MEDIEVAL OLD TOWN, TALLINN, ESTONIA – May 22, 2019

May 22, 2019

My newest  adventure is a trip to  the Baltic capitals!!! First stop – Tallinn, Estonia.  Tallinn has been on the European  map since 1154.  In the city’s long, assorted history, much of it’s medieval-ness still exists and, and for  the tourists, they play it up when ever possible.   Why, just this afternoon, a wench was captured in the old town square and was taken off to the dungeon.  So  beware, if you come to Tallinn,  your past may catch up with you.

Tallinn, being a walled city since the 16th century,  today  still has, in tact, one mile of the  original wall and 26 of the  46 watch towers intact. Some of the towers can still be climbed and the wall walked.

I walked a bit of the wall today but had to back track to the original  tower I climbed to get back down – as some of those old stone steps  were  so small and worn and with a rope as a banister, they were too scary for me to walk down!

With Tallinn being so far north,  I was lucky enough to enjoy spring at home and  also again in Tallinn.  Also, being so far north, sunrise ( in May) is at 4:30 AM and sunset is at 10:05 PM.

Even weeds can be pretty.

Many of the buildings in Tallinn were  built in the Art Nouveau style and fall under the description of beautiful and / or very interesting.

A close  up of that  lounging  dragon was a must.

Tallinn’s Old Town is known for their orange and red roof tops and many church spires and it truly is a beautiful sight.

Sometimes other creeping sights also appear….

Along with some interesting downspouts…

Many churches,  most of them very old , can be found in this city but my favorite was Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, named after a Russian war hero.  Built in 1894 and is Russian Orthodox.

Bird of the day – white wagtail lunching .

Stay tuned – more postings will be coming……

Hope you enjoyed!

Thanks for reading!

 

 

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BIRD SIGHTINGS IN GERMANY, AUSTRIA AND ITALY

June 21, 2018

I am always on the look out for new bird sightings!!  This trip did not disappoint me. There was a small park in Bolzano, Italy  and, seriously-  there was a bird house of some sort in every tree.  Most were occupied  by,  what we call in the USA, house sparrows.  But if  I didn’t  keep looking, I  might miss someone new.  Or a surprising  picture like this…

where Mama  bird  is practically   sticking her whole head down  baby bird’s throat!  Or…

I might have missed my  only sighting of a chaffinch, which is supposed to be very abundant in Europe.  But  I only saw one.   Maybe it was because I have never fed the birds hot dog pieces before.   :  )

This white wagtail was in a park in Munich, very busily searching  for bugs in the grass.  It must have been a lucrative spot because he was there for a long time and  could have cared less about me taking photos of him.

In Austria, I saw dozens and dozens of house martins, in the sky and flying  to and from their nests. Martins, like swallows,  spend most of their time in the air and only eat bugs.  They can mate and feed their young in the air.  House  martins  make cup-shaped mud nests, usually below the eaves of buildings.

“Unexpected intrusions of beauty. This is what life is.”   by Saul Bellow

Family portrait of  barn swallows  in Italy.

This shot really shows off  the forked tail.

Feeding time.

This barn swallow’s  nest was under the awning of a gelato  stand/store but she didn’t seem to mind all of the  gelato-loving people  traffic.

Hope you enjoyed this final and all  of my posts from my  Germany/Austria/Italy trip for 2018.

Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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