Barcelona Flashback – Urban Hiking

10 04 2010

There are two routes you can take to Parc Guell in Barcelona, the short, preferred one or the long one with the steep grade of incline. We chose the short one; we’re no dummies.

We were doing well until we left the subway station. There was some major road construction right outside the station exit. There were detours and temporary pedestrian walkways. We followed the signs and checked our maps but somehow ended up traveling in the wrong direction. Our only recourse was to cut a route across the hill and enter the park from the back.

We knew something was up with our new route when the road ended and escalators began. Yeah, that’s right, they replaced the road with escalators. That’s how steep it was.  At least it beat walking the hill.

Come to find out, the escalators wouldn’t take us the entire way up the hill.

Man, that was one grueling walk. Especially when I had to run ahead to take photos. : )

Want to see agony? Check out the couple about 30 yards down the hill. The woman is struggling.

I can’t tell you how happy we were when another set of escalators showed up.

Eventually, we made it to the park.

I could have easily written about the park but others have done that. I thought the journey was a little more interesting.





In My Garden: Spring 2nd Look

8 04 2010

We have some storms coming in tonight so I made it a point to go out and snap some photos of the spring explosion going on in my yard.

Spirea

This spirea is loaded with buds and blooms.  Click the photo to see how dense it is.  The following pic shows how enormous this bush has become. If the rain doesn’t weigh the branches down tonight, it should be a big white pom pom this weekend.

Rhododendron

Talking about a bush loaded with buds. Check out my rhododendron bush.

It’s interesting. Every time I take a picture, I end up with two pics. The first picture is the one I intended to take. The second pic is what I discover when I finally view the picture.

Look at the following picture. I intended to capture a closer view of the rhododendron bloom. What ends up being interesting is the glistening silver balls hanging on the tips of the flower’s stamen.

Cupflower

I bought this ground cover from a mail order catalog. I believe it was Bluestone Perennials. I have it growing along the path beside the house.  The flowers look like mini-orchids. It’s such a dainty looking plant but it can stand up to foot traffic.

Knock-Out Roses

First rose of the season.

Swamp Jessamine

You’ll see this plant growing in the wild all over eastern North Carolina. Mine is growing on the back fence.