Sunday, March 31, 2013


About to land back home in Perth. 
Thank you to my daughter Lexie for the photo and for a fabulous Tour de Dali

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Ready and Waiting

Early morning at South Beach, Miami and the umbrellas and sun lounges have been set out ready and waiting for the crowds. 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Lena Johnson and Key West Historic Memorial Sculpture Garden

Key West Historic Memorial Sculpture Garden at Mallory Square commemorates the pioneering spirit and heroic folk from Key West's past. A unique and interesting way to share a community's history and it was the sculpture of Lena Johnson and her story that caught my attention. 

According to the plaque:

Lena Johnson made her living by baking cakes and making "pull candy" taffy. She lived in a frame dwelling on Division Street...In 1916, when the Boy Scout Troop needed a meeting place she gave them a small frame building at the rear of her property. At the scout meetings she provided cake and candy. 

In 1922, Scoutmaster Charles Sands wrote the National Boy Scout Headquarters asking if it was permissible to have a Scout Mother. The National headquarters replied there was no such title but they like the idea and were suggesting it to other Scout Troops. 

Lena also organised the Girl's Friendly Society which met twice a week to help introverts get over their bashfulness. She taught them how to bake, make candy and aided the girls in cultivating lasting friendships. In an era, when married women lost all separate legal identity and women were expected to marry and not work outside the home, Lena Johnson was able to support herself.....In 1927, Lena Johnson was elected to the City Council....She died on March 24, 1932. 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

A Quiet Corner in Ernest Hemingway's Studio

I find visiting the creative environments where artist's work - whatever their craft - interesting. Perhaps it is that curiosity in trying to gleam something more about the person and their brilliance. 

I had never expected to travel to Florida let alone to Key West and visit Ernest Hemingway's house. This is a quiet corner from his studio. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Sunrise - South Beach Miami

It was not that I had been up all night - although staying at South Beach will always to noisy enough to awaken me even from the deepest slumber - but that we were off to Key West for the day.  

Given the miles to be covered it was an early start; the bonus being to see the fab sun rise across the street from our Ocean Drive hotel. 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

South Beach, Miami

I don't think that anything we had experienced so far on our Tour de Dali prepared us for South Beach, Miami. What a vibrant place this is! 

Monday, March 18, 2013

Spring at St Pete's Beach

Sometimes when we take a journey we do not know what our destination will be and this was so when I caught the bus not far from the St Petersburg Pier and decided to stay to the end of the ride. 

A great way to see a city and the final destination - St Pete's Beach - was a delight. 

Whilst it was not swimming weather for me, further along from where this photo was taken where hundreds of people soaking up the midday Florida sun. 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

From the Pier at St Petersburg, Florida

I had never expected to go to St Petersburg in Florida but as we were determined to see as many major Dali art works as we could, the St Petersburg Dali Museum had to be on our Tour de Dali itinerary. 

After more than a month of very cold and chilly weather, we welcomed the blue skies which continued when we arrived in St Petersburg. It was a good feeling to put away my heavy winter coat, reduce several layers of clothing (I had been wearing up to six including the coat) and enjoy an afternoon walk along the pier. 

Saturday, March 16, 2013

NASA Kennedy Space Centre

We were in Orlando for only a couple of nights and another significant place I am fascinated with is the Kennedy Space Centre which was not that far away from where we were staying.  

So it was time to seize the moment and take the detour to the NASA Kennedy Space Centre before travelling onto St Petersburg, Florida. 

Of course it did not take long to make up my mind that this was the way to go - after all I was not doing all the driving! Still I can also say that the navigation was not that easy either and in the end we needed to ring the centre to find out exactly what to put into our satellite navigation. 

Visiting NASA was well worth the diversion and as our time was limited we only had a whistle stop tour but were able to be there long enough to find out what it would be like to take off into space through the Shuttle Experience and to visit the Apollo and Saturn exhibition. 

A great start to our day and wonderful to be able to see and experience some of the centre activities first hand. 

Friday, March 15, 2013

Fantasyland, Magic Kingdom

Part of our "Tour de Dali" was to go from New York where by way, the Dali paintings that we had planned see had gone to the Centre Pompidou exhibition in Paris, then onto the Dali Museum in St Petersberg, Florida. 

Planning how to get to St Petersburg was the next challenge along with seeing a few attractions along the way.

Like many little kids, it had always been my dream to go the Disneyland. Well as a big kid we were going through Orlando so here was my opportunity. 

There is nothing like having a horse drawn carriage pull up next to you, the people jump out and then break into dance to foot tapping music. A real treat and the Fantasyland Castle in the background made it just that more magical.

Between the Disneyland Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios Theme Parks there was much to see and many rides to enjoy along the way. A fab day. 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Late Afternoon in Central Park

With a number of my posts over the last few days being photos from Central Park, it may look like this is the only place I visited - it wasn't - but is was the place I probably continue to enjoy the most in New York. 

New York is a fab place for walking (and taking the underground) and this time round we took the opportunity to criss-cross the park as we walked to The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, the Lincoln Centre and to also just visit the park. 

Despite the city traffic, the city noises are quickly lost in the park and it's then time to take in the surrounding natural beauty with the tall city buildings as a backdrop.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Chinatown, New York

A fascinating district of New York made even more special by a photographic session with James Maher. 

If you are visiting New York and have the time, James' photographic tour is highly recommenced. 

Saturday, March 9, 2013

In the Footsteps of Dali....Day 9. The Royal Heart

Whilst this photo taken through a glass case is fuzzy, this jewellery piece is my favourite from the Dali Museum in Figueres.

The middle section of this piece pulsates, just like a human heart. Magnificent. A link to Dali's jewellery art at the museum is here.

It's now time to leave Spain. A short stop in Barcelona then to New York for more art and onto Florida for the Dali Museum in St Petersburg. 

Friday, March 8, 2013

In the Footsteps of Dali...Day 8: Figueres

Then is was to the Dali Museum in Figueres.

Amazingly when we walked into the hotel where we are staying not far from this museum, there were works of Dali on most lobby walls and up the stairwell. As it turned out, Dali was a frequent visitor to Hotel Duran's dining room where or course we had to have a meal - I sampled the local sea urchins - delicious. It was a wonderful coincidental treat for our Tour de Dali!

The visit to the museum was fabulous. This photo was taken in the main hall area looking up to the dome in the ceiling. With Dali's painting on the wall and the light/shadows created by the building, there were these interesting effects. 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

In the Footsteps of Dali....Day 7: Cadaques

Arriving late the day before, we arose early the next morning to explore the beautiful seaside town of Cadaques before leaving for Figueres. And as if to remind us of the purpose of our journey we came across this doorway advertising an old Dali exhibition. 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

In the Footsteps of Dali....Day 6: Port de la Selva to Cadaques

I was surprised to see the distance to Australia being listed on this interesting sign on the track between Port de la Selva and Cadaques. 

This time we took the longer walking route - some 25 kms - to reach our destination and to take in the wonderful Costa Brava coastline. Whilst the sun was shining, the wind that had been blowing for two days continued to make walking more than a little uncomfortable. The track along the coastline is quite varied with some of this section being a stone lined path shown below. 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

In the Footsteps of Dali....Day 5: Llanca to Port de la Selva

After leaving the old town of Llanca our route continued through olive groves and scrub eventually reaching the medieval village of Santa Creu shown here with Port de la Selva in the distance. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

In the Footsteps of Dali....Day 4: Port Bou to Llanca

This is the Costa Brava coastline which according to our trip notes means 'brave' in the sense of courage and wilderness. 

So don't be fooled but the beautiful blue skies and seas that do not really look that rough. We had just come down from the mountains struggling (at least) 80kph winds that nearly blew us and our precious trip notes off the ridges. 

And this was on the easy route. There was no way we could have walked the higher and more "sporty" track. 

Friday, March 1, 2013

In the Footsteps of Dali....Day 3: Banyuls to Port Bou

After yesterday's sunshine the day was overcast and uncomfortable; not helped of course by a developing cold that would dog me for the rest of my time in Spain. 

So when we reached Port Bou and feeling like a glass or two of the local wine, we were delighted to find the shops stocked not only bottles, but wine for purchase by the litre or whatever the size of your container happened to be. And the price was very modest - about 2 to 4 euros a litre. A visit to the local supermarket meant we had wonderful cheeses to go with the wine. It was then time for reflection of our day before a tasty paella for dinner. 

Not only had the day been overcast, but the mountains through which we had walked from Collioure were now topped with snow. 

How lucky we were to have completed our days walking's as the temperature was certainly going down.