“You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.” – Mark Twain
Do you remember the childrens’ guessing game “I Spy with my little eye“?
Often used in answer to cries of “Are we nearly there yet?” during a long car journey or whilst waiting for an appointment, this game not only encourages participants to actively look out for items related to the game, but also to home in on the world around them.
Imagine though, that as well as looking through your own eyes, you were encouraged to appreciate the point of view of others. To develop the ability to imagine what life would be like if we were not constrained by our own vantage point.
For this month’s CBBH Photo Challenge, my question to you is: “WHAT DO YOU SPY WITH YOUR LITTLE EYE?” Show me something either wholly from your point of view, or alternatively imagine what something would be like from someone else’s point of view.
Situated in the gardens of the Alcázar of Córdoba, (also known as the Alcázar of the Christian Monarchs), this monument commemorates the meeting between the Catholic Kings, Ferdinand II of Aragon together with his wife, Isabella I of Castile, and the explorer, Christopher Columbus. After continually lobbying at the Spanish court and following years of negotiations, Cristóbal Colón (as he is known in Spain) finally achieved success in 1492 by securing funds to support his quest from the Christian Monarchs. Ferdinand and Isabella bade Columbus farewell as he set out to chart unknown territory and discover what (for Europeans) was a new world. The Monument of the Catholic Kings is set amongst shafts of sharply pruned cypresses within the spectacular gardens of the Royal Fortress. One can only imagine what would have happened had Columbus been unsuccessful.
Here you can see Calle Alta (High Street) in the upper part of the white village (pueblo blanco) of Frigiliana. There is no motor vehicle access up the steep streets to this part of the village, which remains largely how it must have looked hundreds of years ago, when the village was occupied by the Moors. Can you see the old lady asleep in her chair outside her front door? Above her head there is one of a number of plaques to be found around the village which tell the history of Frigiliana. Everytime I visit, I wonder when was the last time some of the frail, old people who live in and around Calle Alta came down to visit the rest of the village.
This year, I was fortunate to be in the capital city of Andalucía, Seville, for the huge processions to celebrate the religious festival of Corpus Christi. The night before the festivities, the streets are strewn with rosemary and flower petals, balconies are draped with shawls, and shrines are erected at various points along the route. An unusual feature of Corpus Christi celebrations comes at the end of the procession, when the dance of “Los Seises” is performed in the Cathedral by young choirboys dressed in medieval-style costumes. The main procession started around 8.30am and finished back at the Cathedral around midday. This year, however, there were further processions in the city, later in the day, as this was also The Armed Forces Day! Now, anyone who knows me will tell you that I have a soft spot for a man in uniform 😉 so my eye was drawn to these soldiers who were wearing authentic historical uniforms. Of course, it’s difficult to envisage the difficulties faced not only by the men who wore these original uniforms with their lack of modern equipment, but also by today’s soldier with the benefit of up-to-date weaponry, but fighting a total different kind of foe.
There has been a religious building on the site of the Catholic Christian Cathedral of Córdoba, more popularly known as the Mezquita, since 600AD. The original Visigothic Church of St Vincent became a mosque and, over the years a number of alterations and domes with skylights were built to admit extra light. The 16th-century saw the start of 250 years of work commence to build a Christian Cathedral in the centre of the mosque (hence the often-used description of ‘Mezquita-Cathedral’). The building exhibits a range of changing architectural styles and is most notable for its arcaded hypostyle hall, with 856 columns of jasper, onyx, marble, and granite. The famous alternating red and white double arches were a new introduction to architecture at the time, permitting higher ceilings than would otherwise be possible with relatively low columns. Whenever I am wandering around the Mezquita, I can’t help but wonder about the men who worked on building these magnificent columns. Could they have foreseen their work would still be standing more than one thousand years later?
Being a bit of a petrol-head, I love the smell of
testosterone…sorry, petrol fumes, whether it’s Formula 1 or MotoGP, so my final image for this month’s challenge was the view I had when I visited the Andalucían city of Jerez, to see the annual MotoGP motorcycle world championship race. We don’t like to get tickets for the stands, as we prefer to wander around amongst the true fans, trying to get the best view. There are some real characters turn up for these races – some in fancy dress, others playing instruments and banging drums, some setting off fireworks, as well as usually someone wandering around with a leg of Serano ham and a big knife, offering to cut you a slice! There are usually 125,000 spectators at the race-track and the majority of them arrive on motorcycles themselves. It’s the only place I have ever seen a traffic jam consisting solely of motorbikes! Of course, this was my view of the race, but what must it be like to be one of the riders in the race ? Would you be excited or terrified?
This month’s CBBH Featured Blogs are two of the nicest lady bloggers on the internet:
Thank you ladies for your continuing support of my blog and it is my pleasure to feature you both this month.
** The Hidden Spain Blog features tales from an area of Spain I have yet to visit – Extremadura. Sue writes her Letters from Extremadura which feature recipes, days out, as well as fantastic posts about return visits on the ferry to the UK. I particularly enjoyed her recent post “A Grand Day Out” – (I soooo love Wallace and Gromit – don’t you?) when she visited Trujillo during the first weekend in May for the National Cheese Fair. Sue is a great photographer and supplies us with a multitude of shots to give us a real flavour of the Hidden Spain. I’d love you to hop over and say HOLA!
** Sonel’s Corner of the world is in South Africa and not only does she give us an insight into this beautiful place she calls home, but her blog is awash with tutorials and help for all us of lesser mortals who can never hope to take such wonderful photographs. Check out her newly launched Black and White Photo Challenge. Sophia is one of the nicest ladies you could hope to meet in the blogging world and is always ready with a word of encouragement, a friendly comment and big HUG 🙂
So that´s the CBBH Photo Challenge for July, everyone!
Remember, all you have to do is post your entry by the end of the month, tag your entry ‘CBBH Photo Challenge’, link back to this blog and, most importantly, don´t forget to add links to any two blogs that you´ve commented on during the past month, so that we can all HOP OVER and have a look. Make sure you FOLLOW THIS BLOG so you don´t miss next month´s exciting challenge!
For more information on how the CBBH Photo Challenge works click here.
I hope everyone taking part enjoys the exposure the CBBH Photo Challenge offers to featured blogs and, who knows, you may end up finding a new favourite! I´m looking forward to seeing your interpretations.
[CBBH logo Image credit: (cc) Mostly Dans]