Scatterlings and Great Hearts

Earth Under My Feet

It’s little wonder his weekend concert at Kirstenbosch was sold out weeks ago.  At 61, Johnny Clegg, icon of the South African music industry, still makes the hair on my arms rise when he performs songs that were instrumental in bringing South African Afro-pop and Mbaqanga* music to the world stage.

It’s powerful stuff that makes my heart beat and my hips sway to the rhythm of Africa and I’m reminded as I stand photographing this legend performing to a crowd of 5000 Capetonians just of how far we have come as a country since the dark days of apartheid when Clegg and collaborators such as Sipho Mchunu (below) transcended racial and cultural divides with traditional song and dance.

Activist, anthropologist, singer, songwriter and academic, Le Zoulou Blanc (The White Zulu), is true South African music royalty. 9-IMG_82958-IMG_82847-IMG_82835-IMG_82751-IMG_8230

a style of South African music with rural Zulu roots.

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Backbone of the Nation

A new blog. By me.

weird short stories and other things

wheelbarrow

The wheelbarrow is the essence of the South African economy. Without it there would be no economy.

The earliest recorded wheelbarrow was found in a tomb in Chengdu, China and dated back to 118 AD. In Europe the wheelbarrow was introduced in the 12th century.

The wheelbarrow (‘kruiwagen’) in South Africa was introduced by the first Dutch colonists. Indigenous languages don’t have a word for wheelbarrow so they all use the Dutch or the English word; sometimes pronounced in the accent of the own language.

Earth and rocks for roads and waterworks were moved with the wheelbarrow as were diamonds, gold and other precious treasures from the earth. Nowadays mining companies and farmers use excavators and lorries but in small scale operations the wheelbarrow is still indispensable. And so are the guys behind the wheelbarrow. They are the ones that keep the nation going.

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Niles Canyon Railway

Laura Macky Photography

The same day I took the Barn picture we went to Niles, California where the Niles Canyon Railway is located.

The history of trains in Niles Canyon dates back to the building of the original transcontinental railroad. The first Western Pacific Railroad Company (formed in 1862) started construction in San Jose towards Sacramento. It built twenty miles of track that reached into Alameda Creek canyon in 1866. Its first passenger excursion entered the canyon on October 2 of that year.  You can read more about it here:  Niles Canyon Railway.

It was fun looking at this caboose and yes I went a bit wild with it.  I so rarely take any images with people in them but how could I resist this grandad with his grandson?  🙂

Addendum…since some of you have asked.  I reduced noise, tone-mapped it in Nik HDR, used Topaz Restyle on a light opacity…

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As The Sun Goes Down..

Iceland is beautiful!!!

Cornwall Photographic

..On our last day in Iceland, where better to watch the fiery colours than from atop an active volcano, billowing steam and sulphurous gases, before our descent into Reykjavik for one last night before an early flight home tomorrow.  It has been an awesome journey; Poppy and her BB, C and Me on an excellent Icelandic adventure, circumnavigating the island of Iceland in the middle of a winter that, even by Icelandic standards, has seen super low temperatures and very high levels of snowfall.

We spent this afternoon battling through blizzard after blizzard in an attempt to reach Haifoss, a real highlight from my last visit here and one I wanted to share with Poppy and her husband on our final day.  Waist deep snow at our final turn from route 31 made the ascent to the waterfall impossible.  A foot or two of snow had been neither here…

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