Friday, September 30, 2011

This Sheep Thinks He's a Dog

What happens when a sheep is raised as a dog? Will it acquire the habits of a dog? And what happens if you put it with its flock?

Well, a sheep in England thinks it's a dog and Jack the sheep is so convinced he's a dog that he nudges his owner until she puts him on a leash.

The sheep's name is Jack, and it's not his fault he's confused. Alison Sinstadt and her partner Simon Sherwin, who have a farm in Shropshire, England, brought him indoors when he was just a wee lamb because he was quite small. They raised him with their springer spaniel Jessie, and now Jack is so convinced that he's a dog too that he fetches sticks, walks on a leash, and even tries to bark (though it comes out more of a baa-rk).

And putting the 6-month-old ovine in a field with his own flock doesn't help a bit: he just tries to herd them. It's positively unherd-of!

Source of images and news: MSN

I wonder how long the friendship will last between the dog and the sheepdog! And if they say that a dog is a forever friend, can we say the same thing with the sheepdog? And the springer spaniel Jessie, does he think that his inseparable playmate is also a dog?  Oh, my, oh my!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Life is Not a Bed of Roses

Bed of roses is an English expression, which means an easy and peaceful life. Most likely based on a rose representing happiness and love, so a bed of roses would represent a very happy life.

The expression is from a line in Christopher Marlowe's poem The Passionate Shepherd to His Love. This was published posthumously in 1599;  Marlowe died in 1593.

...And I will make thee beds of roses
And a thousand fragrant posies,
A cap of flowers, and a kirtle
Embroidered all with leaves of myrtle;...

Source: Wikipedia

The common saying is: "Life is not a bed of roses".  Surely life has its ups and downs but just like a rose is not a rose without its thorns, life cannot be without pains and heartaches, but it is up to us to assume the fact that no matter how minor, pain is still pain and heartache may either destroy us or make us stronger.  But we have a choice, always.  Here is a beautiful ballad from Bon Jovi entitled "Bed of Roses". I just don't like how the video ends. It could have ended with a reconciliation or something else, but...

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Park of El Capricho, known as The Whim, is one of the most beautiful parks of the city, although not frequented by the Madrileños, being located outside the center of Madrid.

The garden occupies some 14 hectares of land and dates back to 1784 when the Duke of Osuna, from one of the most illustrious and powerful of the city’s families, acquired the land to express the family’s artistic values as well as to give the family a place to escape from city life. It has been of private property until 1974 when the town hall purchased it.

The art of landscaping in El Capricho is displayed in three different styles of classical gardenscapes: the ‘parterre’ or French garden, English landscaping and the Italian giardino.

There are many love trees, elms, almond trees, Holm oaks and lilac bushes, which contribute their colours in springtime.

There is a labyrinth, "parterre", a lake and creek, and a group of beautiful constructions, such as the Old Woman’s House, which brings back the typical lifestyle of simple folk or a hermit’s dwelling in ruins, and in which once lived an actual hermit who used to startle lost passerbys. These are the ‘caprichos’ built to recall the lives of the more humble classes.

Water is present throughout the walk. A sinuous stream makes its way across the property, deep enough for row boats and in fact, uniting the games area and the lake with the Dance Casino, which can be reached by a small wharf called the Casa de Cañas. Made of bamboo, decorated with mirrors and a large fresco, the casino is the work of Martin Lopez Aguado, and the top floor as well as the terrace were used for holding grand parties, which gave the guests all the prestige that they believed themselves to have.

Source of Information:

The park holds its own beauty and if added to it, you are  provided with the music of jazz - soul (of the band Freedonia), the scent of laurel leaves and pines as you stroll in the garden and all for free, would you not consider yourself to be lucky as I did? 

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The Orchid and the Hummingbird

Martin Johnson Heade (1819-1904) Orchid and Hummingbird

Fable of an orchid and a hummingbird.

Once upon a time in a jungle  in Brazil,
an orchid was talking with a hummingbird:
"Of all the flowers - she said vainly -
  that grow here, I am the most beautiful of them all".

But soon enough, the wind blew with all its might
So much so that the poor orchid was taken by its root.

The hummingbird thought :  "in the dense forest, life is
as brief as beauty itself".

Story translated from the book:
Abecedario de Arte by Carlos Reviejo and Ana Moreno Rebordinos
Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza

Source of Image:  Flores y

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Hiroshima, 65 Years Later

What happened with the radiation that could have lasted 1000 years in Hiroshima?

Hiroshima 65 years later

Brazil 65 years after the bombing of Hiroshima

On the long run, what causes greater damage, is it the atomic bomb, or ...

Source: email from Alicia J. B. 14 Sept, 2011.

I have not visited Brazil, so I have no idea how they live and the images may not be truly representative of the present situation, but the notes on Hiroshima seem to be pretty accurate judging from other sources.  Yet there is no doubt that  people with their initiative and perseverance can change the course of destiny,  just like what happened in Hiroshima.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Summer in Cantabria and Asturias

Ron and Beatriz spent two weeks of their well earned vacations in the north of Spain.  And these are some of their pictures.

1)  Lovely and picturesque sceneries:






2)  Where they stayed:


   3)  Some of what they ate:

4)  Flower Parade:


5)  Nice and funny pictures

Do we have to ask if they enjoyed themselves? The pictures are better than words can say.