#DecorDialogues with Architect Siddharth Shirur is now LIVE on the Home-N-Interiors page! CLICK HERE TO READ!
"To expect the unexpected shows a thoroughly modern intellect." - Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

An off-beat view of Spain & Italy - 2

Here we are again, with my next series in the off-beat holiday clicks from lovely Spain and Italy.
Like I'd mentioned earlier, some of the strangest sights catch my fancy and hold my attention. So, what caught my eye this time around? You'll see...right ahead!

Well, I absolutely adore window-dressing displays, street art works, tiled wall murals, well basically all kids of artistic displays, so I couldn't resist capturing a few or more! I can reveal that many a time these clicks had me getting left behind on our brisk walking tours! 
And if you are wondering whether I raided all the stores there....sadly no! 
Too expensive, hence I had to curb my shopoholic tendencies and satiate myself with mere clicks! Well, of course the curb was lifted on certain gastronomic pleasures, cravings for which were hard to ignore! 


Witches and more on the streets of Segovia.

 A beautiful sign board outside a boutique in Segovia.

Water-colors at Montjuic, Barcelona.

Dainty canvas miniatures at Montjuic, Barcelona.

Delicate hand-made glass curios at the Spanish village, Barcelona.

Tiny hand-made cane accessories and curios at the 
Spanish village, Barcelona

L'Auca del Senyor Esteve - A Catalan style story depicted on this tile 
mural on one of the walls in the Gothic parts of Barcelona.

Such a delightful window display of hand-made porcelain, papier-mache 
objects d'art along the by-lanes of Barcelona.

 Incredible 3D framed paper craft again from the
by-lanes of Barcelona.

Luscious Mediterranean fruits on display at a fruit stall in Barcelona.

A kid's clothing store's (I think) window display, in Barcelona.

Delicate hand-painted clay dolls and figurines on 
display along Ponte Vecchio, Florence

Quaint Pinnochio dolls and a reflected scene of the 
buildings along Ponte Vecchio, Florence.

Gastronomic visual treats that tempted - Addicted to Gelato forever!
Festival del gelato, Firenze.

Pretty water-colors near the Colosseum, Rome.

Miniature armies had me rooted along the by-lanes of Rome.

Drool-worthy display outside one of the numerous bistros in Roma.

While gaily traipsing along the cobbled streets (btw I loved clicking that too!), I encountered so many eye-popping treats that I've lost track of them. One that remains a favorite is the incredibly beautiful, large (about 10-12' tall and 6-8' wide), grand and ornate entrance DOORS to common buildings, not necessarily famous monuments. My only regret, not clicking sharper images since many were shot from moving vehicles!
I have to mention here my friend and super-girl travel blogger Divyakshi Gupta who is coincidentally obsessed about clicking all kinds of doors!


A majestic one from the town of Avila

 A solid one along the streets of Segovia.

This one's from Madrid.

 This is from Valencia.

Again from Valencia.

 Oh! Just missed that grand one in Barcelona, 
do enjoy the beautiful windows and facade instead!

 A shiny one from Barcelona.

 A majestic one from the Spanish village, Barcelona.

Another one from Barcelona.

 An ornate one from Barcelona.

From Gaudi's Casa Batllo, Barcelona.

A beautiful one again from Barcelona.

A fantastic piece from Florence. 

This one's right from St Peter's Basilica, Vatican.

Well, I think its time I wind up this rather lengthy trail of my random clicks! 

A personal observation - I think one way to make a holiday more memorable is to get a better feel of the place, its sights, sounds and smells by roaming around on foot instead of just visiting the important landmarks or monuments that form a mandatory part of a guided tour. Also paying attention to tiny, obscure nitty-gritties of a place, do add that additional punch to your holiday memories!
A trivia - I still have scores of pictures covering diverse subjects such as beautiful and unique architectural facades, aesthetic windows, quaint cobbled streets, colorful marble flooring, different types of canopied trees and lots more!! 
But relax, I am not planning to inundate everyone with all those collections....hehehe, some treasures I hoard for personal perusal!

A shout out to all folks who love clicking equally random pictures....woohoo guys!
Its not the big things that give me as much satisfaction as the pleasure of seemingly trivial objects and sights!
After all, beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, doesn't it?!
Do share your stories with me! 

Copyright © 2016 KALA RAVI

Saturday, 18 June 2016

An off-beat view of Spain & Italy - 1

Cliché though it may sound, I am going ahead with my post-international-vacation travel post! 
Only it will not be a regular travel post that details all must - see/do/eat/shop kinda stuff!
Other websites and blogs devoted to imparting and sharing useful travel info are pretty rampant, so let me not try to steal or mislead their share of audiences with my feeble attempts at educating folks on these helpful or meaningful aspects!
Well, honestly speaking, I came up with the idea of this post, while sifting through the scores of pics I'd relentlessly clicked through my fortnight-long family vacation covering the cities of Madrid, Valencia, Barcelona, Florence and Rome.
My phone's (a venerable 4-year old Samsung Grande 2) overloaded memory had declared running out of storage space and I decided to relieve the aged-one of my numerous unwanted...err...aesthetic clicks! 
I was pretty puzzled as to the source of some pics, while many others I wondered at the motivation behind clicking them. 
Of course, my family helpfully supplied info on that aspect - 'Oh, this one? Don't you remember you were clicking this one while you got lost in La Rambla!' or 'This has to be while we were doing the guided city tour of Florence, when you went MIA almost as soon as the tour began!' with sniggers thrown in! 
Yes, I do tend to get distracted or is it attracted by the strangest sights! Typically if you show me a monument, I'll be looking at everything else besides it; whoever said you could only have ADHD kids...maybe I am one of those kids that grew up to be a mom! 
So after much deliberation and a li'l bit of ingenuity I managed to compartmentalize my random clicks into some semblance of logic.
I had options of bombarding FB, Insta, Twitter but I decided my blog would preserve these personal peeves till posterity!
So go ahead and join me on this whimsical and maybe quirky click trail from beautiful Spain and Italy!

Presenting the first series - FLORAL FANCY
Yes! Me love pretty flowers! Can't resist clicking 'em!

Enroute to Avila-Segovia from Madrid. 

A window flower-box in Avila.

Road divider in Madrid city.

 Oranges on trees are as beautiful as flowers aren't they? - At Valencia.

Street curb in the beautiful Spanish village - Barcelona.

White walls, blue potted flowers -Oh! So Mediterranean! 
Poble Espanyol - Spanish village - Barcelona.

 Super pretty isn't this? Spanish village, Barcelona

 Outside one of the boutiques of the Spanish village.

 Dainty flower boxes in tiny balconies in the Spanish village, Barcelona.

Pretty Cacti blooms for sale at La Rambla, Barcelona.

 A delightful nursery on La Rambla, Barcelona.

Nursery near the tower of Pisa, Florence.

What a spread! On a side-walk in Rome. 

Pretty street flowers in Rome.

 A blooming balcony overlooking the Piazza Navona, Rome.

Well, if people have spent time, effort, thought and money in installing them, someone's 
got to appreciate them, isn't it? I love lights that look beautiful even when unlit....

The center of attraction for me at Avila.

Can you spot the street-light next to the guy in blue? 
And the wall-mounted ones on the right-side? Madrid lights!

A lonely light in Avila get its share of limelight!

The stars on the streets of Segovia. The lights, I mean of course! 

 Darn! The Aqueduct, distracted me in Segovia!

 This one caught my fancy on the Madrid city bus tour. 

And look at this gorgeous one from the Royal
palace grounds at Madrid! Had to photo-bomb it! 

This beaut is from the streets of Valencia!

This one's from the streets of Barcelona.

Look at the beautiful lights from the central fountain at Plaza Catalunya, Barcelona.

Technically not a part of my street-light collection, but I had to slip 
these in - from Maestro Gaudi's Casa Batllo, Barcelona.

From the streets of Florence.

Notice the red fleur-de-lis insignia of Florence in this one.

Lights in front of Foro Triano, Rome.

Lights from St Peter's square, Vatican.

Gosh! Looks like this post will be having a sequel after all! I've still got loads of quirky collections that I plan to spring on all my unsuspecting readers!
Cheerio, folks and hang on for the next installment! I hope I'll be getting encouraging comments like, 'Boy! Your collection is way wackier than mine!'
Do share your thoughts about this post and also your travel/photography peeves, if you have some!

-------TO BE CONTINUED------

Read: An off-beat view of Spain & Italy - 2

Copyright © 2016 KALA RAVI