AGIOS SPYRIDON

rrem

This was a boat to fall in love with. I did so in December 2018, when I stumbled upon it in Latsi (Latchi), Cyprus. It was such a beautiful old wooden fishing boat, dry docked, and totally neglected. It seemed so wrong that such a lovely piece of craftsmanship  would now be so uncared for, although you can be sure that thousands of tourists have passed by and like myself have taken many, many photos.

Last year I posted some of these photos here after my trip to Cyprus. I didn’t know anything at all about this boat at the time and didn’t manage to find any information. I didn’t even know that it was named Agios Spyridon

My earlier post can be seen here: https://helenebrennan.wordpress.com/2019/01/15/time-and-tide-and-flaking-paint/

On my most recent trip to Cyprus in December 2019, I went to take a look to see how this old lady was getting on. Alas, I found it in the process of being demolished. There were some local photographers there to record it  and I got the impression that it was a bit of an event.

DSC_0514 agios spyridos

 

DSC_0521 agios spyridos

 

DSC_0516 agios spyridos

 

DSC_0509 agios spyridos

 

DSC_0507

Since my return home I did some more research and was delighted to find some information about it. It seems she was built in 1950 on Crete and  was one of a type  of fishing vessels known as karavoskaro.

On dry land since 2004, the boat was supposed to have been restored but unfortunately that didn’t happen and total negligence forced a decision to have her demolished. Considered to be worthy of being listed as a monument of nautical heritage, it has been digitally recorded in a joint project between the University of Cyprus and the Cyprus Institute.

The 3d image, which you can pull around with your mouse and view from all sides  can be seen here:

http://ephemera.cyi.ac.cy/sites/ephemera/3D1/Latsi_Ag_Spyridon.html

I am familiar with 3d photography as I too was involved with a project to digitally record ancient monuments in my area.  http://www.corcadhuibhne3d.ie/sites.php  A number of these sites were recorded by myself. This development in imaging is a brilliant tool we now have to record any objects that would otherwise disappear from us forever. We may have had photos, but to view objects in 3d is so amazing.

If you click on any image here you will get a better quality view.

Thank you for visiting my post.

FOYNES PORT

DSC_5263

Occasionally, I pass through the port town of Foynes, County Limerick, on the west coast of Ireland. I’m usually in a hurry through, with a long journey to complete and don’t have time to stop. I always think to myself that this looks such an interesting place and I would like to explore and capture the views and interesting buildings. However I managed to grab a few shots on a couple of these journeys. Good light was fleeting, and time was short, but here are some of the images I caught.

foynes_9705

Foynes is on the Shannon Estuary, and is the second biggest port in Ireland. It has a very interesting maritime and aviation history, and there is a Flying Boat and Maritime Museum there, which regrettably, I haven’t managed to  see yet.

Probably the most interesting thing about Foynes is its Flying Boat history. The flying boats were operational from about 1937 up until 1942, when nearby Shannon Airport was opened, and there was no longer a need for flying boats there. You can read more about Foynes’ Flying Boat history on this website: https://www.historyireland.com/troubles-in-ni/ni-1920-present/the-flying-boats-of-foynes/

DSC_9709

My main interest is to create beautiful and interesting images, so even the above industrial scene has beauty when the warm glow of the late afternoon sun lights up these structures and the deep blue of the Shannon Estuarial waters are contrasted against them.

DSC_5242

 

DSC_5251 foynes

 

DSC_5232

 

DSC_5231

The two shots above show Foynes Island

DSC_5252

 

DSC_5257

Foynes railway station, above, now unused – usual story.

DSC_5244

 

DSC_5258 foynes copper tank

I remain hopeful that I will get some more photos of this interesting looking town, some day when I’m not passing through in a hurry.

These photos and a few others of Foynes are available for sale on my website:

https://www.helene-brennan.com/c866-county-limerick

Thank you for viewing my post.

PAPHOS ARCHAEOLOGICAL PARK

DSC_2088

Cyprus is an archaeologist’s paradise. Layer upon layer of historical architectural ruins lie all over the place, and especially here in the Archaeological Park in Paphos. History has not always been kind to earlier civilisations, with foreign invasions and earthquakes destroying many wonderful buildings and works of art.

Some of the ruins here are as old as 2000 years or more, and some date to medieval times.

Here are several photos of these ruins, which include four roman palaces (with some well preserved mosaic floors), castles and amphitheatres.

DSC_6702-

DSC_6703-

DSC_6705

DSC_6707

DSC_6712

DSC_6716

DSC_6717

DSC_6720

DSC_6729

DSC_6754

DSC_6756

DSC_2078

DSC_2080

DSC_6700

DSC_6704-

Thanks for viewing my photos. Please visit my Cyprus Category on my website:

http://www.helene-brennan.com/c857-cyprus

Also see my other posts on Cyprus here

CYPRUS, IN THE TROODOS MOUNTAINS

WINTER IN PAPHOS, CYPRUS

TIME AND TIDE – and Flaking Paint (old boat at Latchi)

THE MAGIC OF LIGHT (Zygi Harbour, Cyprus)

STAVROVOUNI (Cyprus)

STAVROVOUNI 2 (CYPRUS)

APPROACHING CYPRUS

TOMBS OF THE KINGS, PAPHOS, CYPRUS

TOMBS OF THE KINGS, PAPHOS, CYPRUS

The Tombs of the Kings in Paphos, Cyprus, is a very famous UNESCO Work Heritage site.  A must see for all visitors to the region. It dates back to about the 3rd century BC and it was a  burial ground for the richest, most powerful Ptolemaics of the time. Apparently, no Kings were buried there, but it was given its name because of the impressiveness of the rock hewn tombs.

Excavations began there in 1977; tomb raiders had long since removed most of the artifacts. A few pieces remained, that were inaccessible to the raiders.

arch 2 DSC_1497

 

DSC_1434

Individual niches or loculi are cut into the rock in many of the chambers

DSC_1427

 

tombs of kings arch DSC_1494

 

inside tomb 1436

Some of the rock cut stairs have survived well, but many are not easy for old knees nowadays.

tombs of kings paphos

This is a well preserved tomb with lovely doric columns.

DSC_1422

 

DSC_1401

 

DSC_1398

Above can be seen hole in the wall made by tomb raiders to gain access to an adjoining tomb.

DSC_1399

 

DSC_1521

 

DSC_1485

 

DSC_1442

 

DSC_1511

 

DSC_1444

 

 

tombs of kings

 

DSC_1407

Tourists building stone piles in the area. The whole place is littered with them – stone piles, that is!

DSC_1529

 

DSC_1461-

 

DSC_1464

 

DSC_1465

 

tombs of kings - stone piles1462-

Thanks for visiting.

My earlier posts on Cyprus are:

CYPRUS, IN THE TROODOS MOUNTAINS

TIME AND TIDE – and Flaking Paint (old boat at Latchi)

WINTER IN PAPHOS, CYPRUS

APPROACHING CYPRUS

THE MAGIC OF LIGHT  (Zygi Harbour, Cyprus)

 STAVROVOUNI (Cyprus)

STAVROVOUNI 2  (CYPRUS)

Do checkout my website category on Cyprus:

http://www.helene-brennan.com/c857-cyprus

 

 

 

 

CYPRUS – Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa

Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa, in Paphos

Cyprus is an archaeologist’s paradise. There are several ancient sites, all over the country and several of them are in Paphos where I stayed, and excavations are ongoing.

Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa in Kato Paphos is a very interesting site where over the centuries from the 4th century until the 16th century, a number of buildings of Christian worship were created and destroyed.  The exact history seems very complicated, and involved Arab invasion and Earthquakes, building, destruction and rebuilding many times.

The existing church is used for worship in recent times. I didn’t think it was open while I was there, but I understand that it is beautiful inside. Worth a look judging by the photos I have seen.

Here are several photos of the current building and the ancient ruins that surround it.

Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa

Below is a photo of an information notice at the site. If you click on it you will get a sharper, more readable version.

Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa church description-

 

Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1669

 

Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1668

 

Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1666

The ancient sites of Cyprus are particularly noted for their splendid mosaics, some of which you can see below.

mosaic at Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1656

There are raised walkways around the site, offering great views of the mosaics and other remains, without damage to the antiquities.

mosaics an column remains at Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1655

 

Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1653

 

mosaic floor at Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1658

 

Mosaic floor at Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1665-2

 

mosaic floor at Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1675

 

ancient column remains at Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1678

 

decorative column remains with leaf design Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1677

 

Agia Kyriaki Chrysopolitissa DSC_1670-3

 

WP_20171231_12_13_57_ st pauls pillar with arrow

St Paul and St Barnabas are believed to have visited this place to spread Christianity in 45 AD, and it is believed that St Paul was tied to a pillar by the Roman soldiers and whipped  39 times, before the Roman Governor Sergius Paulus was converted to Christianity. The photo above shows the pillar marked with a red arrow.

Thanks so much for viewing my post. If you would like to see more of Cyprus, I have made a number of other posts on Cyprus. See the links below, and watch out for more to come.

CYPRUS, IN THE TROODOS MOUNTAINS

WINTER IN PAPHOS, CYPRUS

TIME AND TIDE – and Flaking Paint (old boat at Latchi)

THE MAGIC OF LIGHT  (Zygi Harbour, Cyprus)

 STAVROVOUNI  (Cyprus)

STAVROVOUNI 2  (CYPRUS)

APPROACHING CYPRUS

Also, do checkout my website category on Cyprus:

http://www.helene-brennan.com/c857-cyprus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TIME AND TIDE – and Flaking Paint

This lovely but derelict old boat is dry docked at Latchi, on the western side of Cyprus. Looks like its sailing days are over, but I guess it is photographed by many passers by. Who could resist it, even knowing that there are so many other photos of it out there. I tried to find some information about its history, but couldn’t find anything.  Perhaps someone out there can enlighten me?

dsc_7002

 

dsc_7021

 

dsc_6988

 

dsc_7025

 

dsc_7024

 

dsc_7023

 

dsc_6989

 

dsc_6990

Thank you for looking at my photos of this beautiful boat.

Many more photos of Cyprus are on my website:

http://www.helene-brennan.com/c857-cyprus

 

 

 

 

OCTOBER EVENING ON MURIOCH BEACH.

DSC_2217

To see more Dingle Peninsula photos please visit my website: http://helene-brennan.com/c25-dingle-peninsula-photos

DSC_2236

DSC_2206

DSC_2226

DSC_2228DSC_2231

Please see my website for more Murioch photos: http://www.helene-brennan.com/tag/murioch

BLASKET EVENING

blasket02

The warm colors of evening sun on the ruins of Great Blasket Island. The island’s beautiful beach lies behind.

More paintings of the Blasket Islands on my website:

http://helene-brennan.com/c62-blasket-islands-paintings

TRALEE SHIP CANAL – THE HUMAN STORY

BLENNERVILLE 023

Tralee Ship Canal, with a view of Blennerville Windmill

Some of you may be aware that I have previously posted photos of Tralee Canal, one of my regular walking and photography routes and in this post I would like to mention just a little snippet about the history in which this canal played a part.

This canal has a rich history. It was built to bring trade to the Tralee area around 1830. But my interest often focuses more on the human side of the story. It was from here that many people set sail for America in the original Jeanie Johnston tall ship during the Famine years of the 1840s to escape hunger and even death, with dreams of a new life in a faraway country, about which they knew very little. This was a dreadful time in the history of Ireland, and its repercussions still resound in the minds and hearts of the people here.

The Jeanie Johnston was a three masted barque that was originally built in Quebec, Canada, in 1847. It was purchased by a Tralee business man who used it to ship emigrants to North America and timbers back to Europe. It was particularly notable because nobody died on the emigrants voyages, unlike on other similar ships of the time, dubbed ‘coffin ships’. From 1848 – 1855 she made 16 voyages to Quebec, Baltimore and New York, taking around 47 days and carrying about 200 people on board. One can only imagine the challenges of this long and arduous journey, on the wild Atlantic Ocean.

When I walk by the canal down to the coast, I contemplate the beautiful view over Tralee Bay and the Sliabh Mish Mountains of the lovely Dingle Peninsula, and sometimes try to imagine what it must have felt like for those thousands of people who left their home country with dreams of a better life, and saw the shores of their beautiful homeland for the last time. I look at the sights they saw as they sailed out to sea, to an unknown fate, and think of their fears and hopes as they knew this might be the last time they would see their beautiful but desperate home country.

In spite of the challenges that confronted them, many achieved their dreams, and many of their descendants have become high achievers in many fields,  some even reaching the highest office of the US.  

Check out this link for a list of 20 US Presidents with Irish connections: 

http://homepage.eircom.net/~seanjmurphy/dir/pres.htm

The Jeanie Johnston is remembered as a ship of great importance to the Irish people. A replica ship was built in Blennerville, Tralee, 1998 – 2000, in a boatyard adjacent to the Blennerville Windmill. It was an ambitious project that cost nearly 14 million euro – way over budget and was sold to The Dublin Docklands Development Authority in 2005, for less than 3 million euro. Unfortunately it did not remain in Kerry, where many stakeholders incurred huge financial losses. It can now be seen moored off Custom House Quay, in Dublin. I have no photos of my own of the current Jeanie Johnston, but here’s one you can see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Jeanie_Johnston.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Jeanie_Johnston.jpg

Read more about the Jeanie Johnston on: http://www.jeaniejohnston.ie

DSCF0017wp

The canal now provides a wonderful amenity to local people who enjoy the beautiful walk along the towpath

rainbow-2_edited-2

A rainbow seen from the canal

WP_20140304_18_39_29_Pro20140304212343 wp

Wetlands border the sides of the canal, on its route to the sea

WP_20140301_15_56_35_Pro__highres

The emigrants may have been glad to leave the uncertain and swiftly changing Irish weather – though it has a beauty of its own

 

 

DSCF0084 copy

Through the lock gates and out into Tralee Bay

WP_20140301_15_58_14_Pro__highres2

A last look up the canal after exiting the lock

WP_20140301_15_55_39_Pro__highres2

The last few yards of the canal before entering the calm waters of Tralee Bay

WP_20140516_21_17_41_Pro20140516222308

Keeping the Sliabh Mish Mountains on the left, thousands of emigrants sailed out towards the wild and rough waters of the Atlantic Ocean, to reach America in approximately 47 days

 

Please take a look at my website on the Tralee Canal Category: http://helene-brennan.com/c112-tralee-canal–county-kerry–photos.

Great Blasket Island – Photographs, Comments, Stories (Part 2)

Image

Great Blasket is a very beautiful Island which has been unhabited since 1953. It’s three miles from the mainland, a mountain rising up from the sea. There is one lovely sandy beach, about 60 acres of arable land in and close to the village; the rest is highland bog and rough grazing land.

On Gt Blasket, viewing the mainland.

Walking on the ridge of the island, viewing Mount Eagle on the mainland

There was once a vibrant, egalitarian community living there – up to 150 people at one time.  A hardworking people who had little material wealth, but they had an enormous wealth of culture and noble values, manifesting in the richness of their language and storytelling. The island boasts several writers among its people, who wrote mainly about life on the island and about its characters, and that’s what makes this island different from other island communities.

Music, song and dance played a dynamic role in their lives, and the island enjoyed the talents of a number of fiddlers and singers who entertained at gatherings in the houses. Traditional set dancing was a popular feature of these social evenings. It was also common for groups to gather for debate and discussion, gleaning information from each other after mainland trips and especially from ‘The King’ (a community leader), who would read the newspapers and keep up with the news of the country and the rest of the world.

Several scholars visited the island in the early part of the 20th Century, being drawn by the language and culture: The  playwright J.M. Synge, linguists like Carl Marstrander and Robin Flower, and many others such as George Thomson, the great Greek scholar, and Kenneth Jackson, the Celtic scholar were among the people that went to learn about the culture and the language.

The people mainly survived on fishing and most families also kept a cow, some sheep and hens. They grew potatoes and a few basic vegetables. Donkeys were also kept for carrying loads, like turf (peat) from the bog, or seaweed for fertiliser. To many of us now, their diet would seem somewhat exotic – aside from the usual potatoes and common vegetables with buttermilk or thick sour milk and  fish – they ate rabbit, birds (puffin, razorbills or young gannets), gull’s eggs, limpets and periwinkles, various seaweeds, lobster roe  (they did not like the lobster flesh), roasted red crab and roasted seal meat.

Resident Donkey on Gt. Blasket Island

A few donkeys are resident on the island

The decline of the fishing markets contributed largely to the process of emigration from the island. The young people left their island homes for a better life in America or the mainland. The vast majority of emigrants settled in Springfield MA. Their numbers declined until in 1953 there were only 22 people left on the island. They knew they had reached the end when a young man died of meningitis and because of a storm that lasted for about three weeks they were unable to get medical assistance for him. Following that they were also unable to bring his body to the burial ground on the mainland. The difficulty of bringing services to the island was no longer acceptable in the middle of the 20th century, when mainlanders appeared to have an easier life. So finally in 1953 they vacated the island.

Image

These houses ,different in character from the other island houses and recently renovated, were built by the Congested Districts Board in the early 20th Century. The famous storyteller Peig Sayers lived in the 2nd left.

Image

The lovely island beach, An Trá Bán (White Strand) is shown here. The grasses in the fields are summer gold.

It’s impossible to not feel some sense of sadness to see the ruins of what were once the precious homes of good people. In the much quoted words of island writer Tomás Ó Croimhthain “Our likes will never be seen here again”. It’s compelling to imagine how it must have been? How did it look then? How did it feel to live here? In what activities were they involved – men, women, children? How different were their lives from the mainland people of the time, and now?  What did they think and feel about the island? Did they love the place? Did they appreciate the beauty of it? Were they proud? They could never have imagined how so many people today could be so very interested in the lives and characters of the island and their way of life.

Thousands of day trippers flock to the island every summer. none can fail to be touched by what they learn of the island, and all of them would be greatly impressed by the beauty of the island and the views from there.

Part Three to follow.

My paintings of Blasket Islands can be seen on my website:

http://helene-brennan.com/c62-blasket-islands-paintings  and:

http://helene-brennan.com/c104-recent-paintings

More photos of the Blaskets can be seen on my website:

http://helene-brennan.com/c53-blasket-islands-photographs

More information about the islands can also be gained from the following websites:

http://www.gokerry.ie/locations/na-blascaoda-blasket-islands/

http://www.dingle-peninsula.ie/blaskets.html

http://www.heritageireland.ie/en/South-West/IonadandBhlascaoidMhoir-TheBlascaoidCentre/

http://irishislands.info/blaskets.html