Globalwanderings is the personal photoblog of Richard Cain showcasing some of the amazing places I have experienced while living and working throughout Asia and more recently, Europe. In 2009, me and my wife Jackie left Asia to renovate a farmhouse and live a new life in deepest Portugal. Our continuing story is told on the blog called Casa Azul. We also run the podcasting site podcastsinenglish.com for learners and teachers of English as a foreign language.
- Plant of the Year Award 2017 (1 Jan 2018)
First of all, a very big Happy New Year to all our readers. We are looking forward to a 2018 of cooler temperatures, more rain but still plenty of sunshine. Fingers crossed! Meanwhile, we have had quite a lot of (very welcomed) rain and the garden and veg patch look wonderful sporting a bright emerald green. When the sun comes out everything glows and it’s been perfect to get outside and do some end of year jobs between the downfalls....
From fires to frosts (11 Dec 2017)
This year, perhaps even more than most, has been all about the weather. The long, hot, dry spring and summer that caused the horrendous wildfires, the briefest of warm dry autumns and now, in early December, Jack Frost is already nipping at our toes. We’ve had a week of sub zero temperatures and as is usual here, if it’s cold, it means bright blue skies during the day and clear dark skies at night. And no rain. And it makes...
Week of mists and mellow fruitfulness (25 Nov 2017)
The poor old veg patch, suffering in the heat and drought. Then, even though we only got a bit, last month’s rain perked a few things up, mainly the brassicas which I have just been keeping alive in the hope that, when the rain did come, they would recuperate. That indeed seems to have happened: the sprouts, purple sprouting broccoli, calabrese and cavolo nero all took a turn for the better and revived my enthusiasm too. In fact, the never...
- Level 2.139 Where's our package?! (11 Jan 2018)
Jackie and Richard start the new year by complaining about couriersLevel 3.139 Ask me another (4 Jan 2018)
It's the 2017 quiz! How much can you remember, and can you beat Richard?Level 1.138 Paddington and the Christmas Visitor. (14 Dec 2017)
Another fun end to the year: watch one of the most popular Christmas adverts in the UK
- Dipping our toes in Cathar country 16 Oct 2017
In May 2016 we had driven across Spain and over the Pyrenees into France to get in some hiking and enjoy pristine landscapes. This time we were going a bit further east. We hoped to see more of the Pyrenees but also to explore its medieval past, dip our toes in the Med and to forge on to the greatest medieval fortress city of the area, Carcassonne...
We visited Syria and Palmyra over Christmas and New Year 2007/08. We encountered a fantastic country and tremendously hospitable people. It will long remain in our hearts and we only hope that the country and people can once again rise from the ruins. During that trip we discovered Palmyra for ourselves and here is what we found.
One of the best things about Central Portugal and amongst the first things we discovered since arriving here were the river beaches. All over Central Portugal the local municipalities have selected a local beauty spot and improved upon it. In the main they have dammed a river, or partially dammed it to make a swimming area and then included some facilities, a cafe usually and picnic areas and places to lie out in the sun. All are unique in their own way and a fantastic way to cool off during the hot summer months. Below are a few of our favourite ones.
This page is a bit of a cheat really as the photographs are of only a few square kilometres of the whole country. But these few square kilometres contain one of the top ten historical sites in the world. Most people just think of Angkor Wat but actually within this area are about a hundred temple complexes built over a period of a few hundred years (9th to 14th Century). Of these I've included photos of just four: Angkor Wat itself, identified by the famous 'beehive' towers; the many faced Bayon; and Ta Prohm - famous for sharing its space with the encroaching jungle and enormous trees.
I got a train for the short trip from Bharatpur to Delhi no problem at all. In contrast to Agra, the Delhi air was fresh and the city looked quite green - New Delhi anyway, as I had arrived in the south and was tuk-tukking north to my hotel in Pahanganj, near the main railway station and between New and old Delhi. This is the main backbacker centre and packed with hotels with a price to suit everyone. I usually choose a fairly decent hotel if I'm in a big city and the Hotel Godwin Deluxe was pretty good. Good enough for me to be really decadent and have a blueberry muffin and coffee on arrival. It's never straight forward however, as the wifi only worked in the stairwell which was a bit of a pain but there you go. What do you expect for £25 a night? Actually more than you get in India but that's another story.