Morocco by Vincent Pohl

Morocco (/məˈrɒkoʊ/ ( listen); Arabic: المَغرِب‎, translit. al-maġriblit. 'place the sun sets; the west'; Berber languages: ⵍⵎⵖⵔⵉⴱ, translit. Lmeɣrib), officially the Kingdom of Morocco (Arabic: المملكة المغربية‎, translit. al-Mamlakah al-Maghribiyahlit. 'The Western Kingdom'; Berber languages: ⵜⴰⴳⵍⴷⵉⵜ ⵏ ⵍⵎⵖⵔⵉⴱ, translit. Tageldit n Lmaɣrib), is a unitary sovereign state located in Northwest Africa. It is one of the native homelands of the indigenous Berbers.[14][15]Geographically, Morocco is characterised by a rugged mountainous interior, large tracts of desert and a lengthy coastline along the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea.

Morocco has a population of over 33.8 million and an area of 710,850 km2 (274,460 sq mi). Its capital is Rabat, and the largest city is Casablanca. Other major cities include MarrakeshTangierSaléFesMeknesTétouan and Oujda. A historically prominent regional power, Morocco has a history of independence not shared by its neighbours. Since the foundation of the first Moroccan state by Idris I in 788 AD, the country has been ruled by a series of independent dynasties, reaching its zenith under the Almoravid dynasty and Almohad dynasty, spanning parts of Iberia and northwestern Africa. The Marinid and Saadi dynasties continued the struggle against foreign domination, and Morocco remained the only Northwest African country to avoid Ottoman occupation. The Alaouite dynasty, the current ruling dynasty, seized power in 1631. In 1912, Morocco was divided into French and Spanishprotectorates, with an international zone in Tangier, and regained its independence in 1956. Moroccan culture is a blend of BerberArabSephardi JewsWest African and European influences.

Morocco claims the non-self-governing territory of Western Sahara, formerly Spanish Sahara, as its Southern Provinces. After Spain agreed to decolonise the territory to Morocco and Mauritania in 1975, a guerrilla war arose with local forces. Mauritania relinquished its claim in 1979, and the war lasted until a cease-fire in 1991. Morocco currently occupies two thirds of the territory, and peace processes have thus far failed to break the political deadlock.

Morocco is a constitutional monarchy with an elected parliament. The King of Morocco holds vast executive and legislative powers, especially over the military, foreign policy and religious affairs. Executive power is exercised by the government, while legislative power is vested in both the government and the two chambers of parliament, the Assembly of Representatives and the Assembly of Councillors. The king can issue decrees called dahirs, which have the force of law. He can also dissolve the parliament after consulting the Prime Minister and the president of the constitutional court.

Morocco's predominant religion is Islam, and the official languages are Arabic, since independence and Berber, becoming an official language in 2011,[16] with Berber being the native language of Morocco before the Muslim conquest in the 600s AD.[17][18][unreliable source] The Moroccan dialect of Arabic, referred to as Darija, and French are also widely spoken. Morocco is a member of the Arab League, the Union for the Mediterranean and the African Union. It has the seventh largest economy of Africa.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morocco

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Gran Canaria by Vincent Pohl

Gran Canaria (Spanish pronunciation: [ɡɾaŋ kaˈna.ɾja]; originally meaning "Great [Island] of Dogs") is the second most populous island of the Canary Islands, an African archipelago which is part of Spain, with a population of 847,830 (in 2015) that constitutes approximately 40% of the population of the archipelago. Located in the Atlantic Ocean about 150 kilometres (93 mi) off the northwestern coast of Africa and about 1,350 km (840 mi) from Europe.[2] With an area of 1,560 km2 (602 sq. mi)[3] and an altitude of 1,956 m (6,417 ft)[4] at the Pico de las Nieves, Gran Canaria is the third largest island of the archipelago in both area and altitude.

Gran Canaria was populated by the Canarii, who may have arrived as early as 500 BC. The Canarii called the island Tamarán or Land of the Brave. After over a century of European incursions and attempts at conquest, the island was conquered on April 29, 1483, after a campaign that lasted five years, by the Crown of Castile, with the support of Queen Isabella I, a conquest which turned out to be an important step towards the expansion of the unified Spain.

The capital city of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria was founded on June 24, 1478, under the name "Real de Las Palmas", by Juan Rejón, head of the invading Castilian army. In 1492, Christopher Columbus anchored in the Port of Las Palmas (and spent some time on the island) on his first trip to the Americas. Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is, jointly with Santa Cruz de Tenerife, the capital of the autonomous community of the Canary Islands.

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Elephants of Sri Lanka by Vincent Pohl

The Sri Lankan elephant (Elephas maximus maximus) is one of three recognized subspecies of the Asian elephant, and native to Sri Lanka. Since 1986, Elephas maximus has been listed as endangered by IUCN as the population has declined by at least 50% over the last three generations, estimated to be 60–75 years. The species is pre-eminently threatened by habitat loss, degradation and fragmentation.[1]

Elephas maximus maximus is the type subspecies of the Asian elephant, first described by Carl Linnaeus under the binominal Elephas maximus in 1758.[2]

The Sri Lankan elephant population is now largely restricted to the dry zone in the north, east and southeast of Sri Lanka. Elephants are present in Udawalawe National ParkYala National ParkLunugamvehera National ParkWilpattu National Park and Minneriya National Park but also live outside protected areas. It is estimated that Sri Lanka has the highest density of elephants in Asia. Human-elephant conflict is increasing due to conversion of elephant habitat to settlements and permanent cultivation.[3]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sri_Lankan_elephant

2012 Olympics - London by Vincent Pohl

Sir Bradley Marc WigginsKtCBE (born 28 April 1980) is a British professional road and track racing cyclist who rides for the UCI Continental team WIGGINS, after leaving Team Sky. Nicknamed "Wiggo", he began his cycling career on the track, but has made the transition to road cycling and is one of the few cyclists to gain significant elite level success in both those forms of professional cycling.

The son of the Australian cyclist Gary Wiggins, Wiggins was born to a British mother in Ghent, Belgium, and raised in London from the age of two. He competed on the track from the early part of his career until 2008. He has won seven gold medals at the track world championships, his first in 2003 and his most recent in 2016; three in the individual pursuit, two in the team pursuit and two in the Madison. He won a gold in the individual pursuit at the 2004 Olympic Games and two golds in the individual and team pursuit at the 2008 Olympic Games. Wiggins returned to the track at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, and has announced his intention to compete in track cycling at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

After the 2008 Olympics, Wiggins took a break from the track to focus on the road. Initially viewed as a time trial specialist and as a rouleur, he showed his ability in stage races when he came fourth in the 2009 Tour de France; he was later promoted to third after Lance Armstrong's results were annulled in 2012. In 2011 he claimed his first victory in a major stage race in the Critérium du Dauphiné, and he also finished third in the Vuelta a España. In 2012, Wiggins won the Paris–Nice, the Tour de Romandie, the Critérium du Dauphiné, and became the first British cyclist to win the Tour de France and the time trial at the Olympic Games. Following his success in 2012, Wiggins was the subject of several honours and awards; the Vélo d'Or award for best rider of the year, the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award and awarded a knighthood as part of the 2013 New Year Honours. In 2014 he won gold in the time trial at the 2014 road world championships. In June 2015 he set a new hour record with a distance of 54.526 km (33.881 mi).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bradley_Wiggins


 

 

BATH UK by Vincent Pohl

Bath, Somerset

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Bath
 

The Royal Crescent in Bath

Coordinates51.38°N 2.36°W

Bath (/ˈbɑːθ/ or /ˈbæθ/;[2] LatinAquae SulisWelshCaerfaddon), is a city in the ceremonial county of Somerset, England, known for its Roman-built baths. In 2011, the population was 88,859.[1] Bath is in the valley of the River Avon, 97 miles (156 km) west of London and 11 miles (18 km) south-east of Bristol. The city became a World Heritage Site in 1987.

The city became a spa with the Latin name Aquae Sulis ("the waters of Sulis") c. AD 60 when the Romans built baths and a temple in the valley of the River Avon, although hot springs were known even before then. Bath Abbey was founded in the 7th century and became a religious centre; the building was rebuilt in the 12th and 16th centuries. In the 17th century, claims were made for the curative properties of water from the springs, and Bath became popular as a spa town in the Georgian eraGeorgian architecture, crafted from Bath stone, includes the Royal CrescentCircusPump Room and Assembly Rooms where Beau Nash presided over the city's social life from 1705 until his death in 1761. Many of the streets and squares were laid out by John Wood, the Elder, and in the 18th century the city became fashionable and the population grew. Jane Austen lived in Bath in the early 19th century. Further building was undertaken in the 19th century and following the Bath Blitz in World War II.

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Chamonix by Vincent Pohl

Chamonix-Mont-Blanc,[note 1] more commonly known simply as Chamonix[note 2] (formerly also spelled Chamounix), is a communein the Haute-Savoie département in the Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France. It was the site of the first Winter Olympics in 1924. The commune's population of around 9,800 ranks 865th within the country of France.[1]

Situated near the massive peaks of the Aiguilles Rouges and most notably the Aiguille du Midi, Chamonix is one of the oldest ski resorts in France and is known as the "gateway to the European Cascades." The north side of the summit of Mont Blanc, and therefore the summit itself are part of the village of Chamonix. To the south side, the situation is different depending on the country. Italy considers that the border passes through the top. France considers that the boundary runs along the rocky Tournette under the summit cap, placing it entirely in French territory. The south side was in France, assigned to the commune of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains sharing the summit with its neighbor Chamonix. It is this situation "for France," which is found on the French IGN maps. The Chamonix commune is well known and loved by skiers and mountain enthusiasts of all types, and via the cable car lift to the Aiguille du Midi it is possible to access the world famous off-piste skirun of the Vallée Blanche. With an area of 245 km2 (95 sq mi), Chamonix is the fourth largest commune in mainland France.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chamonix


Zakynthos (Ζάκυνθος) by Vincent Pohl

Zakynthos (Greek: Ζάκυνθος [ˈzacinθos] ( listen)) or Zante (/ˈzɑːnti, -teɪ, ˈzæn-/; from Venetian) is a Greek island in the Ionian Sea. It is the third largest of the Ionian Islands. Zakynthos is a separate regional unit of the Ionian Islands region, and its only municipality. It covers an area of 410 km2 (158 sq mi) and its coastline is roughly 123 km (76 mi) in length. The name, like all similar names ending in -nthos, is pre-Mycenaean or Pelasgian in origin. In Greek mythology the island was said to be named after Zakynthos, the son of a legendary Arcadian chief Dardanus.

Zakynthos is a tourist destination, with an international airport served by many charter flights from northern Europe. The island's nickname is To fioro tou Levante (Italian: Il fiore di Levante, English: The flower of the East), given by the Venetians.[citation needed]


Day 1:  Today was a travel day, so it really doesn't count as far as a full shoot day or exploring so to speak.  But I did happen to capture a few frames.

This one was toward the 3pm time frame from our villa.

The next one was shot at sundown.

 

Lets see what Day 2 has to offer.....

Peter Hurley: What's In Your Bag by Vincent Pohl

Peter always has great advise to give.  I have to say I have 80% of what he is has in his bag.  Thankfully he had something I have been looking for and didn't know what it was called or who made it!  

Thank you Peter