Tuesday, October 31, 2006

River Lot

The river Lot at Cahors France. Sun, water, reflections!

What more do you need for a nice photograph?

Toussaint Flowers

Halloween is upon us and in France it is a relatively new thing, imported from the US and the UK over the past 10 or so years.

Here the French get ready to place flowers on the graves of their loved ones who are no longer of this life. Whole areas are given over to the pre-sales of these flowers in preparation of the 1st of November - TOUSSAINT

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Last of the summer wine

This is France – my France! Un pitit expresso au café.

The last of the summer wine or so the weather man is saying. Looks like the change is about to take place during the course of this week, well we can’t complain is has been so nice to enjoy the Indian summer.

Taken in the town of Cahors in the Lot.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Taxi Driver

We spent the day in the town of Cahors which is in the departement of the Lot about 100 kilometers north of Réal. I want to go back and take a more photographs but I did manage to get few.

I have been talking a great deal about the weather we are having, I’m not complaining because we have had another day that would fool you into thinking that we are no further into the year than the month of July. For sure the trees are beginning to show their autumn colours but only just and temperatures are reaching as high as 25°C maybe more.

Sitting outside having lunch today was a pleasure when you realize than we are at the end of October. We are enjoying it whilst it lasts.

I could not resist taking this photograph of a taxi driver, he also preferred to enjoy the warmth of day and have a siesta, after all no one was looking for a taxi and they strolled about in the sunshine.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Rolling Tarn

The rolling country side of the Tarn, this image was taken at this time last year but similar scenes can now been seen all around us, but I do like this shot.

Autumn is here the clock changes this weekend. Do I get an extra hour in bed?

Although today like others we have had lately would fool you into thinking that summer is still with us as it was so warm. The tress are slowly changing colour but imperceptibly so and the winter crops have are being sown. When the colder weather does visit us for the first time it will be a bit of a shock as there has been no slow change into the colder weather.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Byzantine Monk

Time for another portrait from France, not quite what one might expect however just over an hours drive from where we live we found a Byzantine Monastery. It was not ancient by any means but set in very peaceful grounds near the village of Saint Hilaire in Les Corbières.

I asked this monk if he minded if took his photograph. He didn’t!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


Sometime between mid November and mid December we harvest the olives from the seven small trees that are on the property. We then head off to an olive mill and last year we ended up with just under five litres of first cold press virgin olive oil. Lovely stuff.

So this year looks as if there might be a bit less as some of the trees don’t have too many olives, but we will have to wait and see. For now it is another bonus to living in the south of France – watching the olives ripen.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Luca F1

Regulars to Réal DP know I post the occasional photograph of our new grandson who was born at the end of January this year. He lives with his parents in the UK but will soon be off with his mother to see his Grandmother and other family in Brazil. I think they are due to go about mid November.

I think his Dad, my son, maybe getting him ready for a career in one of those fast motor sports now that Michael Schumacher has decided to retire. Will he drive for Brazil or Scotland? So many decisions for this international baby to make, or perhaps he just likes posing in front of the camera.

Photo by his Mum Izabel James.

Monday, October 23, 2006

A Rose for my Rose

The summer colour is still making an appearance. Certainly in the south of France the exceptionally nice weather is fooling nature into thinking it might be spring.

I know that there are bad weather alerts for the north west of France but here in the Tarn we are still enjoying summer like weather.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Sunset Doorway

Around about this time of year as the sun slowly sinks to the west it creates a great lightshow in our open doorway. But how to create an image to show this off?

I had to ask my long suffering model to step in a set up some crazy pose to produce an effect that shows of the brilliance of the light. Hands up you are being shone upon –snap.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Praying Mantis

Just when you think that the lovely warm days are gone the pleasant surprise that the south of France can give you are days like today. Today could well have made you believe that spring was in the air, it was so beautiful.

I did some clearing up in the garden and came across this Praying Mantis enjoying the warmth of the sun. A bit difficult trying to get a good photograph with my ‘little digital’ but I managed to get a passable photograph.

A word of warning to other gardeners who might be doing their own autumn clean ups and preparing for winter; I was putting on a pair of garden gloves and felt this sharp pain in my little finger. A wasp had decided to hibernate (I presume) in the glove and stung me right on the tip of my little finger. The wasp is dead and I have a very sore and swollen little finger.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Muddy Waters

The storm that came in from the Mediterranean coast and inland into areas of the Languedoc Roussillon dropped a lot of rain in the departements of the Héralt and Aude.

Over the past couple of days the river Tarn has turned to the color of earth. It has traveled quite a few hundred kilometers as it rushes on its way to join the river Garonne just after the town of Moissac, another hundred kilometers downriver.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Tourist shop in Gordes

The last of summer is well and truly gone even from the south of France. Today was nice and mild with a high of 25°C which is not bad at all.

We had a bit of rain in the late afternoon and I was looking at some summer photographs so I decided to post this one from the village of Gordes. Provence, France.

It is quite a distance from Réal in the Tarn, but it is still easily within a days drive.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

The Wind

There is a storm warning for the Mediterranean coast and inland into areas of the Languedoc Roussillon, so we have been experiencing some quite strong winds this afternoon. Nothing too bad and the temperatures are still quite high as the wind is coming from the south east.

I needed a model to see if I could show the wind doing its thing so my wife Ghislaine volunteered and so did Billy the cat!

Of course I couldn’t just take one photo so if you would like to see more have a look at The Wind.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Video de Milo

I am glad that I now live out of the hustle and bustle of Paris life, but just sometimes I miss that lovely city so I wanted to post an image taken a few years ago.

Paris is known the world over for its art, fashion and photography. It is the city of Cartier-Bresson, Doisneau and many more great photographers. The streets and boulevards are full of images just waiting to be taken.

Eric has now made it a must to visit his photoblog - The Original and it is so good to catch up with life in Paris through is great images.

If you want to see a slide show of great images from this series click A Tourist in Paris

Monday, October 16, 2006


How difficult is it to take a self portrait while trying to make sure you get the computer screen in the photograph and at the same time listening to a song by Suzanne Vega – My Name Is Luca - dedicated to my grandson Luca by a fellow photo-blogger zannnie in Singapore.

Well it wasn’t easy but it was worth it to at least get an image that nearly captures it all. Now all you have to do is visit zannnie's site and see what she has been up to!

Sunday, October 15, 2006


As I clicked away photographing our friends when were with on our day out in the town of Speyer in Germany, they were also clicking away with their ‘phone cameras.’

This is a composition of images they took of me. The photograph I published – phonesRus – was taken with ‘my little digital’ (image bottom left) a Minolta Dimage Xt.

The various images were Taken by Michael, Kerstin, Elka & Ute, but not necessarily in that order.

Saturday, October 14, 2006


Part of our vacation time was spent visit family, my wife’s family live in a small village close to the area known as the Pole European. It is where the three borders of France, Belgium and Luxembourg meet. It is also not very far from the town of Verdun, now known as The City of Peace because of what happen during the First World War.

We have visited many of the war graves of the French, British, German and other nations of the two wars that raged over this part of France and surrounding countries. An hours drive north into Belgium is where the famous last battle of WW2 took place called the battle of the Bulge around the Town of Bastogne which we visited. I won’t get into the politics of war and my total abhorrence of war but I wish that the people who continue to wage war in this world today would visit these places – it just might make a difference to how people think, but I doubt it!!!

For more information about the Bastogne Historical CenterMemorial at Bastogne Belgium have a look at their website.

Friday, October 13, 2006


So I said take my photo please and with all this hi-tech phones with cameras that just what they all did, our friends in Germany.

I am still waiting to see the results.

The sun shone again this afternoon after nearly a week of dull couldy and lots of rain kind of weather, so I am feeling better because I love the sunshine, and I still showing our holiday photos.


Last night I could not get connected to post my DP and I have no idea why!

All is working this morning but as I am a little sad about the end of summer and the weather is not so good this is a photograph to cheer me up taken in Cassis a lovely village in the south of France on the Mediterranean coast.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Four blonds and a guy

After an evening storm - thunder, lighting and lot of rain I need to remind myself of the great time we had in Germany a few short weeks ago.

L to R - Michael, Ute, Kerstin, Elke, and Ghislaine.

Guess who got left out?

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Season Change

The hustle and bustle of country life. Season change and the fields which earlier in the year were so green have now been plowed to the colour brown.

The view from the bottom of the garden and things may not change as quickly as in the city but change they do. I am sure the next thing to happen will be the sowing of a winter crop and more change will gradually take place.

I just love the pace of life here!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Luca & Michael

An update on the main man - our grandson Luca.

My son Michael and grandson Luca who is nearly 9 months old. Is he really starting to stand? Won't be long now until he is walking.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Frida & Noah

Our new neighbors that have moved in next door to us, Frida and her 3 month old son Noah, Our friends Elodie and Michel invited to lunch yesterday and to meet the new additions to their family!

The two Donkey’s, - Âne in French – are so friendly it was difficult getting a photograph as each time I moved back to try and get a shot the pair followed me. In the end I managed one photograph and then it was back to petting and scratching their backs which they loved.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Clean up

Lisi asked what was going on in Réal; well autumn is slowly taking over the days are still soft and warm but with a evening chill.

I have been working cleaning up in the garden so today’s exciting photograph is the first fire of the season burning the rubbish from the garden. It always amazes me how weeds always manage to grow faster than anything else. On the other hand because of all the recent rain the countryside is lovely and green and the autumn colours have yet to appear – but it won’t be long.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Mushroom Season

It is open season for mushroom picking in France. With autumn gradually taking over from summer and the amount of rain we have had the mushrooms have begun to sprout in the woodland that surrounds us.

As I drive the country lanes there are cars parked alongside the wooded areas and one would think that there are lots of people interested in an autumnal walk in the woods, but no they are after mushrooms! Les ceps and les bolets are what they are after at the moment. If you are not an expert mushroom hunter you can always take your collection to the nearest chemists – Pharmacie – who by law and training are able to identify what you have found. At this time of year you can find yourself in a queue clutching your prescription for medication and the person in front of you may have a bag full of mushrooms to be identified.

Me, I found this specimen at the bottom of the garden – and I left it there after taking the photograph.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Movable Statue

Still living the vacation!

How do these guys do it?

Seen in most of the tourist spots they are able to remain unmoving until someone puts a coin in the pot. What do they think about as they watch the people stop and look and perhap toss a coin in the pot.

I am always amazed by their art.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Wilf and Ghislaine

Okay, well I hope you all want to see more of my holiday snaps, although we are now at home in Réal in France the weather has turned very autumnal with lots if rain and the temperature is slowly dropping and summer is over. I am sure we will still have those lovely sunny warm autumn days that the south of France produces and makes living here a joy.

So here is a photograph of the relaxed holiday couple – me and Ghislaine in the town of Speyer in Germany.

Lisi to answer your question, I have no problem taking photographs of people and yes I generally ask before taking, but sometimes the image is just there and needs to be taken at that moment with no time to ask. The cute artist guy I took two photos of and I did ask him if it was ok and he nodded his consent. I published the second one with him looking directly at me, the image looked better that way. Normally I am using my little digital which is no bigger than a pack of cards so I am no different to thousands of other tourists with a camera.

Photo by Kerstin Lohmar - taken with 'My Little Digital'

Tuesday, October 03, 2006


A photograph of a photograph in a phone, technology moving along and me having fun on vacation and seeing what happens when you play around with digital imagery.

This is a picture of Elka the sister-in-law of our friend Michael in Germany. She was showing the half time results of having her hair done. Who know what she will do when she sees that I have published this on my photo-blog.

I have some more fun photographs which I will blog over the next week or so but maybe I should get out and about and see what is happening locally, after all this is supposed to be about Réal.

If you would like to see more of my vacation fun snaps let me know.

Monday, October 02, 2006


A touch of France in the city of Heidelberg! On our all too short weekend with friends in Germany we visited this beautiful city.

I thought that this photograph would keep the French flavour of the photo-blog showing a street artist displaying a great portrait of the famous French actor Louis de Funés in his roll as an officer in the film Gendarme de Saint Tropez.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

River Aude

We are back from out little trip around France and a long weekend in Germany visiting some friends. We are catching up with all the things that are nice to leave behind when you set off and leave the daily grind, although the daily grind is not that much of a grind and coming home makes you appreciate the good things that we do have in our lives and the beautiful place where we live.

In the end we drove 3524 Kilometres had some great times and of course I will publish some photographs from our travels.

This photograph is of the River Aude taken in the Aude region of France in Les Corbières a couple of days ago when we were visiting
Quillan a town that nestles in the foothills of the Pyrenees and 10 Km. from famed Da Vinci Code location; Rennes-le-Chateau. It is a view that reminds me of the type of scenery that I photographed a number of years ago in Yosemite National Park.