Saturday, August 26, 2006

The Bridge That Once Was

It is somewhat amazing how I find myself wondering over things gone. The Roman ruins of Aquincum (and more here) were a place of marvel to me. The old towns of Rhodes, Vienna, Tallinn, Kotor and so on are the exact same thing. I see some glimpses of things that once were and in my mind kind of rebuild them.

Through my minds eyes I saw the buildings of Aquincum still standing and the streets full of life. As do I see this here bridge still standing. This bridge is located just outside the old town of Kotor, Montenegro. Right alongside it is a new bridge but the remains of the old bridge have been left lying in the stream. And what a beautiful, clear watered stream it was. Further downstream, closer to the bay itself there were some small boats anchored. At first it looked like those boats were levitating on the air, I just couldn’t see the water until I got closer.

Such beauty I so rarely see.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

A Picturesque Sunset

As I said in my earlier post, sunsets come and go. They do, but every so often the sunset is something spectacular. This time the orange-red clouds and turquoise sky made a really unusual combination. The black mountains cropped the pale blue part of the sky in the horizon leaving only the most vivid colour visible.

It was truly magnificent. The outside temperature was well over +25 °C even after the nightfall so you can probably guess just how much I wanted to just go to the near by grass field, lay back and just admire the sky.

Too bad I was in a moving train…

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

...Always an RPGamer

And this here is an old Hungarian castle on the bank of Danube. Or for the most of the people it is. For me it is pretty clearly a place where my character based on Saint Jerome, portrayed in the previous post, just might live.

It is located somewhere remote on a river bank on the island of Hârn, in the fantasy world of HârnWorld. It is simple yet quite complex and it does have somewhat of a mysterious aura to it, for real too. For me that isn’t just a ruined old castle but it is so much more too.

Just like this castle or the statue of St. Jerome, I see more in the things around me as an RPGamer that what I would see as a regular guy. For most of the people an abandoned old factory is something very dull but for me… I see an inspiration for a RPG scenario or two. Some people see old statues of people long gone, I see inspiration for characters. Some people see clearing in woods with a fallen tree, I see a camping site for adventurers, maybe even the camp and campfire too.

For a couple of years I didn’t register these. Everything I saw was just that, what I saw, nothing more, nothing less. That was because of personal worries of my own and worries about my wife who was depressed, drowning to her work, got burn out and her appendix became infected and she had to be operated. On top of that I myself got incurably sick. So no wonder I myself got quite depressed too.

But now my imagination runs wild once again.

Once an RPGamer...

If you are an RP gamer then I am sure you know what I am talking about here. Ever since I started playing pen and paper (PnP) Role Playing Games (RPG) I have looked the world around me very differently. For example this statue here, as you can read from the base it portrays Saint Hieronimus, a man who translated Bible from Greek and Hebrew to Latin. This here statue can be found at St. Stephen's Basilica in Budapest, which in itself is a sight to see.

But I digress. What I was going to say was that when I saw this statue the first thing that came to my mind was that “man, some day I will make a RP character based on this statue. That man has the looks of a mage!” And that I will do. Most likely as a non player character (NPC) in my HârnMaster campaign. Or maybe I’ll let this statue represent a NPC already created. Who knows. One thing is certain though, I will implement him in some way.

Monday, August 14, 2006

In Tonight’s Episode of Raw Nature: Exhibitionistic Flying Fox!

We were at the jungle house of the Tiergarten Schönbrunn, the Zoo of Vienna and found these large bats hanging from the ceiling there. All of a sudden my wife started to giggle and pointed at one of the bats “Is that a boy or what?”

Yes, he was a boy indeed and quite randy one too. For a long time he hung with on leg only and covered himself with merely his other wing leaving him half exposed. And then all of a sudden he stretched his wings wide open. The sight was quite something different. I mean the sight of the bat with his wings spread wide open making him look big was astonishing while in the same time his private parts… Well they just launched the little boy and girl reaction in both of us. “Look a penis!” Tee hee hee!

Oh for crying out loud, Batman! Cover yourself!

The Versailles of Austria

Schönbrunn palace the Austrian equivalent of Versailles is actually quite a sight. No picture really can do real justice to since no picture can capture the whole of the palace and its vast gardens. Or actually an aerial picture could but that is a different thing altogether since in aerial photo either the details are way too small or the picture in itself is way too big.

Anyways I visited the palace twice and at first time really didn’t have a possibility to try and find a way to take photo of the palace in any other manner than the regular tourist slash guidebook way. On the second visit to the palace grounds this friendly gentleman was doing some yoga exercises. Maybe he wasn’t friendly I don’t know but he did have a good, sculpted body and gave me a perfect opportunity to take at least a little different photo of the palace.

Besides I know my wife liked the fellas body, so having the opportunity and good excuse, I decided to get two flies with one shot. Especially since in Montenegro I saw this good looking guy with muscular body, nice six-pack and well formed chest and biceps. After explaining to my wife what she missed when she didn’t come to take a walk with me she asked me that why didn’t I take a picture of him, since I did have my camera with me.

Well indeed, why didn’t I?

Ready, STEADY, Shoot!

What to do when you have no tripod on want to take a more artistic shot during night time? Have a very steady hand and/or look for something to support your camera against. I did the latter and I suppose the former did help too. 2 seconds of exposure time is quite a long time to keep the camera steady even with some support, which in this case was widening in the lower part of a street lamp. Not too good, since it was rather smooth and in about 45 degree angle. In fact you can see part of it in the lower left corner of the picture.

I rarely have any good opportunities to take any pictures of this kind. I have been playing around with the idea of drawing with light to the photograph but haven’t been able to find a suitable light source to do that. It would need to be small enough for me to be able to draw with it. It should have light bright enough to be visible but dim enough to not … Well, be too bright and ruin the picture. Gotta keep looking for something suitable.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

And Then There Was Storm

Sometimes the Mother Nature gives you a real show and in sometimes a good shower right afterwards. I have many, many times seen a wall of rain but those walls have been somewhere far away. Far enough to see the area of the (rain) shower as a whole, I bet you know what I mean.

But never ever have I seen such a wall of rain coming straight towards myself. This time I did. Veni, vidi, lavi (hope I used the online dictionary correctly). The rain was quite heavy for over half an hour and then little by little faded away. But as you can see it began quite abruptly.

Sunsets come and go but occurrences like this… Oh so rare. Posted by Picasa

Edit: Had to reupload the picture since the "small" setting in Picasa indeed did make the picture small. Both the thumbnail and the actual picture. I hope this manual upload works better. I'll leave the version Picasa did here: