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The Reclining Buddha

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The Reclining Buddha or Phra Buddhasaiyas is 46 meters long and 15 meters high (150 ft by 49 ft). Sihasaiyas refers to the sleeping/reclining posture of a lion.  

Phra Vihara, the hall of the Reclining Buddha was built in 1832 during the reign of Rama III. The figure is made with lacquered and guilded stucco over a brick-based corpus.

The Buddha’s head rests on two box pillows inlaid with glass mosaics and is supported by his right hand.
The feet of the Buddha is 5 meters in length and 3 meters in height (16 ft by 9.8 ft). Notice his toes which are all even in size and height.
The soles of the Buddha's feet are inlaid with mother of pearl and have 108 panels showing the auspicious symbols with which he is identified. These auspicious symbols can be grouped into three categories: symbols of fortune and prosperity such as the lotus, attributes of greatness of the king such as the throne, and religious cosmology such as the ocean and heavenly forest. There are two circles, one on each fo…

A toast to La Cité du Vin

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“Every detail of the building, evokes wine’s soul and liquid nature: seamless roundness, intangible and sensual." Anouk Legendre and Nicolas Desmazières, architects of La Cité du Vin.

La Cité du Vin (The City of Wine) is a journey through the world of wine from its earliest beginnings some 8,000 years ago to the modern period in a contemporary 3,000 m² exhibition space above the Garonne River in Bordeaux.

There are 19 thematic interactive displays exploring the cultivation of wine starting with a film that takes you on a world wine tour. On the terroir table, winemakers from 10 wine regions in the world talk about the development of their vineyards.  The gallery of civilizations expounds on the topic of divine wine, medical wine, celebratory wine and sustaining wine and how these have accompanied us through the ages. These are just a few of the highlights of an afternoon full of discoveries at La Cité du Vin. My personal favorite was the buffet of the five senses where I could get …

Filipino Struggles in History - Carlos "Botong" Francisco

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In 1968, then Mayor of Manila, Antonio Villegas, commissioned Carlos "Botong" Francisco to paint the history of Manila for Manila City Hall. The series of large scale paintings was called Kasaysayan ng Maynila  (History of Manila). The paintings deteriorated over time and no attempt was made to preserve these historical canvases until 2013 when Mayor Amado Lim sent them to the National Museum for extensive restoration. Four years later, in 2017, Mayor Joseph Ejercito Estrada and the Manila City Council signed an agreement with the National Museum to leave the paintings at the museum so they may reach a larger audience in exchange for museum grade reproductions to replace the originals. Kasaysayan ng Maynila was later renamed Filipino Struggles in History and is now on display at the Senate Hall of the National Museum.
Carlos "Botong" Francisco died in March 1969, a few months after completing the paintings. He is one of the first Filipino modernists and together wit…

A patch of green

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"God almighty first planted a garden. And indeed, it is the purest of human pleasures." Francis Bacon 
Jardins du Palais de la Berbie, Albi.

"Bare feet on the grass comfort the spirit and connect the body to the earth all at once." Maximilian Degenerez
Pont Vieux. Aude River, Carcassonne.

"Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago." Warren Buffett 
Esplanade Charles de Gaulle, Nîmes.

We need to take our children out more often to reconnect with nature.
Place Wilson, Toulouse.

In this medieval village, nature trails down the sides of stone houses and the scent of oranges permeate the air.  St. Paul de Vence, Provence Alpes-Maritimes.
Metal goes well with a patch of green, n'est ce pas?  La Tour Eiffel, Paris.
"I think that I shall never see a poem as lovely as a tree." Joyce Kilmer Place des Quinconces, Bordeaux.
A patch of green will do a world of good. TravelswithCharie
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Images by TravelswithCharie

Montmartre on foot

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There's more to Montmartre than the Sacré Coeur and Place du Tertre. Though neither should be missed on your first visit to Paris. Knowing a little bit about Montmartre beforehand prepares you for a day's exploration of this historical and lively neighborhood.
The sinking house as it is called isn't really sinking. It is firmly standing just below the Sacré Coeur Basilica. Some photographer took an "illusory" photo (similar to the image I tookabove) and it became a social media hit. It wasn't all that easy to take this image because I had to consider both the foreground and background so that they do not lean with the building as well. The published pictures of the sinking house are usually taken from the grassy enclosure beside the basilica because the grass provides a level field. The fence surrounding this grassy expanse was closed to the public during my visit. In this photo, the trees provide the anchor I needed to complete the illusion.
A dozen windmills …

St. Paul de Vence

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St. Paul de Vence is a medieval village sitting prettily on a hill in the French Riviera. Famous artists have come to find inspiration in these well worn cobblestone streets with overhanging vines trailing down stone houses. The scent of oranges permeate the air as you navigate your way around the village tucked neatly within walls built in the 16th century on orders from Francis I after repeated attacks and occupation by the Spanish army under Charles V. 

I followed the route along the ramparts for breathtaking views of the valley and snow-capped Alps in the distance. Le Baou (rocky cliff) of Saint Jeannet rises 800 meters (2,624 ft.) above sea level and attracts mountain climbers. 

The Mediterranean Sea is visible from the west ramparts of St. Paul. Down the hill is a vineyard producing a variety of wine that was once tasted by Francis I when he visited the village. You can enjoy the wines of St. Paul too. Check this link for more info. https://www.saint-pauldevence.com/en/markets-win…