Miami’s Dual Personalities

First night in Miami we booked to stay in a hotel near the port for the cruise ship. Bad mistake. Downtown Miami was an eyeopener to put it mildly. I mean the hotel was lovely (apart from the glass wall in the bathroom…. nobody wants to see their other half use the toilet, no matter how many years they’ve been together. Or is that just the prudish Britishness in me coming out again?) So after pressing everything that was pressable in the bathroom incase it was one of those glass walls that fog up when you shut the door (it wasn’t) we walked out of our hotel to find a restaurant, a nice cold wine and a Walgreens for emergency snacks and bottles of water. Restaurant found, $19 for a burger and $12 for a glass of wine (whit!) then following my phone directions to find the Walgreens, looking amazingly like a couple of tourists. Especially since I couldn’t stop gawking at everything I passed. Like the drug deal stopping the traffic in the middle of the street. Like the prostitutes running away when the undercover cop car pulls up and puts on it’s flashing lights. Like the guy in a wheelchair puking into a carrier bag in the middle of Walgreens (which we found eventually. Who knows what way is North anyway Siri?!?) Like the elderly woman (105 years old I’d guess) naked under a flimsy see-through dress (again at Walgreens) I guess Walgreens is THE place to be in Miami…

Miami panorama

So after the cruise we were meeting up with my sister and her husband for a couple of days in a hotel at South Beach. What a difference! From the beautiful art-deco hotels, the amazing art-district with all the fabulous graffiti (photos to come) to the gorgeous boardwalk and beach. I loved Miami second time around. I was still people-watching but this time round I wasn’t scared and I even took some street-shots of people. Would I go back? Yes, but not to the downtown area. More Miami stories and cruise-ship stories and pics coming up later peeps.

 

Holibags

Hello Bloggers,

For the first time in 6 years (since we moved to the USA) we’re not going home to Scotland for the holidays (vacation). I’m sad we won’t get to see friends and family this year but life happens (which is much better than the alternative). Anyway as a great comedy show once said “And now for something completely different”…. we’re going to try a short cruise to see what we think, followed by a few days in Miami with my sister and her husband, then driving over to the Tampa side of Florida for the rest of the holiday (where my sister lives).

I’ve been lucky enough to have visited some great US cities including Chicago (my favourite), New York, New Orleans, Memphis, St. Louis, Indianapolis and Des Moines as well as loads of smaller ones. When we moved here I said to myself that I was going to say yes to everything and come out my shell more, and so far I think I’m doing OK.

I’m looking forward to Miami and people-watching. Hopefully I’ll have some good pics to upload when I return, but in the meantime here’s a photo of my cruise ship.

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What’s that swan doing on my cruise ship?

Cheers Me Dears,

Alba.

 

Photography backlog

I’m a terrible blogger! I don’t even have the excuse that I’ve been off doing exciting things – I’ve just been working and working-out 5 days a week (no chocolate or bread the whole of January and I put on 2lbs!!!!) My photography is also in a slump, I haven’t shot anything new for ages so I’m resorting to last September in Florida to add something to this blog….

boy sunset lowres

But it’s always fun to go through old photographs and pick up on ones you originally filed as ‘later’ then have a play about with them. That is playing with them in between my ‘jobs-that-I-get-paid-for-doing’. The shot above was taken with my compact camera and I loved how the boy was having a blast playing in the waves at sunset so I enhanced the colours and made him as much as a silhouette as I could without losing all definition in the figure.

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This one is a totally over the top HDR image, but sometimes it’s fun to go ‘all-out’ and garish.

old postcard beach lowres

Then this last one didn’t quite turn out as I’d hoped, I was aiming for a old postcard type effect without losing the colour or going sepia – I might go back to it one day….

I actually have enough photographs to work on that I never have to shoot another pic in my life and I’d still have hundreds left over. One time I went to New Orleans and husband accused me of working for Google-Earth the amount of snaps I was taking. “Wheesht man and go wait for me at the end of the street – I’ll be there in 40 or 50 shots time!”