Sunday, September 16, 2012

Just Recently


That's how I put in a nutshell the onset of autumn. One day, the sun is shining bright and the sky clear blue. The following day, the sky is overcast with gray clouds. Another day looks like stormy, with the wind whipping everything along its way. And the following day turns fine again. Some days would start out gloomy, then the clouds would clear away in the afternoon, revealing the cerulean blue of the firmament. Other days, the situation is reversed.

Last Wednesday, as I was on my way to a "mission", I saw a marvel in the sky: a gigantic halo of rainbow encircling the subdued brilliance of the sun, commonly called circumhorizontal arc. I often observe such phenomenon here, but this time, I got a real vivid view of it. And so I took several photos.  (By the way, the camera is my constant companion. I never go out without it. I know there's always something nice and interesting to capture everyday.)

That happened in the morning, which I kept on tracking until the halo melted out.

In the afternoon when I came home, spectacular sky shows shifted continually until the sun descended. I was particularly ecstatic at seeing rainbow clouds, which I captured in many angles.

Early morning on Thursday, as I prepared to go to work, the bushes outside our kitchen window caught my eyes. The little elongated leaves sparkled as the sun directly struck at them.

Peering closer, I could see that each little leaf was coated with tiny droplets. The leaves looked scintillating!

The flowers, grass and cobwebs were also beaded with glittering dewdrops.

On Friday, gloom and rain greeted me as I pulled up the window blinds. The tree tops were swaying wildly as the raging wind slashed at them. Sure, no way to go out that day, so I just stayed home and did a lot of things that must be done.

Saturday was fine. We attended a whole-day Special Assembly with the theme, Safeguard Your Conscience. A highly refreshing and rejuvenating day.

Today is quite a beautiful Sunday. After doing the more important things, we went to the forests in the mid-afternoon, picking mushrooms and berries. The vibrant autumn foliage that dominated the forests and landscapes enraptured me. Of course, I took several snapshots of fall scenery, but I'll be posting them in another blog.

Tomorrow and thereafter remain to be seen. 

And so I'm closing this update with these rich fall colors that I hope to buoy up anyone who reads this, no matter the season, whether favorable or unfavorable. 

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Across the Denmark

After two days of enjoying the dazzles of Varberg, we drove down to the harbor to get to the ferry that would transport us, cars and all, to the eastern coast of Denmark, specifically Grenå (Grenaa). It took us about five hours to cross the Kattegatt Sea to get to this southern Scandinavian country. On the 27th of June, we docked by the shore of Grenå. We got out of the ferry and kept moving  to the inland down to Aarhus and finally to Silkeborg, where we attended a Scandinavian convention in English, with the main theme, Safeguard Your Heart.

We checked in to our pre-booked cottage in Jyllandsringen Camping. ( I want to mention my gratitude to the kind-hearted owner of this camping site, who generously gave us a two-room cottage instead of the one-room that we have booked, for the same price, since the two-room was vacant that time, and he said that we deserved to have that.)

single-room cottage

two-bedroom cottage, side-view
two-bedroom cottage, front view

In the night, after eating our first dinner in this country, we picked up a friend from the Philippines, who works  as an architect in Dubai. She came by herself all the way from UAE to attend the convention and to visit some places in Scandinavia. I was so glad to see her again after several years, and in a place other than our country of origin and our present settlement. 

our first dinner

The following three days were devoted to the convention programs, which were designed to fortify our hearts so as to keep our integrity, and to build up and strengthen our spiritual well-being through lectures, dramas, demonstrations, experiences, and singing soulful songs. We also enjoyed our international brotherhood through our warm, loving and joyful associations.  I came to meet in person some of my cyber friends, one of whom, along with her hubby,  invited us together with a few others for a sumptuous dinner in their home. 

Those were three days packed with blessings that will always remain as my prized possessions.

The bright summer nights afforded us opportunities for sightseeing around the city. As usual, my camera went busy the whole time, capturing and freezing memories of things and places that tickled my fascination.  My friend, too, being a photography freak like me, got herself preoccupied with peering through her camera viewfinder and pressing the shutter.

Here are just a few of my captures:

I stored most of my photo memories of the place in this album:

After staying in Silkeborg for four days, we set off on our journey back to Sweden. It was not easy to part with our dear friends who attended the convention, and yet it was refreshing to have had wholesome associations with them and to have met new friends from other lands. 

On the first of July, we again took the ferry that conveyed us back to Varberg. This time, my friend from UAE came with us to see some places in the south of Sweden.

I said goodbye to Denmark for the second time this year (first time when I visited Copenhagen last May). Standing on the ferry's deck, I watched the harbor slowly diminish until the vast sea dominated the horizon. 

As we sailed on, some distant interesting sights popped up along the way, and I zoomed my camera up to 24 times to capture them.

When there was nothing left to see except the plain sea, we retired to the ferry's "activity center", ordered  hot chocolate drinks and some bread, and then bought chocolate bars from the duty-free shop.

Thus we waited until the ferry moored along the seaport of Varberg.

Another series of unforgettable wanderlust activities would commence  here, which I will share in the next episodes.