2019 Recap

Last year’s Recap turned out to be quite a good post, so let’s do it again!

January, a foggy walk to the tram stop in the morning. Taken with my smartphone, this shot has not been edited and was not taken in black and white. I like my gloomy pics.

April, Heaton Park. Ferns and out of focus ducks. You know me and ducks.

August, PIccadilly Gardens in Manchester. My favourite type of shot, sun through the trees, with added pigeons basking on the street light. Pigeons became a new feature on my blog this year.

September, a weird photo of the fence around a new car park behind my house, with, again, out focus animal, my neighbour’s cat. Autumn this year has been really good on the blog, if I say so myself (and if I don’t, who will?), hence my choice of a Recap pic.

Much of my 2019 can be summed up in one word–Yorkshire! I’ve had four trips to places in Yorkshire (Leeds, York, Hebden Bridge and Haworth), which provided a good chunk of the blog this year. Aside from Yorkshire, I also enjoyed visiting Chester and Marple.

And I finally made tribute posts for my favourite author Agatha Christie and my favourite fictional character, Anne Shirley.

I’ve been to two anti-Brexit marches in autumn, one here in Manchester during the Conservative Party Conference, the other in London. Yes, I know we lost, but that’s not the point here. I’m glad I went and don’t regret a single second and would do it all over again. Strangely enough, it wasn’t looking so bad at first. Brexit was delayed three times. Then came the election. You know the result of that. I don’t know why it happened that way, how the Tories won such a majority, all I know is that I feel crushed–and I’m not the only one. (This also proves that any year-end reviews should not be done at the beginning of December, because so much can still take place.)

Elsewhere in pop culture, Game of Thrones came to an end (unpopular opinion, I was okay with the ending… but I’m not posting any spoilers here) and Marvel Cinematic Universe reached its milestone with Avengers Endgame, which became the highest grossing movie of all time! And Amazon Prime blessed us with the hilarious and brilliant Good Omens. The song of the year seems to be Old Town Road and I’m sure you agree with me that it’s a banger.

At the end of August, Extinction Rebellion organised a Northern Rebellion here in Manchester, where they took over Deansgate for the weekend. Half of the road was closed to the traffic and they set up stalls and stuff–and it was beautiful. It made me wish more than anything for a car-less Deansgate (the street has a lot of restaurants and there is also a giant Waterstones store). Apparently the city council said it could be done, if they found a different route for buses that pass that way.

Also, like, not to be that person, but I knew about Extinction Rebellion before it was cool. As you can see, my post of their sticker is from November 2018, when most people only heard of them in 2019. Ha!

Speaking of climate activism, I cannot not mention Greta Thunberg. She has so much courage, I couldn’t do what she does, I couldn’t put myself out there, especially not at such a young age. Keep going, Greta!

So here we are, end of the year and end of the decade. What will the roaring twenties bring?

I wish everyone happy and prosperous new year.

Whip-Ma-Whop-Ma-Gate, York

As it’s the end of the year, let me sneak in one more post from York. It turned out to be quite a productive trip for my photography, despite the wrong settings on my camera.

I give you Whip-Ma-Whop-Ma-Gate, the shortest street in York.

I was originally going to make these pictures part of the Diagon-Alley-like post, but somehow they didn’t fit. Now I know why. Whip-Ma-Whop-Ma-Gate deserves its own entry.

Christmas in the City

I’ve taken a few shots with my new Motorola One Zoom of the festive Manchester, so I thought I’d make a post of them. The phone shoots quite decently in the dark, which is something I still haven’t learnt to do.

Some pics of the Christmas markets, which have now wrapped up.

This last one is from inside the Printworks. So good of Iorek Byrnison to grace us with a visit! I bet that scarf was a gift from Lyra. 😀 😀 😀

York Minster

It is the undoubtedly magnificent cathedral of York–and here I give you the pics.

Dean’s Park. It was wort it coming here in autumn, for sure.

Inside shots:

In addition to the normal entry fee (£11.50, valid for 12 months), you can also purchase a trip to the tower for an extra fiver. This means climbing up 275 steps. When I was offered this, my immediate thought was, I probably won’t regret it, so I said yes.

I didn’t regret it.

Although when the woman selling the tickets told me about 275 steps, it never occurred to me it would be this:

I’ve never climbed that high up a spiral staircase, so yay for another new experience!

Trips up the tower are done in groups at regular intervals, so I just joined the next available one.

Reward in the form of panoramatic view of York.

York

You’ve probably heard of York, beautiful walled city with rich history. I finally made a trip there and took over 200 photographs. It was only the day after that I discovered I had the wrong setting on my camera. Some time before I had set ISO to 6400 (I’m not sure why) and forgot to set it back, which is why so many pictures were taken with a narrow aperture and don’t look as good as they should. Live and learn I guess.

But here are some that are okay enough to be posted:

I didn’t get a chance to walk along the walls. I wanted to see the cathedral and city centre first and by the time I got back, it was dark already. The clocks have gone back the previous weekend, what can I say. But at least I got some autumn leaves, which I couldn’t have got had I gone there in the summer.

One of the best known landmarks here is York Minster. I will do a separate post for it but here’s two shots for now.

The narrow streets are really something else.

The Cat Gallery, a shop for all cat lovers. Did I buy something for myself there? You bet I did!

Autumn 2019 Collection

I decided to make a recap post of some of the nicest looking photos I took this autumn. I’ve been lucky with weather; even though we still had a lot of rain, there were enough dry and sunny days to take some good shots. Although you’ll see two of these were taken indoors.

An oak.

A bowl of apples, my favourite fruit.

A cup of pumpkin spice latte. Normally I drink black coffee only; this for me is a once-a-year indulgence.

Two collages. The top one is made from smartphone shots taken on a walk, the bottom one is pictures from Heaton Park this autumn.

Another smartphone shot; this is Cathedral Gardens with Chetham School of Music in the background and the fountain where ducks occasionally hang out.

And I end this with two shots taken around the Manchester Cathedral.

Have a good November!