IAEP had a little holiday last week! A 1000+ mile roadtrip through America. After a brief look at the Pacific coast at Santa Monica, we drove through miles and miles of desert, had a great experience with off-road driving to an abandoned mine in Death Valley, had a couple of nights in the fun-but-crazy world of Las Vegas, saw the Hoover Dam, marveled at the wonder of the Grand Canyon (in both the sun and the snow), and enjoyed the beautiful red rocks of Sedona, Arizona. Quite a way in one week, but what an experience! We traveled on the musical road, saw an aircraft graveyard, had lunch in a ghost town, saw more stars in the sky than I’d ever seen before thanks to the lack of light pollution in the desert, went to Paris, New York, Venice and Rome all in one day, won and lost a little in the casinos, learned about atomic bomb testing, traveled along route 66, saw sunrises and sunsets, and some of the world’s best rock formations.
I did of course, take plenty of pictures. That meant taking camera, lenses, and tripod, which was a lot to carry. But well worth it I think. I hope the small selection of photos below makes you agree.
So enjoy the gallery, but remember that I’m back from holiday now, and now that the jet lag is clearing I’m charged up and ready to take some photos. So please use the contact form below to get in touch if there’s any I can take for you.
It’s February and therefore the shops are full of hearts, cards, chocolates and over-priced roses. No doubt florists (and garages), restaurants (from Michelin starred to greasy spoons), and chocolate sellers (both Hotel Chocolat and Tesco) will do a roaring trade over the next week. In some households – largely in and around Norwich – children will be looking forward to a visit from Father Valentine. But largely Valentine’s Day is noted for romance and displays of affection.
Some, of course, will say “Humbug” to all this – and yes the cynic in me agrees that you don’t need to be told to show your feelings on one particular day of the year. But if we don’t do it now, then lets all make sure we do make some gesture of love and devotion at another time. It’s easy in a busy world to keep putting things off and end up missing the (love) boat altogether.
Whenever you do it, please don’t feel you need to spend a fortune to demonstrate affection. A packet of favourite sweets, a bunch of daffs, a cup of tea and a slice of cake, a couple of hours to read a book in peace, a note left for you to find, a lie in after a night out, a lie in just for the sake of it, a long, soothing cuddle, a good smooch, a shared bag of chips at the seaside, a hot bath run with bubbles and candles and a chance to soak without interruptions, the chance to indulge in whatever activity you love, but never get to do enough, for a couple of hours. All of these things can show love and none of them need cost more than a pound or so.
Whatever you do this Valentine’s Day, do it with love. And let that loving feeling continue through the year. Maybe, to quote Charles Schulz, all you need is love, but a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.