Water Bottle Wars

My back garden is like a war zone at the moment. The horrible drought that has taken a grip on Cape Town has forced more and more wild birds to leave their mountainside habitat and look for water in domestic gardens. Lately I’ve had species of sunbird I don’t normally get to see in my garden coming to feed and the squabbles and antics are fascinating to witness.

Dry and hot weather results in quite a few scraps among the different species.  Most of the time it’s like watching kids in a playground as they fight for a spot at the spout.

Although sometimes different species do  get along and it’s quite a civil affair.

There are more take offs and landings in my garden than at Heathrow at the moment 🙂

And then there are the domestic disputes. Or maybe it was a mating ritual. Either way I photographed their interaction for 10 minutes. In heat of 32 degrees C !!

As for the ubiquitous and gutsy Cape White Eyes, there’s often a tag team to take on the competition – although squabbles amongst themselves are equally common 🙂

Then there are the playground bullies who scare everyone else away.  Male weaver birds are notorious thugs.

And the shy guys.  Cape Bulbuls are regular visitors but are always on high alert while the other species are uber bold by comparison.

Autumn Sunrise

This is the reward for waking up early at this time of the year to photograph the sunrise across False Bay on a Sunday morning 🙂

Not a breath of wind near the yacht basin in Simonstown either, where the pastel hues of pink and blue and lilac reflected on the wet shoreline.  #blissfulSundays

The Waterfront at Night

With the iconic Table Mountain as a backdrop, the V & A Waterfront is a tourist magnet for Cape Town.img_6874

It’s also the perfect place to try out night photography with my new camera and I must confess I am absolutely hooked – on night photography that is.  The crowds at the V&A can be a little much in high season. Which in Cape Town is pretty much all year round 🙂

Mist started rolling in as I was photographing the Clocktower and the canal, adding a lovely magical touch to the twilight.img_6892

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Photographing the Cape Wheel and all the surrounding lights in the harbour proved more of a challenge than I imagined.  I’ll have to go back sometime to get it absolutely right.

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Amelia

I was rushing through the Company Gardens which flank Parliament on a desperate mission to find a bathroom when I spotted her.  It was love at first sight.  The kind that makes you forget a full bladder.  Meet Amelia (in my haste I didn’t get her surname).

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Pint-sized and gorgeous, this two-year old was absolutely determined to move chess pieces her size and bigger.

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And then she got a little bit coy and hid in her “Fortress”.

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I love how Cape Town’s inner city public open spaces are so full of surprises at every turn, especially in the Company Gardens.

30 minutes to kill in Greenpoint

The weekday traffic out of Cape Town central can be manic at around 5pm, so rather than become a statistic in the stop-start madness that could eat up at least 30 minutes, I set off looking for a lighthouse to photograph.

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Greenpoint Lighthouse with the iconic Lion’s Head in the background.

Greenpoint is a cosmopolitan suburb with world class eateries, hugging the Atlantic Seaboard.   Despite the glut of concrete and glass high rise buildings, the ‘burb is full of surprises, like this colourful playpark.

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I’ll have to go back for an early morning walk along the Promenade towards Seapoint when I have more battery to take more photographs 🙂  Note to self:  Charge camera next time!

Slowing down time …..

Occasionally we all need to turn things down a notch or two.  To take time out to smell the flowers as it were.  Or in this case, to switch to super slow shutter speeds to catch the Kalk Bay harbour sentinels flashing simultaneously.

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It isn’t as easy as it might look as the lighthouses aren’t synchronised, but in doing so, I also managed to capture my first ever “misty wave action” effect 🙂

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