Ontario's summer this year - lots of clouds and rain!

women hold up half the sky

My party walked for about eight hours through the mountains of Guilin and this woman offered to carry my backpack which had heavy supplies and all of my camera equipment in it. With aching back and throbbing legs I desperately wanted someone to carry it, but being a guy I just had too much pride to let a lady carry my bag! I know that in China they have a saying that, "women hold up half the sky," but those gender roles get me every time. Although I carried my own pack the woman walked with us the entire eight hours telling us about the history and traditions of the “minority people” who live in these mountains.

mountain trail

Mountain trails in Guilin, China.

lunch boxs

A scene from Beijing, where collecting the lunch boxes is serious business!But on a more serious note – as a former solder myself – I have the greatest respect for these sons and brothers (and daughters and sisters) who are ready to go into harms way to serve their nation.

friday prayers

At least once a week I will post old pictures from my early days of photography. This was taken in the 1980s when I was doing community work with a Bangladeshi group.

It was taken at London Central Mosque (with the Imam's permission of course). I don't think it was actually taken on a Friday - it would have been much busier it it was - but “Friday Prayers” makes for a good title and reflects something important in this community.

Taken with a Nikon FE, not sure what lens.

safe and sound

Better than airbags - mom and dad!

olympic lights

Looking up at the lights outside the olympic stadium in Beijing.

毛泽东 (mao zedong)

I was in a Hong Kong market near “Central” when I saw this small model of Chairman Mao with models of solders holding copies of “quotations from Chairman Mao Zedong” (毛主席语录), better known in the West as "The Little Red Book."

I don’t like to admit it, but I have never read the Little Red book nor studied Mau, even though Time Magazine ranks him as one of the most influential people in the 20th century. Of course I have heard the critiques about him from the West, but I have never looked into the man and his ideas myself. I will have to correct that soon, and who knows once I have, maybe the next time I am in Hong Kong or China perhaps I might be inclined to buy one of these rather cute looking models - or maybe not - I will let you know.

rice terraces

Rice terraces in the mountains of Guilin, China.

the art of self portraits part ii

The art of self portraits in the Roman Coliseum.

the art of self portraits part i

The art of self portraits on the Great Wall of China.

aswan moment

A shot from last year - looking up at a monument built to comemorate the Aswan Dam.

mountain top cafe

A mountaintop cafe in Guilin, China.

dried snake skin

A picture from the Hong Kong markets of what I assume is dried snake skin. Not sure what they are used for, possibly for making bags or other goods but as there are dry and because there was mostly food sold in this store, I suspect they are used for cooking or even medicine. Anyone know the answer?