Wednesday, November 30, 2016

December City Theme

This month's theme is TRANSITIONS -  Linking up with City Daily Photo.

November 2016 - Toronto ON

This one's for William, yes, Union Station is STILL under renovations!

I took these this week.

Considering the number of people who have passed through Union Station, the edifice has held up well. But the almost century-old facility is showing its age: much of it is in disrepair — peeling paint, cracked, damaged floors, leaky roofs and tired-looking passenger concourses that evoke the 1970s — space is used inefficiently, and the facility no longer meets the needs of today’s commuters.

The original entrance to the train platforms, I'm assuming they will leave this as is.

Union Station's revitalization is a $640-million initiative supported by investments of $164 million from the Government of Canada, $172 million from the Government of Ontario, and $340 million from the City of Toronto.

 Everywhere you look, inside and outside work is being done.

Union Station's revitalization will result in many benefits to commuters, including bigger, brighter transit concourses, more exits and entrances to the station, new PATH connections, repair and rehabilitation of an aging facility, and the introduction of an exciting and revitalized retail presence.

York concourse was finished last summer in time for the Pan Am Games and is a much brighter, more efficient space.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Tuesday Treasures

Tom hosts Tuesday's Treasures.

May 1987 - San Francisco CA

This was our first and only trip to San Francisco, how did that happen? We've been in California many times since then.

The first mural we had even seen! And in googling it, it is still there!
Columbus and Broadway in North Beach by Bill Weber and was painted in 1987.
Featured are three musical legends: Teddy Wilson on the piano, Gene Krupa playing the drums and Benny Goodman with his signature clarinet.

This was also the first time I saw patrons have to get a key to the washroom.

An icon.

Another icon.

Is it any wonder you need signs like above?

The biggest SF icon of all!

A bus tour to Napa Valley.

We took the ferry over to Sausalito for a day.

Yes, you can still see this houseboat!

The Taj Mahal was built by land developer turned winery and vineyard entrepreneur Bill Harlan in the mid-1970’s after he visited India and was fascinated by its architecture. With travertine marble floors, a wine cellar (logically enough), a top-level solarium for meditation, a sauna and a secret elevator, the houseboat’s cost in 1970’s dollars was over $2,000,000, which would be a staggering $9,000,000 today.

We were staying close to City Hall, a rather seedy area at that time.

The Transamerica Pyramid is the tallest skyscraper in the San Francisco skyline. The building no longer houses the headquarters of the Transamerica Corporation, which moved their U.S. headquarters to Baltimore, Maryland, but it is still associated with the company and is depicted in the company's logo. Designed by architect William Pereira and built by Hathaway Dinwiddie Construction Company, at 853 ft (260 m), on completion in 1972 it was the eighth tallest building in the world.

And our introduction to Ghirardelli chocolate, which is now a life-long addiction!

Coit Tower on the left.

Coit Tower, also known as the Lillian Coit Memorial Tower, is a 210-foot (64 m) tower in the Telegraph Hill neighborhood. The tower, in the city's Pioneer Park, was built in 1933 using Lillie Hitchcock Coit's bequest to beautify the city of San Francisco; at her death in 1929 Coit left one-third of her estate to the city for civic beautification. The tower was proposed in 1931 as an appropriate use of Coit's gift.

Alcatraz. The small island was developed with facilities for a lighthouse, a military fortification, a military prison (1868), and a federal prison from 1933 until 1963.

Foto Tunes

Tom the backroads traveller hosts FotoTunes

Just for fun, Adele calls Lionel  to say...Hello.

Taken in a monastery in Meteora Greece.

Valley of the Kings Egypt

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Happy Anniversary

November 2016 - Toronto ON

Taken in September at the Distillery District.

inSPIREd Sunday

Amazing, that I have never posted this for inSPIREd Sunday.

Click here to see the day's events.

Info garnered from the BBC.
Of Istanbul’s many ancient wonders, the most famed is Hagia Sophia. The building has served as a museum for the past 77 years and, prior to that, was a religious centre for Istanbul and the wider world for more than 1,400 years. It began as a church in 537 under the orders of the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I, eager to go one up on his Roman antecedents by building a structure on an unprecedented scale. Entering the completed church, he modestly remarked, ‘Oh Solomon! I have outdone you.’

It was still the largest building in the world when Ottoman Turks set about converting it into a mosque after capturing Istanbul from the Byzantines in 1453, and formed a blueprint for its famous neighbour, the Blue Mosque.

Hagia Sophia’s greatest architectural legacy is its revolutionary dome – intended to be bigger, taller and more impressive than any other dome that had gone before it – although construction took something of a trial and error format, with one total collapse after an earthquake in 558. Now supported by 40 ribs, the dome is fittingly inscribed with the Light Verse from the Koran: ‘Allah is the light of the heavens and the Earth.’

I must say it is certainly impressive, the more so when you consider how old it is.

The Hagia Sophia may no longer be a place of worship, but one superstition – allegedly dating back to the days of Justinian I – lives on. Legend has it that if you stick your thumb into a small hole in a copper facing of the ‘weeping column’ and your thumb emerges moist, you’ll be cured of all your ailments.

The upper gallery houses Hagia Sophia’s most impressive mosaics, among them that of Empress Zoe, an 11th century Byzantine. First married aged 50, Zoe had three husbands, famously marrying her courtier the day that the first passed away (he was said to have been poisoned). The mosaic was tactfully altered with the arrival of each new husband.