As some of the pictures that people have posted for Thematic Photographic 301: "Dirty" have already shown, "dirty" is in the eye of the beholder - or the person behind the camera.
A couple of years ago an old friend of Mr A's and his lady friend came to stay with us for a while. He is Austrian and lives in Klagenfurt, she is Chinese and lives in Shanghai. They borrowed Mr A's car and set off on a road trip to see New Zealand.
Some of you will know that the majority of our small country consists of two narrow islands which run north to south (ish). Generally speaking, the beaches on the east coasts of both islands are calm, smooth, sweeping, with light, often golden, sands. Those on the west coasts have black sands, wild surf, rugged cliffs and lots of driftwood.
When our visitors returned, all Ms Shanghai could talk about were the 'dirty beaches' - how nasty and unpleasant they were, and how they needed 'cleaning up'. Needless to say, they had spent most of their trip driving along the west coasts.
What to pick? This is on my list of my favourite photos - I've posted it before, and it's an old shot - from my visit to Turkey in 2010. It was a wonderful holiday, and the visit to Gallipoli was an absolute highlight, as it is for nearly every New Zealander and Australian who goes there.
I took this shot of Ataturk's tribute to the troops who fought and died in that battle:
This word, which doesn't exist in New Zealand English, always sounds quintessentially down-home American to me. It's a variant pronunciation of creature, and would have been familiar to Shakespeare's audiences; it apparently still exists in Irish with the same meaning(s).
We are in the throes of a wintry storm which is apparently dumping large amounts of snow on the skifields in the South Island mountains. I'm certainly not going outside looking for critters!
Instead, here are some of my favourite critters, from a summer visit to Auckland zoo:
I've always loved giraffes, so prettily marked and so graceful.