Winter scenes

It’s been pretty cold in the past weeks. When it’s been freezing for such a long time, the Dutch get a special type of disease: ice fever. Within days, ice skates were sold out everywhere, because for the first time in 12 years, it was possible to skate on natural ice in The Netherlands. There was even talk about a new Elfstedentocht, but the ice didn’t get strong enough for that.

So, we too wanted to go ice skating, but I too had to buy new skates first. We finally went this Saturday.

Apart from the fun of ice skating, the cold weather also provides some beautiful natural winter scenes, and the opportunity to try to make a few nice photos.

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Sunday, January 11th, 2009 Leisure, Personal, Photography No Comments

Photos… lots and lots of them

In the past months, we have been very busy sticking all our photos into albums. No, not digitally, but the old-fashioned, analog ones, you know – on paper!

I had quite a backlog of photos, some even 10 years old. We had all these photos, on a big pile, in what is now the baby room. So when we started clearing out this room a few months ago, we decided that we needed to get rid of this pile. So we spent lots of evenings and complete days sorting out the photos and putting them in the albums. We even took a bunch of them on our last holiday!

Well, yesterday evening we finally stuck the last of our pictures (of that same holiday) into our latest album, so we’re finished… for now, of course…

A rough estimate:

  • 12 photo books and albums
  • 820 pages
  • 2300 photos
  • 9000 adhesive photo corners


Friday, September 28th, 2007 Personal, Photography No Comments


At the end of our holiday, last week, we had two nights with heavy rain and thunderstorms. Secretly, I had hoped for that to happen, because I wanted to try out my new camera (and toys)!

This is the result:


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Wednesday, July 25th, 2007 Leisure, Photography No Comments

Sunset in Vlissingen

In the past months I have been doing a course in photography. It was very nice and I learnt a lot – and made a lot of pictures! A hundred to a hundred and fifty a week! And we could only show 3 or 4 of those!

Well, anyway, because I haven’t been using my weblog very much in the past year, I decided that I would start a photoblog. So, the first picture is coming up right now, and hopefully, I can give you regular updates with new (or old) pictures.

All pictures made by me, of course, and with my Canon Powershot A620 digital camera, unless otherwise stated.

Sunset in Vlissingen

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Thursday, April 19th, 2007 Leisure, Personal, Photography No Comments

HEMA Online Fotoservice

Last week, we uploaded a selection of our digital photographs of our summer holiday to the HEMA, to be printed.

The last time we did that, we uploaded the photos via the website. Unfortunately, the user interface wasn’t very good. Certain selections you made were forgotten and you had to make them again. We only had about 10 photos that time, so it was not such a big problem. And the print quality turned out to be very good!

But this time, we wanted to upload 144 photos, so I didn’t feel like doing things two or three times. Therefore, I decided to try out the offline order software. Well, I’m not very enthusiastic about that either, but at least it remembers the selections you make.
When it finally came to uploading the pictures, I was quite surprised that it went so quick. I am pretty sure that my 256 kbps uplink cannot upload a 3 MB picture in about 10 seconds.

I noticed that the HEMA order software had made an “Upload” directory in its Album directory. All my original HiRes photos had been copied there, and they were disappearing one by one. But every time, the topmost picture was first replaced by a much smaller, low resolution version, before it was uploaded! I quickly copied one of those files as “evidence”. Apparently, the photos are resized to 1600 x 1200 before they are uploaded. OK, I didn’t say they could do that, but if the pictures really have to be resized before they can be printed, so be it. But the pictures were also compressed! And not just a little!

My original photo was 2724 kb, with a resolution of 3072 x 2304.
The uploaded picture was only 369 kb, with a resolution of 1600 x 1200.
Of course, I tried resizing the picture to the same resolution myself, (without compression!), and got a photo of 1658 kb. That’s 4.5 times larger!

I thought I would wait to see the result. So today we picked up the pictures, but they’re terrible. You can clearly see the JPEG compression artefacts on some of the pictures. So, I’m certainly going back tomorrow!

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Wednesday, September 6th, 2006 Computing, Photography No Comments

Summer holiday

Yesterday we returned from our summer holiday. We’ve been to France, camping most of the time. We started just south of Calais, where we stayed for two nights. My brother and sister-in-law were over from Bristol for a long weekend, so we met them there. After that, we drove on to a small village south of Clermont-Ferrand. We did some walking thereabouts, amongst others to the summit of the Puy de Dome.
Because the weather wasn’t great, we went further south after five days, to the Gorges du Tarn in the Cevennes. There we did a lot of walking (and climbing!) on the steep slopes of the gorges. But we also visited a castle (Chateau de Peyrelade), caves (Grotte d’Argilan), Le Chaos de Montpellier le Vieux and we went canoeing on the river Tarn one day. Oh, and of course we went to see the famous Viaduc de Millau.

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Sunday, August 27th, 2006 Leisure, Personal, Photography No Comments

Gorges du Verdon

Last week, we were on holiday in France, camping near the Gorges du Verdon. We were in a small village, Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, just north of the Lac de Sainte Croix, on the camping St. Jean (which I can highly recommend).

We had a great time. We have walked le sentier Martel (14 kilometers, 6 hours), rented waterbikes, swum in the lake, visited Cannes. The last morning, we went canyoning! That is really very much fun to do (if you’re not afraid of heights!). It’s part walking and abseiling, and part swimming, wading through the river and jumping off waterfalls. Very spectacular!

On Provence Web there is some more info about the gorges, about the village of Moustiers and about the lake.
And take a look at this site, which has some nice pictures of the gorges and the lake.

Update (July 16): The photos are now available from, if you have the correct username and password, that is.

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Tuesday, July 13th, 2004 Leisure, Photography No Comments

Skiing trip

Last Saturday I returned from my skiing holiday. With a couple of friends I went to Oz-en-Oisans, near Alpe d’Huez, only a few kilometers from where my girlfriend and I stayed this summer.
It was great fun, and very nice to see what it looks like in winter. I’ve been to the same places and have taken photographs on the same spots as I did then.

Unfortunately, the weather hasn’t been very good all the time, we had a couple of snow storms, but luckily also a few very beautiful days.

On Tuesday we celebrated my birthday with a very nice dinner in a restaurant in Les Deux Alpes.

Update: The photos are available on my photo gallery.

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Monday, February 2nd, 2004 Leisure, Photography No Comments

Back from France

We returned from France, yesterday.
We had a really perfect holiday, with magnificent surroundings, and beautiful weather!
My girlfriend and I stayed on a camping in Allemont, in the Vallée de l’Eau d’Olle, about 50 kilometers east of Grenoble.
From our tent we looked out upon Alpe d’Huez, and the mountain range of the Grandes Rousses with its glaciers.

We have done a lot of walking, up to 7 hours and 900 meters of climbing. We have swum in a small mountain lake at 2100 meters altitude. We have done something called Hydrospeed on the river Vénéon, and we threw snowballs on the glacier on Pic Blanc at 3330 meters altitude!

The weather was very good, 35 to 40 degrees mostly, except for the two times that we nearly washed down the mountain. Rain and thunder up in the mountains is not much fun when you still have to descend for an hour and a half to get back to the car… But we got home safe alright.

All in all, we had a wonderful holiday together. Only way too short…

Update: A selection of photographs is now available on my site (if you have the password, of course).

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Thursday, August 21st, 2003 Leisure, Photography No Comments

Ben’s gone skiing

I learned on New Year’s Eve that a couple of my friends, with whom I went skiing last year, had planned their skiing holiday for this year, independently of each other, to the same place, in the same week.

So, I decided I’d also arrange something there and then, and today, I got the confirmation from the hotel… I’m going to Selva Gardena, Italy in a few weeks! And I’m very much looking forward to it!

Update: If you have the correct username and password, you can check out the photos here.

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Tuesday, January 14th, 2003 Leisure, Photography No Comments