MENU Photographs 2015-18

Since 2003, when we started writing our weekly MENU, it has always been headed by a photograph. Here is a selection of the photographs we have used, with last week's at the top

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All these images are ©John Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus, and may not be used without permission, accreditation and payment

Watching the winter waves - DSC_5344274

Wheat cover crop in Simonsig vineyards. Table Mountain at sunset - DSC_5605151

A male pin-tailed whydah (Vidua macroura) in non-breeding plumage, Hemel en Aarde Valley, Western Cape - DSC_5604576

Blood Moon. Lunar eclipse, Sea Point, Cape Town 21h27 27th July 2018 - DSC_5602619

Sea Point Sunset - DSC_5602270

Across Table Bay from Lagoon Beach. Waterfront, Stadium and Green Point with a trawler - DSC_5601990

South African rosemary, South African bee - DSC_5601697

Hovering kelp gull - DSC_5329553

Lion's Head sunset glow - DSCN900069

Beached boats at a boatyard on the north bank of the Douro, Porto - DSC_5361434

Dreaming the Impossible Dream. Don Quixote and Sancho Panza. Part of the Cervantes memorial in Madrid. Revisited after 47 years - DSC_4032650

One of the joys of living by the sea is watching the gulls, such magnificent aviators - DSC_5361405

View of the distant Stellenboschkloof vineyards from the Jardine restaurant terrace, through the raindrops - DSC_5605198

A gull flying down the Douro, Porto - DSC_5361401a

A beautiful malachite sunbird supping nectar from the proteas on the terrace at the Jordan wine estate tasting room - DSCN901962

A seagull flying past the Port houses alongside the Douro River in Porto - DSC_5361403

This cock sparrow (Passer domesticus) and his hen have been trying to get at a fruit bowl on our window sill and have been a deep fascination for the predatory instinct of our cat, Rory. We are not unsure that they are having fun baiting him - DSC_5601880

Bridges and boats on the Douro, Porto - DSC_5361396 

A seagull flying past the Port houses alongside the Douro River in Porto - DSC_5361399

Victorian era houses in Porto - DSC_5361282

A lovely courtyard lined with flower pots at the Sandeman wine cellar in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain - DSC_4031935

The floor was a whirl of colour, swirling flounces and pretty ladies, with a few boys joining in, very few men - DSC_4031508

A tourist boat on the Douro at Porto - DSC_5361417

A traditional port boat at the Sandeman cellar. Porto. These boats carry the barrels (pipes) of port from the quintas up the river to the trading venues in Porto - DSC_5361393

                              Don Quixote and Sancho Panza statue in the Cervantes Monument, Plaza de España in Madrid                                       Scanned from a Kodachrome slide, photographed by John in 1971 - with an iconic Nikon F, not the camera in the picture                                                        Perhaps significant as we prepare to embark on an Iberian Odyssey                                                Slide 1500

Beach Road, Sea Point. Sunset with some blessed rain - DSC_5361064

The freedom of flight – Kelp gulls off Strandfontein - DSC_5301518

Sunset from our deck, late evening - DSC_5106870 - IMG_20180320_15

The back of Table Mountain and Devil's Peak, seen from the National Botanical Garden, Kirstenbosch - DSC_5358740

From our deck, late evening - DSC_5106870

Mating dragonflies in a pond at Nitida wine estate, Durbanville - DSC_5357429

Sunset picnic on the rocks, Clifton - DSC_5358491

Clouds forming over the mountains in the Winelands - DSC_4020159

The water lilies in our fish pond are thriving, fed by the fertiliser provided by the fish - DSC_5356777

One of the joys of summer. Sitting under a Stellenbosch oak, tasting wonderful wines - DSC_5357596

Sea Point sunset with boats - DSC_5301276

A bee harvesting pollen from a water lily in our pond - DSC_5356808

Fishing on the beach near Velddrif - DSC_5357070

A peacock on the roof, La Residence, Franschhoek - DSC_5355713

A fire boat practising in Table Bay – cool water for a hot summer - DSC_5356203

Blue waterlilies in our pond - DSC_4001484 

Blue cranes at Benguela Cove estate, Overberg - DSC_5332691

Beach huts, Muizenberg - DSC_5350409

An owl in a Buitenverwachting oak - DSC_5115467

Fishing from the breakwater, Kalk Bay - DSC_4028177

A yellow-billed duck takes off from a pond - DSC_5351632

Wheat fields, clouds and hills in the Overberg - DSC_5352970

A southern red bishop (Euplectes orix) in a bamboo thicket, Wildekrans Estate, Bot River, Western Cape - DSC_5352604

Wheat fields near Caledon, Western Cape - DSC_5351873

The view over Creation wine estate in the Hemel en Aarde Valley from the deck at Ataraxia's Greek chapel tasting room - DSC_5351826

Cymbidiums or boat orchids at the Duckitt orchid nursery near Darling - DSC_5351114

Two of Nitida’s Yellow-billed ducks (Anas undulata) enjoying a spring day on the pond - DSC_5350075

Bud break signals the end of winter in the vineyards in front of Buitenverwachting’s 18th Century Cape Dutch manor house in Constantia - DSC_5350405

Rain comes to a vineyard in Rawsonville - DSC_5349976

A sure sign of spring. Two squirrels romping in an oak tree at Delaire Graff - DSC_5349548

The play continued and a new litter can be expected in a few weeks

A prehistoric beast or a reincarnation of Spielberg's ET? - One of the giant tortoises in The Vineyard Hotel's gardens - DSC_5348793

Antarctic exploration ship SA Agulhas 2 in the V&A Waterfront - DSC_5112307

Winter rain brings green to the landscape - DSC_5147193.jpg

Moorhens in their mating rituals, Hemel en Aarde Valley - DSC_5347686

A tanker on a "wine dark sea" (quote from Homer) with clouds on the horizon which we hope will bring more blessed rain

The sky on fire - a Sea Point sunset

Looking across the Øresund strait past Kronborg Castle in Helsingør, Denmark, to Helsingborg in Sweden

Green lawns, white roses, winter vineyards and Stellenbosch mountains. An evening view from Asara Wine Estate & Hotel - Asara uses grey water on the gardens

Looking across the Øresund strait past Kronborg Castle in Helsingør, Denmark, to Helsingborg in Sweden - DSC_5345684

Poppies and Dutch windmills, ancient and modern, North Holland

Autumn colours in the avenue leading to the manor house at Morgenster

Winter waves, Sea Point

The Palmiet River at Shannon Vineyards, Elgin

A Camps Bay autumn sunset

Common waxbills (Estrilda astrild) photographed from the verandah at David van Niekerk’s High Constantia winery

Tall, straight trees. Reaching to the sky. Paul Cluver Estate,Elgin

Flying off into the sunset

A lotus flower and seed pods, De Morgenzon wine estate, Stellenboschkloof

A Southern Double-collared Sunbird on a pink hibiscus flower, Van Loveren winery, Robertson

A blue dragonfly on a dead leaf in our koi pond

The classic view of Table Mountain, across Table Bay from Blaauwberg

A honey bee harvesting from a pickerel weed flower in our pond (Pontederia cordata; jongsnoekkruid)

Tourists enjoying a boat ride on Hout Bay

A bee collecting nectar from a lavender flower. Hillcrest Estate, Durbanville

A flight of Black oystercatchers at Yzerfontein on the West Coast

This magnificent peacock was strutting his stuff at Shannon wine estate in Elgin

A Cape white-eye (Zosterops virens) in a white strelitzia in our garden

Summer in the Swartland

Summer is flirting with us at the moment, we have warm days then it is chilly and a little cloudy. Drought is with us again and severe water restrictions in the Cape came into effect on the 1st of November, so we just wish it would rain

Wine farm workers fishing from a weir. Breede River, Robertson

Summer coming in – a Southern Double-collared sunbird hen and wilde dagga

A bee harvests the delights of an orange blossom

Wagon ride to the Rhône manor house on Boschendal

Winter has gone. Families playing at the water’s edge, Three Anchor Bay

A tanker in one of the wonderful sunsets we see in winter
A kelp gull in a Sea Point winter storm

The sun sets on Ha Long Bay, Vietnam

A Western Cape winter sunset

A magnificent kudu bull at Thali Thali near Langebaan on the Cape West coast

Trees silhouetted against the Helderberg

Cormorants, seemingly unconscious of the crashing winter waves 

God in his wisdom made the fly and then forgot to tell us why (Ogden Nash)

This little hovering fly was about 3mm from wingtip to wingtip

A gull flies into the sunset, taking the last of summer

A blue headed agama lizard (bloukop koggelmander) basking in the sun

Heavy clouds off Sea Point bringing us very welcome rain - Change is in the air!

The Stellenbosch Kloof from the deck at Jordan

A flurry of Antarctic terns

Sailing in the sunset on a calm Table Bay

Hartlaub’s gulls on a roof In Hout Bay harbour

This magnificent visitor to our southern countryside, a sable antelope bull with his young companions, in a Boschendal field

 A fresh South-easter and a spring tide on Camps Bay beach

 Refreshment and shelter from the heat at Oak Valley’s Pool Room

 The next four photographs, "Hadeda Love", show Interest, Affection, Action and Conclusion

Two noisy hadeda ibis on our neighbour's roof 

 A hot landscape in the Nuy Valley

 Three banded plover, Paternoster

 A baby owl at Steenberg

 Summer is here

 Night view across the mouth of Cape Town harbour

Grace in flight - a grey heron comes in to land

 Malachite kingfisher (Alcedo cristata)

A family of meerkats in the Karoo near Oudtshoorn

The view across False Bay from Strandfontein

The sun sets over the dam. Robert Stanford Estate, Stanford

A carpet of Spring flowers at Postberg, West Coast National Park

Spring is in the air and the dragonflies emerge

A misty spring day near Stellenbosch 

Evening rush hour on a rainy N1, returning to Cape Town 

A wintry sunset over Camps Bay beach

A break in the storm. Looking across Wellington to the surrounding mountains

A squirrel surveys his territory from an old oak on Laborie in Paarl

A stormy winter Sea Point sea

A last look at ancient Greece. A temple being restored in Corinth

Blue hills of a late afternoon in Mycenae. A sort of Trompe de l’oeil, certainly an optical illusion

Trees on the shore of the Gulf of Corinth

The Temple of Nemean Zeus at Corinth

An elegant Three-master on a rainy Naxos night

A classic Greek Island church on Ios

A hooded crow takes a bath at Topkapı Palace, Istanbul

These two young Turkish lasses asked John to take their photograph with their phone in the Blue Mosque, Istanbul. He also used his camera

The Cisterns in Istanbul, built by Emperor Justinian, 527-565 AD. A magnificent domed roof and a selection of different columns to support it, with the water for the city below

Autumn vines, apples and olives at Hannay, Elgin

A flight of Quelea at Elandsberg Reserve

Bartholomeus Klip has a breeding herd of disease free Cape buffalo

The end of summer on the beach as gulls tell us the weather is about to change

A Common tern at sunset

A Clifton evening. Looking toward Oudekraal and Llandudno

A black backed gull in the evening light

Clifton sunset

Vineyards and Mountains in the Helderberg Valley

Redwing Starlings Take Off and Landing...

Hout Bay harbour

Evening on Milnerton lagoon

Strolling home in the fog

The sunset at Babylon’s Peak, seen from Creation in the Hemel en Aarde Valley

Sunbird's agapanthus breakfast

Early morning shadows on a road between the vines at Laborie in Paarl

Green summer vines below the mountains in the Slanghoek Valley

Juvenile kelp gull taking off

Developing olives at Baleia Bay

Cape Sugarbird (Promerops cafer), Constantia Glen 

A gemsbok (Oryx gazella) at Groote Post, Darling Hills

Evening light on Bains’ Kloof behind Nabygelegen

A Sea Point sunset

Britannia Bay’s cormorant Fleet Air Arm squadron coming in to land

A Cape weaver contemplates an evening plunge

Waterlilies in Elgin morning light

A seagull flying to a winter sea

Sea Point Beachfront, 6pm, 21st May 2014

Milnerton sunset with tanker

Cormorants flying home ahead of a cold front

A winter storm approaching Franschhoek

A misty rainbow behind De Ou Pastorie between Oudtshoorn and Calitzdorp

A sunbird enjoying a wilde dagga sundowner near the Heads, Knysna

A couple on Camps Bay beach watches the sunset and a choppy winter sea

A white-fronted sandplover (Charadrius marginatus) running from the surf on The Wilderness beach

A lonely yacht on the calm but sparkling Knysna lagoon 

The Sea Point beachfront with a gathering storm and a “hat” on Lion’s Head – a sure sign of turbulent weather

A grey heron by the dams at l’Avenir -  so still for so long that he could have been a statue

A yacht going home in a winter sunset

A pelican glides past cattle drinking at a Durbanville dam

The view from Delaire Graff to Thelema on a wet late winter day

The freedom of the skies

A bee harvesting on a dandelion flower

The old prison boat Susan Kruger ferrying visitors to Robben Island

Sunrise on Walker Bay, Hermanus

Spring brings the dragonflies back to our pond

L’Avenir’s resident grey heron surveys his domain

Table Mountain, 55Km as the crow flies from the top of Kanonkop hill on Vondeling, Voor Paardeberg

An olive thrush in Mariana’s garden, contemplating which of a feast of mulberries he should choose next

Two friendly mules at Excelsior, Robertson

A red bishop surveys the young vines in a vineyard

South Africa's national floral emblem, the King Protea, protea cynaroides

A dramatic Sea Point sunset

The vineyards at La Residence, in the shadow of the Franschhoek mountains

New vine tendrils reach for the sky

Log cabins by the dam at the Slanghoek Mountain Resort

Oil rig at Sunset; Sea Point

Vineyards at Longridge, on the slopes of the Helderberg

Rory joined us, January 2015

Laborie vineyards, Paarl 

Slanghoek landscape with summer vineyards

Trimming the vines, Excelsior, Robertson

Three-banded sandplover (Charadrius tricollaris), Knysna

Autumn vineyards, Elgin 

Pine trees and vineyard, Ataraxia, Hemel en Aarde Valley 

A Cape White eye takes a bath and gives a Cape Canary a shower. Photographed in the courtyard at Marc’s Restaurant in Paarl

Pincushion Protea, Leucospermum

A blue dragonfly takes a moment's rest

Evening on the Sea Point beachfront

Cormorants - home time

A paraglider descending to Clifton with Table Mountain behind him

Late evening over the Twelve Apostles as a South Easter gathers force

A tranquil Hemel en Aarde evening

Table Mountain and its tablecloth from Blouberg beach

Bantry Bay

Slanghoek Mountain Resort, The dam and the valley after sunset

A Cape Wagtail (Motacilla capensis) with a juicy snack

Cape Grassbird or Cape Grass Warbler (Sphenoeacus afer) near Walker Bay Reserve

An orange-breasted sunbird hen

An orange-breasted sunbird hen

An orange-breasted sunbird hen enjoying a refreshing nectar meal

Late evening at Weltevrede in the Bonnievale valley

Milnerton lagoon with children, evening

A Cape Town evening: The 92 year old Russian four master Sedov leaves Table Bay, while a gentleman paddles by on his surf ski

A weaver couple inspecting the new nest he has just built - "I told you I wanted a second bathroom!" 

The Lanzerac manor house under a winter sky

Two Aloe Ferox (Bergaalwyn or Bitteraalwyn) and Agave (Garingboom) in flower on the rocks at Clifton

Ducks controlling snails in the vineyards, Avondale, Paarl

Spring flowers at Groote Post, Darling

Evening in Cape Town harbour, from the deck of SA Agulhas 2 

Still life in Peter & Yvonne Bayly's kitchen, Calitzdorp

Mount Currie, Kokstad, KZN

A trawler battles a stormy winter sea, Sea Point 

Gulls playing with winter waves, Sea Point

Bees in a King Protea, Glenwood, Franschhoek

Winter vineyards, Glenwood, Franschhoek

An Egyptian goose flies home in a Franschhoek evening

Evening, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town

Early spring, Simonsberg, Stellenbosch 

Winter vineyards, Muratie, Stellenbosch

The lord of all he surveys, Rivierzicht, Robertson

The Breede River in flood, Rivierzicht, Robertson

Table Bay evening

"Pirate ship" Table Bay 

Buitenverwachting avenue, Constantia 

Lions Head in winter 

A fire fighting Huey collecting water, Sea Point 

Surfing seagull, Hout Bay

Evening fishers, Old Harbour, Hermanus

A bug with long antennae, Hemel en Aarde

Vergelegen manor house, Somerset West

Peahens, Vergelegen, Somerset West

A squirrel in The Company's Garden, Cape Town

Delaire vineyards, Banhoek Valley, Stellenbosch

Queen Mary 2, Cape Town harbour

Hemel en Aarde farm

Young malachite sunbird, De Werf, Hemel en Aarde Valley

A dragonfly and a blue waterlily bud, Hemel en Aarde Valley

Vineyards at Jordan, Stellenbosch Kloof

Saronsberg, Tulbagh

A chase of gulls in the V&A Waterfront

A grey heron contemplates breakfast, Port Alfred, Eastern Cape

A False Bay fishing boat brings home the catch

A view from Delaire’s vineyards, down the Banhoek valley to the smoke of the Franschhoek fires

Setting sun over Noordhoek Beach 

The view across Pringle Bay towards Gordon’s Bay

A pair of black oystercatchers, Pringle Bay

The Buitenverwachting owl