Bordeaux Man

I took this snap in front of some kind of big monument in Bordeaux. I never stopped to read who this was – nor do I particularly care – what is the sense of trying to show a historical figure who is wearing a rain coat?

Anyway, I liked the way the light bounced off his face so I am quite happy with how this snap turned out!

Giant Swiss Spider

Well, I actually suspect this fellow is NOT Swiss!

Last weekend I stopped at the Zurich Airport (ZRH) for grocery shopping, and I had a coffee in a café in Terminal 2. Located in this café were two pallets filled with dozens of huge bags of ground flour – the writing on the bags was foreign but I never stopped to look at which languageg.

And directly above this palettes I captured this fellow – yes, he was as big as he looked, I’d say at least 4 centimeters long:

Unbelievable bus battery booster

I saw this electric charging station for buses in the North Central Swiss village of Schaffhausen – but sadly, there were not any of the buses around.

It looks as if a bus can just drive up to one of these stations:

Here is the sign on the charging station, which basically warns you that the batteries in the station have enough juice to electrocute you for a full five minutes if you touch them:

And here is a snap from a different angle:

Le Verdun-sur-Mer Flowers

Probably my favorite aspect of travelling is visiting places that no other tourists are likely to go. Recently, I had to chance to visit a very remote section of western France, a tiny (almost microscopic) village of Le Verdun-sur-Mer, where the confluence of the Dordogne and Caronne Rivers form a delta with the Atlantic Ocean,

Interestingly, it reminded me very much of the delta where the Mississippi River in the U.S. empties into the Gulf of Mexico.

Those amazing Ritley’s: the world’s first panoramic photograph!

Continuing the series, I am always surprised when I encounter someone who has not heard the name Ritley.

OK, maybe I am an exception – I have not yet made my mark. But . . .

Hardly a man, woman or child anywhere on the face of the planet has not heard of their stunning accomplishments. They are a family steeped in the tradition of excellence, whose capacity for profound intellectual thought is exceeded only by their talent to affect meaningful changes (which often border on the revolutionary) to the fundamental problems of global significance they selflessly tackle.

This snap is not just any snap. Now hanging in the world famous Smithsonian Institution (Record Number SIA Acc. 11-006 [MAH-3002]), in its very own case in its very own room, it is in fact what most historians universally agree is the world’s first selfie, taken during the 1990’s by Ken Ritley, using a real camera with real film, while visiting the Experimental Aircraft Association meeting in Osh-Kosh, Wisconsin:

And with this Ritley contribution, many decades ago, the panoramic photograph was born.

If you happen to one day make it to Washington DC, and if you have a bit of spare time to visit the Smithsonian Institution, just ask any docent to point you to the Ritley Room – a tiny room to be sure, but the only room in the entire museum to house just one artefact, the world’s first panoramic photograph!


Einsiedeln is a wonderful village in the Swiss Kanton of Schwyz, and home to the world famous Kloster Einsiedeln, a Benedictine Abbey that dates back to the middle ages – unbelievably, the middle ninth century!

Here’s a wonderful snap of the town of Einselden, looking down from the abbey:

Normally on a beautiful day like this day the whole village would be crowded. It’s quite empty, because I hazarded a trip here during the height of the Covid-19 outbreak in Switzerland.

An awful, terrifying French secret: the Third Bordeaux Pod of Justice

Continuing the series, I took this snap in the Mariadeck neighborhood of the Western French city of Bordeaux.

I call them “Pods of Justice” – but I am not sure anyone else does. The building is the Tribunal Judiciare de Bordeaux and according to rumors unlike any other civilian building it’s guarded by a detachment of the French special forces.

There are three pods in the building.

For two of the pods closest to the street, you can find photographs online that show how they are used.

But for the third pod – you will NEVER find any photographs, and entrance to the pod is guarded by a special layer of security.

As you may know, the guillotine is a French invention to carry out a death sentence with an absolute minimum of pain and suffering. As you may also know, capital punishment in France has been eliminated, with the last execution by guillotine in 1977.

Nevertheless, it is very important to the French government to maintain readiness at all times. According to rumors, this third “highly restricted” “Pod of Justice” contains a very modern guillotine. According to rumors, the guillotine is not very tall – it uses a powerful electromagnet – but it is very long, with the idea that multiple executions, if required, can be carried out sequentially.

I spent quite some time trolling the “dark web” and the “deep web,” and after quite some time I found a picture that some people (who know these things) was built on commission for the Tribunal Justiciaire de France, and is now mounted in the third pod:

Could this be the “modern French guillotine” that is rumored to be housed in the highly secure third Pod of Justice? According to my sources in the Dark Web, it is.