Meet my travelling non-gnome, Dini

A few weekends ago, while ambling along a flea market for some treasures, I noticed this tiny dinosaur toy  being sold by a 10-year old boy for 50 centimes (65 US cents).  He probably has grown tired of the toy I thought, but in my photographic eye, it suddenly dawned on me that this would be a perfect travelling non-gnome  to take along with on my travel escapades!

As a photographer,  I am always behind my camera and making my family or friends pose for me is always a big problem as sometimes they are not too cooperative whenever I ask them to act like a clown or to stand upside down or hang on a line with one hand, etc…etc…

And so I bought the toy which I named “Dini” and from then on, my photo shoots of famous landmarks and even insignificant spots have become more exciting as never before!  Tourists next to me would probably laugh at my actions but I don’t mind.  The  important thing is, I believe I have put my photographic passion into a higher dimension, lol!

There is a history behind this.  It was started by an Australian in the 80’s when he stole a friend’s garden gnome and took it with him to his travels.  He would take a picture of the thing in each new place he went to and post the photo on the web!  This started the Travelling Gnome trend!

But I prefer a non-gnome and choosing Dini is one of the best decisions I have ever taken in my entire travelling life!

So meet my cute little Dini.  He will, no doubt, become the most-travelled dinosaur toy in the universe!


“Get me out of this rose garden! “

If King Kong can climb the Empire State building, my own little Dini can do the same with the Eiffel Tower!

“Yey, I’m going  to England for the first time!”

(Yes, this is Dini’s first travel out of the country (France) and naturally he was so excited!  This is the bus we took from Paris to London, 8 hours travelling time crossing the English channel via the Eurotunnel. )

Dini: Why are you unhappy, Mr Fountainhead?
FH:    Because I’m thirsty…. I’ve been here for several hundred years spouting water but it’s only in the 21st century that they stopped water flowing out of me

Dini stopping to see the memorial of Princess Diana at the Pont d’Alma.

The sculpture is called the Flame of Liberty, a replica of the torch carried in the hand of the Statue of Liberty.  It was offered to the people of France by donors throughout the world as a symbol of the Franco-American friendship.  The Flame has become  an unofficial memorial for Princess Diana who met her fatal accident in the tunnel below.

Holiday time by the River Soar, UK

Having just moved to the UK last June, we are experiencing our very first British summer and I am liking it so much because, after all, the English countryside – which comprises of bucolic scenery of canals, woods, matured trees, historic architecture, charming villages with their stunning medieval churches – is still my top reason why I adore this country!

It’s been a warm and rainless summer so everybody was really up and about just enjoying their time. And this, I promise you, is the best time to scout for the best shots.

Enjoy the photos!


Barrow-on-Soar, Leicestershire

The gently-winding river Soar with its rural scenery is very popular for narrow boat cruising..

Kayaking in the calm waters of the river is a great way to forget the stresses of modern life..

It was a hot Saturday with temperature soaring at 30degC!

A narrow boat waiting for the water to rise before going through the lock in Mountsorrel.

Camping is still the cheapest way to holiday!

Giant mushrooms growing everywhere.  This one we found in the campsite next to our camping spot.

At Loughborough to have some lunch.  The heat is an excuse to show your tattoos!

A lovely moment to do trainspotting over the bridge of Barrow..


A trip to the market

Hello everyone!  I’m sorry for being off-blog that sooo long – 39 days actually!

Been so busy-busy looking for a flat while yo-yo’ing backwards and forwards between Leicester and Paris, in fact, it is still continuing as I’m due to disappear again in a week’s time to play tourist guide (for the Nth time) to my sister and her family on their two-week British tour of England, Scotland and Wales.  Northern Ireland was supposed to be part of the itinerary but I just couldn’t squeeze it any longer for tightness of time.

So, I have a lot of catching up to do, loads of photos due for posting and I just need your patience to keep visiting this site for more weird and exciting entries.

Now, for my comeback post, here are some pics of my trip to the market yesterday.  It’s the season of soft fruits and England, being the paradise of all those berries, cherries, apples and everything soft, is the place for feasting without making a dent into your pockets!

Enjoy eating….


Yeah, ,it’s only in England that I can feast on cherries for peanuts!

David Beckham posing for my camera.


This 700-year old market in Leicester is the largest outdoor covered market in Europe!