Welcome To My Morning, Relax and Enjoy!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Truly The Information Highway




I have found that the Internet is a great learning experience.  Through the online posts of new friends and acquaintances I have stumbled upon many interesting and exciting destinations.  Today I will touch upon two of them.

I had just been lead through a link posted to Twitter this morning by a photographer friend, Gwen Dubeau of Massachusetts.

Whistman's Wood, Dartmoor, Devon, England

Nestled on the eastern slopes of the West Dart river stands a wood of dwarf oak trees. Once you walk into the tangled web of trees you are transported into a mystical world of moss carpeted boulders, lichens of all descript, finger like oak branches, all engulfed in a wonderful smell of earth and age. For millennia this small, mystical, stunted woodland has been held in awe and for many fear. Tales of Druids, ghosts, the Devil and a host of other supernatural creatures abound, some dating back to the long lost ages before man could write. Many writers have described the wood as being "the most haunted place on Dartmoor", others warn that every rocky crevice is filled with writhing adders who spawn their young amidst the moss and leaf strewn tree roots. Locals will never venture near once the sun begins it slow descent over the nearby granite outcrops for it is when the dark mantle of night draws tight that the heinous denizens of the wood stalk the moor in search of their human victims. 

Legend has it that Wistman's Wood was a sacred grove of the Druid's and it was here that they held there pagan rituals. The huge boulder in the title picture above has become known as 'The Druid's Stone', otherwise called the 'Buller Stone'. The wood is also said to be the kennels where the diabolical 'Wisht Hounds' are kept. These are a pack of fearful hell hounds who hunt across the moors at night in search of lost souls and unwary traveller's. It is said that they are huge black dogs with blood red eyes, huge yellow fangs and an insatiable hunger for human flesh and souls. It depends on what part of the moor you meet them but they are either led by the Devil or occasionally by the ancient spirit of Dartmoor known as 'Old Crockern' who lives nearby on Crockern tor. There have been reports from travellers that on dark, misty nights the hounds can be heard howling and baying for blood. The wood is also said to be home to 'hosts' of adders who writhe and slither amongst the velvet moss covered boulders, their bites are apparently more venomous that any other adder on Dartmoor. Sometimes the small ghost of a dog called 'Jumbo' can be seen scurrying around the rocks and boulders in search of rabbits. At nights, the plaintive cries of the little terrier can be heard echoing down through the valley below. History has it that the poor dog died in the wood, from what nobody is sure but there is a strong possibility that it was from an adder bite. Some people say that the small oak trees never produce acorns but on the other hand people also say that if you carry an acorn from the Druid's Grove it will protect from rheumatism. Near to the northern edge of the wood is the ancient Lych Way or 'Way of the Dead'. It was along this track that the corpses were carried for burial at Lydford. There have been reports of a ghostly procession of monastic looking men dressed in white habits slowly walking by the oak wood in sombre silence.
For centuries Wistman's Wood has been the inspiration for numerous artists and poets and a whole plethora of paintings, etchings and poems have been produced. The noted poet Carrington went into full flow when he penned the following drear lines:
 


So be afraid, very afraid, as the wagging finger of fate warns you to stay clear and risk not your mortal soul in the 'Wood of the Wisemen'.


"Scarce hoarier seems the ancient Wood
Whose shivered trunks of age declare
What scath of tempests they have stood
In the rock's crevice rooted there;
Yet still young foliage, fresh and fair,
Springs forth each mossy bough to dress,
And bid e'en Dartmoor's valleys share
A Forest-wilderness".
Sophie Dixon -1829.


DARTMOOR
                                      
Dartmoor! thou wert to me, in childhood's hour,
A wild and wondrous region. Day by day
Arose upon my youthful eye they belt
Of hills mysterious, shadowy, clasping all
The green and cheerful landscape sweetly spread
Around my home; and with a stern delight
I gazed upon thee. How often on the speech
Of the half-savage peasant have I hung,
To hear of rock-crowned heights on which the cloud
For ever rests; and wilds stupendous swept
By mightiest storms; of glen, and gorge, and cliff,
Terrific, beetling o'er the stone-strewed vale;
And giant masses, by the midnight flash
Struck from the mountain's hissing brow, and hurled
Into the foaming torrent; and of forms
That rose amid the desert, rudely shaped
By Superstition's hands when time was young;
And of the dead, the warrior dead, who sleep
Beneath the hollowed cairn! My native fields,
Though peerless, ceased to please. The flowery vale,
The breezy hill, the river and the wood,
Island, reef, headland, and the circling sea,
Associated by the sportful hand
Of Nature, in a thousand views diverse,
Or grand, or lovely, - to my roving eye
Displayed in vain their infinite of charms;
I thought on thy wild world, - to me a world, -
Mysterious Dartmoor, dimly seen, and prized
For being distant and untrod; and still
Where'er I wander'd, - still my wayward eye
Rested on thee!


In sunlight and in shade,
Repose and storm, wide waste! I since have trod
Thy hill and dale magnificent.  Again
I seek thy solitudes profound, in this
Thy hour of deep tranquillity, when rests
The sunbeam on thee, and thy desert seems
To sleep in the unwonted brightness, calm,
But stern; for though the spirit of the Spring
Breathes on thee, to the charmer's whisper kind
Thou listenest not, nor ever puttest on
A robe of beauty, as the fields that bud
And blossom hear thee.  Yet I love to tread
They central wastes when not a sound intrudes
Upon the ear, but rush of wing or leap
Of the hoarse waterfall.  And oh, 'tis sweet
To list the music of thy torrent-streams;
For thou too hast thy minstrelsies fro him
Who from their liberal mountain-urn delights
To trace thy waters, as from source to sea
They rush tumultuous.  Yet for other fields
Thy bounty flows eternal.  From thy sides
Devonia's rivers flow; a thousand brooks
Roll o'er they rugged slopes; -'tis but to cheer
Yon Austral meads unrivalled, fair as aught
That bards have sung, or Fancy has conceived
'Mid all her rich imaginings: whilst thou,
The source of half their beauty, wearest still
Through centuries, upon they blasted brow,
The curse of barrenness.

     N. T. Carrington 1834


















 
The second destination that I had stumbled upon online is the Chocolate Hills in Bohol, Philippines through a video posted by my online friend Tata Chavez aka yummybro on YouTube. Click here for a link to his channel:
The Chocolate Hills is an unusual geological formation in Bohol, Philippines. It is composed of around 1,268 perfectly cone-shaped hills of about the same size, spread over an area of more than 50 square kilometres (20 sq mi). They are covered in green grass that turns brown during the dry season, hence the name. The Chocolate Hills is a famous tourist attraction of Bohol.

It is featured in the provincial flag and seal to symbolize the abundance of natural attraction in the province. It is in the Philippine Tourism Authority's list of tourist destinations in the Philippines;[3] it has been declared the country's 3rd National Geological Monument and proposed for inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage List.

The Chocolate Hills are Bohol's famous attraction. Photographer Salvador Andre notes: Most people who first see pictures of this landscape can hardly believe that these hills are not a man-made artifact. However, this idea is quickly abandoned, as the effort would surely surpass the construction of the pyramids in Egypt.

There is no natural formation like them in the world. From a distance, they look like half a ball grown out of the ground. The molehill-shaped and almost uniformly sized hills dot the landscape with green and brown. The Chocolate Hills is a rolling terrain of haycock hills – mounds of general shape which are conical and almost symmetrical. Estimated to be at least 1,268 individual mounds to about 1,776, these cone-shaped or dome-shaped hills are actually made of grass-covered limestone.

The domes vary in sizes from 30 to 50 metres (98 to 160 ft) high with the largest being 120 metres (390 ft) in height. They are scattered throughout the towns of Carmen, Batuan and Sagbayan in Bohol. Bohol's "main attraction", these unique mound-shaped hills are scattered by the thousands on the island's central plain, concentrated near the town of Carmen.

During the dry season, the precipitation is inadequate such that the grass-covered hills dry up and turn chocolate brown. This transforms the area into seemingly endless rows of "chocolate kisses". The branded confection is the inspiration behind the name, Chocolate Hills.




Bohol, Land of Chocolate Hills

B-OHOL, Land of the famous chocolate hills
Cradles the smallest primate ever to exist,
The world renown Philippines tarsiers
That loves to cling upon rubout small trees
As they stare with their round eyes so big.

O-ver its verdant valleys, I have seen many hills
With wonderful sceneries sharing nature's gifts
As they speak to us geographical mysteries
And nature's wonder with the beautiful hills
Scattered around with their perfect cone shapes.

H-eaven I behold when I reach the famous hills
and extend my eye upon the horizon of the hills
For I have seen nature's captivating sceneries
of cone shape hills that radiates God's mysteries
And his artistic inclination when he made all these.

O-ver the sky, birds from the heaven fly with glee
As they sing with song of praises as they are free
To soar upon the blue sky as they enjoy the scenery
With a promise that they will never destroy the beauty
Of this abode and sanctuary of nature's tapestry.

L-ove our land and never rape its wealth and beauty
But be stewards of God in protecting all its scenery
with all it creation upon its wide verdant valleys
Like the birds, the tarsiers and other wildlife sanctuary
For our children's children to behold these someday




Melvin Banggollay

Click here for Local Attractions:

Just sharing the above information, it is not of my writing.

1 comment:

  1. Diane, what a surprise! Your blog is interesting, and this article too... Glad to be featured here. Unfortunately, the oil painting Wistman's Wood has been sold a long time ago.

    Other artwork can be found here:
    http://pictez..wordpress.com

    Wish you all the best and a Happy New Year!

    ReplyDelete