Saturday Surprise – Cool Places 2

globe-trotIt was getting late last night and I was hard at work following a story a friend had tipped me to, when suddenly around 11:30 it hit me … IT’S SATURDAY!!!  I can’t fool around with this … I have less than four hours to write my Saturday Surprise post!!!  I thought about saying that since you got a Saturday Surprise on Thursday … but no, that would be a cop out, so I saved and closed the file I was working on for later today, and turned my attention to that blank page that had only “Saturday Surprise 28 October 2017” at the top.  And I remembered the fun I had back in September when I dug up some cool places  for us to visit.  And so, dear friends … let’s take a trip to some really interesting places, shall we?


Where do old school buses go to die?  Why, the school bus graveyard, of course!  In the tiny town of Alto, Georgia, some retired buses begin new lives as quirky pieces of art. Each year, artists transform the buses signature yellow exteriors and give the vehicles a makeover. Old buses, trucks, and RVs become a canvas for murals that come alive with bright colors and whimsical designs.

The property is owned by Alonzo Wade, who runs an auto parts shop. After people began stealing scraps and material in the early 2000s, neighbors suggested he use his array of salvaged buses and trucks to form a fence. Not only did the wall help deter thieves, it also acted like a beacon for local creatives searching for an unconventional canvas. A team of artists known as Crispy Printz began painting the buses in 2012. They invite other artists to come repaint them every year, so the designs are constantly changing.

bus-6

My personal favourite


Pamukkale, meaning “cotton castle” in Turkish, is a natural site in Denizli Province in southwestern Turkey. The area is famous for its hot springs and enormous white terraces of travertine, a carbonate mineral left by the flowing water.

The Turkish name refers to the surface of the shimmering, snow-white limestone, shaped over millennia by calcium-rich springs. Dripping slowly down the vast mountainside, mineral-rich waters foam and collect in terraces, spilling over cascades of stalactites into milky pools below. Legend has it that the formations are solidified cotton (the area’s principal crop) that giants left out to dry.


In the midst of hopping about the globe looking for fun things to share, I came across a pink lake!  It is a salt lake outside of Torrevieja, Spain.  Halobacterium (also known as “salt bacterium”) thrive in salty places, as does a micro-algae called Dunaliella salina. These are the two magic ingredients that concoct the lake’s bizarre hue. Despite its funky color, the water is perfectly fine, though it can get a bit smelly.

But wait … turns out that isn’t the only pink lake in the world!  Lake Hillier is also a salt lake on the edge of Middle Island, the largest of the islands and islets that make up the Recherche Archipelago in the Goldfields-Esperance region, off the south coast of Western Australia.

I am not a fan of pink, but I have to admit these lakes are pretty cool!


In Alaska, the have igloos, and in Harran, Turkey, they have beehive houses.

beehive-1What really stands out in the modern village of Harran are the clusters of primitive “beehive houses.” This is an architectural tradition that is at least 3,000 years old. Made entirely of mud or clay bricks, these buildings are designed to fence off searing heat and retain cool air. The dome-like structure topped with an opening is also functional, as hot air collects in the upper part of these houses and escapes through the aperture.

The beehive shape of these abodes allows them to withstand earthquakes, violent wind storms, and seasonal heavy rains, which explains why they are still in use these days, thousands of years later. What’s more, it is relatively easy to expand the size of a beehive house by simply erecting another hive next to it and knocking an archway through.


I enjoy a bit of ‘armchair’ travel … I can afford it, don’t have to put on makeup and get dressed up, and I can bounce all over the world in a matter of minutes!  Rather fun, don’t you think?  So, until next Saturday, my dear friends … Have a great weekend and keep safe!  Hugs ‘n love from Filosofa!