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Thursday, May 30: Marianne of East of Málaga …. and more! has given us a challenge for the month of May to find pictures of knobs and knockers.  She writes:

Forget bells and intercoms – this month’s CBBH Photo Challenge is all about decorative door furniture, to make an entrance look perfect.

Of course, the purpose of a door knocker is to let the householder know there is someone at the door, but at some point in history they took on shape and symbolic meaning. I’ve seen protective dogs and lions, honorary wreaths, severed hands, mythological references to Medusa and Cleopatra, as well as elegant and ornate displays of wealth in polished brass.

I’ve taken many pictures of Omani doors in the 20+ months I’ve been here, and I’ve noticed that most of them don’t have knockers at all.  It seems Omani doors are all about safety and security.  Instead of knobs and knockers, they all seem to have metal bars, locks, spikes, and chains.  I could hardly find a knob or knocker anywhere in my collection.  I feel this tells a lot about Omani culture, much like the watchtowers that adorn every hill throughout the country.  It’s all about protection, keeping things under lock and key, keeping intruders out.

metal bar and lock on a metal door in Yanqul, Oman

metal bar and lock on a metal door in Yanqul, Oman

knockers on a door in the Ibra ruins, Oman

knockers on a door in the Ibra ruins, Oman

a lock and chain on a door in the ruins of Ibra's old souq

a lock and chain on a door in the ruins of Ibra’s old souq

more locks and bars in Ibra

more locks and bars in Ibra

Lock, bar and spiky deterrents at Nakhal Fort, Oman

Lock, bar and spiky deterrents at Nakhal Fort, Oman

Lock, bar and spikes at Nakhal Fort, Oman

Lock, bar and spikes at Nakhal Fort, Oman

Surprisingly, I found the same kinds of bars and locks in Nepal.

locks and bars in Bhaktapur, Nepal

locks and bars in Bhaktapur, Nepal

Marianne asks that we introduce two bloggers in this challenge.  I’d like to introduce Heather of artist. hippie. cali chic.  Heather has a serious case of wanderlust.  She’s traveled a lot in the past, but is now trying to save money to pay off her student loans.  So instead of traveling now, she’s doing the responsible thing and saving money.  That doesn’t stop her from dreaming of travel.  She describes herself thus: I am an artist/graphic designer/huge Audrey Hepburn fan and self-proclaimed giant hippie with a hopeless case of wanderlust living in Southern California.

I’d also like to introduce Lynne of On the Go with Lynne and her husband, photographer Ron Mayhew, of Ron Mayhew’s Blog. (All right, I know that’s two more, but they’re a husband and wife, so I want to include them together!)

Lynne writes of herself:

Wherever I am, I have learned to appreciate the moment.
To draw inspiration from the experience.
To write about the journey and not just the destination.

And to have fun…while I can still bend over to pick up a shell
And to cast without tangling my line.

Ron describes himself thus: Having been a professional wood sculptor  for over twenty years he has developed an eye for composition.  It’s  this artistic  background which has helped Ron achieve recognition regionally and internationally in photo competitions.  His photography is beautiful.

I especially love reading about their joint trip to Havana, Cuba.  Ron’s photos and Lynne’s stories are fascinating and capture a culture that few Americans get to experience.

 

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