The word for the new WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE on the Daily Post  is “foreign”.  Here’s how they set up the challenge.

“While foreign (rightly so) often brings up images of things outside of your own nation, it can also apply to things outside of or different from your normal environment, or even something which is out of place in general. I’m sure you’ll be able to find some great examples of this.  

Share a picture which means FOREIGN to you! “

With all the travel photos I have taken, my first reaction was … “no-brainer”! While I was browsing through my travel photos, there was constant news coverage in the background about Hurricane Sandy.

I can’t keep my mind off the devastation this storm has already brought and the potential for so much more. It’s impossible to stop considering how nature can be so fickle:

beautiful so much of the time, like last week from our balcony,

and, at other times, the ugliest of ugly … whether it be a few horrific seconds of an earthquake or mudslide or terrifying hours/days of fires, tornadoes, floods, hurricanes, typhoons and the like or the ongoing suffering of famine caused by drought.

All of that ugliness is so foreign to many of us who live in seemingly safe parts of the world. Here in Toronto we’re told we will have some high winds and above-average rainfall caused by Hurricane Sandy. No biggie. We are fortunate.

Here’s the calm before our storm taken from our balcony a few moments ago. The masts are down and the boats are stored for winter, as of last week – that was good timing.

Hurricane Sandy is a different type of foreign than I was considering at first and certainly fits this part of this week’s challenge definition: “it can also apply to things outside of or different from your normal environment, or even something which is out of place in general.”

Hurricane Sandy is a force of nature frighteningly foreign to millions of the people it is affecting. If you are one of those, we wish you and yours safe passage through the storm and the opportunity to help others. Let us all  keep those in less fortunate locations in our hearts and thoughts and hope the storm somehow loses steam sooner than later.

Have you ever been caught in one of nature’s ugliest moments? What was your experience? How are you being affected by Hurricane Sandy? How do we come to terms within ourselves when we witness these types of experiences over which we have no control? 

See what “foreign” means on these fab websites:





Published by patriciasands

Patricia Sands lives in Toronto, Canada when she isn't somewhere else, particularly the south of France. With a happily blended family of seven adult children and, at last count, six grandchildren, life is full and time is short. Beginning with her first Kodak Brownie camera at the age of six, she has told stories all of her life through photography. Much to her surprise a few years ago, she began to write and has now published three novels, including two that are part of a six-book series set in the south of France. Love France? Love her work! Check out her website www.patriciasandsauthor.com She is particularly drawn to the rewarding friendships of women and the challenges many embrace once their families are grown. "It's never too late to begin something new," she enthuses. "As the saying goes, just do it!"


  1. Gorgeous photos, Patricia! That’s your view every day? Wow.

    I hope Sandy leaves you unscathed. Unfortunately, that can’t be said of New York and other places. It’s terrifying. I’m thinking of all our friends on the east coast today and wishing for their safety.

  2. Beautiful photos!
    Our natural disasters come in forest fires, flooding, avalanches and tornadoes. Luckily I have only had to go through one. An ice storm back in Wisconsin, the big one in 1976.
    My heart goes out to everyone in Sandy’s wake!

  3. Thank-you for this timely post as those affected by hurricane Sandy are in our thoughts. Your photos are lovely! Thank-you for the mention of my “Foreign” post 🙂

  4. This is a great take on the subject. I for one am glad I moved away from NYC earlier this year – what a mess that cleanup will be, and it will go on for awhile. I’ll be back there next week – I wonder what evidence I’ll see of yesterday’s storm? One thing about New Yorkers – they mostly come to terms with the out-of-control pretty well, and often with a great sense of humor and resignation – I do miss encountering those qualities on a daily basis. But the weather extremes & constant stress? Nah.

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