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Showing posts from June, 2011

Too Damned High

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From Jun 30, 2011
This morning on the beach I met two turtle women from Connecticut who weren't the least bit shy about the truth--which truth is why there are so few turtle nests in the usual places on North Topsail Beach.  Other turtle folks from other parts of our curious nation have played up the positive--there are 28 nests on the island--at the expense of the negative--there are too many people doing the wrong thing for females to do what they need to do in the right places. Which is to say the dunes are too high for female turtles to create their nests. As a result, there are many false crawls.  As a result, many females are digging their nests in bad places, places that are vulnerable to the tides....If the turtle hospital folk need to move a nest, then each egg must sit exactly where it sat in the previous location.  It would be much easier if the town would grade the sand it dumps in a way that was turtle friendly. It would also help if the vacationing yo-yos would rememb…

Skywatch Friday: Whose Fire?

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From Jun 26, 2011
We live in paradise. We have only to notice. And to be grateful. And to tell the angels. Goodness comes. Just look.

Skywatch Friday

Wordless Wednesday: The Patterns of Going Home

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Header Challenge: Expressions

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From Jun 28, 2011
I like Dave's header challenge for this week because it is wide open. We're sure to get a range of responses. I am stretching expressions to an act of expression that I came across at the Food Lion in Surf City today. I had to get out the handy-dandy point-and-shoot for this guy. I think he has a point--but my inner, vacationing, reading teacher woke up to this one, and I am wondering if it's possible to have a legitimate point if you can't spell. Your thoughts?
(Please visit the bloggers listed under the banner for their take on the challenge of "expressions.")

My World Tuesday: Wilmington, North Carolina

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From Jun 26, 2011
From Jun 26, 2011
From Jun 26, 2011
From Jun 26, 2011
From Jun 26, 2011
I took a ride down to Wilmington, North Carolina, on Sunday. I had thought I would bring the DSLR, but the battery was done and I wasn't waiting around. So I brought the Canon point-and-shoot and decided to work on composition. I wanted to capture those corner-of-your-eye moments, those turn the corner and catch your eye and have the "here" moments. I didn't quite succeed, but I got closer than I have been. So I was happy enough. Here are bits and pieces of the Wilmington that makes you want to stay there.
My World Tuesday

Clyde Strolls the Beach

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My daughter's dog Clyde and I have been together on North Topsail Beach in North Carolina for almost a week. He has missed my daughter sorely, and he has been reluctant to go out to do more than the biz. He's porked out a bit without the usual exercise, and I was figuring it was time to cut him back at chow time so that he's have the familiar boyish figure by the time my daughter gets here Wednesday.

Then he surprised me. Today, he walked beyond the usual patch of grass to a larger one. Later, he walked with me to Seaview Pier and back again, his big ol' ears flapping in the breeze. He was happy and comfortable and enjoying the beach he has enjoyed on his last three vacations. (He has had four North Carolina vacations in the past year. Try not to feel too sorry for him.)



From Jun 25, 2011

The thing about Clyde is that he is truly my daughter's dog. When we went to the ASPCA shelter to adopt a very different dog last year, I spotted this guy in a kennel full of boun…

One Single Impression: Seven Sins

It tops the list Of the seven deadlies
Our favorite to talk about
To grow warm over, to squirm and to blush
And look away....

The noun form means desire, pleasure,
A condition or state of being playful,
Any source of pleasure and delight.

An appetite.

A liking for a person.

Also, fertility (of soil).

The verb:
To please,
To delight.

Call it good
And then open your Bible
And see it as a bad thing:

A strong sexual desire.
Merely this,
An overwhelmingly bad thing
That gets in the way of spiritual progress.

Whatever that means.

Let the people say

Whatever

And be playful,
Have an appetite
To please and be pleased.

Let's do it.

One Single Impression

Today's Flowers: 'We Choose Our Road'

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The Sea Turtle Hospital

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I visited the Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue and Rehabilitation Center yesterday. There were about half a dozen turtles being introduced to the public. Among them were Lennie, the blind Kemp's ridley who is a permanent resident at the hospital because he is blind. A fisherman had struck him in the head and tossed him overboard--hence, the blindness. He was swimming in a tank alongside another, younger Kemp's, who had dislocated his shoulders in another fishing net. The interns said this was a common injury among these endangered little guys.
I learned today that the most common injuries of late are head injuries and body trauma caused by propellers and by impact with boats. There were a few banged up loggerheads whose shells were being put back together with stainless steel bands. When the turtles come to the surface of the water for air, they suffer these injuries.
There was a little loggerhead who had been cold stunned and was getting her strength back to be ready fo…

Topsail Storm

I was out for a walk last night--again alone on the beach. When I turned around, the clouds illustrated pretty clearly why everyone else was hunkered down indoors. I guess I didn't get the memo. It was a lovely storm, though brief.

Writing in Faith: Changing Gears

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As a kid watching Gilligan's Island (over and over again), I had to wonder about the place(s) those folks were going to on their three-hour tour. They wanted outta here for a little while, but their lives were pretty good. So where...

I have wondered. And I have wondered what would become of me if I were suddenly unmoored, adrift.

Wondering that, I have cut myself free to wander and explore for the summer. I wil visit your blogs and comment as I have Internet access, but I need a change of scenery. I will be back. For now, though, adieu.
--- The wild fire in Holly Ridge, North Carolina, has been raging for days, filling the air from here to Viginia Beach, Virginia, with untold filth. Yesterday, I was about the only person on the beach in the morning, and the smoke in the air hung like a curtain.




From Jun 22, 2011

I have no idea who this guy in the white shorts is in the photo below, but I took his photo to make the point that his own mother wouldn't recognize him in this mucky a…

Skywatch Friday: A View of the Sound

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From Harkness Memorial Park, June 12, 2011
From Harkness Memorial Park, June 12, 2011
A chalky gray sky can keep the world from seeming too big. So it was at Harkness Memorial State Park last weekend as the ferry moved up and down the coast.

Skywatch Friday

Wordless Wednesday: A Quiet Place

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Header Challlenge: 'What's Buggin' You?'

This week's challenge from Lanny was an easy one because I had a few photos of my favorite bug eaters, the local turtle population.  What really bugs me, though, is that these guys are the most vulnerable jaywalkers here in the suburbs.  (Click here to "Meet Mother.") Not a day goes by that I don't come across the fragments of a shattered turtle shell and the flesh of their remains smeared in the road.  Makes me nuts.  If you care about these amazing reptiles, please sign the petition on the right in support of their cousins the leatherbacks.
Also, please have a look at the other head bangers whose blogs are listed below my banner.  They are wonderful photographers.

My World Tuesday: Harkness Memorial State Park from the Inside

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From Harkness Memorial Park, June 12, 2011
From Harkness Memorial Park, June 12, 2011
From Harkness Memorial Park, June 12, 2011
From Harkness Memorial Park, June 12, 2011
From Harkness Memorial Park, June 12, 2011
Della and I had a look inside Eolia, the mansion at Harkness Memorial State Park in Waterford, Connecticut, last weekend. Once the summer retreat of the fourth richest family in the United States, Harkness is now a well-dressed ward of the state and the site of many weddings (for a mere $4,450) and other fancy functions.
The Harknesses actually gave John D. Rockefeller a leg up when that gentleman began dabbling in oil.  Mr. Rockefeller borrowed money from the Harknesses to drill for oil--twice because he was unsuccessful the first time.  (Never heard of Harkness before?  I guess not everybody needs to brag....)
 The Harknesses bought the 42-room Roman Renaissance Classical Revival-style in 1907. It is surrounded by some of the most beautiful gardens I have ever seen. The lawn …

Today's Flowers: Brown-Eyed Girl

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From Wildflowers
From Wildflowers
I know these are black-eyed Susans, but I don't see black; I see brown. The centers make me think of Clyde's little wet nose, so I may just rename them for myself as Clyde's noses and call it good. These guys sprouted a few days after the tornado that wasn't that actually was after a proper review of the amateur video footage. We've got it all here in Connecticut, that's for sure. We have also the lesson that if you stay close to the ground, Mother Nature is less likely to mow you down on a bad-hair. You live. Your learn. You blossom.
Today's Flowers

One Single Impression: Wind

For ninety minutes in June

Wind tore off skin
Exposed and shredded
Muscle
And left corpses
Draped over power lines
In unwilling bows
That suggested

Extreme humiliation

Or cast across laneways
And lawns
To be discovered and removed
By some bystander or passerby
Who dared to.

So it went in a vortex
Of black clouds and rain and
Green tornadic light
And thunderous, chilling
Cracks that,

As my dad would say,

Would make a believer out of you.

Except, of course, that this was the wind,
Air moving in circles at a furious pace

Except, of course,
That there was no fury.
There was no slaughter, no rape, no humiliation.

This was simply wind
Taking down magnificent trees

Because it was wind
Because the trees were there.

I was there.  I watched.
I said, and I say, fury.
Strangely.

Click here for images and the back story.

One Single Impression

Skywatch Friday: Almost There

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From Topsail, April 2011
Breathing in, I know I am breathing in. Breathing out, I know I am breathing out. (Thich Nhat Hanh)

I love the color orange for the reasons stated in the photo.  I love the intense warmth and friendliness of the color.  It invites you in to enjoy yourself without expecting you to dress up for the event.  That, to my way of thinking, is delightful.  I am days away from a summer filled with this delight.  I can't take it in, though.  These last days of school are so intense and important that I can't think beyond them.  That's OK, though; dreams have a way of waiting--for a little bit. Skywatch Friday

Wordless Wednesday: Shimmer

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From Harkness Memorial Park, June 12, 2011

These crystals hang around a light bulb in a ceiling fixture in the morning room of the mansion at Harkness Memorial Park in Waterford, Connecticut.  Here is the light:



From Harkness Memorial Park, June 12, 2011
and here is a link to the album.
Wordless Wednesday

Header Challenge: That's Silly

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From Topsail, April 2011
This good-looking couple on the beach in North Carolina is my daughter, Adella, and her best bud, Clyde. We rescued Clyde a year ago this July shortly after her guinea pig died. It was time; Clyde was waiting for her. I think Tapper the Pig knew that and made way for the next mammal. I think animals know.
When we first saw Clyde, he was in a small kennel at the ASPCA kennel in Monroe, Connecticut, being bounced on by what seemed to be three dozen million Jack Russell terriers. "There's your dog," I said to Dell. "Under those other ones." And so he was.
Almost a year later, he walks the line between devoted and needy, often falling over one way AND the other. He's a piece of work. He will be a tough act to follow for the men in her life many years down the road.
Clyde's devotion is to my daughter only. He does not multitask; he does not share. I am an onlooker, a bill payer, in his world. That he can run so hot and cold…

My World Tuesday: The Namless Tornado That was not

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From Not Tornado Damage, 6/9/11
Mother Nature packs quite a punch.  On Thursday, we in Woodbury, Connecticut found that out when she socked us but good when several micro-bursts (not tornadoes, apparently) touched down here, leaving trees lying across wires like babes in arms,  slammed into streets, on top of cars and homes, and leaning against other trees in the woods.It was a wild storm that left us without electrical power for more than two days.
It was awkward.  It was frightening.  But we did not die.
Instead, we walked up and down our little road and told the tale, mixing and mingling with neighbors we otherwise had not had the time for.Neighbors spoke of being in their cars and trapped between fallen trees, floating in that water-filled space for more than an hour (an eternity) while waiting for some guardian angel with a chainsaw to show up and carve the way to freedom.Others left their cars on the main road and walked under the slack power lines to get home to their waiting dogs…

Beluga Whales Face Extinction

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Today's Flowers: Lone Beauty

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As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness weakness. (Henry David Thoreau)
Today's Flowers

One Single Impression: Miss

Driving along New River Inlet Road
To the stop
Before the bridge
That is the first step to far away
I do not miss
The smell of the ocean
Or the taste of salt
Or even the light crystallized in the foam
As the heat of morning
Dissolves the mist
And the moment
Becomes clear.

None of this
Do I miss;

I take it with me.

Instead, I miss a sensation that will not travel:

The feel of the damp sand
Inches below the warm surface
Cold and
Halfway to where the hermit crabs make their home
At the center of the earth.

I miss the digging in,
The rooted feeling,
The being home.

One Single Impression

Skywatch Friday: Ordinary Times

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When I rise,  Let me rise.  Like a bird,  Joyfully.  And when I fall,  Let me fall. Like a leaf,  Gracefully, without regrets.  (Thich Nhat Hanh)
Skywatch Friday

Wordless Wednesday: Joy

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From Apr 9, 2011
"The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other's life. Rarely do members of one family grow up under the same roof." (Richard Bach)

Wordless Wednesday

My World Tuesday: In the Garden

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From May 7, 2011
From May 7, 2011
From May 7, 2011
Saturday I spent some time planting vegetables in my parents' garden. Dad had tilled the earth, so it was a small matter of raking it out, drilling some holes, and wishing the seedlings well in their new home at the back of the house. Easy work, this, but the sun left me blissfully warm and tired at the end of it. When I finished, I found my daughter walking around the flower beds with her dog and her little Canon taking photos of the flowers that seem to do just fine without our help, thank you very much. So I followed here and took these among others. I love flowers. They remind me that art is every bit as important as math, that we must breathe no matter what else we do.
My World Tuesday

Today's Flowers: Peonies

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From
From May 7, 2011
From May 7, 2011
My parents' peonies are about to blossom. It's great to watch them loosen up under the sun as the days grown longer and warmer. After a recent heat wave, we've had the pure pleasure of low humidity, vivid blue skies, and breezes that have kept the pollen flying about and the vivacity of spring going on. In Connecticut, we've escaped the extremes of weather that have taken lives and left people homeless and facing an uncertain future. Ours is a sheltered world, somehow.
Wishing you a delightful Sunday.

Today's Flowers

One Single Impression: Endure

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From Writing in Faith

Reading your letter,
Ruth,
I wonder if you were worthy of my
Great uncle
Not yet twenty
In his third year of service in the US Navy
As a submariner

In the Second World War.

My uncle was a high school drop out.

Passion drove him
And though it horrified his mother,

She was an artist,

She understood,

She signed.

Go, boy. Fight.

He died fighting off the coast of Japan.

Reading your letter, Ruth,
I think you were the bright and flighty voice
Of home,
Of all that was simple and warm and fragrant
With your
Gees and sweeties and sugars
And send me an insignia I can pin to
My suits and jackets
Like the other girls with sweethearts
In the Navy.


You made a boy feel good.

He died for that feeling
And the place it came from.

You and the Japanese
And this boy's mother who saved
Every scrap of her son
In newspaper articles and announcements
Of his friends' engagements and marriages, life and death:

You brought us here.

Note: Recently my mother's aunt died, and my …