Monday, September 30, 2013
Fall is again in the air, the summer beach-goers are gone, and the brilliant blue sky is streaked with high cirrus - what a moment. (Flag Rock is at center). The tire tracks are from boaters driving down to launch, otherwise, vehicles are not permitted on the beach.
With the exception of Flag Rock (right center with the white top with resting gulls or cormorants) I think all these rocks at White Horse Beach are underwater when the tide comes back in. They make a great discovery garden for youngsters probing the mysteries of the sea.
And sometimes a nice quiet tidepool remains for a few hours - although usually the gulls will .
pick anything moving and edible out quickly.
Sunday, September 29, 2013
It is almost always a good idea to be up at the crack of dawn on Bartlett Pond.......especially as summer gives way to fall.
It's not cold yet - really barely cool - but the shorter daylight has triggered the color change......
....from the tallest trees.......
....to the smallest beach plants.........
....the greens slowly give way in the annual dance of the season.
The last few dramatic flowering plants make their appearance.........
....and explosions of gold herald the coming cold.
The fallen leaves are starting to accumulate along the sides of rural lanes. Yep, fall is here.
Saturday, September 28, 2013
Priscilla Beach at low tide. And no, this is not a Photoshopped sky - this is really how it looked that day.
Looking south toward White Horse Beach and Manomet Point. (Panorama - click on image to view in full width.
This image suggests a huge cloud wave curling and about to break on the beach.
Just the smallest bit of blue sky remaining before the clouds closed in. (Panorama - click on image to view in full width).
With or without clouds, Priscilla Beach and adjacent White Horse Beach are beautiful places on the planet. (Panorama - click on image to view in full width).
Friday, September 27, 2013
This view of the recent full moon is looking eastward from the First Encounter Beach area. It was a rare evening: warm, clear, low tide, sunset, and full moon all together.
And a few minutes later, here's the view from the town boat landing - what you can't see are the mosquitoes the size of small birds. Bad time to be wearing shorts.
Thursday, September 26, 2013
I don't see this too often but, now that the summer crowds are mostly gone, I guess it is a great time to take your horse to the beach. He/she tentatively pawed (hoofed?) at the water's edge a few times before venturing out to knee depth then turned back and walked in the shallow surf. It looked like the rider was letting the horse determine the course but it's hard to tell what subtle cues may have passed between the two.
I think a horse might be a better kid-magnet than a dog! They came running from all directions with daddies in tow to touch his/her muzzle from on tip-toe and stare upward at the huge gentle creature.
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
King Richard's Faire is an annual event here, much like other Renaissance-styled fairs. In the above image are the ticket sales windows and main entrance. If you want to see what is likely a more authentic experience in France, check out the last half dozen blog posts at this link from Photos of Provence.
Renaissance style fairs have been around the United States since the 1960's and now are held in more than 200 venues in almost all of our states. Sometimes it's hard to tell the audience from the performers as many attendees dress in costume.
Juggling fire while standing on someone's shoulders is always popular.
This cast member on the right was very popular for the photographers, both because of his costume and short stature, but especially the painting on the back of his bald head. In fact he complained (in jest) that people weren't taking enough photos of his front side. The woman on the left with exposed breast tops was a very popular look on women dressed in the Renaissance garb.
The Renaissance era equivalent of the photo booth - you could sit for a portrait with the portrait artist.
But if you don't have the time to sit for a portrait, there were lots of photographers like these two roaming about having a good time making pictures.
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Monday, September 23, 2013
Cormorants are often seen with wings outstretched, ostensibly drying their feathers after diving underwater for food.
Though not normally thought of as one of the more visually beautiful species, they can be quite handsome from the right angle (as can most of us).
You may think this is just another one drying his wings, but I think otherwise. I watched him for quite a while and he wasn't wet. He balanced on this wire alternately changing his wing's angle of attack to create more or less lift - whatever the moment needed to stay balanced during a gusty wind. It looked to me like he was simply having fun. He can't read, write, check his email or smartphone but, he sure can enjoy the magic of wings. Find pleasure where you can, whatever the species. For another example, check out this squirrel lying on a block of ice on a wicked hot Oklahoma day - (photo at this link).
Sunday, September 22, 2013
What does this sign mean? Are we in danger? Are there government agents or terrorists hiding in the bushes waiting to harm unsuspecting passersby? Why did they choose those words for the sign? Why doesn't it say, "Natural space - enjoy it!" or something positive like that. Why something slightly ominous and threatening?
Perhaps this is the risk the sign alluded to - a tree might fall on my head ..........or perhaps not.
Saturday, September 21, 2013
About 25 years ago I took a trip to Portugal. In one town, I stayed in an inexpensive rooming house for a couple nights. I will never forget the above sign that was in the bathroom. It reminds me that every time I go to a foreign country and attempt to speak the language, it probably isn't going to come out just right.
And all those years ago I looked differently......
.....no gray hair, nor wild eyebrows, nor other obvious signs of aging. The backdrop in this photo is an old castle in Portugal. We paid an old man with a small rowboat to row us across the river to gain access. We were the only ones there.
Travel can offer a glimpse of the unknown and unexpected, of things neither seen nor done at home........
.....like this tender moment between two "wild" Barbary macaques (they run free but are acclimated to humans) on top of the Rock of Gibraltar.......
......or watching the day unfold from high atop a white hill town in Spain........
......or the delight of this young girl in Ecuador using a camera for her first time........
.....or a patient fisherman in Mexico mending his nets in the shade of the day.
Travel can create an uncertainty and awkwardness that focuses attention in the present moment. It is a challenge to be a stranger in someone else's country.
The big leap beyond occasional traveler is being an expat. I am intrigued by the concept of being an expat. I regularly read blogs by others who are expats. The idea of leaving one's homeland and trying to make a go of it elsewhere is enticing - becoming a part of a new and different culture with the intent of staying there.
Seems like there are two basic types of people: nomads or homesteaders. Nomads have the urge to move - there is more to life than staying put in the same place. A nomad sees dreams and adventures and possibilities somewhere different than at home. What drives the nomad? Is the nomad missing a part that needs to be filled?
Right now I call Plymouth, Massachusetts in the United States home (an hour from Boston pictured above) but, I still have the itch - there is something else, somewhere else calling me to come visit and/or stay. I think that travel makes me more than I am - and I like that.
"After to open the hot water, wait that it arrived. Please."
Friday, September 20, 2013
I guess if you can afford to spend the $200,000-300,000 USD cost for a Ferrari...............
.........then you think you can park wherever you damn well please.
Thursday, September 19, 2013
It is a distinct sound - the webbed feet of a swan slapping against the water surface as he tries to get up to flying speed. It's a big hunk of bird to get moving. Sometimes he's not trying to fly but rather just get away from another pursuing swan protecting his territory.
Such was the case here - he settled back into the water maybe 100 yards farther away.
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
This is part two of my post on the Cambridge Carnival. Today's contain my favorite portraits of individual participants.
My favorite smile.
My favorite dancer.
The strongest man - he had to battle a powerful gusty wind the entire parade while wearing this huge fan-like costume, often leaning forward at steep angles to offset the wind.
The smiling man again.
My favorite boots.
My second most favorite look - my favorite is next.
Between the hand gesture and the face, this look says it all - my favorite of the day. Whatever story he's telling her, I don't think it's working.
Smiling man again with a smiling woman.
These young participants are congregating near the reviewing stand as successive acts pause to dance.
What a great way to spend a late summer afternoon!