Tag Archives: Gulf

A Summer Broadcast

For weekend reading this Saturday, I thought I would share with you some “documentaries” of natural and human activities as seen from our terrace.

There is a lot going on in our East-North-West field of view at any given time. A visiting friend once told us “You don’t need any TV because you have a live broadcast going on for free”. That is of course an exaggeration.

This summer, which is the rainy season in Florida, we have witnessed majestic storms with dramatic skies on many occasions both on the bay and on the ocean side. Here is a small sampling (hover mouse over the pictures for text).

A few times we’ve experienced tropical storms, like Debby in 2012, which flooded the beach and the nearby nature reserve. We were able to scan the situation from the terrace. Keeping my fingers crossed that we’ll not see one this year.

Then, of course, there are plenty of sunny days in the summer as well. They are not as dramatic to document, but there is lots of activity going on, like sailing schools and racing boat competitions. Believe me, we can hear the roaring speed boats…

Occasionally we also spot pirates on the ocean. And now that I got the hand-me-down Canon from my hubby, I can get closer to them, still keeping at the safe distance on the terrace.

And on weekends and holidays, there is a lot of activity going on in the water and on the beach.

And at the neighboring watering hole. When it’s hot, lots of liquids are required.

And then the day turns to evening. The sun plays in beautiful hues and colors the bay and the city behind it.

And offers delicious light to complement the dinner on the cruise boats on the ocean side as well.

And finally the sun takes a deep dive into the ocean with a different “tune” each night, sometimes soft pastels and other times passionate reds. And anything in between.

At night, the lights of the city reflect on the water to the North and to the East. Occasional boat blinks on the ocean.

Unless there are fireworks on the beach around July 4th or for special occasions. The terrace provides for first row seating.

Right now, some clouds are gathering again. We’ll see what kind of excitement we’ll get. Although I will not be documenting any of it, planning to be in a concert tonight, indoors.

I wish you all a blessed weekend.

Softly the Evening Came…

…with sunset. – Henry Longfellow

“The sunrise is Gods greeting – the sunset his signature”.

– Unknown

“Peace…is seeing a sunset and knowing who to thank”.

– Unknown

“Clouds come floating into my life,

no longer to carry rain or usher storm,

but to add color to my sunset sky”.

– Rabindranath Tagore

“Sunset is a global phenomenon

with a long history”.

– Tiny

“At sunset

Nature is painting for us…day after day…

pictures of infinite beauty”.

– John Ruskin

“Sunsets are so beautiful that they almost seems

as if we were looking through the gates of Heaven”.

– John Lubbock

“Living is strife and torment,

disappointment and love and sacrifice,

golden sunsets and storms”.

– Laurence Oliver

“At sunset

the universe is getting up its hopes

for a better tomorrow on earth”.

– Tiny

A Small Sunday Outing

I love little outings on weekends, provided they are nature bound. One of my favorite destinations is a very small, uninhabited barrier island just off the coast here in the Mexican Gulf. We can reach it in about 30 minutes by boat.  On the boat ride we usually spot a variety of birds, such as pelicans, cranes and fish hawks. Oftentimes a couple of dolphins will swim alongside the boat and we can stop to chat for a while.

For those in the family desiring a more adventurous experience there is always the option to jump on the raft instead of just riding the boat, provided you have strong arms. It’s one wild and bumpy ride on the ocean! I definitely prefer the soft seat on the boat…

Once on the island we usually watch birds and then just walk around on the white sand and pick shells. There is a fantastic collection of them both on the land and in the water. The water is absolutely crystal clear and we always snorkel for a couple of hours picking large sand dollars and other “treasures” from the sand. And admire the many spices of small and occasionally even bigger fish that frequent the shores.

Sometimes the dolphins come there to swim with us. It can be a bit scary when they come from behind and nudge you in the butt, because you may think it’s a shark looking for a meaty piece for lunch. But once we know they are there, it just a wonderful experience. There is something so peaceful about dolphins.

Sometimes there may even be visitors more rarely seen. Playful manatees may come to say hello! And if they take you by surprise while you are in the water, you’re likely to make it to the dry land quickly! These sea cows are huge, but friendly and just a little curious.

After spending a half day on this island I always feel serene and refreshed, and grateful to have this tiny and still a relatively wild sanctuary so close by.