Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Bob's Farewell

The Sixteenth of October was a day of rituals; 
Bob's Day at the National Cemetery in Sarasota County, Florida. 

The American Flag was smartly unfolded and waved over Bob's urn.

A Navy bugler played Taps
and tears began to flow.

Then, just as smartly, the flag was refolded and placed
between the urns of Bob Nutt and his wife Dorothy.

The American flag was presented to Bob's family.

A priest spoke a few words about Bob's life.
And the process of burying Bob and Dorothy was begun.

Long Live Robert Nutt!

Long may Bob's spirit of optimism, good humor, and caring 
live throughout his neighborhood
and the world.

--- FIN ---

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Missing Bob

Here I am looking across the street at Bob's house. It is late in the afternoon and the Wood Storks have begun arriving for their afternoon snacks of white bread.

These homely sentinels don't seem to understand why Bob is late. They have been coming here for years; this house is on their pathway of natural food resources.

The Storks are waiting for Bob in the same way we waited for him every day; full of faith he would come and the expectation he would deliver something special. However, those deliveries ceased on September 22 after Bob's last fall in his driveway; Bob had almost completed his first walk of the morning. 


We were fortunate to be Bob's friends and his first stop of the day. He arrived at the front door punctually at 8 AM, pushing his walker across the street, carrying the day-old newspaper he shared with us.  

Often times we would meet to exchange pleasantries and hugs.  Bob was a WWII Seabee and proud to be ninty-one years old and able to walk the neighborhood three times a day. But more than that, Bob was a full-hearted optimist who graciously spread his cheerful moods

"Have a great day," I would say as he walked away. "You have a better one," he called in return.

I started emulating Bob's cheerful retort some time ago. Whenever someone wishes me a good day, 
I respond ala Bob: "and you have a better one."

These greetings sometimes escalate into "Great, Wonderfuland even "Magnificent days." And all the  greetings feel good.

Now when I look across the street at the empty house of Bob
I feel a tug in my chest
and a lightness in my head
because I miss that old man so much.

He was such a GOOD man in a world that needs more Bobs.

Wouldn't you know the Wood Storks are finally moving on,
after their lengthy, fruitless waiting for Bob.

Who is that at the front door?

Yes, now these primitive creatures beckon to me 
in the same way they must have beckoned to Bob:
"How about a small snack to see us until our next fish dinner?"

I understand that white bread is fattening, but who can resist such noble creatures?

Not I.


Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Marsh Hawk Breakfast

I was enjoying a breakfast of blueberry yogurt 
 a Marsh Hawk quickly descend into the back yard.

I put my spoon down and grabbed my camera.

Carefully, she checked the surroundings with a series of measured glances.

Then there was a flurry of wings and some hopping around in the grass. 

Breakfast had arrived in the form of a black snake
who failed to negotiate 15 feet of grass between
the house and the garden.

The hawk remained cautious while holding onto the snake.

Little by little she prepared her breakfast. 

When she flew away 
the hawk left only one 
chunk of 
snake in the grass.

--- FIN ---

Friday, August 7, 2015

Patterns in the Sand

I live in Southwest Florida where I can walk for miles on beaches 
that caress the eastern edge of the Gulf of Mexico.

While I am walking I can't help but to notice the patterns
that develop in the ever-changing seashore sands. 

I interpret the patterns in the sand 
because I was a geographer
and I remember that


is the key to understanding
the shifting of physical 
earth forms.

But also,

I love wind and waves.

who doesn't like
detective work???

     From the subtlety of tidal debris patterns to the unmistakable canine foot print, detecting is just a small part of being there when one strolls the calming zone between the land and the sea,

     While walking I ask myself what happened to leave the many and various patterns in the sand? What is the relative timeline in the scene? Which patterns were made first and by what force(s) of nature?


Please enjoy puzzling over some of the patterns and the natural forces 
at work in the following iPhoto images from some of Florida's sandy beaches.


Patterns 1

Monday, August 3, 2015

Walking Around St. Thomas More

Consulting my Weather Bug the other day, I found a break in the everfalling summer rains and decided to take a walk around grounds of the St. Thomas More church nearby.  

I needed a relook at the delicate green vines criss-crossing the fallen pine needles in this nature preserve, 
so I took my little Fuji XP waterproof camera with me.



I love to eat mushrooms. 
These are for viewing only.

Small things from a busy world.

Near the end of my walk through this St. Thomas More preserve
I passed this landscaping rock that impressed me
as rather alligatorish.