a second look, fireworks, friends, fun, Just do it, perseverance, photography, sky, technology

Farewell to the 4th…

Things are not always as they seem. The lovely cool-looking waterside view in the feature photos is actually where I sought to recover from the sweltering hot dragonfly photo session I had just attempted. The dragonflies were having none of it, and I didn’t find the shade to be much of a relief at all. I haven’t minded the summer in Florida as much as I have this year. But I got away a lot the last few years. Plus instead of my part time job taking up time and making me feel as if I’d earned some relaxation time in the afternoons, I’m twiddling my thumbs and mad at myself for not ‘doing something’. We did do the fireworks on the 2nd actually, and I posted photos already. But after watching my friend edit his photos I went back to mine and worked on some more of them that I hadn’t used before. But this is the end of them, I think.

I love that this looks like a flower.
I liked the greens in this one.
I deliberately tried NOT to get any of the lights at ground level in my shots. Now I think that was a mistake.
Since I didn’t know where in the sky the next display would be I had a lot of photos of half of a pretty bloom of light. I really appreciated the ones that I happened to catch in full.
Lots at once.
I liked seeing some of the blue color.
Blue again.

A final view of the fireworks. I have no clue what will come next but I suppose I’ll figure that out.

photography, on closer examination, old dogs new tricks, friends, fun, perseverance, technology, fences, weather, moments, sky, Home Team, making memories

Baseball and fireworks!

All that was missing was the apple pie! An early 4th of July fireworks display following a Clearwater Threshers baseball game. As you will see, the fireworks took most of my attention, but there were a couple of reasons for that. First, and mostly, it was the new netting that has been erected to prevent injuries from foul balls of the line drive sort. So you happen to see a cute interaction between the Threshers mascot and a cute little old lady in the stands, and you happily shoot a picture, but you get this…

Did I have a clue in the world that the netting was there? No, I did not. And yes, I was disappointed when I put the photos into the computer and lost what I expected to be my favorite shot.
The camera ignored the netting better than I would have expected for this shot. Not quite the ball on the bat, but close.
I might have been tempted to try to take the dark line of the top of the netting out of this shot, but it does illustrate the dilemma.

It was about this time that I noticed that my camera had dropped under a full charge, and I have misplaced my extra battery. And there were fireworks to come. I remembered being disappointed in my actual baseball shots the last time I was there, and there was no netting to contend with back then, so that was the end of my baseball shots. And the thing about fireworks shots is that you make your settings in the camera, setting an 8 second exposure, and every time your camera shows you a completed shot on the screen you fire another one off. Your camera only covers a small portion of sky, and you have no idea where exactly the next display will come up, so it’s a crap shoot. But on this day I got lucky…

And then there was the fiasco of trying to get off of the parking lot. The close in parking spot we were so happy to find when we got there turned out to be a liability when we wanted to leave. But I’m sure you’ve all been there. Fireworks and baseball at the stadium the next two nights in a row. I hope the weather cooperates as nicely as it did for us, and that they win for them, they didn’t for us. God bless the USA!

'scene' along the way, adventure, attention to detail, birds, friends, fun, live and learn, nature, perseverance, photography, rain, sky, storms, weather

Summer in Florida…

My friend announced that he wanted to go to Clearwater yesterday, which made me think of the nesting birds that we hadn’t gone looking for so far. I was sure it was now or never to find the chicks before they fledged, so I sort of hijacked his trip by suggesting we go a little bit farther and see the birds first. Only they weren’t where we found them last year, requiring a plan B. Our second stop was going to require feeding the meter before we even knew if they were there, so he parked while I hurried down to the beach to see what I could see. And I did see several adult birds in a roped off area up the beach a ways. But I began to hear thunder which caused the lifeguards to being sounding their whistles to get swimmers out of the water. I had my cell phone with me and thought I’d get a beach picture before I left, but looking behind me I saw quite the sky.

At first we were amazed at all the lightning we were seeing on the drive home. The claps of thunder and the lightning were almost simultaneous, so we knew the storm was right over us. But when it began to rain we couldn’t keep driving, we had to pull over and wait it out. My friend never did get to run his errand in Clearwater, but I had told him that lunch was on me. And then when we were finally almost home I was amazed at how dark the skies were, but some of the clouds were lit up and looking amazing against the dark sky. We have a photo walk to go to tonight and similar weather conditions are on the menu. But that will be the story for the foreseeable future here in Florida, my adopted home.

'scene' along the way, flowers, fun, Just do it, nature, perseverance, photography, weather

Crepe Myrtle…

This New England transplant just loves crepe myrtle, but mostly because those trees covered in blossoms remind me of lilac bushes. And, as I rode the trike around the neighborhood looking for some to photograph before they are past their prime, I discovered that they smell pretty good also. Days of being driven into seclusion by the hot, humid weather had me desperate to get out, and it felt great. Let me clarify, riding on the shady side of the street felt great.

Deep red crepe myrtles line the median strip of my friend’s neighborhood. I think they are the most dramatic color variation. But they certainly aren’t the only color.

I think that I see more white ones than any other color. They peek over fences and also line the roadways.
Several shade of pink are also seen.
But my favorite color is the ‘lilac’ color. Be still my heart. I could almost convince myself that they are, in fact, lilacs. As long as I don’t take a whiff.

I belong to a Facebook group for the Liberty Trike Owners, and I read enough comments about people tipping over on their trikes as they take corners that I think I must really look like a little old lady as I putter along carefully. Honestly, riding seems very intuitive to me, I wouldn’t want to discourage anyone and I haven’t had any problems at all. And I’m not ashamed to say that the electric pedal assist does help out a lot. My tour of the neighborhood wound up at the little pond to look for dragonflies, even though I knew that there would be no shade for me there. I almost gave up before this one finally showed up. I felt better about hiding from the heat after my ride. I earned my time in the chair with my book.

I wonder why they land on sticks?
'scene' along the way, adventure, exploring new places, friends, fun, making memories, nature, perseverance, photography, rain, storms, sunset, unintended images, weather

Those late sunsets…

There is an upside to the late sunsets in early summer in Florida. Usually I’d rather have an early sunset so I can be home in time to relax and check my photos. But on this day when we had a meeting of our photography club we could catch the sunset on the way home. Plus this was the first time all day that it felt good to be outside. Actually the first time in many days that it was nice to be outside. And our fearless leader suggested a new-to-us spot to watch the sunset happen. What a find! Thanks Jeff!

Not one but two bridges in view. And me without my camera. But as they say, the best camera is the one you have with you, and I’m never without my iPhone.
At first I wished I was on the sunset cruise boat, but as things progressed maybe I ought to count my blessings.
I was beginning to be more interested in the clouds as time went on.
A quarter turn to my right and this was the sky.
This blue heron watched the sunset with us. I turned this way for the sky but the reflections won me over.
Now the race was on, Would the sun drop under the bridge before the rain began to fall?
The answer to that was that it was a draw. We took shelter under the covered pier, but that was useless because it was raining sideways.
We were two drowned rats sitting in the car waiting for the rain to let up before driving home. We could hardly see the pier we had just been standing on. Still a good night, regardless.
home, nature, perseverance, photography, say goodnight, sky, sunset, weather

Port Richey sunset…

I was watching TV in my little house. My recently acquired app that predicts how good sunrises and sunsets might be had me happy to stay home, it wasn’t going to be much. From my chair I can see a sliver of the western sky above the sheers in the Florida room, and it looked dull and gray. But down the hallway is a back door with a little diamond shaped window in it, and when I noticed it glowing red I stepped outside to see this amazing chunk of sky. So my trip out for the sunset took me only 10 feet out the back door, but it was the prettiest one I’d seen in a while.