Thursday, December 31, 2009

lonely sailors pass the time away

Maizie and I headed out this morning for a New Year's Eve kayak trip. The temperatures were warm and the water was calm. At least it was calm in our inlet! We hit a fierce wind as we made our way south. We certainly earned our breakfast! Our local McDonald's is on the water and provides boaters with a handy dock. As we tied up our little crafts, other boaters were docking for their New Year's Eve breakfasts too. Our trip back was quick and easy as we were with the wind. I am shocked at how much kayaking is like riding. Maizie on her "horse" and me on mine. We are out in nature enjoying secret views. It is probably not like riding at all, but I am horse deprived! I went to see dear, sweet Thoroughbred Red yesterday. She nickered and nuzzled me up. It is going to be hard not to ride this year! As I was tying up the kayaks after we had finished, Maizie kept apologizing for not helping. I laughed and explained how easy it is to "tack" and "untack" the kayaks! They don't wiggle or move like Pie and Sovey! Below is Maizie in all her cuteness!

Here is the view from our porch. I just love how the sun glistens off the water.

Can you see the bird on a branch in this photo below?

It is a Cormorant and he (or one of his relatives) caused us a heap of trouble on New Year's Eve in 2004. I guess we caused our own trouble because of our lack of Cormorant knowledge. That entire Christmas week we had observed Mr. C. sunning himself, wings outstretched on this very branch, below. As the New Year approached, it seemed to us that he never left the spot. He must be stuck we reasoned. Why else would he stay in that exact position? No bird, we thought, would purposely stay with wings outstretched for hours on end, days even. On New Year's Eve, Brian and I began to seriously worry that we had no choice but to "rescue" this bird from certain death. He must be caught in a fishing line and would die from dehydration and starvation. (My imagination can get rolling and I usually am able to bring Brian right along with it.) I frantically phoned the local bird authorities. No answer - it was a holiday. All our neighbors had headed north, but I left nervous messages on their answering machines anyway, asking for help. Brian and I got into our bathing suits and geared up to dive off the dock to make a swimming rescue. We had scissors and wire cutters and shoes and gloves. The very second we went to dive the bird just took off - it flew away!!!! It wasn't stuck at all! We learned later that the Cormorant is known for finding branches to stretch out on and staying like that for hours! Duh! I was terribly embarrassed about my messages, but what else is new? I can just imagine the employees of the seabird rescue station returning from holiday and falling down on the floor laughing at my breathless plea.

Brian is demonstrating, below, our usual position on the back porch. The porch is like a beach cabana, keeping wind at bay and allowing us sun and shade and perfect weather no matter what is really happening outside. We also have a radio out there and we listen to a silly, soft, easy listening station that plays sappy songs from the 70's that bring tears to my eyes. It is nostalgic and relaxing and everything a vacation should be. You can just see my iced tea glass and coffee mug and book in the photo. The book is The Pink Motel. Right before we left home, Maizie's school library was giving away the "old" books to make room for new. Maizie and I are obsessed with old children's books. Often the stories are so much better than the new fare. Maizie inhaled the book whole on our trip down here. She said that it is ironically a mystery set in sunny Florida. It was written in 1959. I can't wait to begin. Happy New Year everyone!


  1. Have a wonderful New Year!

  2. Hah! That is so funny about the cormorant and your wire cutters and scissors and scuba gear! I am snickering to myself as I read this! If I didn't already know that about those birds, I would have been thinking the same as you--commanding a rescue op! You and Brian are like Navy Seals!
    I really love your view and just the very fact that you have a place in Florida! I love visiting Florida! LOVE IT! It is so different that it feels like you are a million miles from home. Well, that's how I feel anyway. Before I had Lilly I kayaked quite a bit, so it is a real pleasure to see pictures of you and Maizie enjoying it. "Tacking up the kayaks," that is a scream!
    Hope you have more Florida fun!
    PS those books look good! Have you ever read anything by Helen Wells?

  3. How fun, I've always wanted to Kayak!!

  4. Thanks Kate!

    maizie jane - Hey you, Meme! Welcome to blogging! I can't wait to read all your stories. You are a good writer and I am proud of you.

    baystatebrumby - We haven't read Helen Wells. I just went to her site - what books do you recommend? She looks like she is right up our alley - not the nursing, maybe, but the detective stuff.

    kristen - you have to go - it is really fun!

  5. Loved the story about the cormorant! I can just see it all happening....It was so nice to see you last weekend! I hope you all are enjoying this freezing cold weather! Ha ha!

  6. About Helen Wells--yes the detective stuff. Very Nancy Drew. The main character is Vicki and she's a flight attendant! I read one about Magnolia Manor recently. I gotta say, I really enjoyed it. Certainly a nice break from Vygotsky!

  7. Michelle - It was great to see you! Hopefully I will email you the pictures soon and post about it too! All this "vacationing" has kept me busy - (not complaining!)

    baystatebrumby - Thanks! We will try Helen out soon. Wow - Vygotsky! Inter-relationship of language and thought!?! Brian just said, "Wow, that is so cool!"

  8. Looks like you are having a great time. I love birds of all kinds. Very interesting about the cormorant. I would have wanted to rescue it too.


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