Saturday, June 30, 2012

Catching Up is Hard to Do

It's been busy up here in Connecticut but headway is being made. I've been enjoying the amazing natural beauty of only two places, but they hold so much, it's like traveling within walking distance. So here are some more photos to show you. I think I could become a serious birder person up here; Teresa would be so proud of me for actually identifying a bird no one around me knew the name of, even though rarity is not its middle name.

The rose-breasted grosbeak. You can read all about it here and listen to its song too!
(photo credit not available and I haven't gotten a good one yet!)
But I have gotten some others. While I haven't been hiking through the woods to find any (at this time of year it's a friggin' jungle out there and full of ticks too), they do love the bird feeders!

You can barely see the baby swallow here. Just trust me.
This is not a bird. This is some prosciutto. Maybe. We're going to scrub it off and hope it has stayed good.
They waited for me to get here for this. I'm not sure what that means but I'm glad my friends know I appreciate the strangeness and potential deliciousness.
It was hard to get a good shot - and I didn't - because it is in the basement of this
1750 house where I can almost kiss the walls, they are so amazing. I didn't though. Really.

This is just another shot of this incredible area. Collins Cove.
These ducks were all lined up. I didn't see any with a badge, so I'm assuming it was a beauty pageant. 
Annie and Ian kayaking down to the trestle bridge.

Another shot of the bell. During the tag sale, we had to put up a sign saying it was not for sale.
Though I did offer it to a pretty good looking guy for 50,000. If he could pay me in cash and run away really fast.
Such a strange and funny plant. It looks like my high school reunion.
And now, off to cool down in water. Salt water, but in a pool. With pool toys. 


Your half carny, half debutante, MJ

Have a saturated with satisfaction Saturday! Do something slippery.

p.s. Having just gotten the news from Kelli about Mamacita's closing August 1 because of not winning their court case, I can only try to move past the initial anger toward Jay and wonder what great things Kelli and crew will be doing next. I'm not quite there yet, but I'm trying. Hope y'all do too - an encouraging word is a lot better than wallowing in the negative. 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Rush of Slow Time

I had this whole blog planned for this morning, but. I woke up early and took a walk instead, wowed by trees and birds and...more trees and more birds. I took a lot of photos and meant to put them together with the sky photos I took on the flight, wanting to talk about how coastlines and islands are ruined with no care, because I got photos of barrier islands that should sink under the weight of overbuilding. But then, the day took me over and then there was something that made my heart so much happier than the sadness of worrying about Culebra being destroyed by greedy bastards. Which weighs on me a lot.

Instead, I'll show you a little visual miracle (and more). We were on descent into Hartford and going through the cloud layer. I'd put my camera away for the fifth time but it was so pretty, I took it out again. Then, there was this circle rainbow. I couldn't get it but THEN!!!!! There was the shadow of the plane INSIDE the circle rainbow!!!! My hands were shaking like mad and I was just hoping to get it and...I did. Not perfectly but, there it is. I told the captain about it on the way out and he said getting that shot was one of those, gotta be in the right place right time moments, with a grin. Hope it makes you smile too. I am.

The first thing I saw on my walkabout this morning was this empty bird feeder, with an added bit of flora. I like it.

But then there was the full bird feeder.

This bird feeder draws birds that'd me. I haven't seen them in a long time.
This bell is from my friend's grandmother's plantation in Cuba. We rang it.
 It's loudloudloudloudloud. And awesome. More of that later.
We took one of the daughters to work; on the way we back saw this. I had to share it...what a beauty!
We stopped for something and I saw this truck. I asked the guys if I could take the photo and one guy says sure and another guy says, do you know what this is? I realize he's not talking about the truck, he's talking about what's on the radio - Johnny Cash. He says, it's just like the 60's! I say,'s not? He looked confused.
Instead, there are way too many photos I took but you can stop any time you like. This is the backyard of the house where I spent so many hours last year cleaning up a sad horror zone of a person's leftover life. Now it's all beautiful and for sale, but we get to hang out there until that day happens. We'd had a day of work at the home house and it was time to jump in the pool at Collins. This is what we saw.

Mama and not so new baby

Jim called to me to look over the swampy ground. There was a deer, just meandering across. My heart went boing.

He was not far away. He was not scared. It was wondrous.
 While back on the water, the ducks and the swans carried on.

First it was just mother and one. Then...the whole famdamily came out, except for Papa, who kept watch

Across the way, a heron made his dinner dance

They swam and floated and ate and learned and played and then went back to home ground. Because that's how it should be. And we did the same, except in a pool and as friend and family. It was all good.

Since it really is Wednesday but getting close to Thursday? Have a wonderfully winding down Wednesday falling into a totally true Thursday. Do something wastefully wonderfully triumphant.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Chasing the dragon...fruit

One variety of dragon fruit, the Lake Atitlan

I think one of the most beautiful fruits, and there are too many that are beautiful to say THE most beautiful, is the dragon fruit. Like all good fruits, there are a lot of varieties but we only tried one. Truthfully, it wasn't at its sweetened best, but with vodka and peach slices, somehow that didn't matter much.

Before we get to the dragon martini though, we got to Galuppi's, where my brother took me for our 'see you next time' dinner. The place has mixed reviews on tripadvisor, but our experience was nothing but excellent. With the place - and it's a big place - 3/4 full both indoors and out on the patio, we were waited on almost immediately by a super friendly guy who made sure the whole meal was a happy meal. We knew we wanted the ribs, and the bonus of two for one drinks didn't hurt. The house merlot and cab were Kendall Jackson, the ribs were perfectly cooked. It sort of felt like sitting in the early bird section somewhere in Palm Beach, but there were families with little kids and you can bring your dogs! They'll bring you a water bowl for them. With the golf course surrounding, it was easy to forget this place is in the midst of Uburbia.

Speaks for itself

The woman this dog owns told us he was a street dog in Ireland and she brought him home. She also told us much more about his digestive system than we ever wanted to know. Ever.
Our bad, we asked if they wanted the bones from the ribs. I won't do that again.
Sorry we asked, little Irie. 
Okay, back to dragon fruit. We bought this at the Asian place, New York Mart. Jonny bartended.

Yes, it really is that color.

Cut and scoop, making sure none of the skin is on it. It's bad for you. And me too.

Cut into chunks, add a slice of perfect peach, and a splash of lime juice. Add vodka. Enjoy.
And now it's time to finish up finishing up packing and stop worrying that the shuttle won't pick me up in time to get to the airport. Sure it will. What can go wrong?

Have a time to fly Tuesday! Do something from the top.

This concludes the Florida part of My Summer Vacation.