There they were, on top of the world. There’s an egret down below, at water’s edge, to the left. And, out of the frame, an osprey perched on an electrical wire.
We’ve seen the osprey before, and an egret, too, but hadn’t noticed this nest. Probably wouldn’t have if the birds hadn’t flown to it. Nicely camouflaged in the yucca (?) or whatever that prickly-looking tower is.
We also came upon a local walker who’d found a loose dog. She didn’t have a phone (neither did the dog) so we called the number on the dog’s tag and the owner came and picked up the little escape artist. “Buddy” had done this before, apparently, sneaking out as the garage door opens. He was a thirteen-year old schnauzer mix and didn’t look the least bit sheepish.
Walking by the lagoon is quite different from walking on the beach. Still an ocean-y thing, though.
When we can’t walk on the beach at low tide, the lagoon is a nice alternative. We get to walk by the nearby hotel, through acres of ’empty’ land that people use to walk and train dogs — and fly drones — (ugh), then up through a residential area along a shaded walkway, then to the lagoon itself with its multiple lookout points and benches.
It is quiet and comfortable to walk there mid-morning, hearing the birds, the approaching yet somewhat distant trains, the water fowl squawking, and the multitude of mocking birds and morning doves; seeing the lizards/geckos skitter around, the variety of flowering shrubs, and the dogs being walked. The air is sweetly scented with clover, jasmine, and other things I can’t identify but still enjoy. A multi-sensory experience. We even stop partway for a bite of cheese, and there is always a breeze and usually sunshine on one’s neck. Paradise indeed.
Nope, not the moon. I haven’t been there lately. Nope, not cliffs. Nope, not constructed sand sculpture. Nope, not a topographical map.
Just the lovely effects of waves on sand, and those telltale holes left by some still unknown-to-me critters. I appreciate the shadows and the slightly yellowish tint of the lower band of sand. Just a hint of color can be so delicately suggestive.
What would it be like to be an ant or a bee and explore that landscape?
It always comes back to glyphs for me. Writing. The written word. The symbols we use to write. The compelling mystery of language. And here it is in nature. The other side of the stone has more glyphs.
When I create my fiber art, I have to include the written word. It’s so central for me, so essential. I don’t remember when I learned to read; it’s as if I were born to read. And there’s magic of a sort in being able to perform — yes, somehow, it’s performance — the act of writing. Etching, scratching, drawing, pulling, pushing the mark onto paper or fiber or sand or wet concrete, or chalk on dry concrete, or dye or charcoal onto a stone wall, concocted ink onto papyrus or skin, the printing press onto precious paper, the carving into the trunk of a tree: I was here, I spoke, listen, remember, speak again!
This is the first photo on the blog with people in it…so I can no longer say I don’t photograph people! This was just too cute to pass up — both the kids and their creation. Another cool, grayish day on the beach with the sun determined to come out soon.
I’ve noticed a lot of moats as part of the sand-castle paradigm. I wonder if that is a universal…there are possibly a few anthropology studies lurking within a tour of beaches world-wide, studying variation and similarity in sand castles!
Moats: protection, separation, exclusivity. Not exactly friendly or welcoming. It would be interesting to correlate the sand castle design with the local illustrations of fairy tales and fables. Which, now that I think of it, have probably been mostly written by men. Kingdom, conquest, territory. Sigh. Even Frost said, “Good fences make good neighbors.”
Blonde colors. Not my colors (to wear, that is.) But so appealing that the sunlight shades what seems that it should be green into this silvery lavender, dusty and pale and elegant.
Dusty and pale and elegant I’m not. But it’s fun to notice it and admire it, even if it seems a bit alien. Subtle for sure. (And, again, subtle I’m not.) Low contrast. Complex edges and layering and shadow. Diversity is good.
After what-passes-for-rain in Southern California, we checked out the lagoon. So did this guy. There was a slight bit of mud, everything sparkled, and the air was heavy with humidity in a peculiar way. The air here is simultaneously salty, windy-dry, and barely humid-feeling; actually it’s much more humid than it feels. To have it truly feel humid was unusual.
The water fowl (least terns?) squawked a group good-bye as we left the area. Our snail had retreated, but we were happy to have had this brief sighting.
It seems artificial, day-glow. It almost sets your teeth on edge, but the bits of white and the green center, along with the delicacy of the petals and their wonderful points, softens the whole thing. I love the almost blue-gray cool tones of the foliage that sets off the vividness of the yellow. Then add the textures: the sand, the bracts (?) — oh, it is almost yummy. At the meditation garden, perhaps even the plants meditate.
Sometimes the sun looks so far away and small; I don’t understand the physics. It was quite cloudy at the horizon tonight.
I really like these cool, cloudy (overcast) mornings. They feel fresh and clean and it’s pleasant to walk. But this photo happened because we have a dear friend visiting from the Midwest, so of course we have to go watch the sun set over the ocean. Lagoon in the morning, ocean at night. It is so fine!
Sometimes we walk around the lagoon instead of on the beach. There were hundreds of birds out on a mound that was disappearing slowly as the tide came in. They squawked and fluttered and were a beautiful sight, but my camera couldn’t capture them. So here’s a view of the brush and shrubs around the lagoon instead.
There must be something special about certain tides or certain seasons or a combination of the two. The beach was crowded with seaweed at low tide; wonder what it will look like tomorrow. And where does it all go? Back to the sea, to wash up again sometime later? Does it stay alive until it washes back out? Does it get buried in moving sand? Does the whole coast look like this? Does it move up and down the coast? Does it get caught in rocks and jetties and piers? The migration of seaweed…
There are human footprints, shoe prints, bicycle tire tracks, and lifeguard truck tracks; there are gull tracks, godwit tracks, curlew tracks, and sandpiper tracks.
And then there are these mysterious faint linear tracks, and we finally saw one being made — by a bee. Or, at least, something that looks like a bee: large and winged and multi-colored and rather bee-like. This bee-creature was upside-down (!) in rather wet packed sand, near the surf line. Amazing maze of faint jagged lines, the traces we leave.
Actually, the pattern of the light (?) is as striking as the plant (?) itself.
Lots of questions there. Lots of questions here. It’s so much easier to ask questions than to find answers. Maybe because there are more questions than answers anyway. The questions can be pointed and specific and piercing. The answers often seem vague and incomplete and unsatisfying. Perhaps the deepest questions aren’t meant to be answered. The awareness is in the asking?
Even getting there holds its treasures. The poppies and daisies set themselves up nicely against the ever-present purple…whose name I forget.
Ah, the forgetting. It’s one syllable, and I think it starts with ‘s’ and I think it has an ‘h’ in it. And it maybe has another non-floral meaning. But you can’t look that up, can you? Even if I think of its name, I don’t think I’ll come back and edit this. Words just beyond the tip of the tongue (or perhaps tip of the brain?) are fascinating. I want to say ‘stealth’ but of course that’s not it! Ah, statice! (No ‘h’ after all.] And I’m not sure that’s how you spell it — but it doesn’t seem to have much status in my brain. [Ugh!}
This was in the rose garden at Liberty Station, and I have some similar to this in a huge pot in our yard. Their scent is as delicious as their beauty. I love the way the color changes, and the contrast of the delicate pale pink edges and the intense apricot of the center.
Well, new to me, anyway. There’s kelp with its amazing bulb-shaped bladders, huge bases, and long tangled masses, 8-10-12 foot expanses of it. There’s sea grass, bright and deep green, graceful strands. There’s the lacy group: some purple, some yellow, some in varying shades of brown. And now there’s this, a pine-y, fern-y form that I’ve not seen before.
It’s all the same, it’s all different, it’s all wonder-ful!
And thus we take a break from rocks and stones. It’s harder and crustier than one would expect from a sponge. It’s probably not a sponge. Related to coral? Or the ubiquitous kelp? I never did study marine biology, which is a popular college major around here (no surprise!)
It looks like the birds (the sandpipers, I suspect) inspected it, or did a dance around it, or pecked out whatever teensy creatures they found hiding inside. Or maybe all three. Their footprints give them away. The strand of grass and other seaweed is nice punctuation. I don’t arrange these shots, just take the photo as I find it, by the way…
It seems to be old stone week. Well, at least it’s been a theme.
There was another beached baby sea lion today, but it feels intrusive to take their photos. I did it before but felt funny about it. The stones, on the other hand, don’t seem to mind. Today the stones were piled/placed; there was a rectangle of stones elsewhere, but I liked this somewhat chaotic arrangement better.
The sea lion turned around and moved towards us, and it felt like (s)he was beseeching us. One eye appeared to be injured or missing, but we didn’t want to get close enough to be sure. We went up to the lifeguard headquarters to let them know, but it was closed.
Stones and sea lions. The stones seemed ok; hope the sea lion was.
Yes, rock. These are chunky, clunky, craggy rocks, not stones. And this one is different from all the others surrounding it. What a complex and unusual surface it has: it looks a bit like an archaeological excavation site. There is also something bone-like about it, with the white ridges and holes and skeletal-looking shapes. Anomalous indeed. I’ve walked by this area dozens of times and never noticed it, but the sun must have hit it just right to grab my attention!
Wow, that came out at a strange angle! Don’t fall down! (Don’t fall up, either, for that matter…)
It must be spring-break-at-the-beach, because we are seeing large groups and lots of kids and lots of human-made structures and arrangements. I was going to say man-made, and then perSON-made, and even huMAN-made has gender, so does one say ‘people-made?’ But ‘people’ is just the plural of ‘person’ so where does that leave us?
Anyway, enjoy the stones and the flowers and the piles and the circle and the linear raking pattern. It’s Passover/Easter/Spring weekend!
It’s been so lovely, never hot, always a nice breeze, around 70 degrees, blue skies, occasional morning fog (which lends atmosphere) and perfect evenings. Capris, sandals, and a tee. Doesn’t get much better!