Like the constant rain that has come and gone [in buckets!] so has the month of May! The rain is due back tomorrow, but May won't be back again for another year. In the meantime, we'll try to read and follow the signs.
Thursday, May 30, 2013
Oh, yeah! It's that time of year...graduation! At our postsecondary adult vocational institution, the commencement was emphasized with the basic facts that our graduates will walk straight into the workplace...and generally decent-paying jobs, as well. From Aviation Mechanics to Dental Assistants to Network Systems Administrators to Surgical Technologists [and many more], our students have awesome opportunities not only for immediate paychecks, but also stepping stones into additional education. Congratulations to the class of 2013! :) Lorenzo Walker Institute of Technology, Naples, FL
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
Tuesday, May 28, 2013
Mangoes...yummy mangoes! Unlike zucchini when it is more than plentiful and one wonders what to do with the excess crop, there is no need for such a hunt with mangoes...at least not for me! And since there are so many varieties with staggering dates of ripeness, this season will extend into July, I hope! :) Good thing the neighborhood shares, too. Naples, FL
Remembering and honoring those who sacrificed their lives - many at a young age - in service to our country.
To Brandon - killed in action 02.18.07
"A U.S. Army soldier from Naples died in the weekend crash of a military helicopter in Afghanistan, authorities said. Spc. Brandon D. Gordon, 21, and seven other soldiers died Sunday when the Chinook helicopter they were in crashed after reporting an unexplained loss of power and engine failure in the Shahjoi district of Zabul province in southeastern Afghanistan, according to the Department of Defense. Gordon, who attended Lely High School for his freshman and sophomore years, was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne), Fort Campbell, Ky. He joined the Army in October 2003 as a Chinook helicopter repairer, the Department of Defense said in a news release. The military said the Chinook was carrying 22 U.S. service members when it crashed about 50 yards from the main highway between Kabul and Kandahar."
and to Pinkus Aylee, Civil War Union soldier, "since there are no living descendants to do this for him."
~ Pink and Say by Patricia Polacco
Sunday, May 26, 2013
Since life is all about change, this sign takes on even more meaning. ;) Funny that I've been in this spot dozens of times and never noticed the sign - maybe it is because it is newly installed or maybe because it was the first time that I sat down at the bench across the path....either way it seemed to make its point very well! At the Naples Botanical Garden again! Naples, FL
Saturday, May 25, 2013
Touching down in the lotus pond for a staring contest - this dragonfly must have forfeited as he hovered off before the camera was down. The purity, elegance and simplicity of the lotus flower is quite beautiful to behold. This one is just unveiling its magnificent petals and there's much to show underneath the layers. Quite the heat today, but still an enjoyable stroll through the Naples Botanical Garden. Naples, FL
Friday, May 24, 2013
Decorative ironwork is not as popular as it was years ago, which makes it even more interesting and attractive when discovered. This gate is on the property of a church built in the late 1800's, but I'm not sure if the gate was 'original', since there have been renovations on ground. The curves of the grape vines mimic the curlicues below and add interest and balance to the linear framework.
Thursday, May 23, 2013
Looks like this red-winged blackbird got his feathers a bit ruffled - hope it wasn't anything I did?! ;) He did have quite the chatter (listen to other's recordings of their various calls). Thankfully, there was a significantly different and more embracing mode at the BYOD presentation for our high school parents at tonight's meeting. :) Lorenzo Walker campus, Naples, FL
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
On a hot, sunny day, this fountain spells cooling, refreshing, 'relief'. Even though kinesthetic touch is elusive, the wet feeling is evident. Similarly, there is no sound in this photo, but one can hear the gentle splash as the water recirculates. It is amazing how much power the visual sense can evoke - well beyond it's original function and purposefully fluid in interpretation. Naples, FL
All locked up! Even though there is evidence of rust, it appears the Master's function is not compromised. It is intriguing to think about how these ordinary, but indispensable, tools were developed (love the history as described in Wikipedia). The inventiveness of the human minds is quite extraordinary - too bad so many of our current systems dissuade such creations.
Monday, May 20, 2013
Until I got up close, I really thought someone had left a starfish in the garden...what an unusual flower! :) It is apparently called a Carrion Cactus and has an interesting story per this website. [Note - I didn't notice any stink!] :) It reminds me, though, of the importance of camouflage for some to survive. Recognizing that many make their reputation by being a 'standout' and having name recognition, there is still value in 'hiding in plain sight' to allow for a different kind of quality success. Naples Botanical Garden, Naples, FL
Saturday, May 18, 2013
Friday, May 17, 2013
There's a constant drip and trickle of life that goes into one's awareness really and consciousness of things.
~ Mike Leigh
Whether or not it is obvious or latent, that constant 'drip of life' continues to influence and impact our day-to-day moments. Carpe diem. :) Naples, FL
Thursday, May 16, 2013
The lovely plumeria (also known as frangipani) trees are in bloom - they really are magnificent visual beauties. I recently acquired a yellow one to add to my pink tree, but now I see I need the white...especially when the sky is this bold blue! :) Naples, FL
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Not sure how 'welcoming' this pair of chairs is, but certainly a whimsical visual while enjoying a beach walk on a gorgeous afternoon. ;) There's no doubt that summer is on it's way, but for us that means heat, humidity and hurricanes, so I'll keep May, please!
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Monday, May 13, 2013
Trapped in the butterfly garden, this monarch has all the ingredients to survive, but still senses freedom is on the other side of the mesh. Drawn to the transparent quality of sun-drenched wings and patterned blue sky, my thoughts moved to the ethereal and coveted qualities of independence. To be liberated from such enclosures does lead to more responsibilities...in the case of the butterfly, finding own sources of water/food and protection from the negative elements. Yet, we often seek what we don't have with the idea that the 'grass is always greener on the other side'....Motivations becomes more complicated! :) Naples, FL
Sunday, May 12, 2013
Saturday, May 11, 2013
Friday, May 10, 2013
Thursday, May 9, 2013
Not the sharpest image, but the osprey parent and hatchling on a platform nest is always a highlight! Disappointed that I also missed another osprey with fish in its talons flying off to another nest I presume. Hopefully, I will get a another chance at them tomorrow now that I know their 'address'. South Seas Resort, Captiva Island, FL
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Monday, May 6, 2013
The brilliant Geiger tree is blooming - there's actually a white flowered version as well, but one can hardly deny the stunning beauty of this streetscape tree. I love this replicated entry from John James Audubon's Ornithological biography;, or An account of the habits of the birds of the United States of America : accompanied by descriptions of the objects represented in the work entitled The birds of America, and interspersed with delineations of American scenery and manners / v.2 [Publication Info: Philadelphia, PA. :, Edinburgh : Judah Dobson ;, A. Black, 1831-1849].
"The Rough-leaved Cordia
This plant, on account of its large tubular scarlet flowers, is one of the most beautiful of the West Indian trees. I saw only two individuals at Key west, where we supposed, they had been introduced from Cuba. They were about fifteen feet high, the stem having a diameter of only five or six inches. They were in full bloom in the early part of May, and their broad deep green leaves, and splendid red blossoms, mingled with the variety of plants around me, rendered their appearance delightful. Both trees were on private property, and grew in a yard opposite to that of Dr. Strobel, through whose influence I procured a large bough, from which the drawing was made, with assistance of Mr. Lehman. I was informed that they continue to flower nearly the whole summer."
Not only did I enjoy the digital version of this classic and encyclopedic work, but I learned more about the White-Headed Pigeon. Audubon's storytelling narrative really does make learning 'stick' and much more interesting! Naples, FL
Parts of five umbrellas in honor of Cinco de Mayo on this absolutely gorgeous (almost humid-free) Sunday morning. The birds were relatively uncooperative - either in hiding or with their backs to me across the marsh - so the patterns in diagonal format were the selected image. On the dog walk through the Botanical Gardens, we apparently missed a curious baby alligator as the workers rode quickly by on the golf cart with a one-footer tightly gripped - wished they'd stopped for a photo opp, but understood! Naples Botanical Garden, Naples, FL
Saturday, May 4, 2013
Spanish moss and a broken branch offer a natural 'still life' though chances are there is nothing but 'still' in that micro-ecosystem! In thicker clumps, this gray beard is used as homes for bats and birds. As an air plant (epiphyte), it is part of the bromeliad family.
It is easy to take liberty for granted when you have never had it taken from you. ~ M. Grundler
Like so many other things we take for granted, the air we breathe is a vital part of our being. After the rains or even a wind squall, it smells so much cleaner...and it makes you wonder how 'dirty' it really was! Trying to keep the air clean is a continual challenge, but even more difficult in the summer when the air is warmer and the ozone levels are higher. In addition to the typical driving tips, it is recommended that you 1) refuel, when it's cool, 2) don't top off your gas tank, and 3) use less gas. Naples, FL
Thursday, May 2, 2013
A very full day of rain finally gave way to some sunshine - sweet moments when capturing the color of bromeliad highlighted by remaining water drops. More rain on the horizon for tomorrow and then tapering off on Sat...it always leaves everything so fresh and clean...AND the precipitation is not white! Naples, FL