Saturday, April 29, 2017

Birds and beach and fire and ash

Almost May, and today I'm choking on the unexpected, record breaking heat which has descended on Naples. Tiffany and the little girls come down to visit in a little over a week and I sure hope this goes back to normal temps. Of course it's always cooler at the beach and I expect that's where you'll find us.

I made it to the beach myself before the heat wave and had a couple serene hours. And then a sizable crowd showed up with all their paraphernalia  While season is now done, there is a whole other group that has descended for some blissful days in tropical Florida. I'm hearing a lot of German wafting through the air.

You may have read about the fires in Florida and we had one erupt fairly close to us (15 miles away). Most areas are way down on rainfall which makes for dry, brittle conditions even in the tropics. Even with a lot of miles between us we had a couple of days of hazy skies and ash actually dropping from the sky at one point. It reached 7,000 acres at its peak with a number of homes destroyed. It's 75% contained but a lesson in how no one is immune to these disasters. At this point I say with the exception of Tiffany's visit, the rainy season can start.

In the meantime, snow is melting away at Star Mt. revealing everyone's broken fences, and ours is no exception. Adding that to the repair list. The weight of that huge amount of snow did a lot of damage all over. Our damaged deck railing is soon to be repaired - this time going with a removable rail. We'll be prepared for the next winter of massive proportions, which probably won't happen again for 20 years. On other news, there's been a moose sighting at Star Mt. It is the third spring in a row that moose (singular) has been seen, this time a female. It is tantalizing to me as we're not there and I've missed a sighting every time. Maybe she'll stick around for when I'm back (early June).

My time left in Naples is starting to dwindle and feel like it. It's always a weird feeling to book a one way plane ticket but its the practical thing to do. When I leave I won't be back until October. Mark will come back and forth for two weeks at a time. A very odd life we're living but it works, at least for now.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Musings from Naples

Checking back in. I'm in Naples with some gorgeous days but the summer heat is beginning to creep back in. Yoga class is suddenly not nearly so crowded, but this week I've noticed a lot of family groups everywhere I go, so I think we have the last of the spring/holiday crowd around. It's a great place to visit after all.

It's mating season for alligators and at the same time baby ducks are appearing in every waterway around us. Happily I think the alligators are too occupied to pay attention. That's Florida.

My early morning walks have become quieter, and season end parties, last golf and tennis tournaments,are all happening now, and car carrier trucks are back to gather up the snowbirds' cars and drive them back north. Restaurants are suddenly easier to get into, which is very nice. Back to Charred with friends over the weekend. Hunka hunka steak - great stuff!

Caught the full moon from a few days ago. For me always compelling and just magical.

One of many bunnies that are suddenly everywhere
Night Heron
People are leaving by the dozens, which includes our upstairs Canadian neighbors.We remain, and I will be in Naples until June. Mark will continue to travel between Naples and Miami, and then fly over to Star Mt. on a regular basis all summer and fall. Same plan as last year. Time is moving very fast all of a sudden. I have lots of projects going that are keeping me busy and I'll talk about those as I get a little bit further in. Suffice to say, writing is involved, lots of it. Happy spring everyone!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Quick visit to Virginia

City Center DC
After a quick trip to VA I'm back to record heat.  Going straight to summer temps and skipping spring in Florida was not the plan, hopefully it will change. Wonderful to see family and Heather popped over too which was great. Too bad Mark couldn't make it, it's that work thing...

Lovely to see those precious little girls. Lots of playing hard as you can see. I remember those days fondly - now. Small children can mess up a room in about thirty seconds. It's a talent.

My last day was spent playing tourist in D.C. with Tiffany. We decided to go to one of the Smithsonian museums neither of us had been to, The National Museum of the American Indian. All I can say is the most exciting thing I saw was the Dyson dryer in the restroom. We were not impressed with the exhibits at all. A shame.

Early spring in D.C.
More success with lunch. We went to a Korean place, Momofuku, in a redone area called CityCenterDC. This was not just any Korean place, its chef owner David Chang,  is a hot commodity in New York, Sydney, Toronto, and most recently, Las Vegas. Great ramen and pork buns.