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I got a call earlier in the week from friends who were going to take a boat out of Fort Myers Beach, and did I want to come along? You bet I did! We did a leisurely tour through Matanzas Pass and Ostego Bay, then emerged into the Gulf via Big Carlos Pass, near Lovers Key. That’s the bridge over Big Carlos, behind us (above).
We decided to head for Nervous Nellie’s in Fort Myers Beach after our excursion. The town is all done up for Christmas. As a native New Yorker, it still gives me the giggles to see Christmas decorations juxtaposed against palm trees and blue skies.
Here I am, enjoying royal status for about three minutes – Princess Without A Country 😉 You will find this over-sized bench with the cutout near the gazebo beside Nervous Nellie’s, should you have a princess you’d like to photograph.
At Moss Marine, I saw this egret standing on a post and took aim with the camera. I saw the pelican come in for a landing behind him, but did not see the little shore bird on the post in front of him until I got the picture up on the computer screen later on.
A closer look at the egret – handsome fellow, isn’t he?
The sun was setting as I crossed back over Matanzas Pass and made my way toward Summerlin. I decided to take a side trip before heading back to Lehigh, and made my way to Bunche Beach Preserve, where I saw this little blue heron hunting for his supper.
The little blue wasn’t the only one looking for dinner – pelicans and an egret hunted as well. A misty glow enveloped the Sanibel Causeway in the distance – one of those scenes that makes your heart go “ahhh!”
The sky is streaked in Creamsicle shades as the sun descends upon Sanibel’s east end.
A side trip to the Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve the next day yielded the delight of finding a cute little two-foot gator sunning himself in the vegetation along the banks of the gator lake. He would not be the last gator I would see this week!
Saturday found me at the C.R.E.W. Bird Rookery Swamp, where I would participate in a geocaching event. It was a glorious day to be tramping around in the cypress swamp’s wide trails. Here’s a balsam pear we found growing wild alongside the path. It’s a relative of the cucumber.
I haven’t identified this moth yet, but I liked the angle of his upper wings against the lower “tail” part of his flying apparatus.
It’s that time of year, when the beautiful but destructive lubbers turn into lovers. These grasshoppers go through several colorful stages before they reach the cooked-lobster hue you see here.
See? Told ya there would be another gator! Actually, there were two, on opposing sides of the path, but the other one was a bit too far away to get a decent shot. I’d say they were about 4 feet or so. We observed them for a while and when we were ready to move on, they quite agreeably slunk into the swamp and let us pass unmolested.
So that was my post-Thanksgiving week. How was yours?
What a beautiful time of year it is to live in Southwest Florida!
The summer can be unforgiving – the heat and humidity are relentless, the rain is capricious, and there is always the threat of a hurricane or two hanging over our collective heads.
However, as October melts into November, a kinder, gentler Southwest Florida emerges. Blue skies and refreshing breezes reign in the late autumn and early winter days. It’s a little cooler, a little drier, and much more enjoyable. It’s time to take it outside in Southwest Florida – let’s go!
© Copyright 2012 | http://MyMobileAdventures.com | CLICK any photo for a larger view
The blog has been quiet, but that doesn’t mean I’ve been languishing – far from it! Most people think this part of the country is a paradise only in the winter, a respite from the frozen north. Well, that may be true, and it may also be true that while the rest of the world comes out of the house and comes alive in the summer, we tend to go inside to the blessed relief of central air conditioning.
Despite the heat, there are still things to do, places to go, and people to see in the summertime in Southwest Florida. My month started out a little slow, after all the June excitement with Tropical Storm Debby and the treasures brought to the beach by that natural phenomenon – but I’m happy to report it rapidly picked up speed and I’ve had a blast this summer so far 🙂 Are you ready to see what I’ve been up to? C’mon – let’s go!
JULY 5TH: The Holocaust Museum of Southwest Florida has been on my bucket list for a while. My visit coincided with a special exhibit featuring comic strips and cartoonists who were prominent during the era of Nazi Germany. Both Dr. Seuss and Walt Disney are featured, among others.
I wasn’t happy with my visit. I was VERY interested in the special exhibit, as you can imagine – I am, after all, a huge Disney fan. Disney’s war propaganda cartoons were being shown in one room, but I was told that a really great docent was about to lead a tour, and the sound on the television was turned off, probably in deference to this tour, so I joined them. Little did I know that this tour would involve the docent delivering a lecture that went on for an hour and did not show signs of stopping; there were some chairs, but most people were left standing. I wandered away and after a quick turn through the rest of the museum, I made my escape. Wish I had better things to say about this experience.
JULY 6TH: Art Walk in the Fort Myers River District! I began the evening at Ford’s Garage, rendezvous point with friends Charlene and Eric Taubert. Ford’s is one of those places with lots of different beers and ales to try, and if you have dinner there during Art Walk, you can have free valet parking that night. The place was VERY crowded, and it took a long time to get seated. After a good dinner and lively conversation, we took to the streets of the recently revitalized downtown area of Fort Myers to see some art.
A friend pointed out that the buildings themselves in downtown Fort Myers qualify as art; everything has an art deco feel to it. Here’s the historic Edison Theater, which is no longer a theater but now serves as office space.
The Howl Gallery had a special exhibit – it was all Mickey Mouse, all the time in there! Check out the Howl’s current show page to see all the art. Above is my favorite, because he’s sort of emo and sweet ºoº
JULY 10TH: Freakish and violent weather is not unusual for Southwest Florida in the summertime, but this was scary-freakish. I walked out of the house one afternoon on a grocery mission and saw this in the northeastern sky. Looks like a tornado wanted to form, a little too close to home for comfort! My shopping expedition was in the precise opposite direction, and I hastened away. The house was still here when I got back, so I guess it was all good 😉
JULY 14TH: Out on the town with pal Michele Lorito-Chase. We saw a movie at the Bell Tower, had some dinner, and went for a drink at World of Beer.
The best part of going out for pizza: bringing some home for breakfast the next morning 😉
JULY 16TH: I’ve been volunteering as social media strategist for Lee County’s Conservation 20/20 organization, which acquires and maintains conservation preserves. I curate their Facebook page – drop by and “like” us! A new piece was added to the Alva Scrub Preserve, so I set out with a friend on a promotional photography mission….
NEXT TIME: a hike through the Alva Scrub Preserve
This plant is also known as the coastal plain willow. Fun fact: fire will turn it from a tree to a shrub
A male (full red cap) red belly woodpecker seeks a snack on the edge of the cypress forest
The forest is trying to reclaim the marsh – who will win the battle?
We are progressing at a good clip now, and should have his hike completed soon
No, the railing isn’t painted – that’t a pink lichen hat grows on wood surfaces. We are at the "south lake" part of the swamp.
These are a very pretty color and are probably providing cover for some baby alligators.
Native American women would feel with their toes at the base of these swamp plants to find and harvest the roots, thus saving their backs from a little wear and tear. Pretty clever, huh?
You can see the coloration on the bottom of this cypress tree, which shows the high water mark. Currently we are at the beginning of dry season; not expecting significant rain until April or May
Sand cord grass will dominate if burn is not frequent enough. We are headed into that line of cypress now
It has been burned recently (2 years ago) – the other side is shaggier
I received a "reunion" invite from one of my Florida Master Naturalist instructors, so here I am. Hope to see some interesting critters today!
Here in Maples,Florida to see HAPPY, an offering at the Naples Film Festival. Should be awesome 🙂
Sunset on Rookery Bay
April 26th, 2008
Many, MANY thanks to all of you who have posted encouraging comments and sent really nice messages regarding the Rookery Bay Sunset Cruise series. We’re about half through, and it’s nice to know that this sort of blogging is appreciated.
Today is just a little pause for Wordless Wednesday; there’s more of the series to come tomorrow and Friday. Hope to see you here again!
I'm very early. It's beautiful here!