Sunday, August 31, 2008

1...2... Wheeee !!

And he was singing...




It's the surfing life for me!

Surf watchin'

If you enjoy high surf, this is the morning to get your fill. Red flags are flying across Pensacola Beach and the surf is building.

In another few hours it will be painful if you're on the beach without long pants and sleeves.

Watching and photographing surfers and big waves is great fun, but the harsh effect of high winds, salt air and blowing sand on your camera is not.

Taking a break and watching the surf. You may check out a Pensacola Beach surf cam HERE.

We are now under a Tropical Storm Warning and expect winds to start kicking up to 20-30 mph by this afternoon, with higher gusts. Should be fun for the "Anything that Floats" bathtub race at Quietwater Beach this afternoon at 2:00 p.m.!

[Note: There was a problem with my link to the surf cam earlier, but it has now been fixed]

Early bands of Gustav

Early morning clouds spiral across Pensacola Beach as Hurricane Gustav approaches, bringing to mind the old saying, "Red sky in the morning, sailors take warning."

" a red morn that ever yet betokened,
Wreck to the seaman, tempest to the field,
Sorrow to the shepherds, woe unto the birds,
Gusts and foul flaws to herdmen and to herds."

~~ Shakespeare, Venus & Adonis

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Scanning the horizon

Today's calm surf gives no indication of rough and dangerous waves that will build tomorrow. The weather is hot and hazy.

An eastern view of the island from the 17th floor of the Beach Club.

Looking over the core area of Pensacola Beach, nary a sign of Gustav.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Making One of Opposites

"All beauty is a making one of opposites, and the making one of opposites is what we are going after in ourselves."

~~ Eli Siegel

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Until I Saw the Sea

"Until I saw the sea
I did not know
that wind
could wrinkle water so.

"I never knew
that sun
could splinter a whole sea of blue.

did I know before,
a sea breathes in and out
upon a shore."

~~ Lilian Moore

Business After Hours

The Pensacola Beach Chamber of Commerce met for their Business After Hours yesterday at the SpringHill Suites by Marriott. It was the first time I had been inside the property and it was very nice indeed.

An outside bar area overlooks a double pool deck and the Gulf of Mexico. But wait 'til you see what greeted us inside!

The meeting room was spacious and the food presentation was delightful. The edible orchids which decorated the fruit selection and other trays were a beautiful touch.

There was almost too much food to mention, but you've twisted my arm. There were miniature New Orleans style muffaletas...

And -- my favorite, perhaps - Thai chicken with its flavorful heat...

Crab-stuffed mushrooms...

Hummus and pita chips...

Yummm...delightfully decadent baklava that put a pound on my hips just looking at it.

Assorted gourmet cookies...ooohhhhh.

And a tray of tartlets too perfect to touch.

Our thanks to the SpringHill Suites for a beautiful evening. The catering staff did a fantastic job!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Monday, August 25, 2008

View from the Hilton

It was certainly a beautiful evening at the Hilton. I took these shots from the 17th floor.

What a view.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Chillin' at the Hilton

What a beautiful evening to celebrate my anniversary at H20. TS Fay was sending an occasional band of clouds back around.

The Hilton has a beautiful view of the Pensacola Beach pier.

Tomorrow I'll present photos of our anniversary dinner at H20, but right now I'm MUCH too full!

Island Resaurant links

While helping out on the events committee for 'Taste of the Beach', our first annual Pensacola Beach seafood festival which is coming up September 20 & 21, I decided to add a section on my blog with links to restaurants here on the island.

This is not a complete list of our restaurants. I am simply providing links to those that maintain websites so you can check out their menus and location. I'm hopeful some of the newbies such as Native Cafe, The Fish Sandwich & Snack Bar, Charlie Banana's and other will create websites eventually. I'll be sure to add links, when they do.

Fay fades

It was a lovely surprise to wake up this morning and see sunshine! Warnings were dropped around 10:00 p.m. last night as the system drifted north. Lower Alabama and Georgia may have received more rain than we did on the island overnight.

The beach was wind-swept clean which seems like a good thing until you remember we were experiencing winds from the north and any trash on the beach most likely ended up in the Gulf of Mexico!

ATV tracks left proof SRIA employees and GINS rangers had been out early checking the beach. Hopefully all our turtle nests fared well as TS Fay passed through.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Waitin' for Fay

The sun sets on Santa Rosa Sound as the wind kicks up waves that look like scalloped lace on an old-fashioned wedding veil.

Be gentle, Fay!

Personal Weather Stations

For three years now, I've put a Davis Vantage Pro 2 weather station on my Christmas list. So far, Santa hasn't delivered. I'm envious of those residents who have Personal Weather Station sensors mounted on their roofs. Unfortunately I am unable to find where any of these lucky people have linked their PWS to either Weather Underground or a website.

The Pensacola Beach Elementary School has a personal weather station which can be found on WEAR-TV's weather net, but it is frequently out of commission and defaults to Gulf Breeze High School (and, inexplicably, to Germantown, Maryland at times).

If any of my blog visitors here on the island have a PWS (or know someone who does) and that information is available on the Internet, I would like to provide a link from my blog to your site, with your permission.

Here's hoping I'll get some good news from you. Or maybe Santa will step up this year and give me one of my own!

Flat 'fore Fay

A northeast wind kicked up this morning, flattening out the Gulf of Mexico and churning up the Sound. Folks have been busy bringing in their patio and balcony furniture, plants, flags, wind chimes and anything else that can be used as a projectile.

By tonight the wind is forecast to be in the 20 - 30 mph range and rain should set in. The worst of the storm is scheduled to arrive late Saturday night/early Sunday morning.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Clouds roll in

Clouds are beginning to loop around from the south-southeast, a precursor to Fay's arrival this weekend which will most likely bring heavy rain and high winds. For now we are enjoying the beautiful cloud formations.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Girl Power, redux

I was excited to learn that my photograph "Girl Power" won 1st Place in the Pensacola Beach Optimist Club "Fun on the Beach" photo contest!

Wouldn't it be great if they used all the winning photographs submitted to create a quality calendar of Pensacola Beach -- by the people of Pensacola Beach!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Kemp's ridley fun

Hmmm...sibling rivalry? One of my blog viewers explained they were playing "leap-turtle"!

A Kemp's ridley hatchling focuses on the waves ahead.

A tiny Kemp's ridley hatchling, the smallest of marine turtles.

Photographer Tony Giberson takes a break from the water where he's been photographing the sea turtles march to the Gulf of Mexico for the Pensacola News Journal.

A WEAR-TV reporter interviews viewers for their reaction to this rare event!

March to the sea!

Tiny hatchlings get swept up in the surf and may be tossed ashore numerous times before they finally make it to the sea.

Swept away!

I'm coming!

Two by two...

Ready for release.


Egg casing of Kemp's ridley sea turtles.

Learn more about Kemp's ridley sea turtles by clicking HERE.

Kemp's ridleys

I had the great pleasure of attending another release of Kemp's ridley hatchlings this morning at Opal Beach. Even more exciting is that the Pensacola News Journal and WEAR-TV were able to join us and document one hundred and fourteen of these endangered sea turtles making their way into the Gulf of Mexico.

If you are a local resident, pick up a copy of tomorrow morning's Pensacola News Journal. And be sure to catch either the 6:00 p.m. or 10:00 p.m. newscast on WEAR-TV tonight.

If you are out-of-town/out-of-state, below is a link to their sites. I will make them more article/segment specific to the event when photos or film clips are added on their websites:

Pensacola News Journal - Be sure to also check out Tony Giberson's online photo gallery of the event on the PNJ. It includes several great underwater shots of the hatchlings.


As for me, I will definitely be bringing you more photos of the event later. Also check out Traveling Turtle Girl's blog for more details!

[Note: Be sure to click on the photo above to enlarge it so that you can see the tiny little nostrils of the hatchling.]

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Gray day

It is a gray day along the coast and there were periods of heavy rain overnight. I just hope it's not a warm-up for Tropical Storm Fay!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Golden, glimmering vapors

"Down sank the great red sun, and in golden, glimmering vapors..."

~~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Thursday, August 14, 2008

From the end of the dock

"hark, now hear the sailors cry,
smell the sea, and feel the sky
let your soul & spirit fly,
into the mystic..."

~~ Van Morrison