Archive for September, 2010

See sea duck duck

Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

[IMAGE] Harlequin duck
Sea duck.

[IMAGE] Harlequin duck
See sea duck.

[IMAGE] Harlequin duck
See sea duck flap.

[IMAGE] Harlequin duck

[IMAGE] Harlequin duck
See sea duck duck.

…click to listen:

…about the music

Just ducky.

Duck, as a verb.
A sea duck.
A Harlequin Duck, to be specific.
Clowning around, perhaps?

On closer inspection

Saturday, September 25th, 2010

[IMAGE]  lion's mane jellyfish

Welcome to my Saturday morning. The warm air of the equinox insisted that I have breakfast on the deck. Ok, I didn’t argue. Scrambled eggs with smoked salmon, strong coffee, English muffin and jelly… fish. Some people get Jehovah’s Witnesses showing up unannounced at their door. I get this guy. A lion’s mane jelly, easily 16″ across; I’ve scribbled about them on these pages before because they just mesmerize me. It’s sad that I always see them at the very end of their life, but then again, given their ferocious sting, I think that’s better than the alternative.

Here’s a closer view of my morning friend for you:

[IMAGE] lion's mane jellyfish

…click to listen:

…about the music

A trio for my trio.

So, as I’m enjoying a silent conversation with this unexpected breakfast companion (good thing he didn’t have much to say; neither do I before noon), I hear a screech to my right. I turn my head, look up, and there’s one of the two mating bald eagles with a nest in this particular tree, hanging out, looking for his own Saturday brunch:

[IMAGE] eagle

Here’s a closer view of him for you:

[IMAGE] eagle

Ok, so I admit that my eggs and coffee got a little cold because I spent more time with a camera in my hand than a fork. But I can have breakfast anytime. Nature, it always seems to me, is fleeting. Catch it while we can.

Borrowed beauty

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010

[IMAGE] weather over Waldron
Almost like a tornado…

[IMAGE] weather over Waldron
It leans east and there’s a hint of color…

…click to listen:

…about the music

Drama from my desk.

[IMAGE] weather over Waldron

[IMAGE] weather over Waldron

One of our fellow Kelphistos laid down the gauntlet a week or two ago, and challenged me to photograph rain.
I shall obey. Soon. When we have some.

But this… yes, this was rain. Intense rain, from afar. Borrowed from those wetter than I, for my personal visual delight. Rain that circled my island on three sides but barely landed. Sometime soon, I will explain the meaning of “rain shadow” to the non-locals reading this. You will hate us San Juanians even more.

So, lacking rain of my very own, I gazed out from my desk two afternoons ago (I am pinching myself to realize that yes, this is actually what I see while I’m aligning all those notes you hear) and watched this downpour appear to float above lovely and even-more-remote-than-me Waldron Island, with little Flattop in front of it tapped with a wand of technicolor grace.

Wow. I need not write a word more. The pictures say it all.

Everyone’s a critic

Saturday, September 18th, 2010

[IMAGE] raccoon
“Oh, please. Are you seriously going to make the French horns play that??”

…click to listen:

…about the music

Hornless here.

I get lots of visitors at my door, but few are as cute as this one, who, along with some family members, figured out quite a while ago that at the end of each day there’s still some birdseed left on the deck railing.

Personally, I just think he’s hanging around, hoping for an autograph. After all, I’m now officially a celebrity on this island, having unexpectedly stumbled across myself (ouch!) in Frommer’s Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands & the San Juan Islands.

What a hoot! Gotta get those 8 x 10 glossies ready…
But first, more birdseed!

[IMAGE] furry friends

How can you be crabby…

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

[IMAGE] Pacific coast ship wreck

…click to listen:

…about the music

Mood music.

… when you look like a parrot?

Nothing like a perfectly placed barnacle to morph one thing into another.
Can nature please attach a little barnacle to all my wrong notes, and turn them into all the right ones? Thank you.

Yet again

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

[IMAGE] September sunset

[IMAGE] September sunset

…click to listen:

…about the music

A lovely distraction.

What is it about sunsets?
Each one different, each one compelling.
Theme, and variations.
Inspiration, and distraction.
Yup. Of the most riveting kind.

I can stare over the railing of the deck of this seafaring studio, more boat than house, really, and be transported each evening. Not just to the Canadian isles which dominate the western view, but to an other-worldly place of my imagination (ok, sometimes that’s Canada, but mostly it’s more like some parallel universe populated by alien creatures who neither resemble me in their Socialist leanings nor human life form).

At this upper latitude (48.4 degrees, if you’re interested, and yes, I can claim that I’m north of Canada), the sun still sets pretty late even as autumn nears, and the penumbra of color and glow lasts for a very, very long time. Long enough for me to think about all the things I should be doing instead of gazing mindlessly into the sunset. And long enough to think about how really, there’s nothing else in the world that’s more important to do. I like rotating around this elusive flaming star year after year: age improves my sense of priorities!

[IMAGE] September sunset, photo snapped by Dan or Lisa Kubiske,