Thursday, April 14, 2011

RANDOM PHOTOS FROM VACATION


No, this is not the house we stayed in while we were in Florida.  It's the Carpenter's House within the Old Spanish village - the Dow Museum of Historical Houses - in St. Augustine.  I love St. Augustine.  I liked the lean and the shutters - those may be crows?



There is so much to see in St. Augustine - and not just the touristy things.  Get a bit outside the touristy areas and you find marinas and charming houses and streets where people walk their dogs and smile and say hello.  I think I could live there - as long as I didn't have to drive over the Bridge of Lions every day :)









Visited Marineland and saw how they train their dolphins.  Not your typical dolphin show, these are trained in order to be in the water with guests who pay a higher price than those who just want to watch, and they don't really perform but interact with the people.  They did look like they were having fun but you never know.  These animals are so intelligent and I always wonder if we have the right to capture and "train" and show off certain animals.  The kids seemed entranced by them and the dolphins seemed interested in the kids, too.  In this photo, the trainers were feeding the dolphins before the kids got in the water. 




Alligators at the St. Augustine Alligator Farm.  A photographer's dream if you're into nature photography since they have a rookery there and the birds fly in and out (they are not contained within the park) to breed and nest every year.  Great egrets, snowy egrets, tri-color herons, little green herons, roseate spoonbills (last year was the first year they nested there).  The noise of all the birds squawking and making crazy noises, defending their turf, is incredible!



When you want to get noticed, fluff up your hair!  Because the birds are used to all the people coming by on the boardwalk to see them, they are often within touching distance from you - but I have never been foolish enough to try to touch a bird with a long, thin, sharp beak like that.





The high/low tide variation at Crescent Beach (where we stayed), just south of St. Augustine, creates wonderful sand sculptures and designs.  The white is from the wind whipping the top of the sand around, the darker sand is from the water having dried on it, and the hint of the golden color is the sells crushed and creating a more cinnamon color - almost a gold vein running through the light sand at times.



13 comments:

Elizabeth Seaver said...

What a great trip, Rhonda. I really love your photos and their commentary. Thanks for "taking us along!"

Caroline said...

Thank you for sharing your wonderful holiday photos, I think the sand design is my favourite!

laura said...

Great photos. I'd love to visit St. Augustine ... The alligator photo reminds me of John Singer Sargent--are you going to paint them?!

Jane said...

The photos tell the story, must have been a great trip. Thank you for sharing.

Jane said...

The photos tell the story, must have been a great trip. Thank you for sharing.

RH Carpenter said...

Thanks, Elizabeth - long time no see! I'll have to check out what you've been up to recently :)

Thanks, Caroline. I think the sand design is my fave, too. It was wonderful walking at low tide to see the sculpted sand around the rocks and just where the water had rippled away, creating beautiful designs.

Laura, it's a great city with lots to see and lots of art galleries, too. I did a couple of alligators years ago and may have to revisit them again - they are fascinating and fun. Check out the one Carol Carter has started!

Thanks, Jane. Glad you like the photos!

Suzanne McDermott said...

So great in every way to see these photos. My old stomping grounds and daily pals. I hope you're enjoying every second. Xo. Suzanne.

Carol Flatt said...

What beautiful photos! This would certainly be a fantastic location for a vacation - scenic and full of history - I hope the painting ideas are brewing!

RH Carpenter said...

Thanks, Suzanne! I didn't know you lived in St. Augustine - it's definitely a funky, fun and also elegant place :)

Carol, lots of ideas. I am thinking of moving into (gulp!) landscapes...maybe!

Carol King said...

Sounds like you had a swell time. The photos of the bird and the 'gators were cool.

RH Carpenter said...

A wonderful place to view the beach and birds, Carol :) There are so many places to see in the US, aren't there?

Sadami said...

Oh, Good! Welcome back from a safe and joyful trip!! Happy to know aligators have not had you:). Hehehe.
Cheers, Sadami

RH Carpenter said...

Thanks, Sadami. I try to stay away from gators that aren't enclosed somewhere :)