Sea of Agapanthus

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While I was waiting for these photos to download, or upload, I could see that this year has led me to photograph bodies of water more than anything else. You might see that I was in search of water again but was pleasantly surprised to see this, lovingly placed, field of Agapanthus perched above the Pacific Ocean on Highway 1.  I had to turn the car around and get out to take a shot and walk in the coolness of this cliffside. It was a busy place and I was not the only person who stopped with camera in hand.

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Just as I had finished taking pictures and started to return to the car, this caught my eye. What a wonderful surprise to see this white flower with one tiny pink bloom in it’s center. How did that happen? 

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It made me think about the likenesses of plants, scenery, people, and creatures. I thought about how we look at things and think they are the same, but they are not. We are all unique individuals with something that is extremely special about each of us. Just passing by, you might only see the white cluster, but take a closer look and the true beauty of the plant is so small yet brilliant.

Do you think we eventually could end up with pink flowers with one tiny little white flower in each of the centers? Seems unlikely that would ever happen, but it’s fun to consider such a metamorphosis.  

 

Coastal Weeds

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Last Saturday, we went for a walk along the coast to cool down from the 100 degree weather in the valley. Several months earlier we had heard that we could walk to Alamere Falls on The Palomarin Trail (Point Reyes National Seashore) and that the walk was about eight miles long. We thought it would still be a good time to see the falls since we had lots of rainfall in the winter months and the falls would not be dry.

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Native Pacific Coast Plants

Fact is, we thought a lot of things that turned out to be untrue. This trail is not a gentle trail. It has a rut running through the middle of it that I could only presume was an active way for the water to run to the ocean during the wet months. It makes the walk…hike much more difficult.

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Cooling Pacific Ocean Fog Bank

 The hike to the waterfall is eight miles if you take a short-cut through the thickets of berry bushes and poison oak. You have to crouch down into a ball and walk your way through the thicket, only to find a cliff at the top of the falls that is made of shale. Many people took this route, thinking that there was no poison oak, and slowly made their way up and down the cliff. We went around, as I know that I am extremely allergic to poison oak.

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Morning Glory

We hiked for over 40,000 steps and totaled seventeen miles of hiking up and down and up and down and….you understand. Will I ever do it again? Nope! Imagine walking the entire seventeen mile drive unpaved, dry, dusty, without water refills or food trucks. If I’d come prepared with cash in hand, I would have offered it to the people riding horses to take me out of this place.

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Alamere Falls

The saddest part for me was that once we arrived at the waterfall, that falls to the beach, we only wanted to start our trek back to our car. Sitting on the beach watching the falls was not an option. Each step we took was one step closer to the end of our walking. I’ve got to tell you that the quaint little town of Bolinas had a restaurant that we were dying to get a table at. The menu was very limited but who wouldn’t want pizza and beer after walking seventeen miles? Ahh, pizza, beer, and a chair, divine!

 

 

Headed for Shore

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Yesterday I headed for the shore. It was over 100 degrees in the valley and I couldn’t get the thought of how refreshing the coast might be, out of my mind. My sister-in-law was staying with us so I asked her if she had ever had lunch at The Cliff House in San Francisco. Her answer was, “I don’t think so.” and off we went.

When we arrived it was foggy, the towers of the Golden Gate Bridge were not visible, and it was 60 degrees. We sat at a window seat, had a delightful lunch, and watched the fog move about the coast line and the Pacific Ocean. It was a beautiful sight. We lingered as long as we could and then took a, barely sunny, walk out to the Sutro Baths. They are long gone but the Cliff House readily reveals the history of the place which makes it easy to imagine just what it must have been like to visit here, many years ago. So, as this heat wave lingers, remember that people on the coast are living a charmed life in the summer fog. Maybe you should go and visit the ocean too.

Be, Stay, & Keep Cool! 

 

Aloha

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Last week we got away to the island of Oahu and spent three days at Turtle Bay Resort before embarking back to Honolulu and the Hilton Hawaiian Village. They should really call it the Hilton Hawaiian Zoo. It was so much more relaxing at Turtle Bay. There aren’t turtles in Turtle Bay, it’s got good snorkeling, and the atmosphere is something that makes you want to return, time and time again.

The food on site was wonderful. We were even able to share a rather nice showing of a green flash with the other people who were staying there. It was a bit like the reaction people have to fireworks. You could tell that everyone had seen it. 

I just wanted to share a little of the aloha spirit today as you all started your week. I know you weren’t there to share it with me but these photos depict the feeling well. Open them to a larger size and remember your fondest memories of any one of the islands. Do you think that it’s time that you return to Hawaii?

Iris’

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It doesn’t get much better than finding the scent of a favorite childhood treat in your own backyard.  I can’t tell you how this Iris was acquired, and I am sure I did not pick it for its scent.  It popped open last year for the first time and the scent was just like grape soda.  I couldn’t wait for it to return again this year.

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Grape Soda Bearded Iris

This next Iris reminds me of a walk along the cliffs near the Pacific Ocean and the little beauties that we found there one day.  Iris’ come and go so rapidly that, if you don’t happen upon them, you might miss them altogether.  This one grows in my front yard.

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Pacific Coast Iris

Thank goodness that I failed to post this blog last week beacause we went to Bodega Bay last weekend and walked along the cliffs.  We saw Gray Whales and lovely wild flowers and very near the end of our walk we came upon this little Iris, growing out amongst the weeds.  There were very few of them left.

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Wild Iris at Bodega Bay Headlands

At long last, I finally came upon some Water Iris’.  We came around the corner in Vina, CA a couple of weekends ago and there was, what looked like, a sea of yellow.  I jumped out of the car to snap a few photos.  I asked the girl at New Clairveax Winery how long they would last that way.  She said that she had never noticed them, in the last four years that she worked there, until someone brought them to her attention.  I don’t know how one could miss them.  They were amazing!

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Water Iris

So there you have it.  Seasons come and go.  Even the season of the Iris’.  Hope you didn’t miss them because you’ll have to wait almost a year to see them again.

What’s Happening?

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I’ve had several interesting things happen to me lately.  The first was traveling with my family to Santa Cruz, California.  I found, when I was there, that I was looking at people in various places who had greying hair and wondering if I went to school with them.  

Jelly Shadow

Jelly Shadow

I might only be able to recognize someone if I have seen them on Facebook.  It has been a very long time since I lived in Santa Cruz; 1980 to be exact.  While in Santa Cruz, I found that my mind was full of memories from the time that I lived there.  They were mostly childhood memories and now I was looking at grey haired people with the thought that I could identify them, had they been my classmates.  I was looking at grey haired people……OH!……that makes me one of those people!

Blue Jelly on the Beach

Blue Jelly on the Beach

Where did the time go?  I still feel young, and I still remember being young.  I still love wandering the tidepools.  My body feels older but my mind feels young.  That’s probably true for all those grey haired people I was looking at.  They probably wonder, “How did I get here?”

Crab Near the Pools

Crab Near the Pools

Another interesting thing that has been happening to me is that every time I shop at Lunardi’s Market in Walnut Creek, they stop and look at me and give me a senior discount.  They don’t even ask if I’m a senior!  What age is a senior anyway?  I turn 60 tomorrow and I don’t think I look my age.  What is happening to me?  I want to be clear about something…..this age thing just creeps up on you and you don’t even see it coming.  Our children look at us and think that we don’t move as quickly as they remember us moving when they were kids.  The thing is, our minds are still moving, just at a different pace then our bodies are.  We know that they will find out our secrets soon enough, and then our time spent with them now, will seem to make more sense.  

Nearing Sunset

Nearing Sunset

Have you ever noticed how the sky changes color before the sun begins to set?  On certain days, it seems to lose its color before the glorious colors of the sunset show themselves.

Color on the Pier

Color on the Pier

So, even though some of us may look like we are losing our color, it is possibly our most colorful time of life.  We are not  unlike this pier that has accumulated much as it holds the wharf up.  If you look at it closely, you will find a beautiful sight.  Long story short, it is not too late to follow your dreams…..even if your hair is turning grey.  

Pacific Sunsets

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You may have missed my recent attempt at posting my blog.  I was in Maui, Hawaii and my iPad didn’t want to allow me to post anything.  I thought about struggling with it, and then I thought; why?

First Evening Sunset Kaanapali

First Evening Sunset Kaanapali

This isn’t the best photo that I took, but on our first night, we were serenaded with a concert six floors down.  It was amazing.  I love music, I love tropical evenings, and I love pleasent surprises like this.  I wanted to keep the feel of the party long after it was gone.  I’ve been listening to their CD’s for days now.

Concert with Henry Kapono & Willie K

Concert with Henry Kapono & Willie K

Our first night in Wailea was beautiful and I took this while on our way to the welcome party, down the beach pathway which was just past the pool. 

Pool Sunset Grand Wailea

Pool Sunset Grand Wailea

I had heard glorious rumors about Mama’s Fish House and was longing to go there all week.  We finally made it on the last evening and stopped in for an appetizer.  This place is like being in first class.  I wasn’t sure if I’d return to Maui, as it is rather congested for me these days, but I must return to go to Mama’s.  It was devine.

Final Sunset at Mama's

Final Sunset at Mama’s

There’s more to come as we had many adventures while in Hawaii.  I’m missing the sound of the ocean waves as they pounded the shore.  It’s funny how fast you can grow to appreciate certain things.

Aloha