7.29.2007

Our Weekend, or, Ice Pack to the Nose

It all started innocently enough. Friday night we went out to dinner at a little cafe located on the St. John's River. At least I think it was the St. John's. There are so many bridges and waterways in Jacksonville, that I shall call all that is not the Atlantic, the St. John's River. We ate outside, and it overlooked a sweet little dock. Not particularly great, but we survived.

Sailboats...waiting


Saturday morning we did our run to the Farmer's Market. Always a joy. I could stay there all day. But, I've been told I have issues.

I have never mentioned before that I look forward to the ride to the market. We pass through an older neighborhood, and an establishment that makes perfect sense to me. Take a close look at this picture (click on it to get a big view). And, it is not a fluke. It has been set up this way each time we go by.

Nothing I would like more than to get ribs and my car washed. Really.


But, we don't stop, for what I'm convinced are probably the best ribs in the South. And we arrive at the market.

Farmer's Market


Here are the objects of Drew's affection. Unadulterated love. Pure.

Sweet melons


The line up


Lowe's Produce Stand


Sunday. Ahhhh. Sunday. We decided to take Petey to the beach. It had disaster written all over it. And that leads to the reason I am sitting here with an ice pack on my nose. I had good intentions. Really I did. It was going all right until we landed at the beach. I should of known things had taken a turn for the worse when Beach Bucky got knocked out of the back of the Tahoe and all of our water for the day splattered all over the parking lot. (For those that are following the escapades of Beach Bucky, he is doing fine. Lost a little cap, but I don't think any major damage was done.) Regroup. No harm done. No broken bones. No bruised bodies. Yet.

I can tell you about Petey, but I couldn't do it justice. Let's just say he is a free spirit. And he has no social skills. He gets excited and he dumps. So, 5 minutes out of the Tahoe, I'm looking at a pile of doggie-do. I didn't want to use my only plastic bag right out of the gate, so I spotted a discarded sand shovel close by a trash can. Perfect. Scoop and dispose. I begin the scoop process...Petey on the leash in one hand and the shovel in the other. I stooped down and just as I got almost all of the said do on the shovel, Petey lurched forward which in turn pulled me flat on my face. Literally. I was pulled straight out and my nose broke my fall. I was certain I broke it. There I was sprawled out face down on the ground, spitting sand and crying. And that is how Petey's big day at the beach started. Here are the pictures of his experience.

Morning sun.


Ocean dog...Petey


Drew took this one of a lonely surfer waiting for a morning wave. I was up the beach walking the wild man.

Surfer dude


Of course, the Atlantic Ocean.


Now you know why I'm sitting here with an ice pack on my nose. And why things are really starting to ache. What Doesn't Kill You Makes you Stronger. I have to remember that.

7.22.2007

Decisions, decisions...

We are in the middle of life changing decisions, so, well, we did a lot of deciding. But, in this process of making these life forming decisions (did I mention that these decisions are going to change our lives?) we went out the the Jacksonville Farmer's Market. As usual, it was charming. Charming to me. Stinky and repulsive to Drew...and yet he is strangely drawn to it. I think he went along just to make sure they have enough watermelon to take care of his habit. He sat in the car and read while I wandered about. And he worried about the amount of watermelons available to us. (Did he not see the 5 trucks out front with their back gates open, filled to the brim with big juicy red watermelons?) I did make a watermelon purchase (2 to be exact), along with some butternut squash, 2 cantaloupes, romaine lettuce, cucumbers, summer squash and corn on the cob. I only took a picture of the radishes. I'm not fond of them, but I really think they are pretty!

Red radishes


After the market, we wandered. No we were not lost. Merely changing directions often with maneuvers that resembled illegal U-Turns. I may be mistaken, but I think he was actively seeking out a Walmart!! His arch nemesis! As it turned out he was looking for the Walmart so he could go to the jewelery counter to get batteries in his watches. I don't know if that officially counts as looking for a Walmart, but I'm going to mark it in my book. Alas, Wally world let him down. The lady did not have the proper tools. How strange.

After we left there, we were getting hungry, so we headed down Atlantic Blvd towards the beach. We ate at a little place called the Third Street Diner. It was good, but baffling. It was Greek, but appeared to be a diner from the 50's. Of course, after we ate, and discussed decisions at great length, we headed to the beach. Not an official trip, just a little drive by. But, I talked him into stopping for a minute. It was an overcast day, but very pleasant.

These are not snow fences, my friend.


Sea oats


A boardwalk


After enjoying the beach once again, we headed home. Where I took a 3 hour stress nap due to all the decisions and talk of decisions. When I stess, I nap. Don't judge me. It is my coping mechanism. I woke up in time to get ready to go out to the World Golf Village to watch "Harry Potter: The Order of the Phoenix" at the IMAX Theater.. It was a visual, auditory experience! Wonderful.

Afterwards we dined at Murray Bros. Caddyshack. Little disappointed that Bill wasn't there to welcome me to his restaurant, but, we all have lives. Perhaps next time.

You may be wondering if we were able to decide on a decision. Well, I can tell you without hesitation...I think so.

7.16.2007

Lunch hour in San Marco

Today I had an extended lunch hour during the orientation process, so I called Drew to see if he wanted to meet for lunch. He came and picked me up and we went to San Marco. This is an artsy fartsy little neighborhood. Think old town rejuvenated with cute little shops, cafes, bookstores. It seems to be an area for couples without children. And everything is within walking distance. Quaint, picturesque...

Shops


Church steeple


San Marco flags



Ivy covered gate


Fountain


Gazabo


One showing...


Store fronts



Sidewalk

7.15.2007

Lazy Sunday Morning

I suppose it wasn't too lazy. We got up early (it is all relative) for a Sunday for us. I was up and just putzing around...checking email and trying to wake up. When all of a sudden Drew got up and went straight to getting ready for the beach. Now, anyone that knows Drew, knows that is not part of his morning routine, Sunday or not. His routine usually involves a lengthly visit to the bathroom then a trip to the couch so that he can think about actually waking up. I was in shock. But, quickly recovered and commenced to getting ready myself. Soon after we were out of the door and on the way to the beach, with fresh fruit and Beach Bucky in tow.

Morning sun


Wildflowers


Yes, it really is that pretty


Dotted with shells


Flight


View from our umbrella

7.14.2007

Saturday Morning Farmer's Market

This morning we had planned on going to the Jacksonville Farmer's Market. It was on the north side of town, and we finally found it. There is not much I enjoy more than a morning at a farmer's market. The colors, smells, people...it is like a flea market for veggies. I was excited!

Making a sell


You can almost smell the peaches!


Lined up and ready to go


Juicy and red


and more juicy and red


There would be more pictures...or perhaps different ones. But, my batteries died in my camera! So, next time...next time. After the batteries died, I got down to the business of shopping.

Our purchases:
  1. tomatoes
  2. cantaloupes
  3. purple hull peas
  4. corn on the cob
  5. watermelons (yes, plural)
  6. eggplants
  7. basil plant
  8. cilantro plant
  9. pineapple
  10. bananas
  11. 1/2 flat of strawberries
  12. portabella mushroom caps
Yum, yum...yum!!!

7.11.2007

Outside of Outback Crab Shack

We met a friend for dinner after work tonight. It was a quiet, humid evening. Perfect Florida! These pictures were taken outback of Outback Crab Shack on the St. John's River. What a lazy river. See how dark the water is? Not a fault of the camera. The river was dark and murky...black.

Long dock


Down on the bayou


Outback Crab Shack


Crabbin' boat

7.09.2007

The Healing Garden

There are some sweet things about this hospital. The Healing Garden is one. I wish I had more time to spend there. And I wish I had used it to heal.

The labyrinth


Like a bridge over troubled waters...

7.08.2007

Do you see the music?

Today was an early beach day. The earliest we have ever been. Lovely day for it too. The water was calm and pretty. The people were not as many, nor as frenzied. Guess you could say they were calm and pretty too.

This morning we stopped on a bridge over an inner-coastal and I took a couple of shots. This happens to be one of Drew's favorite views. He especially likes the house you see to the left. His dream is to live on an inner-coastal sound. I'm sure a dock will be involved.

The serenity of the inner-coastal waters


The walk from the car to the ocean is always an event.

Tall rugged palms



Blue umbrellas in waiting


Wispy seagrass


It was hard to decide which of these to post. So, what the hey. I'll post all three!

Early morning beauty


Soft waters


Sand and foam


If you are wondering about the title of this post, wonder no more. There is a certain worn shell, conch actually, that makes me think of music when I see it. It started when we vacationed in Playa del Carmen last year. I found beautiful conchs in various stages of disrepair. None were whole. There is something musical about the inner swirls exposed when the shells are broken and tumbled in the ocean floor. But, these conchs all sang to me. So, look very closely at the picture below. Do you see the music?

Singing to me


If not, look a little closer to see the music. I'm sure you can hear the music, too.


Music of the ocean



I display my conchs in a basket with the pointed ends down. It is a gallery of swirls, smooth edges, and soft pastel colors. Music.

7.01.2007

Sunday beach observations

Since I have been working all week, our days at the beach during the week has been severely restricted. We have joined the forces of the weekend beach-goers. To offset the problems, we decided to leave early and beat the rush. The plan is the best we could come up with. Off we went, early by our standards (9am) with Beach Bucky in hand. First stop on almost all of our beach trips is this wonderful little Publix out in the middle of, seemingly, no where. A jewel to say the least. We always pick up some sort of sub sandwich and a bag of chips or a tray of fruit.

Our first beach stop


The dogs on the beach fascinate me. Some look miserable, but others seem to be made for the beach life. This old fellow falls into the latter category.

Just enjoying the cool water


Sometimes the ocean takes all the credit for a great beach experience. I find looking the other way offers magnificent sights also.

The other half of the experience


Other times I like to get real close to things. It is not so much about the big picture as the littlest details.

Beach flower


The shell


Of course there is always the people. And I love the hats. Drew pointed this awesome beach hat out to me when I came back from my (ahem...lenghty) walk.

Beach hat


Guess we got home just in time. It is lightening and thundering and it is deafening. The rain is pouring down!



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