Whaleship Days

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography, Wildlife
The author sitting aboard the whaleship.
My Whaleship Days

A while back I got into learning about the history of whaling and whalemen and the crazy tough lives they had to lead. You can get a part of it by reading Moby Dick but what really got me into it was learning about the whaleship Essex from In the Heart of the Sea which was sunk by a whale and was probably the inspiration for Melville to write his novel. That book was amazing, I should reread it actually. Don’t see the film, I heard it sucked. You can actually also read the original account of what happened from the first mate himself who was there.

Anyways, the point being that I have no idea how these guys did this. Imagine getting into a little rowboat and harpooning this giant creature, who would them take off at full throttle and take your boat for a ride, not to mention the real possibility of it’s tons of weight smashing down on you or drowning, eventually pulling it back to the main ship, peeling off its pieces and burning them in pots for hours in totally unsafe conditions. Many of them lost toes while doing this btw. But then on quiet days, the amazing artwork that a lot of them drew on the whale’s teeth, called scrimshaw. Really intricate amazing work on many of them. Plus just being away from home for months and years and a time (only had wind power back then – you had to sail to Portugal to get around South America to the Pacific) , not knowing if it’d be your last trip. And if you did make it back, unless you were an owner of the ship or captain, you got paid peanuts. It was ahard life for sure.

But then oil was discovered in the ground in Pennsylvania and hunting whales for oil wasn’t needed anymore – good for the whales as their population was decimating. I do find them to be fascinating creatures as well, I believe they are really quite intelligent. There’s a lot we still don’t know about them. They could smarter than us for all I know, their brains are definitely bigger than ours.

Silent is the Hunter

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography, Wildlife
A Red-tailed Hawk silently hunts it’s prey.

The story behind the photo: I came upon this red-tailed hawk while walking around a wooded area in the town of Wellesley a little while back. He only stayed for a little while, but long enough so I could get a few shots of him, this one being one of the better ones. Completely random, I suppose that’s how most birding is. This guy seems laser focused on something although I couldn’t tell what.

Autumn Arrives

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography

Thanks Boston FoxBoston25 for highlighting my pic today! I always get a thrill when some of my work gets shared around.

Installed iPadOS 14.0 last night on the iPad.

Learned that SiriusXM channel 302 is a channel devoted to playing covers by other musicians (24/7 Cover Songs) – I thought that was pretty cool, check it out if you have it.

It was kinda cold outside today. I did sit by the firepit for a bit this afternoon but mostly we stayed in and hibernated.

Visiting the Borderlands

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Smith Farm at Boirderland

This afternoon we took a drive out to the Borderlands. Borderland State Park to be more exact. As an aside, parts of Mermaids, Knives Out and Shutter Island were filmed here. We hiked a couple of the trails, first checking out the stately Ames Manor on the property and then walking down the trails toward the pond. I went a little beyond over to the old farm house built in 1880. Coming back we took the Quiet Woods Trail which lead to the Pond Edge trail bordered along the edge of the pond. We even saw a guy playing guitar by himself on one of the little docks along the pond. Returning home (we are beat!) I fired up the grill and cooked up some turkey burgers along with some corn husks. Just felt like it. Might take a trip to a beach tomorrow for some more nature goodness,

Sunlight on the Horizon

Art, Cape Cod, Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Paine’s Creek

If you want to cast a vote for me for the cover of the town calendar then head on over here on facebook and like the image. I’m not expecting to get the cover since it’s a winter image but share some love anyway and boost my ego a little bit. The picture shows the luminary night where one night in December the town common is lit with bags that have candles inside them.


Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
The Modern Theater in downtown Boston, MA.

I spent the day in Somerville yesterday and while there I was able to pick up the CO monitor at the Home Depot there in town as I looked on the website and it mentioned that that store had 5 left in stock of the kind I wanted. It also said exactly where in the store it would be, aisle and bay number. That is awesomely convenient. Once back I installed it and it’s good to go now.

What do you know, my photo for the town calendar was selected to be one of the 12 out of over 200 entries! Now the vote is on to see who gets the cover. I’m not expecting to be on the cover but if you want to vote for me I’ll put up the details shortly so please check back here. I’ll probably also link the details on my facebook page shortly.

Trying Not to Drown in the Monstrosity

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Ocean waves approach the beach.
Ocean waves approach the beach.

“You never really know what’s coming. A small wave, or maybe a big one. All you can really do is hope that when it comes, you can surf over it, instead of drown in its monstrosity.”

I dreamt last of a barn owl flying in front of me, from right to left, but as it was flying it was directly looking right at me, not looking at where it was going. I looked up Owl Totem and it could mean a change in direction or insight about a moment of transition. Then again, it was just a dream so who knows, although I do know that I have never dreamed of an owl before.

Also it’s mums season, here’s a couple of pots of mums that we purchased recently:

Mums in bloom.
Mums in bloom.

One thing we have to get around here is more pumpkins and more mums. Give it that really nice autumn feel, although I personally don’t want summer to leave us. I removed some of the empty pots and ones that contained flowers that were past prime to the shed for winter storage and also weeded a bit out in front of the house. Typical fall tasks as the season gets nearer.

Late this afternoon I kept hearing this siren squeal and I was trying to discover what the hell it was, trying to locate the source of the sound. At first I thought it was outside but when it kept going off I needed to investigate. After a few minutes I found that in the cellar the CO detector was alerting that it was dying. It’s one of those lithium battery enclosed devices that you never have to fiddle with until it croaks (which is supposed to be 10 years but this one seemed to be less to me). Anyways I found that the Home Depot in Avon carries them so I’ll probably pick up a new one over the next week or so and take a ride out there, I want to get the same one so I can just mount it on the wall bracket that’s already there and will fit without having to redo stuff.

The west coast on fire, hurricanes in the south, pandemic killing hundreds of thousands, a leader who is taking us down the wrong path, Americans divided, killing and dying, businesses going down the drain, depression setting in the more you think about it. When will things finally get better and we live the way we all should?

Following the Path to the Sea

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Hiking the sand dunes in Marshfield
Hiking the sand dunes in Marshfield

Of all the paths you take in life, make sure some of them are sandy.

We took a ride out to Marshfield this afternoon for some beach time. It was a wonderful day. We hiked about 2 miles along the shore and out back along the sandy dunes to the estuary. We picked up some rocks along the way, just because they looked really cool. I picked up one that to me had a pattern that reminded me of a map of a city and I also found a heart shaped rock. After all that we got our beach chairs and brought them down to the water’s edge, the waves crashing in front of us while the sea breezes blew. It was very relaxing. All in all we must have been there for about three or so hours. It was also the first outing of the new beach chair and I’m satisfied with it.

The sea air always knocks me out. I suspect we’ll be crashing earlier tonight than usual.

Came home and chilled for a bit before making a shepard’s pie for dinner. Watched 60 minutes. Just going to glide now the rest of the way.

My computer keeps wanting to run updates since this morning it finally updated itself to Windows 10 2004 which was the huge update that came out last May. To be honest most of the new features are things I would never use anyway.

Hawk Says Hello! A Different Kind of Chair Arrives

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Scituate Light bathed in sunset.
Scituate Light bathed in sunset.

We actually had a hawk land on the back deck railing this morning! What a sight that was!

I unpacked my new beach/camping chair this afternoon and it wasn’t what I expected. It’s not the chair I ordered, however after trying it out and looking at it and it’s quality I’ve decided to keep it. Strangely the chair they sent me was actually more expensive than the one I had ordered. The only real difference is it doesn’t have the cooler and it appears to be of a really good build quality, so I’ll take it. Comes in a really nice carrying bag too.

NECN did a section on the news broadcast highlighting one of my photos (where the anchor actually called it beautiful). It was the scene from the Boston seaport with the gull lapping up some water from a puddle in the foreground. It’s always cool to see them highlight my stuff like that.

This afternoon’s movie watch was something a little different as it was animated, plus only I really watched it. Batman: The Killing Joke based off the graphic novel from the 1980s of the same name. Not as good as the book (but how could it be? Nothing could beat Bolland’s artwork from the original, plus they seem to have added some stuff for the whole first half the movie which really didn’t have anything to do with the original source material).

Today is 9-11. Never forget.

September Sunsets

Cape Cod, Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Sunset picture taken at Harding's beach in Chatham, Massachusetts.
September Sunsets

“Summer’s lease hath all too short a date.”

– William Shakespeare

People in the lighthouse group seem to really like my lighthouse photos! Finally, some people who can really appreciate my art (LOL). The Nauset one so far has 381 likes, 40 comments and 29 shares. The Pemaquid one really took off with over 500 likes, 55 comments and 195 shares. That one really boggles my mind. I also recently uploaded one I have of Whaleback Light which so far has garnered 104 likes, 7 comments and 7 shares, and I just recently put up one I have at sunset at Scituate Light which is climbing the ranks at 74 likes, 11 comments and 4 shares, not that I’m counting or anything (!). Someone on the group actually messaged me with an interest in purchasing it so I’ve made it available. Fingers crossed!

My new beach chair arrived tonight. I’ll try unpacking it and trying out sometime tomorrow and see how it performs. If I’m satisfied with it, the old Big Boy can finally rest in peace. However I may cut out the Big Boy logo on the carrying back strap and attach it to this new bag as a honorific to a great chair that sadly is no longer available. Had a lot of great beach adventures with that chair, along with other outings. Speaking of beachy things, I did get around to repairing my inner tube with this yellow rope that goes around the perimeter. Not sure if I mentioned that before, it was a few days ago. You know you care.

Tonight I made a chicken sausage, sweet potato and kale soup with some herb butter toast. Not too bad.

Impressions I Created That People Like and Share

Art, Everyday Life, Meme, Memories, Scenic Photography
Facebook post going viral (available for purchase)

This is amazing. My photo on FB so far has become pretty well liked (for me anyway) but I was really blown away by the number of shares of this image so far, and climbing. Pemaquid Light is probably my favorite lighthouse out of the many I’ve visited. I enjoyed clambering along the cliffs just behind it. I can remember when I took this, we were leaving for the night when LD did one final pass and I just shot it from out the car window (ah, miss that old Saturn – many adventures in that automobile). I think what makes this one must be the cloudy sky and I also like that I got it just as the lighthouse flashed. So I feel a lot of my shots are just lucky and are taken right off the cuff. I’m just pleased they come out so well. This was also time we witnessed two skunks frolicking around the area and being amorous (and hopefully not malodorous) .

I downloaded the Star Trek Console Watch face for my Versa 2. I’m sharing it here in case you want to download it as well (it’s free) and you’re into Trek. I’ll use it for a little while before reverting back. The nice thing about the Versa is you can have up to 5 different watch faces. For those that care my current stats all time so far for the year are: 1,604,234 steps, 2140 floors, 679.37 miles and 793,033 calories burned.

I got an email back from those town calendar people. They seem to like what I sent them but we’ll see if they actually end up using it. There’s no monetary prize or anything like that, but I figure it’s just another way to get my name and work out there.

We appear to be having some small pumpkins growing, although not in the pumpkin patch we set up but rather in one of the raised boxes where I put some leftover seeds just to see what would happen if anything. These would be the 3rd generation of the “Sean the Pumpkin” that we had two years ago now – actually seeds from his “son”. LD has named this little pumpkin Penelope Pandemic. An apt description for the times I’d say.

My Love of Lighthouses

Cape Cod, Everyday Life, Food, Memories, Scenic Photography
The Sisters of Nauset, Eastham MA

Update: I’ve added the Nauset shot now up for purchase.

I’ve always loved lighthouses, just everything about them, their location, their various looks, their history, the people who lived in the them and tended the light, their bravery. I just think it’s pretty cool. I’m sure many people feel the same way. I’m very lucky to live in new England where there are so many. Boston was home to the very first lighthouse in America after all (and it’s still there!)

I joined a lighthouse of New England group and posted my shot of Nauset Light from this summer. Seems to be getting a lot of traction, hundreds of likes and comments. Makes me feel good but also reinforced the fact to me that I need to focus some of my work toward the proper audiences. Anyways here’s a shot of two of the three sister lighthouses which originally were where the current Nauset Light is. You can read a history of it all here. There’s a nice trail you can walk between the current and former lighthouses. I like the vibe I created for this photo – I feel it looks a little spooky. Will probably do another Cape trip in the fall for a night or two. In somewhat unrelated photography news I submitted a photo for the local town calendar but we’ll see if any thing comes of it. I’ve submitted things before but never really got any traction out of them.

Made pizzas for lunch today using up the remainder of things in the fridge like roasted tomatoes and eggplant that we had made a few days ago. Last night we made a walnut encrusted chicken with honey mustard and a side of roasted broccoli with some bread with melted cheese and butter. Today I’ll probably grill some turkey burgers (had done a couple of those a few days ago as well). We also made apple sauce using the Instant Pot last night with some apples that had been in the fridge for a quite a while. It’s kinda good to get through and use all these items!

Enjoyed some nice quiet time out on the patio this afternoon, reading and I even napped at one point in the deck chair. Been trying to get through a book I purchased a couple of years ago on Giza and the Pyramids by Lehner and Hawass (two quite famous and respected egyptologists). It’s a huge tome with lots of amazing photographs and very many pages. It weighs 6 pounds!

Black Swan Peddle Boat

Everyday Life, Goat Love, Memories, Scenic Photography
Black Swan pedddleboat docked
Black Swan pedddleboat docked

There it was, docked on the small wooden pier, alongside the edge of the river, surrounded by lily pads and a crisp September afternoon breeze. I knew I had to get in and take it for a spin. Someday maybe I’ll get the chance, just not today. But while at the Sanctuary, which we finally visited after not having been since February, we petted goats and they remembered us, got to see some other animals and re-upped our membership. It’s a special place.

I did buy some rope tonight to help re-add the old rope around my inner tube floatie. This time I picked a bright yellow so I’m hoping to not just fix it but make it better and look better as well. Also bought some bubbles for Carson although I probably won’t tackle these tasks until tomorrow.

Tonight’s movie watch was Precious. Pretty heavy subject matter.

Morpheus Turned Me into Rumpelstiltskin?

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
A boater off the coast of Thatcher's Island.
A boater off the coast of Thatcher’s Island.

I’ve been feeling so sleepy these days. Not sure why since I seem to be getting enough sleep. Maybe it’s residual from that last Sunday when the power went out over at Earth-1. Maybe it’s because I got t up early yesterday morning to get some yard work out of the way that I’ve been meaning to get to. I mowed and edges the front and cleaned up the back patio and weeded around the edges. All in all I think it looks pretty good! I also cleaned up some of the spearmint that was starting to invade. Maybe it’s a little bit of depression. No matter what’s causing it I feel like I’m dragging lately.

BBQ’d up a few items tonight for dinner. Also bought 3 pots of Mums. I like Mums but I also don’t like them just for the simple reason it means summer is ending. Finished the day off to a soothing fire burning in the pit.

I’m up to Level 117 of the first grouping of levels on SokoDroid, a game I posted about a few days ago. They’re getting really crazy now – sometimes takes me a day or two to solve, although I’m not playing it all day – just some minutes here and there. Keeps my brain busy for sure though.

Recorded a movie on the DVR called Lovelace, a story about the porn actress. Sounds interesting. Hopefully we’ll get to watch it tonight. Last night I just zoned out to Deadpool II.


Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography

Thanks NECN for the feature!

more later..

Wednesday Again

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Broken Bridges.

“I can almost understand why people leap from bridges.”

Charles Bukowski

Good days, bad days. For some reason it seems when it’s rainy out, I tend to get a little more down on myself. I find it rather interesting that that happens.

Carson likes watching bubbles. I don’t know if it’s the reflections (he has a thing where he likes to chase shadows and light reflecting off of devices on the walls) or just the spheres hanging in the air floating by, but he really seems into them. I need to go buy a bottle so I can blow some and he can watch them and continue to be fascinated.

Checkerboard of Nights and Days…

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
A checkerboard design on a street in Downtown Boston.
A checkerboard design on a street in Downtown Boston.

Around 10 am every morning or so the hummingbird comes around and probes all the flowers on the deck. I wonder if maybe I should try to be out there around that time to see if I could get a good photo of her. I believe it is a female since I don;t see the red throat markings that the male has.

Yesterday I put together a three tiered metal cart which came out rather cute and LD will use for her various papers and notes.

I finally ordered a new camping beach chair. Took me a while to select one that I think would last and had a lot of options (for a beach chair anyway). The one I chose has extra pockets for storage including one in the headrest which I’d never heard of before but liked the option (you can also put a small pillow in it for support if desired). It also has a small cooler in an armrest to keep cans cool. The other armrest has a cup holder as well. It also has lumbar support which a lot of these chairs don’t have although I probably won’t use that much. It should arrive in a couple of weeks and then I can throw out my beloved-but-now-has-seen-better-days “big boy” beach chair.

Tonight’s movie watch was Daddy’s Home starring Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlburg. It’s hilarious! Super funny! While watching it we were eating dinner that we made, a dish called Salmon Limone, with couscous, italian herbs, and a zucchini ribbon salad – basically ribbons and diced tomato with some scallion greens.

Breaking Things on the Last Summer Weekend Sunday

Cape Cod, Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography

Spent a big part of yesterday down at the beach house, quite possibly our last chance of getting in the ocean. I used my inner tube again and bounced on the waves. The wind was blowing and made it a bit exciting and maybe even a little scary but surprisingly not as cold as you would think – the sun basking away kept us from shivering. Nothing us hardened New Englanders couldn’t handle. The little rope I have on it broke so I want to get a new piece of rope and tie it anew. I bought this tube down at the Cape probably about 10 years are so ago but never used it. It just sat in the garage for, like, 10 years. Finally this year I pulled it out and so far have used it twice and it’s held up great. It really did feel glorious to be riding the waves with the sea spray in my face,.

Speaking of things breaking, my beach chair appears to be on the way out. One of the rods seems to have rusted out so it’s time for a replacement. Unfortunately it appears that this particular chair isn’t being produced anymore so I’m trying to find something comparable because I love that chair.

One the way back home got a call from my mom saying the power to the house is all messed up. Usually something blows out somewhere and the panel needs to be reset. She said she did that though and still no luck and wanted to me to come check so I headed over there last night. When I got there it just didn’t make sense. I reset everything but some outlets just wouldn’t work, while others did. I was wracking my brain over this one. Long story short, EverSource came down this morning to check something and come to find out a tree across the street broke something on the wire in the wind or some such. Strange how it would only affect certain outlets and not others but whatever they replaced fixed it up. Nice thing is we didn’t need an electrician to come out (and we had called because we thought he would be needed) but it wasn’t so we cancelled. Anyways I stayed at Earth-1 over the night but slept like crap so I may be taking a nap later. My mom also placed a ticket with the city to trim some of the branches of this city tree that apparently caused the damage to the electrical gadgetry.

The story behind the photo: Just looking around Brewster and came across the historic Stony Brook Grist Mill, probably one of the first grist mills ever in America, if not THE first. Herring also swim up the brook in this location and you can easily see them when they come to spawn. It’s a lovely scenic area worthy of checking out.

Make Life Worthwhile and Smile

Cape Cod, Everyday Life, GameTime, Memories, Scenic Photography, Wildlife
A seal smiles while basking on a rock.
A seal smiles while basking on a rock.

“You’ll find that life is still worthwhile, if you just smile.”

Charlie Chaplin

Been doing some rearranging in the house today. LD’s office is temporarily going to be in the sun room which is a big improvement. Also looked at some ovens today because it’s getting to be time to replace the one that’s there as it’s quickly running out of its useful lifespan and it’s time for an upgrade. One that would match the decor better would also be a nice improvement to the kitchen. Still trying to get the right match (dimensions, etc.) Not easy to get just the right combination of factors all lined up! Would’ve maybe liked to get one on the tax-free weekend but it isn’t happening. It’s got to be right so there looks to be more looking around for the time being. Anyways, the new setup in the sun room is a reason to smile.

I’ve also been following the Tufts Covid dashboard. Interesting.

Gametime: SokoDroid has been keeping me busy lately.

Tonight’s movie watch was Lymelife. Kind of a strange movie, but we kind of dug it! I’m giving it a recommendation if you haven’t seen it.

Summer’s Ending on the Horizon

Cape Cod, Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography, Wildlife
A silhouetted dowitcher looks to the waves at sunset in Chatham, MA.
A silhouetted dowitcher looks to the waves at sunset in Chatham, MA.

The story behind the photo: This was taken a few weeks ago down at Hardings Beach in Chatham as the sun was setting. A dowitcher kept running back and forth into and from the surf. I was really trying to capture the movement of the waves, their undulating flow was hypnotic to me in a sense that night.

Got my RealID coming finally. This time I made sure to have all my ducks in a row by having more documents than were needed, just in case. Had to wait over an hour in line because one of the machines apparently broke down, so that sucked (going to a AAA location is still better than the RMV in my opinion), but finally getting the thing is good. Glad that’s over with. Now I’ll be able to enter federal buildings as well as get on a airplane after Sept. 2021, not that I plan on ever possibly doing those things, but good to have just in case. Naturally you have to wear your mask and be socially distant as you wait your turn. I wear glasses when I drive so I had to take the eye test (which is really easy – basically just tests to make sure you’re not blind IMO) but they ask if you wear your glasses while driving which means it needs to be checked. (So I thought to myself, if I didn’t wear glasses I wouldn’t need an eye test? And wouldn’t that actually be worse?)

I took two pictures. I didn’t like how the first one came out and the 2nd one wasn’t too swift either but everyone knows that nobody looks good in these ID photos. Why is that?

Getting Ready for the Real

Everyday Life, Memories, Scenic Photography
Boston Seaport, 1900 – present

Well, tomorrow’s the big day when I try to get my Real ID again. This time I think I’m better prepared so I’m not expecting any issues.

Remember when this blog used to be full of interesting stuff? Feel like I’ve become “tres boring” lately. Truth to tell there just isn’t that much to tell (about myself these days anyway – there’s lots of things happening in the world for sure).

I’ll try to up my game moving forward.