Where Have I Been?

6 January, 2010

As the three or four regular readers have noticed, I’ve been away.  I haven’t been completely out of touch with computers, but I was actually on vacation.  Well, visiting relatives, but close enough.

First, we went to Florida.  We left at oh-four-hundred (what’s the ‘oh’ stand for? oh, shit, it’s early!).  Our first stop was the shoulder of I-81.  When it was still dark.  Why?  So I could photograph my dashboard.  No, I’m not kidding:

66613 odometer reading

Yes, I stopped on the shoulder of an interstate highway to record the blessed mileage reading “66613”.

The whole trip down I-81 was a breeze.  Until we turned onto I-75 heading toward Fancy Gap. 

Damn, this traffic jam.  Hurts my motor to go so slow.

 We took advantage of the backup to eat lunch in the car.  hummus, salami, cheese, apples and pita bread.

We spent the night in Orangeburg, South Carolina.  I knew I was in the deep south when I watched a couple of adverts from a local car dealership promising a free shotgun with every new car purchase.  I also saw this on the window at a gas station:

I guess the clamato juice would add some flavour. 

Down in Florida we ate, visited, ate, took a trip to Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge.  Along the way, I saw this example of car abuse:

I lost count of the number of nice cars ruined by butt-ugly wheels which didn’t match the car (if any of my readers have cars with wheels like this, you need help).

At Merritt Island, we saw lots and lots of avian theropods.  Including:

An Anhinga kind enough to pose with a Great Blue Heron.

 A Glossy Ibis taking wing.

Another Great Blue Heron.

A Great Egret (the used to be called American Egrets, but they also live in Canada, so . . . )

A Little Blue Heron.

A Red Heron (not a red herring).

Of course, it wasn’t all about birds.  We did see quite a few of their cousins:

This one was bout 13 feet long. 

We also saw many, many, many armadillos.  One even stayed around long enough for me to get a photo (fast little fuckers):

The flowers down in Florida were almost enough to make me forget we were going to be driving north again.

This magnificent hibiscus was outside one of the Disney resorts.  We just went in to look around and shop for some Disney kitsch.

Then, we drove back to Pennsylvania and then to Maine.  Why?  Because (((Wife)))’s in-laws retired to Maine.  My in-laws retired to Florida. 

Those photos will be put up tomorrow.



  1. Good to have you back. The dashboard photo is too funny.

  2. (((Billy))), (((Billy))), (((Billy)))…

    First you discribe the Ibis as ‘glossy’, and yet: it is at best a matte texture, the herons you discribe as ‘great’ are at best ‘pretty good’ or ‘just acceptable’, and then you discribe what must certainly be a crime, you say you dined on hummus.

    You can expect a visit from the police for what you’ve done! Frightful! Huumus-cide! The horror!

    Sorry, can’t help myself…;-)

    Really great pictures, though, loved the armadillo and gator. Beautiful snake bird, too.

    Welcome back!

  3. Chappie: (((Wife))) could not believe that I pulled over for that. I had to. That was the best of twelve pictures (taking a photo of a lighted dashboard at night ain’t easy).

    Sarge: Just going by the bird’s names. Blame Adam — god told him to name the animals, right? You have to admit, though, that Little Blue Heron really is little and blue, right?

  4. All right…Little Blue Heron… I’ll grant you that one.

    Just remember, though: I’m watchin’ ya! 😉

  5. BTW, wasn’t there a song a while back about some guy that had wading birds?

    Think it went, “Egrets, I’ve had a few…”

    You’re not the only one I do that to. I recently got a reissued Lindburg kit of a missle launching system, and my wife found out.

    I told he I would work on it when I was in a certain frame of mind, ie: feeling SNARK-y.

    She said reproachful and hurtful things with the mouth she kisses me with. (uncomprehending, sad head shake)

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