A Trip to Sanibel Island Lighthouse

Last week, whilst staying in Fort Myers, we took a drive up the coast to Sanibel Island. I was keen to see its most famous landmark, which is located at the eastern end.

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Here is the plaque which tells something of its history.

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As you can see, the tower is constructed from ironwork, and the story is that after the foundation had been completed in 1884, the ship transporting the ironwork, sank two miles off Sanibel Island. A crew of hard-hat divers from Key West managed to recover all but two pieces of the ironwork. What a job that must have been!

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The tower which is built in a pyramid style, is 98 feet tall, and was the first lighthouse on Florida’s Gulf Coast. It didn’t look like it would be very easy to climb up to the top, and there is no access for the public, so I didn’t find out if one had to climb up the outside, or whether there was an interior staircase. 🙂

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These Ospreys would have absolutely no problem reaching their perch at the top.

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This one had even carried his lunch up with him, so he could enjoy the view whilst snacking on his sushi.

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Down on the pier, a few fishermen were also trying their luck, but looking into their empty buckets, it didn’t look as though they were as successful as the Ospreys.

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On the beach, a Reddish Egret, looking rather cold, was having a competition with his friend the Sanderling, to see who could balance on one leg the longest.

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A trio of Snowy Egrets looked very disinterested in the show.

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On our walk back to the car, we spotted an Osprey nest high up, with the daddy flying off to get some takeaway for the family’s lunch.

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Sanibel would be a great place to spend the winter months, especially if one could afford one of these waterfront mansions.

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I still have lots more to tell you about my trip west, so stay tuned. Hope you’re all having a great week so far.

If you would like to read more about the lighthouse and its history, you can click here.

 

 

 

 

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Serene Scenes for the WPC

Serenity …….. “The state of being calm, peaceful and untroubled.”

“Life has its rhythm and we have ours. They’re designed to coexist in harmony, so that when we do what is ours to do and otherwise let life be, we garner acceptance and serenity.” ~ Victoria Moran

Here is my choice of photos which I believe, show a state of serenity.

A serene start to the morning if ever I saw one.

A serene start to the morning if ever I saw one.

A man and his best friend. No conversation needed.

A man and his best friend. No conversation needed.

A very serene way of life.

A very serene way of life.

A serene scene against a beautiful blue backdrop.

A serene scene against a beautiful blue backdrop.

Serenity for Mr A, is just basking in the morning sun.

Serenity for Mr A, is just basking in the morning sun.

Wishing you all a serene and untroubled week.

The see more entries for the challenge, click the logo. (Thanks Gemma, for this super new 2015 badge design.)

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Mrs Edison in the Garden, for Jude’s Bench Challenge

Mina Miller, born July 6th 1865, was the seventh of eleven children, and became Thomas Edison’s second wife in February 1886. She met her future husband at the home of a mutual friend of her inventor father Ezra Gilliland and Thomas Edison. The story goes that Edison taught his ladylove Morse code, so that they could converse in secret even in front of her family, and that he actually proposed to her in Morse code. Her answer to his proposal was “-.— . …”

Here is a sculpture of her sitting on a concrete bench in the Edison Heritage Garden in Fort Myers. She would have felt right at home here, as she had a great love for the tranquility of formal gardens and created really beautiful ones in the grounds of their extensive winter estate.

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Click here to participate in Jude’s ‘Bench Challenge’.

 

Giant Trees in Edison’s Botanic Garden, for Cee’s Wood Challenge.

Here I am in Fort Myers. The biometrics screening went well, apart from the fact that I apparently have fingerprints which don’t scan, so I had to do the black ink ones. I looked like a paid up member of the ‘Black Hand Gang’ by the time we were finished. Fortunately the stuff they used to clean me up, was very efficient and my hands and nails were soon back to pristine condition again.

Afterwards, we spent a few wonderful hours at the Edison & Ford Winter Estates botanic gardens, houses, laboratory and museum. I have loads of photos to sort through, but here for Cee’s B&W Photo Challenge ‘Wood’, are just two of the amazing trees in that garden.

This sprawling and gigantic Banyan Tree, planted in 1925, is one of the largest in the continental United States.

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When it arrived from India in a butter tub, it was 2 inches in diameter and 4 ft high, and was a gift to Thomas Edison from Harvey Firestone. Today the tree is 64 ft high and the circumference of its aerial roots is 396 ft. It looks to me like a many-legged prehistoric monster.

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Look at the gigantic roots on this majestic Mysore Fig tree.

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It stands so tall and stately, and it’s branches reach way up to the sky.

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Although the weather here is rather cool and grey, we’re off to Sanibel Island to look at the beach and more especially the lighthouse. We’ll be driving home again tomorrow. I wish you all a great weekend

To join in Cee’s B&W challenge, just click the badge.

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Hammock and Lighthouse Shadows for the Weekly Photo Challenge

This week’s photo challenge ‘Shadowed’, brought to mind my hammock photo which was my previous blog header. It brings back great memories of our holiday in Bora Bora a few years ago, and I’ve been toying with the idea of resurrecting it. What do you think?

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Today would have been my sixth and final art class, when I would have finished my lighthouse painting. Unfortunately, we have to travel to Fort Myers for our Green Card application USCIS Biometrics screening. It’s a three hour drive, and as our appointment is at 8am on Thursday, we’ve decided to spend a couple of days there and check out a bit of the Gulf Coast. This is my unfinished painting, and as you may notice, there’s quite a nice bit of shadow on the one side.

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I’ll catch up with you all when I get back at the weekend, unless I think of something I want to say before then.

 

Laughter for Ailsa’s Travel Theme

“There is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious, as laughter and good humour.”  ~ Charles Dickens

After yesterday’s rather sombre post, I thought I’d better brighten up my blog with a few happy photos. Ailsa’s Travel Theme this week, is ‘Laughter’. Whenever my family get together, we usually end up laughing about something or other, and sometimes even about nothing. I have loads of photos with us smiling for the camera, but I’ve chosen these because we’re really laughing.

I have no idea what my dear mom found so funny at Easter lunch last year, but she certainly got us all laughing too.

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Our little granddaughter Sienna, obviously found the family photo album really amusing, and who could blame her?

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Hubby looked really happy with his choice of  dessert on his birthday. It does look rather amazing.

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I had a job to blow out my candle on the birthday cake my sister had made for me, because the rest of the family were doing their utmost to make me laugh, and they succeeded.

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I know that Dolly the dolphin isn’t family, but this is the photo which always comes to mind when I think ‘happy’. She really does look like she was laughing.

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To see more laughter, or to add your contribution, you can visit Ailsa, here.

 

Great Blue Heron mourns his mate

I saw a really sad sight on entering the Green Cay Wetlands a few days ago. A Great Blue Heron was standing guard over the remains of another one who had evidently met an untimely death. There were dozens of people on the boardwalk taking photos, but he just remained absolutely motionless, looking so distraught and disheveled. I felt really sorry for him, as he was obviously grieving and didn’t want to leave his mate.

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I wonder what happened. Maybe an alligator.

‘Your Feet’s Too Big’.

Most of the water birds I see here in Florida, really make me smile. How cute is this little Black-bellied Whistling Duck, but don’t you think his feet look a bit on the large side?

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Where did my title come from? Enjoy this throwback to the Golden Age of Jazz, as Fats Waller sings, “Your Feet’s Too Big.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzu0hG9qr5k

Happy weekend to you all.

 

“Don’t turn your back on me baby” for Photo a Week ‘Humor’

Nancy Merrill has a Photo a Week Challenge. This week, the topic is ‘Humor’ and she invites us to “SHARE A PHOTO OR TWO OF SOMETHING OR SOMEONE THAT TICKLES YOUR FUNNY BONE.”

I find this photo taken last week at the Wakodahatchee Wetlands, rather comical.

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When I saw this couple of Great Blue Herons who looked as though they’d had a bit of a tiff, I was immediately reminded of that line in the Carlos Santana classic song Black Magic Woman, “Don’t turn your back on me baby.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cTxRj_Vfepk I hope they kissed and made up before bedtime.

Wishing you all a great weekend.

Click here to join Nancy’s challenge.