WPC Transformation: A Fishy Tale

Our outdoor area has been undergoing a transformation lately, since we had the new screen room installed.  Some of you may remember my photos of iguanas sunning themselves on a pile of rocks around a defunct pond.

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It was also a favourite perch for Samantha squirrel to eat her breakfast.

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The occasional visit from the otter family also made for good entertainment value.

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This was all well and good for the wildlife, but not a very pretty sight from my kitchen window, so hubby tackled the job of improving the aesthetics. First thing was to rebuild the waterfall and install a new pump.

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After much thought and hard work, it took shape and the transformation began to look rather pretty.

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The next thing to do was buy a few little fishies for the pond. We adopted six goldfish and two koi and have also grown some lotus from seeds, which seem to be doing quite well. The two koi are named Blue Flash and Silver Streak. The orangest goldfish is Donnie of course, and the others I can’t tell apart except for little Freddie who is the smallest and least sociable. Whilst the koi show off as they race up and down the pond doing laps, the goldfish mostly paddle around together in a jolly group. Poor little Freddie however, just keeps to himself and hides between the plant pots. I sit on the bench and call him to come and play but to no avail. I hope he’ll be okay but only time will tell.

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The keeper of the pond is Ali, who we found hiding out at our local nursery. Because he’s so scary, his presence is very effective at making sure that all the inhabitants behave themselves.

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We also have two toads on lookout duty from the edge of the waterfall. Warty and Rocky may not look very menacing but I can assure you that they stand for no nonsense.

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Little Sammy would love to pop in and join the fun, but has to make do with peering in from  the outside of the screen.

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This is a bit late for the WPC ‘Transformation’, but better late than never.

Hope you’re all having a splendid week. I’ll keep you updated on Freddie if he ever shows his little face again. I’m not hopeful.

 

 

 

 

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Mr. Pelly Back In Winter Residence

Glancing out of the window this morning at breakfast, I was super excited to see that our first Pelican had arrived after a long summer absence. He was all alone on his branch, having a jolly good preen.

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After quite a lot of effort, he sat back, well satisfied with his appearance. “Wow, look at me now! Even after that long flight from up north, not a feather out of place.”

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I’m sure he’d been sent down in advance to check that the trees were still intact after Hurricane Irma passed through Florida in September, and he’s most probably already sent a Whatsapp to the rest of the gang, reporting that all is well.  I’m hoping that I’ll soon see more of these gorgeous birds decorating the branches.

Hope you’re all having a great weekend.

 

Six Word Saturday: Anatole says “Here’s looking at you.”

Anatole is the largest of our resident Anole lizards. He lives inside our screen room and although he’s cute and very well-behaved, is never allowed into the house. He seems quite content to peer at us through the glass doors and occasionally goes over to chat to the fish in our pond; but they are a story for another day,

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Wishing you all a splendid and relaxing weekend.

 

All’s Well That Ends Well

Here I am on the other side of Irma. I’ve never experienced a hurricane before, but they do say that there’s a first time for everything. Irma was one really wild woman and I certainly wouldn’t want her to come visiting again. Compared to many people, we escaped very lightly, with no damage to property or ourselves. The worst part was being without power for about 18 hours, but we had prepared for that, except that we hadn’t thought to buy a generator until they were all sold out. Anyway, I’d had the foresight to freeze water in several plastic containers in the freezer, which helped to keep our frozen food from spoiling. I’d also put jugs of ice blocks in the fridge which of course kept everything nice and cold.

The morning before Irma was due, Woody wood stork assumed the role of  ‘Town Crier’ sounding the alarm urging everyone to take shelter.

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Poor old Igasho looked totally bemused. He had no idea who Irma was, but figured that he’d better run for cover anyway.

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Sweet Anatole, stuck on the outside of our screen room was frantically calling, “Let me in! Let me in!”  but I’m afraid he had to take his chances, as we weren’t going outside to rescue him.

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Daisy duck decided that she’d better get her brood across the lake and into the shelter of the trees, before it got too rough for passage.

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Mr. GBH, who isn’t scared of anything, carried on regardless. I’m sure he knew from long experience that when the waters are stirred, there are sure to be some nice fishy pickings.

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Several of our neighbours had left for pastures north and others just hunkered down with their hurricane shutters tightly fastened. Having quite recently replaced all our windows and doors to hurricane-proof standards, we didn’t need shutters, so were able to have a grandstand view from the comfort of our lounge.

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I even went to my ‘famous’ bathroom window to catch the waves skimming over the usually smooth waters. One could have done a neat bit of surfing across there.

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We went to bed, wondering just how rough it was going to get.  The next morning we were pleasantly surprised to find that we still had power, so showered and made porridge and coffee. The electricity went off quite soon after, the rain was still pounding. and the road looked like a river. That day seemed very long indeed, with no music, no TV news and no phone. I couldn’t play my piano as it was too dark to see my music, so I sat reading my kindle. Hubby read his stash of engineering magazines which had accumulated, as he never had a chance to look at them whilst he was renovating the house. Supper was salad, cold meat and boiled eggs with a glass or two of wine, followed by dark chocolate, which as we all know is very good for stress. We eventually went to bed hoping for a calmer tomorrow.  The morning arrived, sunny and bright, but still no power, so we had cereal, yoghurt and fruit and a couple of Starbucks frappuccinos for breakfast. The only damage we could see, were a few branches which had broken off of our neighbour’s tree, falling harmlessly onto the grass.

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There was a  palm tree lying prone on someone’s front lawn across the road, but other than that, no damage.  Our power was restored about 9:30, and we heaved a sigh of relief. Today, the lake is once more calm and still. We are counting ourselves very lucky indeed.

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You’d never guess anything untoward had happened, except for the garden service cleaning up some of the palm debris.

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We even had our grass cut yesterday.

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Igasho returned to our backyard. He appears to be changing to his autumn colours and by Halloween, he should be the perfect shade of orange.

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Going out on the roads for the first time yesterday, we were shocked to see just how much debris there was on the sidewalks. So many trees had lost branches,  and hedges had been blown right over. it will take some time to clean everything up and to get the traffic lights all working again, but at least we didn’t suffer any loss, and for that we are most grateful. My heart goes out to those people who’s lives and livelihoods have been put on hold and in some cases, totally devastated.

I had an appointment with my eye surgeon yesterday and he said that everything is healing well and to see him again in two months. I still have the gas bubble in my eye, but that should disappear within the next week or two. I wish you all a very good rest of the week.

 

 

 

 

My Sunday Photo: The ‘Welcoming’ Committee

It’s been a while since I’ve seen an alligator in our lake, but on Friday, a juvenile ‘gator, probably just four feet long, came gliding in to shore. His approach did not go unnoticed however,  as Mr. GBH, Lenny Limpkin and a representative of the Iggy family had gotten word of his imminent arrival, and were right there waiting for him.

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Mr. GBH the self-appointed Chairman of the Residents’ Committee, using his sternest tone of voice, told young Al in no uncertain terms that his presence was not welcome on their peaceful grassy bank. “I’m quite happy to share the fish with you, as long as you’re not too greedy, but you are definitely not allowed to trespass on our territory. I realise that there are many tasty pickings here on land, such as small birds, iguanas, rabbits, squirrels, as well the occasional pet dog or cat, but such creatures are absolutely out of bounds, and I just want you to know that we are watching you. That’s all. You may go now. ” Well, that told him in no uncertain terms and he hasn’t been seen since.

Thanks to hubby who always has one eye out of the window for any interesting activity. He took the photos for me. My eye is healing well after the op, but I still can’t see distance at all. I guess I’ll  just have to be patient, but it’s not easy. I truly appreciate all  your good wishes on my last post.

Happy Sunday everyone.

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Good Morning Sammy

I’m finally getting used to my new Macbook Pro and have learned how to put my photos on my desktop. Everything seems different to my previous one, which is very confusing.

One thing that is a constant, however, is little Sammy. He’s as cute as ever and always nibbling away at something he’s found in the backyard.

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Wishing you all a very good week.

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Travel Theme: Four Brown Pelicans

Four Brown Pelis perched up high in the swaying branches.

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I’ve often marvelled at how they keep their balance and even manage to sleep standing on a branch. Surely it must be exhausting having to hold on so tightly so as not to fall. Well, apparently their talons have a pulley system of tendons so that the bird’s foot closes and grasps automatically as the ankle and knee joints are bent. They can only release their grip once the limb is straightened, so instead of having to expend energy holding on for dear life, as we humans would if we were clinging to a branch, a bird’s magical system simply locks their talons in place. How cool is that?

Have a great Sunday. If you want to see more ‘Fours’, just visit Ailsa’s Travel Theme here.

 

 

 

 

A Turtle kind of Thursday

Little Terrence was parked right outside our garage door this morning. “I’m a bit lost, can you help me, please?” he asked in a very tiny voice.

DSCN4677I knew exactly how he felt, as I’ve often been lost. Thank goodness for GPS these days. In the bad old days when I had to rely on map books to find my way around, you would often find me parked at the side of the road, map book in hand, turning it this way and that, trying to decide which direction I was actually facing, and then endeavouring to work out whether to turn around or go straight on. I must have inherited my lack of sense of direction from my dad. He was always making u-turns. It’s not just on the road that I get lost. When exiting a public toilet in a shopping mall, I invariably turn the wrong way and head towards the men’s. Then I suddenly realising that there’s no way out at that end of the corridor. Hubby thinks this is funny and always has a weird smirk on his face when I eventually find him again because he knows what I’ve just done.  Anyway, dear little Terrence had found a kindred spirit in me and was gently taken to the backyard, where he was deposited in the lake. I’m sure he’s now happily reunited with his family.

Hope your Thursday is a good one.