The Good Thing Harvey Washed Away

My Best Laid Plans

There’s not much in the world I can truly say I hate. But I hate Harvey.

We have been sitting here for more hours than I can begin to count being brutally lashed by his seemingly never ending fury. I would be lying if I said it wasn’t scary…terrifying…at times, but we are among the lucky ones. We are safe and dry.


Harvey has taken so much from so many. Homes, lives, hopes, jobs–all washed into the Gulf of Mexico by his relentless anger. As the horrifying images and desperate needs flash across my screen in endless and quick succession, I sit here with tears in my eyes. Where do you begin? I have never felt so helpless. My neighbors are in dire straits and I can’t do anything but pray. It’s a terrible feeling.


Pregnant women and their toddlers stuck on roofs waiting hours upon hours for…

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Solar Eclipse 2017- Shadows and Light in the Park

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Spots of light that I see on my floor every day became more interesting this Monday morning.

 

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So did all the usual shadows in the park.

 

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Look at these perfect crescents!

 

 

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And these!
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Great view of a park with all the spots of dappled sunlight becoming pinhole camera viewers.

 

 

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The Boy had his first day of school, but the students were able to get out to see the eclipse. He snapped a neat photo on his teacher’s camera. The Husband had to watch it all online since he was in meetings. Hands down, The Girl won. She planned her return drive to college via the eclipse’s path of totality- she won’t forget this anytime soon!

 

 

And one more:

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Everything Old is New Again- Music

The local news had me stop in my tracks this morning- not for a shocking headline but for the sound of a new song. The music chosen to play into the commercial break was fabulous! I opened Spotify on my phone, and identified these fabulous musicians: Mariachi El Bronx. Not new, but new to me.

Here is Sleepwalking by Mariachi El Bronx

Their sound was so familiar but I couldn’t place why. An online search delivered a mix of options that finally made sense after I read an article from 2009 by The Guardian: “The Bronx- How Punk Rock Went Mariachi.” In a nutshell, if you grow up next door to David Hildago of Los Lobos and two of his kids are your best friends, fabulous music just may happen and multiple bands can be formed.

Here’s Mariachi El Bronx performing live for Seattle’s KXEP radio station-

It’s too bad that I missed them playing at The Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach this May. But, guess who is playing the San Diego Fair tonight? One of my all time favorites: Los Lobos.

Wildflowers of Torrey Pines, Guy Fleming Trail

Super Bloom, Spring 2017

The drought that has plagued the Southwest United States, Southern California included, has been declared over… for the most part. We saw hardly any rain over the last five years and this winter we made up for the deficit. Finally! And when the rains come, so do the wildflowers.

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The Torrey Pines State Reserve is a special place, and if you are visiting the San Diego area, try to stop by here. For spectacular scenery, the Guy Fleming Trail is one of my favorite places to walk, run, bring tourist friends, and take photos.

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This year, a lot of photos. Never have I taken more pictures of any natural area. Ever. And I like taking pictures along hikes, so that is saying something.

 

From the dozen or so walks I have taken recently, I’ve saved about a hundred photos, culled down from four hundred, at least. The scenery changes every ten paces or so, quite literally! During San Diego’s May Gray and June Gloom, the fog sneaks and slips through the pines and up over the slopes that rise from the beach below. But- in a matter of minutes, the entire marine layer can clear up leaving tourist and locals blinking in the bright sunlight and marveling at the weathered bluffs, crumbling cliffs, and lovely, lovely flowers.

Just look at these side-by-side photos of similar views, but different times or weather:

 

and more…

 

 

Cold, early morning poppies vs. bright, shiny (and badly photographed) poppies:

 

I love these two:

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Here’s a bit of the wildlife. Surfers count, they are totally legit wildlife…

 

 

Get a load of the geometry and patterns seen out on the beach trails:

 

 

 

 

And to conclude, a few of my favorite pics of just the flowers:

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Milk Maids
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The Blue Larkspur- spotted in the eponymous Larkspur Canyon.

 

 

 

 

All right. I have to quit. I could upload another 50 photos that are every bit as lovely as these, but I have to calm the heck down.

Happy hiking, all!

Anza Borrego Desert State Park- Wildflower “Super Bloom” March 2017

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Brown-eyed Primrose

California’s above average, drought-busting winter rains are the proverbial blessing and a curse- floods, rock falls and mudslides that probably won’t be seen for another ten to twenty years, but the reservoirs are near to full, the snowpack in the Sierras is reassuringly deep and… oh, the WILDFLOWERS!

 

 

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Blue-eyed Scorpion Weed (AKA Wild Heliotrope?)

If you have considered driving out to the desert to see The Superbloom, GO. NOW. I’m going to conclude this post with a barrage of photos of the desert wildflowers.

 

Here is our Anza Borrego Desert State Park in full bloom on March 13, 2017:

Above: top left- Lupine (Arizona Lupine?); top right- Beavertail Cactus; bottom- Desert Sunflower

 

Some of the wildflowers at one of the highway park entrance signs, pictured below, include Desert Pincushion, Desert Dandelion, and Blue-eyed Scorpion Weed, and in the pic on the left, you can also see an Ocotillo “skeleton.”

It’s simply lovely. I mean LOOK HOW GREEN THE DESERT HILLS ARE! Below left, an Ocotillo’s tips are ready to fire up it’s red blooms. Below right a Cholla cactus is usually the only green thing you would see in this picture.. again, look at those GREEEN HILLS!

Henderson Canyon Road is stunning this year:

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A ridiculously beautiful expanse of yellow Desert Sunflowers

 

Coyote Canyon has water! And amazing flowers!

 

More flowers, Ocotillo, and Agave along the Coyote Canyon drive (off-road, not for casual tourists in sedans):

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