Saturday, August 28, 2010

Places & Animals (1)

This latest series of photographs (the usual four week montage) involves mostly animals and places. Some of the animals might be considered unusual for this part of the state, but rest assured, Connecticut does have more than its fair share of functioning farms, which are quite often heavily featured in our local metropolitan newspapers. And a couple of the places that you'll be seeing, should be experienced with a trip down the back roads of your memories. So, in the immortal words of John Cleese, "Let's begin at the beginning!"

One quick note: All shots were taken in early part of May. I know this because I had this CD developed on May 23rd.

Continuing on a theme from the last series, we are visiting with Mr. & Mrs Duck today. It was a gloriously sunny late afternoon in G's backyard when Mr. & Mrs Duck decided to stop by for another visit. Before beginning their visit, they decided to sit a spell and catch a few rays and work on their tan. They lounged about for a while, checking out the storage shed, the old pool deck, a crab apple tree and a blueberry bush.

Once they got done working on their tan, they got up and began strolling to the back porch. The Mr. was still enjoying the late afternoon sun, but after becoming just a little bit too toasted for his own good, he decided to rest for a spell in one of the many large shadows that populated the backyard.

The misses however, was a bit hungry, so she came in a little closer looking for some of the appetizers that the backyard was offering. In addition to feeling a little peckish, she was also feeling a little overheated, so she decided to take advantage of the cool shadows that the late afternoon sun was offering as well.

The mister finished his brief nap and came looking for some taste nuggets of food as well. However, the second he started looking, a lonely little miss quacked suggestively in his direction. Intrigued, he turned to the right and started to style and profile.

Miffed, the misses took flight to the pond located in the far corner of the backyard. The mister, suddenly worried about the possibility of the misses kicking him out of the nest, flew to the pond and dived right in, and began doing the lovey-dovey groveling that all male species have imprinted in their genes.

Eventually, the misses took his apology for what it was worth, and began cultivating a nice soft spot on the ground, where the cool mountain breeze would caress her...ummm....her....well, I think we should leave the happy amorous couple to their own devices here and...ummm....ummm...say, I do believe that I hear my cat calling for me.
"Coming Mother!!!"

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Flora, Fauna & Aminals (4)

Okie dokie, I got smart this time and uploaded the last batch of photos using the home computer via the picture CD, just in case my notebook wasn't up and running in time. I now present to you the last installment of Flora, Fauna & Animals for your viewing pleasure.

This shot was taken during a walk around the block. I was running into a dearth of subject material, so when I saw this relatively clean view of someone's side yard, I decided to take the picture. Not much there to look at, but from the stories I've heard, it used to be a large farm of some kind back in the early part of the 20th century. Eventually the owners (whose house you can see off to the left, subdivided and sold off parts for housing, of which you can see through the trees in the background.

There is an interesting story behind this and the next four pictures that you see. One late weekend afternoon, I was standing on my back porch getting a breath of fresh air, when I spotted our resident ducks taking a stroll through the backyard. Inspired, I ran back inside, grabbed my disposable and hoofed it back to the porch. I knelt down and stuck my camera through the railing and took a shot of the ducks. There were two, but in this shot, you can see only one (duh!) of them scrounging for food.

This one I apparently turned the camera sideways, so that I could get a better shot of them. I estimate that the one in the foreground is about three feet away from me. Yes, that is a tire swing, which is currently attached to the dead tree that is decaying in the backyard.

In this one, you can see the male duck (drake?) inching a little closer to the back porch. A couple of old summer chairs are making their presence known, and you can get a better view of the old pool deck in the far right of the photo, along with the other storage shed and the pond.

To take this shot, I leaned over the rail and aimed downwards. I have no idea about the white in the foreground except it may have been an overexposure in the camera. In any event, they were still scrounging for food, but definitely had no interest in the empty soda bottles.

Not much to describe here. Same ducks. I found it so fascinating to see ducks this up close and personal that I went hog wild taking these five pictures. Normally, I don't see any kind of wildlife in my backyard, save for the various birds that take roost in the trees. But from I've been told by the wife and kids, our backyard has been a temporary resting place for a couple of rabbits and the stray frog or two.

And no picture montage would be complete without showing you the absolute least favorite bird in the entire world of Cedar's Mountain and Shooting Suburbia. Still nasty as anything, loud as anything and has responded to the bulk of everyone's displeasure by squawking even louder and earlier than ever before. While I may like my aminals (cat and fishies), I will someday beat the absolute snot out this bird. I don't like this bird and this bird certainly doesn't like me.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Flora, Fauna & Aminals (3)

It. Is. Back.

After a one week hiatus, in which our computer got ill and had to be taken to the hospital to be binged and purged of said illness, we can now present to you the latest installment of Flora, Fauna & Aminals for your viewing pleasure and enjoyment.

This was taken while I was walking down one of the many side streets that populate the route to which I partake in while traveling from point B (the center) to point A (home). Now although the lawn looks well kept and a spiffy shade of green, with the shrubbery trimmed neatly and the sun shining ever so nicely across the yard and house, leaving a funky telephone wire shadow in the foreground, this photo is not about that. If you examine the photo closely, and you may have to click on it to enlarge it, you will see just off to the left of the triangular pine tree, the actual subject of the photo: a squirrel. Yep, a squirrel. By the time I was able to dig out my disposable, him had moved from the near foreground to where you see him now. Since I didn't want to step on someone's property without permission, this was the best shot I could get.

This flower bed was taken as I was turning down the last street before mine. Always has a well maintained flower bed and yes, this was taken right from the street. I think that this shot came out pretty well, with all the various colors of the yard melding together: purple and white flowers, pink blossoms, bright red chimney, tan house and of course, the solid non-burned green grass.

Same flower bed, taken at the far end. Just off to the right beyond the fence is an in ground swimming pool. Not sure if its used much by the current owners (who have been there since I was a tiny tot), but it is meticulously maintained, just like the flower beds.

This is my backyard. Specifically, a man-made pond, created when the above ground pool was taken out and removed. As of the day of this post, it has been bone dry and pretty much DOA, but during the spring, when these photos were taken, a trio of ducks had called it the Grantmoor. In picture itself, you can see a small statue of St. Francis of Assisi to the right, to the left a ladder for the pool and smack dab in the middle, one of our resident Romeo drakes.

This shoot is from the other side of the pond. In the foreground is one of our Romeos (or Juliet, can't remember which). The building on the right is one of our lovely storage sheds. Leaning against it is the old ladder to the pool deck, which is that white thing just off to the right. The pond, such as it it, shows the reflection of the shed and the sky quite well.

The backyard. In the foreground is the pond. To the left is our neighbor's and center is ours. The deck/porch that you see off to the right, is my other writing area. Yes, the one with the 21 wind chimes. The tree that you see just off to the left of the deck, is now dead, courtesy of our friend, the termite.

And finally, another shot of the pond, featuring the mountain in all of its sunny springtime glory. The last few shots were taken simply because I wanted to take a stroll around the backyard. Now, you're probably thinking to yourself, "So what. Everyone walks around their backyard. Why should this be something to mention?"
Easy. If you take a look at an old town map from the early 60's, you will see that a good chunk of this street (like my end) simply does not exist. In fact, what you see for a topographical symbol that denotes my section of the street, is the one for swamp land. Yup, my part of the street is filled in swamp land. Which means during a normal spring (which means a normal amount of rainfall), my back yard turns into the type of yard that can literally separate your foot from your sneaker.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

An Unfortunate Interruption

Flash! We interrupt your regularly scheduled episode of "Floral, Fauna & Aminals" with this late breaking news story. On Thursday, August 5, 2010 at approximately 4:00p, my computer crashed and burned. It is now in the shop getting (hopefully) fixed. Because of this problem, the photos that would normally be here are not, because they are now at the shop waiting for the computer to be fixed.

However, there is good news, in the form of that old technologically obsolete standby called the 3 1/4" floppy disc. My good readers, I have stashed away on a shelf in my room, about 30+ floppys with all kinds of neat things on them. I took down the tray and pulled out a floppy and stuck into that other technologically obsolete item: the floppy disc drive. This particular group of photos are the end result of a two minute surf through the disc.

I'm hoping by next Saturday I'll be able to broadcast episode #3 of "Flora, Fauna & Aminals". In the meantime, please enjoy this special Summer episode called Life Is Good.

Oh, if everyone can do me one small favor, it will be greatly appreciated: Please leave in your comments a caption for any of the pictures you see here. I really didn't have the time to compose anything, so I will use each and every caption that my favorite readers can come up with.

"I heart the ocean" by Lynn; "Noah?" "Yes...God!" by Snaggletooth; "Love floats away." by Septembermom.

"Leave the ears please!" by Septembermom; "Uncle Chomp loves you!" by Snaggletooth.

"A trunk full of puppies = a trunk full of trouble!" by Talon; "Rumble seat Rot ride." by Snaggletooth; "My furry luggage." by Septembermom

"I don't have any cash, but you can have all of the fleas you want!" by Snaggletooth; "I thought this was a litterbox!!!" by Septembermom.

"Burp!" by Snaggletooth; "The ladies love me!" by Septembermom.

"Hey! It's only *called* a hot dog!" by Riot Kitty; "That hot dog looks a little undercooked!" by Bearman; "We've run out of the advertised meat, but have made a substitution!" by Snaggletooth; "Please, no mustard!" by Septembermom.