Scenes from the Lake

I got to spend considerable time around Canandaigua Lake today, even though I did a lot of other things.

We had to have a piece on our camper awning replaced, as it was damaged when the new awning was put on.  Mark had talked to the service center, and they agreed to send a man out to make the repair.  Shortly after nine this morning,  the man came by.

The repairman happened to be one of the most animated and lovable fellows we have seen in a llong time.  Mark wanted to be outside when he came to make sure there were no more “accidents” as the damage to one of the awning members ocurred while being repaired! Mark also wanted me to watch, as he just wanted to make sure everything turned out well.

Our repairman had a huge handlebar moustache and was more fun than anyone I know! He and Mark hit it off right away, and soon, we were all talking like old friends! He worked as he talked, and it became evident that he was comfortable working very well while keeping conversation going!  We talked about so many things, but mostly about campers.

I had to go inside the house, and Angus was sitting right next to the door. I secured his leash and took him out. Well, didn’t he and our new friend, Larry, hit it off! Mark told him how much we love Scotties.  That brought up the topic of Scottie campers. They have not been made in years, and Larry, seeing how much we love the Scotties, wanted to know if we might like to buy an old one from him to fix up!

Mark is doing some digging about on the internet….people who own these Scottie campers have clubs and websites about their old campers! Oh, I forgot to mention that Larry’s grandfather came to the US from SCOTLAND!

Larry left shortly before noon! Then, I had to run Michelle down to Naples shortly thereafter.  As I was driving home,  I saw the eagle perched in the tree. I raced home and asked Ben if he wanted to go kayaking for an hour. 

We got down to the boat launch and paddled over to see our friend. As I approached, there was a man in a kayak, sporting TWO Nikon cameras, photographing the bird.  He said that over the course of about three years, the bird has finally grown use to humans and now sits patiently above, while humans snap  photos and talk to it!

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I got into the door at about 2:20 and headed about 15 miles up the road to the garage to have my brakes adjusted.  This is from the repair I had done a couple weeks ago, and the mechanic worked on it for about 45 minutes. No charge…he said he should have done the procedure before, but didn’t know about it. This fellow is a Sherriff’s deputy and he is just fabulous! Mark and I are both tickled pink with his service and honesty!

I returned home at about five, then had to get some things set up for Mark. We were supposed to pick Michelle up at 5, but she switched it to 5:30.  Ben and I raced down to pick her up, then raced to Middlesex for youth group.

 The following were taken whille waiting on the kids…..

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Off On a Tangent Today!

Michelle had some work today, so we dropped her off and decided to take a ride. It has been a while since we have gone off with no particular itinerary.  It really felt good….years ago, Mark and I used to get in the car and just take off for unknown destinations.

We took a road along the bottom of the lake that goes on up the east side. Mark went down a side road that crosses over West River. I had never traveled along this leg of the river in the kayak and Mark had never seen it before.

As we stopped at a boat launch there, we saw a Heron standing in the water.  I  got out to take a picture…..

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The river was pretty grungy here. There was a lot of algae and seaweed growing in the river, but the Heron could care less! I didn’t notice how the pretty autumnal trees reflected in the water until I looked at the photo. Cool!

I cropped the photo a bit for a better look at the Heron.

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We drove over to Geneva and took a look at the Extreme Home Makeover house.  It looks like things have settled down in the neighborhood and are back to normal. The house is amazing and all of the lawns that were destroyed by curious onlookers earlier this summer are now lush and green,  probably looking better than before!

We had Kentucky Fried Chicken for dinner and then leisurely drove back home.

Shamefully (to me) I only took the one photo of the Heron today.  It was such a dreary day and somehow, I just had a hard time even thinking about photography…..

(Almost) No Photos Today!

We all know that we need some rain to fall in our lives from time to time so we will appreciate the sunny days.  So, we are told.  Well, Mark is swimming in some paperwork that needs his attention, and I have been doing some remedial work with the kids as well. All I know is that if I ever get “behind” again, I am going to scream!

This morning got off to a really cool start. I got up shortly before 6 am….has anyone else noticed how the darkness is closing in later and later into the morning hours? I cleaned up a few dishes from last night and fed the Scottie boys. By the time the boys were done eating, the skies had lightened up and the sky was a gorgeous sapphire blue color.

As the Scotties walked about outside, I heard a distinct call high in the sky. If you have never heard the “call” of a vulture, it sounds a good deal like a crow with a sore throat!  I looked up and saw such a sight! The vultures were circling (hmmm….wonder if they were considering the Scotties?) high in the sky…..the moon was still straight up and it looked as though those enormous birds were encircling the moon!  I immediately consoled myself it was okay that the camera was in the house, as  trying to photograph anything with the Scottie boys is impossible.

Later in the day, I walked down to the mailbox and this pretty oak leaf caught my eye…

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Mark spent the better part of today doing paperwork and I was busy with the kids.  By late this afternoon, Mark must have recognized that I was about to lose my mind from being captivated in the house all day, and he sent me over to Honeoye to pick up a pizza. Getting out into the world was so refreshing,  and I had already planned the photos I was going to take.  As I drove, I noticed that the hills all looked “fuzzy”.  It wasn’t long before I realized that all those wonderfully clear days we had are behind us! The atmosphere was just totally ugly, and taking photos would have been senseless….

So, in thinking back to this morning and those vultures, I looked up!

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The skies were so pretty! The entire sky was covered in the most impressive “marbled” clouds.  Everywhere I looked, the sky was prettier than the direction I had just seen!

I feel as though I am having withdrawal…from both not being outside and  from not being able to shoot photos! Phew, this just cannot continue!!!

It’s Definitely in the Air!

Something tells me that divulging my treasured “photographic secrets” in my last entry has caused my credibility to have become just a tad tarnished! How many folks carry their camera “props” (you know, the tripod and all the handy-dandy gadgets) with them everywhere they go? As it is, when Mark sees me coming to get into the truck to go for a ride with my Biker Babe bag, the Nikon camera bag, (rather large) the little Lumix camera bag, (rather tiny) and my laptop bag, he rolls his eyes…..I usually leave the tote bag at home, or place in in the back of the truck.

I decided that today, I should take a few photos that are more “safe”. You know, the type of photos that don’t require standing on one’s head, talking to wildlife, and such. I never made it out of the house to take photos, but a little photo op did present itself anyway!

I was washing the bedroom windows, one of the most boring and tiring jobs on the planet, when late afternoon sunlight broke through the canopy high in the trees and shone directly on one little area of autumnal-colored leaves. 

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The leaves were so vibrant, almost glowing as though lit up and glimmering on their own! The colors drew me and so I grabbed the camera and took a couple of photos.

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Autumn is certainly making her appearance.  Last night, on the weather forecast, the word “F-R-O-S-T” was even mentioned as it was threatening to pay a visit in the valley regions!  I have been enjoying the cool temperatures thoroughly, as this is the type of weather that feels so refreshing! As a matter of fact, I rested so well last night with the window cracked open, I slept in until seven this morning!

Did You Know?

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That the moon has a (visible) equator?

Okay. Here’s the scoop! Yesterday, the entire day slipped right past me before I even noticed. The kids had to go to their Bible study in Canandaigua last night, so I dropped them off, then ran errands….and errands….and errands.  Before I knew it, the night had gotten away from me, too!

Bound and determined to take some photos, I noticed the big semi-degraded Harvest Moon. This time, instead of a white illumination, it was golden! The next problem presenting itself was that I would need a tripod. Well…….

Since I had neither tripod nor monopod, I would have to simply “make do”.  Since we were already in a nice flat area, (a plaza parking lot in Canandaigua) I decided to risk having someone report me!  I purposefully walked forth to the nearest light pole, wrapped myself around it as best I could, and snapped some shots! It actually worked quite well, but in hindsight, I must have resembled the “town drunk”, trying to stabilize myself after a hefty binge!

It was only this morning, when I looked at the photos  that I noticed a telephone line running through the moon, neatly dissecting it into two nearly identically sized halves. Oh, and the other two lights are not UFO’s, but merely street lamps!

The Great Buzzard Showdown

 Or, call me Mrs. Doolittle!

Early this morning when the Scottie boys and I went outside, it was obvious something was “in the air”. Both of the Scotties kept putting their noses to the wind and sniffing.  They even gave me a bit of a hard time, lunging on their leashes, which they rarely ever do.

Later in the morning, I was working in the bedroom when I heard a rather new and different noise. I somehow knew this was not a sick crow, but that perhaps the turkey vultures were back. I grabbed my camera, resolved that I would capture one of those birds! I guess I have lived with my Scotties long enough that their stubborn, tenacious nature has taken hold somewhat of my usually complacent personality!

See what followed!

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Hiding, indeed! Did it *really* think it was invisible?

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I cropped one photo just to give a basic idea of how UGLY different this bird looks!

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I began walking slowly towards this bird, while taking photos the entire time. Risky business, as the hill on which we live is a very steep grade! Fortunately for me, I have relatively good balance and can walk and chew gum  take photographs! These birds are BIG. There is no doubt about that!

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As I walked towards the bird, I talked out loud to it. Amusing, were one of my neighbors to hear.  I told it how ugly it was….asked it why, considering how ugly it was, was I taking its picture?…you know, just mindless chatter to put my subject at ease! It did seem to work, as the bird allowed me to get in fairly close.

At this point, I thought it was going to fly away, but maybe instead, I just ruffled its feathers….hahaha…..

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Since it considered me to be of no threat to its well-being, it began marching over to the side of the road where a poor raccoon didn’t make it.  YUCK!!!

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To snack or not to snack in front of this crazed human….that is the question!

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That did it! Off went the vulture into the sky!

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In relating my vulture story to one of Michelle’s friends, he made mention that once in the air, there is little difference in the soaring and gliding patterns between a vulture and an eagle. He was right! And, they both have distinctive feathers when they soar. I guess one of the biggest differences is that eagles soar higher in the atmosphere.

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I was disappointed my photos weren’t clearer, but happy that I did catch a bit of the vulture!

A Beautifully Atmospheric Day!

Michelle went down to help our friend, Cindy out. Cindy is the lady who makes and sells all kinds of terrific pies and other baked goodies. This is the time of the year, as it grows closer and closer to the Naples Grape Festival,  that Cindy needs help and Michelle works a little for her.

As I dropped Michelle off, (Cindy’s house is located directly across the street from the high school) I was greeted by something I had not seen in this small village before! Jackie in Glasgow feautured a photo of shoes, plus some other stuff similarly displayed….

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Hmmm….those kinda look like Vans…..expensive shoes to be tossing about, I think!

After dropping Michelle off,  as I was coming up the hill, I saw what looked like a large piece of black fabric sitting on the side of the road.  As I came closer, I realized I was looking at two Turkey Vultures, wings spread out as though to make them appear larger than they are! I grabbed for my camera and opened the lens.

As I was sitting there, about to shoot some photos, doesn’t a Fed Ex truck beep from behind me! PLEASE!!! I live “in the boonies” and we rarely have traffic on this hill. HOW could this person be behind me?  Frustrated, I turned into our driveway and hoped the birds would reappear.  One of the birds did come by, gliding overhead and causing the sky above me to darken. Man, those birds are BIG!

Here is the bird flying down the hill towards the woods….

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and then flying away…………….DRAT!

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Here are some photos of Canandaigua Lake….no more explanations necessary!

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Grave Reminders

I know that hanging out at a graveyard isn’t the most “fun” thing to do, but it really can be quite interesting! While waiting for Michelle on Sunday,  I decided to pay a visit to a little cemetery I had mentally noted when passing by many times.  Stopping by such a place isn’t what I would ever expect my family to do, although they do often patronize my frivolous-to-them whims!

I walked around the place for a bit, and so many thoughts and questions began to fill my mind. …

There is no sign to alert one to this cemetery. It would be easy to miss if one wasn’t looking for it.  The grass here is rather lengthy, but we have had quite a bit of rain, so it would be hard to mow.  As I walked about, I also noticed that mowing with a lawnmower might be an indomitable task….I kept finding myself walking over pieces of stone that were probably very old gravestones that had broken off at ground level or just above.

The “occupancy” within dated back a goodly bit….there were people who were born in the late 1700’s and pretty much through to the mid-to-late 1800’s. The latest burial I found was in 1981.

Throughout the graveyard, there were several stones bearing the name “Dunton”.  In looking through the present telephone directory for our area, there are few Duntons living around.  There were also some “Karnes”, and when I looked up that name, I couldn’t find any locally.

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I found two little stones that bore the names of children. The one below marks one “Essie” who passed away at only two years of age. There was also a marked that read “Little Libbie” on it.  There were other markers with several names on them, including the names of infants who passed away far too soon.

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There were markers that had fallen to the ground, and some were in terrible disrepair. This one looks like it fell long ago and the earth around it has kept it somewhat protected from damage.

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While most markers were rather humble in appearance, there were some that were certainly more stately. It would seem that the wealthier families were able to purchase monuments carved from more durable stone.

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Many of the markers stated the date of death, noted in years, months, and days. So many of the graves memorialized people who passed away at far too early an age…

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Considering some of these grave markers have been around for almost 200 years,  I guess it is remarkable they are legible at all! Many look as though the names they were created to commemorate disappeared many, many years ago…

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This particular area made questions arise….Were there several markers here that tumbled on top of one another? Why were some of the stones sunken into the earth?

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These two markers were so beautiful. It almost would seem that the hands that crafted them were related to the ones they marked. I couldn’t make out the names and information on them, nor was I given to crawling about on the ground. As it was, this cemetery is located in a rather “moist” area, and the grass on my ankles was making them itch like crazy.  I was a little concerned that my bare ankles would be calling out to any and all mosquitoes in the area, but thankfully, no mosquitoes were present!

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Another question….Here is a marker with the name “Lockwood” engraved.  Many cemeteries have such stones marking an area where family members are interred.  The wooden cross with a cement “anchor” attached looks suspiciously modern…..The painted named looks as though done with a stencil recently. So, what is the story there?

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I previously mentioned the name “Karnes”. Well, there seems to be a little problem with the Karnes marker in the form of an Ash tree! The tree stands  mere inches in front of the marker.

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And another question….this couple passed away in the 1800’s, he in 1889 and she in 1898. The little statue looks like a mother and child, perhaps Mary and Baby Jesus.  It also looks very modern.  It appears to be well anchored between the graves.  Does someone still attend to these graves after all those years?

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Here is a fine-looking marker that looks as though it could be repaired if someone took the time and knew how to go about doing it.

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I kid you not when I say that this place is in disarray!

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Another marker that is in need of repair.  These days, families are scattered not only around the country, but also the world.  How could the descendants realize these need repair if they cannot see them?

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Although I did see some markers with dates as recent as the 1940’s and 1950’s, most are older than that. 

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I was curious about the little metal marker on the ground. Apparently the marker was added after 1981 when a child of the couple the large marker was buried here.

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Another marker found in a bit of a heap, with writing no longer legible.

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And a beautiful marker in tribute to a young woman who passed away at the tender age of 21. 

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There were markers with birth dates listed, but no date of death.  These people surely passed away, but were they interred somewhere other than where they had intended?

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Curiously, the last grave that I photographed spoke volumes to me.  This little grave is leaning over so! It does look as though someone does tend to the grave from time to time. However, as I looked more closely…..

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I saw such a hideously ugly spider that had spun a web from the stone to the flag to the ground.

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One hundred years from now, we will likely be located in a similar place…..perhaps not with a fancy marker….it seems the modern cemeteries are disallowing the use of large markers any longer. With the type that is ground level, lawnmowers pass right over the markers without any extra care.

So, it all came to me that while we are in these “earth suits” given on loan to us, we must make a little difference in this world and down the line, when we are gone, others will make mention of our name and maybe even say a kind word. Perhaps our children will even decorate our marker with flowers.  But in, say, fifty, sixty years, we and our little grave sites will likely be forgotten.  What a sobering thought.

So, go out and make the most of this day!