My Bonnie Lies IN the Ocean!

It’s been tough to watching folks on the East Coast deal with Hurricane Matthew. “Should we stay or should we go?” isn’t always an easy question to answer. During our stay in the Outer Banks (OBX) of North Carolina this past April and May, we faced that dilemma when tropical storm Bonnie started brewing off the coast our third week there.

The weather had been stunning, and we enjoyed daily walks on the beach:


Then one day the sky over the ocean filled with clouds… Continue reading

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Ferried Away

No trip to the Outer Banks is complete without a trip on the free ferry to Ocracoke Island. We made our first trip to Ocracoke about 20 years ago and then again in 2011, and when we stopped back this past May we remembered how everything seemed to have changed except the ferry ride…


…and the Ocracoke Lighthouse: Continue reading

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OBX in the Spring

Being on the ocean shore of North Carolina during early April meant birds were enjoying the warm weather on the beach as much as we were.

This Whimbrel casually scoured the waves, looking for a tasty morsel…


…while a male Black-Bellied Plover did his best to spot things first:

obxredux4 Continue reading

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Coast to Coast

In late April we left the West Coast for the Midwest, stopping for awhile along American’s “North Coast” (you know, that coast formed by the Great Lakes) in Ohio. But where to go from there?

Why not head for the other coast — the one along the Atlantic? Sounded like a good plan to us!



So on down the Outer Banks we drove, ready to revisit some of the places that inspired “Pea Body” a few years ago… Continue reading

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Local Politics

We never know what we might see as we travel the byways of America. On May 10 we passed a few people on a corner in a small West Virginia town, holding signs:


Another block, and more signs:


Clearly, some passionate supporters of local and state candidates were out on primary day: Continue reading

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Did You See That? Me, Neither.

Early spring found us along Lake Erie in northern Ohio, one of many areas attracting birdwatchers hoping to catch a glimpse of a two-legged flyer they can scratch off their life list. I’m not one of those bird watchers.

But I’d read a flock of birders were near Toledo for the great spring migration, and we decided to see what we could see.


We spotted of a couple of Great Egrets in flight as soon as we arrived, but the warblers were the big attraction here, so we turned our attention to the edge of a small woods where other birders seemed to be focusing their attention.


I learned quickly that this group of birders was eager to share info: “What have you seen?” and “Up in that tree there’s an Orange-Crowned Warbler/Tennessee Warbler/Black-Throated Blue Warbler…”

Of course what I saw looked like this: Continue reading

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Round on Both Ends

Have you heard the riddle we grew up with?

“What’s round on both ends and high in the middle?”*

It was our destination early this spring — specifically near the southern Lake Erie shoreline, which the local marketing folks like to call The North Coast. After Ellen spent about a week visiting her mother we did some birdwatching, catching amazing views during this migratory season, like this Great Blue Heron in flight…


…and another calmly awaiting lunch:


This Red-Winged Blackbird in flight… Continue reading

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