Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Visualizing the Lizards....

The heads of the lizards were shaped like this, with the nose being the point of the shield:
The head was about 2 feet wide, and about 6 inches deep, once the lizards stopped expanding.

Growing up in Florida, we called these anoles "chameleons."  The lizards in my dream had the bodies, legs, feet and tails of anoles - but they were 6-feet long.

In my crazy dream, the lizards had a living, pulsating mane of bright scarlet and neon blue, that looked kind of like this Butzbach sea anemone.  The mane started on top of the head, between the eyes, and ran down the neck and back to the shoulders of the lizards....

Weird, I know.

My Arm Opened Like a Giant Banana Peel....

I had one of my really strange and vivid dreams this morning.  I don't know where I was, but I had glanced down, and noticed what I thought were movements under the skin of my right wrist, on the side where the thumb joins the hand.  I kept watching my wrist, and saw more movement under the skin.  I started poking at the movement, and trying to stretch the skin around, not really expecting anything to happen.  A teeny, tiny slit appeared in my skin, and a small greenish head with two dark brown eyes looked out at me, blinked, and then disappeared back into my arm.  The slit disappeared and the movement I thought I had seen ceased.  Wow, I thought...  there's an alien living inside of me.  A few days passed, in the dream, and then I saw more movement under the skin of my wrist.  I visited my sister, and told her what I had observed the other day - she told me I was full of manure, but using a much shorter word for manure.  I insisted  that I wasn't lying to her, and she refused to look at my arm to see the movements under the skin.
  I began poking and pulling at the skin on my wrist as I had done before.  I had to show my sister I wasn't insane.  After a few minutes, things started to move under the skin of my forearm - and my sister say it.  She was dumbfounded.  I kept pushing and poking at the area where the slit had appeared the last time, and it finally began to open up...   At first it was only a couple of inches long, and my sister said, "Oh my God..." as a pale greenish shield-shaped head slid out of my arm.  The nose was the bottom point of the battle-shield shaped head, and the eyes were dark and shiney and placed about two-thirds of the way up the sides of the shield.  Between the eyes and running in a thick mane down the long thin neck were tubular tentacles in bright scarlet and neon blue that pulsated and waved about as if they were separate entities from the lizard itself.  What was even more frightening, to me, was that with exposure to the atmosphere, the lizard was suddenly doubling, then quadrupling, then exploding into a huge size.  As this became apparent, my arm opened like a giant banana peel and five of the creatures appeared.  I remember being surprised that my arm didn't hurt at all - that it just felt as if some kind of pressure had been released.  I could look inside, and my ulna and radius looked like small steel bars with a few veins wrapped around them...  I kept wondering how I was going to make my arm close back up and look "normal" again.
   In the meantime, my sister was screaming as the five lizards crawled out of my arm and all five expanded to the size of a six-foot-long alligator.  They all had grey-green skin, with a pale underbelly, clawed and toed feet, and that weird mane of moving tentacles.  I somehow knew that the manes were poisonous, and I warned my sister not to let them touch her.  She finally ran like mad for the front door of her house.  I was trying to figure out how to wrap the skin back around my arm, when I heard a big hiss - just like gators make.  I slowly turned and looked at the first lizard to emerge, and... Lyra, the cat walked across me and I awoke.   Weird.  Really weird.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Chincoteague Pony Photos (Virginia)

The last five photos are from DSC Photography - they have a lot of magnificent photos for sale, so please visit their site at

2015 Buy-backs- (l to r) Blue Moon, Surfer Princess, Gingersnap

Surfer Dude in 2006

Fifteen Friends of Freckles (foreground)

Kelly's Luck

Wildest Dreams

Jessica's Sea Star Sandy

Sweet Jane

Chincoteague Pony Spring Round-Up Begins Friday

The following statement was released by the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company yesterday, 27 March 2016:  " The spring roundup will start Friday, April 1st at 4:30 pm for the south herd. We will sweep the south end from the lighthouse to the south corral. Hopefully we should have the herd in the corral within a couple hours. It just depends on how well they cooperate. The north herd will b rounded up starting Saturday morning. We will start as close to 8 am as we can. (Weather and personnel permitting). We will also be performing the vet checks at the same time on the south herd. The buybacks at the carnival grounds will be released on the south end Saturday morning as time permits."
  I honestly wish I could be there.  When I lived on Chincoteague Island, I was always scheduled for work during the Spring and Fall Round-Ups, so I never had a chance to see one in person.  I enjoy my round-ups vicariously through the photos of Deb Iddings Noll, Darcy and Steve Cole, and Cindi H Herman.  They are fantastic people who share their photos on Facebook, and on the DSC Photography website.  I couldn't get through Spring and Fall without them, and the other folks who post their photos.  
   ...  I have enjoyed watching the squirrel family and raven family from my desk window this morning.  It was 26 degrees at 7 a.m., when I returned home.  (I slept with Tessa, Lyra and Lily last night - and tonight, also.) The squirrels have been enjoying the almonds, Brazil nuts and walnuts that we put out for them; and yesterday I added another 2.5 pounds of unshelled sunflower seeds into the bird feeder.  The ravens help themselves from the trash dumpster at Chez Thuy, the Vietnamese restaurant that is our immediate neighbor to the south.  
   Yesterday, for Easter, I baked a lemon pound cake; and we had ham steak, mashed potatoes and glazed carrots for our supper.  It was a nice, quiet day.
   I hope your week goes well!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

More Cottages That I Like...

Horse Racing Is Getting Interesting, Again

I have to say that I was thoroughly impressed (all over again) by California Chrome's performance in the $10 million Dubai WorldCup race yesterday.  I saw it live, on a racing channel, and I wasn't sure what to expect.  I loved California Chrome two years ago when he won the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness.  I wasn't that upset that he lost the Belmont, but his owner's hateful, hurtful, bombastic tirade after the race was over caused me to lose interest in the horse, himself.  Last year, CC's owner boasted that he'd win the Dubai World Cup race, but CC finished second.  He did not race well in England.  As a five-year-old, this year, the owner stated that the horse was "five lengths better" for the same race.  While European horses horses frequently run longer races (on the turf) than American horses, it's highly unusual to have a mile-and-a-quarter dirt race for older horses - excepting the Breeders Cup Classic.  I was very excited when California Chrome won the World Cup race yesterday by a distance of five lengths...  Not only did he run and win convincingly, he ran three and four paths out for most of the trip, and his saddle slipped backwards during the race.  Jockey Victor Espinoza made a thrilling and athletic ride on the young stallion; at the finish line, Chrome's girth was around his last rib, instead of behind his elbows...  All I can say is Wow!

The Kentucky Derby, to be run on May 7 this year, is beginning to look like a delightful free-for-all.  The three top picks are generally agreed to be Nyquist, by Uncle Mo; Songbird by Medaglia d'Oro, and Mohayman by Tapit.  Lani, another son of Tapit, won the UAE Derby earlier this week, and secured a gate position for the iconic May race at Churchill Downs.   Gun Runner was impressive winning the Louisiana Derby yesterday.  Cupid, another son of Tapit trained by Bob Baffert, won the Rebel Stakes on 19 March.  And it looks like American Pioneer will be entered in the Arkansas Derby ...   Yep, I love horse racing in the Spring!

Friday, March 25, 2016


I've always wanted a small, cozy house for myself - a little cottage.  With my cats, and my books, I'm afraid I'd need at least 4 rooms, but still, cozy.  I used to be surprised when I'd see a advertisement about an English cottage for sale or rent and it always seemed to have at least three bedrooms.  That, to me is a lot larger than a "cottage."  It is definitely Spring, as I am hitting my nesting-mode again! Anyway, here are a few photos of small cottages that I admire:

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Over 16 Inches of Boulder Snow - Photos (Yesterday)

In less than 18 hours, Boulder had 16.1 inches of snow fall yesterday.  The Boulder Valley School District, the University of Colorado at Boulder, and Naropa University were all closed for Spring break.  With the large snow fall, and unexpectedly windy conditions, all schools closed their campuses today.  The City of Boulder and the Boulder County offices were closed.  The Public Library was closed.  Even the dinner theater was closed because of the weather. It was weird.

Snow plow

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

What Is It?

Some folks walking on Assateague National Seashore in Maryland found this item partially buried in the sand, near the high tide mark.  There are a lot of speculations as to what it might be.  Most people are weighing in that the artifact is a vertebrae bone of some type of large fish, such as a whale, or that it's the fossilized vertebrae from an amphibian, either an alligator or crocodile.
   It doesn't look like a vertebrae to me - there is no opening for the spinal cord, and the growths appear to be horns, to me.  I have the feeling that the bone is the upper part of the skull of some type of small ruminant, a ram, a goat, a Sika (Japanese elk), or a young short-horn cow....
   What do you think this mysterious item might be?  Please feel free to comment!

Item found on Assateague Island beach  (bottom view?)

Item found on Assateague Island beach  (top view?)

Item found on Assateague Island beach

Item found on Assateague Island beach.  Ruler shows almost 8 inches between the V-shaped legs (or horns, or wings).

Some folks on Facebook insist that the item is part of a fossilized crocodile vertebrae (above)

The three items below are whale vertebrae:

Again, what do you think it is?

Assorted Art & Photos

Young red squirrel

White dragon

Odd friends - baby porcupine and Great Dane

Black Canyon of the Gunnison overlook

Captain Barry Is Out On the Water; Boulder Is Having a Blizzard

A tale of two cities - or towns....   It's currently 63 degrees on Chincoteague Island, in Virginia.  Captain Barry, my cousin-in-law, took several cruises out yesterday, and was scheduled for three or four today.  Captain Barry's Back Bay Cruises are the best ecological, interactive cruises on Chincoteague Island - especially if you want to learn about marine life and how it affects the marsh and channels,and how the waters cause effects upon the marine life.  Now, that sounds awfully boring.  Barry loves to make the cruises as interactive as possible, so it's a true hands-on experience.  I love going out with him - I always learn something new each time.  Learn about clams, crabs, oysters, jelly fish, sponges, and almost anything that you can imagine finding in a drag net - or in and on the marsh flats.  It's a fantastic experience.  Captain Barry always books up fast, and frequently has an "on-call" waiting list during the summer.  You can call and book your experience today at (757) 336-6508.  (And don't forget his Champagne Sunset cruise, either!)
   It was in the mid-70s  yesterday, and Beatrice traveled down to Denver and was able to spend a good amount of time in the new Samurai exhibition at the Denver Art Museum.  I laughed yesterday evening when the newspaper announced that Boulder could get up to 6 inches of snow overnight.  I heard the first rain drops pelting my bedroom window at 12:35 a.m.  by 4:00, there was three inches of snow.  At the moment, 10:30 a.m., more than 8 inches have fallen, and the weather guys are saying we might get another 10 inches before the snow stops tonight...  I am not walking Rosie or Tessa today, but I am due at Rosie's for a 2-hour stint this evening.  I may end up taking a cab both to and from her house.
    Colorado needs the snow.  I am not complaining about the precipitation.  The snow plow for the apartment parking lot just went through, and I've heard the snow plows on US 36 running past about every hour.  My cousin was pretty shocked when she found out that the front of my apartment building faced US 36.  She thought I lived somewhere secluded in a very wooded area, far away from traffic.  I wish that were so.  In any event, it's the usual weird Spring weather for Boulder...

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

A Last Bird Courtship View

Paradise Rifle bird

Peahen and peacock display

Sage grouse display

Sarus crane


Superb bird of paradise displays for brown female