Sunday, June 25, 2017

Island Sunrises and Sunsets - Photos

Chincoteague Bay sunset

Assateague sunrise

Chincoteague Channel sunset

Happy and Bodacious Bob with Assateague sunset
(Photo by Beached Paws Photography)

Chincoteague Channel sunset

Crab pot sunrise
(Photo by Beached Paws Photography)

Marsh Island sunset

Critters, Wild and Tame

It doesn't seem like a week since I sat down in front of a blank blog page...  All sorts of things are going on in the news and wildlife areas.  And I've been taking care of multiple houses full of critters, as people decide to vacation on a whim, without planning for pet care.  I've been running around like crazy.  I think I have two days off, Wednesday and Thursday this week, if nothing else pops up.
   I've started re-reading my Robin Hobb collection, and am currently reading Dragon Haven.  After I read her books, I'll hit my Rafael Sabatini novels, and then my un-edited editions of The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers.  That should keep me busy for a little while.
  I received my National Geographic DNA information back some time ago - my Haplogroup is J1c4.  But I have recently sent my DNA for processing to both Ancestry and to 23AndMe, also.  I'm waiting to see what is reported by the other two agencies...
   We've recently had moose in North Boulder - a woman was tending her garden on the edge of Wonderland Lake, and said she "suddenly felt a presence looming over" her.  It was a mother moose with twin calves, and the mother decided the woman was threatening her babies.  She was knocked down and walked upon.  Luckily, she only had scrapes and bruises.  And another moose with a single calf was reported at the Justice Center near the end of Boulder Canyon.
   Of course it's now summer, and we're having our usual incursions of coyotes, mountain lions and black bears.  The coyotes have been grabbing small dogs who are off-leash on walking, jogging, and biking paths, as well as cats loose in neighborhoods.  The mountain lions are grabbing the mule deer and fawns.  The bears are smashing bee hives and stealing honey, as well as raiding any bird feeders they can reach.  A friend has a one-inch thick wrought iron post for her feeders, and thought they were safe - this morning the post was bent at a 70 degree angle and the bird feeders were crushed and empty on the ground.  And folks around my sister and brother-in-laws house now have teen-aged bobcats out hunting with their parents, as well.  The fox are staying under cover as much as possible.  The cottontail rabbit birth explosion is feeding most of the smaller predators.
    Tess, one of the dogs I care for, is not doing well at the moment.  She started having seizures last fall.  They began occurring every 4 days a couple of months ago, and she has finally been placed on Potassium Bromide as a daily medication. (Her owner is a very firm believer in holistic medicine and diet taking care of everything.)  The K-Bro medication has increased her appetite amazingly, as well as her thirst.  But the main side effect is ataxia, her hind legs don't support her well...  The vet told the owner that once Tess reaches her optimal medication level, she'll return to normal.  The vet told the owner it would take one month.  I read the information, and it says the optimal level is reached in three to four months...  We'll have to see.  In the meantime, the dog who always bounced and danced on her hind legs is now shuffling with her nose to the ground.  It's pretty sad...
   Still at 59 new foals on the Chincoteague NationalWildlife Refuge - 56 after the three losses.  One foal died from an umbilical infection, one foal got stuck in the marsh mud and couldn't break free, and one had a congenital defect of the forelegs, which could not be healed.  All the others are quite bouncy and bold.  As usual, there are some really stupendous pinto markings, quite a few solids with great conformation, and a few real stand-outs.  I'm happy with the foals so far...

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Odd Advertisements and Photos

Tonight's News Headlines

"Several Injured After Vehicle Rams People Leaving London Mosque: Witnesses"
"U. S. Warplane Downs Syrian Army Jet In Raqqa Province"
"Gunmen Attack Resort Outside Mali's Capital, Two Dead"
"At Least 62 Killed In Forest Fire Still Raging In Portugal"
"U. S. Navy Confirms All Seven Missing Sailors From USS Fitzgerald Found Dead"
"Iran Fires Several Missiles At Syria Following Tehran Attacks"
"Trump Attorney Says President Not Under Investigation - Then Hedges"
"Six Top Experts Resigned From Donald Trump's HIV/AIDS Advisory Panel"
"EPA Acknowledges Delaying Methane Rule Might Make More Children Sick, But It Will Help the Oil and Gas Industry"
"North Korea  Accuses US Authorities Of  'Mugging' Its Diplomats At NY Airport"
"Turkish President Erdogan Condemns US Warrants Issued To His Security Over Washington Brawl"

What does this say about the state of our world tonight?  All evening, I have had the old song "Eve of Destruction" running through my head...  Barry McGuire released his version in 1965, followed by a quick cover of it by The Turtles; I also remember Paul Revere and the Raiders having it on an album in the early 1970s.  My Uncle fought in Korea in the 1950s; and I grew up with the Viet Nam War - we were usually eating supper and watching horrific news with Walter Cronkite and Dan Rather.  It was a nasty way to grow up, but my Dad, having been in the US Navy for 22 years, believed that my sister and I should see the world as it was/is - and not through rose-colored glasses.
   I have managed to sail into my sixty-first year with, I think, a pretty even look at the world.  I will be the first to admit that I have a "bleeding heart," and sad stories always make me cry.  baby animals make me "coo" like an idiot, and I mourn the death of everything, while I also realize that it's all a part of the cycle of birth,life and death.  I read constantly - histories of different areas of the world, archaeology, explorations of land and sea and space, and a lot of fiction for pleasure.  I have read the Bible, the Torah and the Koran.  I enjoy learning, and applying what I have learned to my everyday life.  I dislike conflict and will do my best to avoid it.  But I am very happy to listen to my friends, whether they are discussing troubles or joys, and, if asked for an opinion, I try to give a measured one - trying to see it from all perspectives.
    I am worried about my country, the United States of America.  There is a narcissistic nincompoop sitting in the Oval Office.  He is not a leader.  He is not a politician.  He is a real estate man who has multiple bankruptcies, who cannot and will not obey laws, who buys his way out of the troubles he causes himself.  He does not work or play well with others.  He has the mind and temperament of a child stuck in the "terrible twos."  He is poorly educated and does not read.  He does not know the history of his own country, let alone the entire world.  According to people inside the White House, he shouts back at the television when someone says something he doesn't like. Yet he is in charge of our nuclear codes.  He is the "Commander in Chief."
   I am truly frightened.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Assateague Photos by Beached Paws Photography

USS Fitzgerald - and Appointees

So the President, who has consistently Tweeted his thoughts, even after the White House Press Staff has stated that 45's Tweets are "official Presidential statements," has now stated that "I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director!  Witch Hunt"  Hunh.
   Yesterday afternoon in Colorado, but early Saturday morning in the sea off Japan, a Phillipine  container ship collided with the USS Fitzgerald, a 505-foot US Navy missile destroyer.  It looks like the container ship has some buckling of the port bow, but a large section on the starboard of the Fitzgerald was crushed, and the hull is breached under the waterline.  The bilge pumps have been running continuously since the collision, but the ship is listing due to water weight.  The Commanding Officer was air-lifted off the ship and is receiving treatment in Japan.  Multiple sailors are injured, but we have no list of the men, or their injuries.  Two other sailors have been air-lifted from the ship.  The worst part is that seven sailors are missing.  So far, none have been found.  I think that one of my biggest problems with this is that the President of the United States, the Commander in Chief, did not say a word about this yesterday - it wasn't until 1 hour ago (almost 18 hours after the accident) that he decided to mention it - on Twitter, of course - "Thoughts and prayers with the sailors of USS Fitzgerald and their families. Thank you to our Japanese allies for their assistance."
   The Japanese Navy has sent one of their ships to aid and support the USS Fitzgerald, along with two tug boats to help guide and support the stricken vessel.  Another US destroyer is on it's way to assist the ship, also.  But one of the biggest problems is that there could be no calls for assistance to the US Japanese Ambassador, nor to the US Navy Secretary - because neither one currently exists.  The positions exist in the government ranks, but no one has been named or nominated to fill those two positions by the current President.  So the US Navy families must just sit on their hands and wait for reports to be vetted and finally released to the world at large.  This stinks for any military family, period.
   Before 45 became President by taking his Oath of Office on 20 January 2017, he was aware that he needed to appoint 558 people for key positions that require the confirmation of the US Senate.  To date, 42  positions have been confirmed.  He has nominated 94 others, and has stated that he wants, but not actually nominated, 7 others.  415 key positions have not been mentioned by the President, and all offices are empty, because he has not yet seen fit to nominate people.  More details on this may be found at:

   If you dislike the sitting President, and have an outrageous sense of humor, I suggest you visit Randy Rainbow's page on Facebook - and especially watch and enjoy his music videos...

Friday, June 16, 2017

Assorted Photos

Lovey and her weapons

Moose family in Boulder County

Young squirrel

Chincoteague Channel sunset

Clint Watts testifying before Congress

Legacy's ladies (and kids) on Assateague
(Surfer Princess is second butt from left in bottom group.)

Surfin' Chantel and Maverick's filly - I think she'll be a very dark bay
once she sheds out

All The Craziness

I keep getting caught up in the increasingly crazy news stories that seem to be happening every day, and, trying to keep up with the facts, I'm spending more time watching "Breaking News" on the 24-hour news stations than anything else...  Apparently I'm truly addicted to it, as I'm fascinated by the stories, and I want to know more, but I am also bored with them at the same time.  A conundrum.
  Attorney General Jeff Sessions almost had an old fashioned spell of the vapors while being questioned by Senator Kamala Harris during his testimony.  AG Sessions, being a true Southern boy, hesitates between every word, and tries to explain every word he uses.  The Senators were given only 5 minutes in which to ask their questions and receive answers. The AG tried to only answer one question, by spinning out his answer, and then, when the Senator interrupted him, said that she was making him "nervous and unable to think clearly."  Sessions is a well-known bigot and I believe that a great part of his reluctance to answer the Senator's questions had quite a lot to do with the fact that she is (a) African-American, and (b) female.  The man is a squirmy worm that wishes he lived in the 18th century, when he would have been lord and master of all he viewed...
   The very next morning, the shooting attack on the House Republican baseball practice occurred.  I am personally sorry for all the fear and pain caused by the shooter, and I hope all the victims recover and can live full lives.  Seemingly, the shooter hated 45 and felt the Republicans were responsible for the chaos that this administration has caused. I believe that, also, but I don't think taking a rifle and shooting House members was the way to protest.  (The Democrats won the game last night, 11 to 2.)
  I was pretty groggy watching the news about the shooting, as I had been up for several hours in the early morning.  When I'm sleeping at home, and not house-sitting, Lovey sleeps in the bed with me.  Lovey is my 13-pound brown tabby cat, who has razor sharp claws.  If I'm sleeping on my back, she sleeps on either one of my shoulders, effectively "pinning" me down (in her mind).  I was sleeping on my back early that morning, with Lovey asleep on my left shoulder.  She apparently had a nightmare, and launched herself across my face, onto my desk, and then head-first into the closed window.  She then looked wildly around and fled under the bed.  At least one of her feet had landed on my left cheek - and I touched the spot to see if I was bleeding.  It was bleeding, so I sat up for a couple of seconds, then walked the 20 feet into my bathroom and turned on the light.  I certainly wished I hadn't.  Blood was literally pouring down my face, under my chin, down my neck, between my breasts, and down to my navel, where it was then cascading to the floor and leaving a huge puddle.  I wanted to laugh hysterically, but I grabbed a huge wad of toilet paper and applied pressure to my cheek instead.  It took five minutes to get the cut to stop bleeding profusely.  Then I examined myself and found I had one small scratch under my eye socket, the very deep, but only 1/3 inch-long bleeder next to my nose, and a very small puncture two inches left of my mouth.  I had to awaken my roommate for first aid assistance, because when I took my glasses off, I couldn't see my face, and I had to have the glasses off to clean the cuts...  And I applied so much pressure to stop the bleeding that my face is still bruised and swollen around the cut today.  We cleaned it out with alcohol and then hydrogen peroxide; placed antibiotic ointment on it, and then a BandAid.  Took a while to get back to sleep after that.
   And I'm frustrated because I keep missing Clint Watts' appearances on MSNBC...  I'd love to hear his take on all the craziness.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Photos of Favorite "RussiaGate" People

Chris Hayes, host; Malcolm Nance, expert

Rachel Maddow, host

Maxine Waters, US Representative

Eric Swalwell, US Representative

Naveed Jamali, expert

Joy Ann Reid, host

Clint Watts, expert

My Favorite Experts

With all of the craziness taking place within our federal government at the highest levels, I have become addicted to cable news and certain specific "talking heads."  I am speaking of them as a commentator or reporter who is interviewed with a camera close-up of their head, neck and shoulders.  And my list of favorite people is increasing each week.  My favorite folks with their own shows are: Rachel Maddow, Joy Reid, Chris Hayes, Lawrence O'Donnell, Ari Melber, Jake Tapper and Wolf Blitzer.  My favorite commentators and experts are: Clint Watts, Malcolm Nance, Naveed Jamali, Matt Miller, and David Cay Johnston.  and, of course, I have a whole slew of Congressional favorites - Maxine Waters, Bernie Sanders, Al Franken, Eric Swalwell, Rob Warner, and Ted Lieu, to name a few....
   I sat, riveted, while ex-FBI Director James Comey gave his testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee this past Thursday - with Preet Bharara in the audience as support.  Bharara, a former US District Attorney, was also fired by the idiot in the White House.  Bharara, like Comey, was also investigating 45 and ties to Russia.  Hummmmm....  I smell something fishy there.
   I will watch, also with great interest, when the new Attorney General will testify tomorrow before the same Committee.  Sessions is a big a liar as his boss, the toupeed cheeto.  Both men are blatant bigots regarding race, religion, and money.   I have the feeling that the Ag will attempt to make his questioners believe he is a very forgetful innocent, who misunderstands a lot of things.
    I just finished reading Malcolm Nance's book, The Plot to Hack America: How Putin's Cyberspies and WikiLeaks Tried to Steal the 2016 Election.  Wow.  The book was amazing, and, as Malcolm was a Navy cryptologist during his 20 years of military service, he is capable of describing cyber warfare in easily understood English.  Fluent in Arabic, he is active in the field of national security policy particularly, in anti- and counter-terrorism intelligence, terrorist strategy and tactics, torture and counter-ideology in combating Islamic extremism. He studied Russian in high school and worked as an interpreter; then began working in the intelligence field through research into the history of the Soviet Union and the KGB.  He subsequently devoted years of research analyzing Middle East terrorism and sovereign nations with ties to Russia.  Mlacolm has a great sense of humor, too.  It's a fascinating book.
    Naveed Jamali is a former FBI operative and an expert on American national security.  His parents are French and Pakistani, and he is a native-born American.  Naveed graduated from the university with a degree in political science and government.  After 9/11, he reached out to the FBI to offer his services.  He later became a double agent when a Russian GRU member named Oleg Kulikov attempted to recruit him.  The ruse lasted from 2005 into 2009, during which time Kulikov paid agent Jamali for what he thought were classified documents.  The operation ended with jamali being "arrrested" by the FBI in front of Kulikov, which blew Kulikov's cover as a diplomat in the USA.  Naveed teamed with Ellis Henican to write  How to Catch a Russian Spy: The True Story of an American Civilian Turned Double Agent.  Naveed Jamali is a Senior Fellow in the Program on National Security at the Foreign Policy Research Institute, and serves as an intelligence officer in the US Naval Reserve.
    Clint Watts is an extremely thoughtful and articulate man.  He received his BS from the United States Military Academy, and subsequently an MA from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies (in 2005).  Clint served in the US Army as a staff officer in Seoul, Korea, an officer in the Infantry, and as a US Ranger. He was the Executive Officer of the Combating Terrorism Center at the USMA at West Point.  After the 9/11 attacks, he was recruited into the FBI, to help coordinate efforts combating terrorism across multiple governmental agencies. Watts also worked as a Special Agent for the FBI; in this capacity he served on the Joint Terrorism Task Force.  He also has consulted for the FBI Counterterrorism Division, and for the FBI National Security Branch.  Clint is currently a Foreign Policy Research Institute fellow, joining them in 2011.  He became the FPRI Robert A Fox Fellow in the initiative focusing on Middle East Studies.  He is also the Senior Fellow at the Center for Cyber and Homeland Security at George Washington University.  He does consulting work for, and teaches at, police agencies, intelligence sources, and the military.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Maryland Chincoteague Ponies - by Beached Paws Photography

These photos were taken by, and are available for sale through Beached Paws Photography
of Berlin, MD - Please check out her facebook page and website...
Her photographs are artistic, beautiful, and amazing!

Carol's Girl - passed away at age 23 last month


Dr Jay

N6EL (I call her Noel)

Pretty Lass


The Belmont Stakes and Other Items

We knew there would be no Triple Crown Champion when Cloud Computing won the Preakness Stakes.  I was surprised that neither he, nor the Kentucky Derby winner, Always Dreaming, were in the Belmont.  The only horse to run in all three Triple Crown races this year was Lookin At Lee - who finished second in the Derby and fourth in the Preakness.
   Twelve were entered in the 149th Belmont; Epicharis could not pass the veterinarian exam in the morning, and was scratched, so eleven horses went to the starting gate.  The race is/was 1 1/2 miles on the main dirt track; the purse was $1.5 million, with $800,000 going to the winner.   Meantime led the way out of the starting gate and at the first turn, Hollywood Handsome was caught charging up into traffic, clipped heels, and almost lost his rider.  Irish War Cry took over the lead in the back stretch, and looked to be the winner, but Tapwrit came charging up, stayed stride for stride, then passed the chestnut, and won by two lengths in 2 minutes 30.02 seconds. Patch was third; Gormley fourth.  Lookin At Lee finished seventh. Hollywood Handsome walked off the track, but had surgical staples applied to a laceration behind his left knee.
   If you made a $2 bet to win on Tapwrit, you received $12.60; a $2 place on Irish War Cry paid $4.70; and a $2 show bet paid $6.50 for Patch.  A $2 perfecta bet paid $45.20; a $2 trifecta paid $624.00; and a $2 superfecta paid $4,486.00.
    Tapwrit won by two lengths over Irish War Cry, who was 5 3/4 lengths in front of Patch, who was 4 1/4 lengths in front of Gormley.  This is the full order of finish:   1 - Tapwrit; 2 - Irish War Cry; 3 - Patch; 4 - Gormley; 5 - Senior Investment; 6 - Twisted Tom; 7 - Lookin At Lee; 8 - Meantime; 9 - J Boys Echo; 10 - Multiplier.  Hollywood Handsome did not finish; Epicharis did not start.

  I apologize for having gotten so lax in keeping this blog up to date.  I find myself fascinated by the monkeyshines occurring in the 45th administration, and I keep spending more time in front of the television, instead of the keyboard and monitor.  My television is in another room, just so I cannot stare at it and try to type and research...  Thursday I watched the testimony of James Comey in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee; Friday, I celebrated my birthday by driving over Trail Ridge Road, through Rocky Mountain National Park (where we saw elk, elk, more elk, moose, and a large variety of birds). Yesterday I tried to catch up on household things, and watch the Belmont.
  Today, I'm taking care of three houses full of pets, whose owners are on vacation...  I have pet duties through the 29th of June, followed by a few days off (if nothing comes up).
  And, of course, I'm also trying to keep up with all the new foals on Assateague Island - the ones belonging to the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company.  As of last night, there had been 54 births (and 2 deaths)... including a palomino pinto baby born on my birthday to Marsh Mallow.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Chincoteague Ponies and Views - Photos

Canada geese

Krackers, a five-year-old, by Surfer Dude, out of Diamond's Jewel

Baybe and Prince's colt   (Thanks to DSC Photography)

Sea Feather, a 22-year-old pony, who has books written about her

ET and Puzzle's colt  (Thanks to DSC Photography)

Chincoteague Channel sunset, 31 May

Surfer's Riptide, 8-year-old stallion; by Surfer Dude, out of Surf Queen