July 14, 2016

Last night, we went to ‘Business After Hours’ from 5:30 – 7:30 at Aquarium Encounters (http://www.floridakeysaquariumencounters.com), here in Marathon.   This ‘Business After Hours’ is put on by the Greater Marathon Chamber of Commerce.  Because Marathon Boat Yard and Marine Center is a member, and because I (Karen) am employed by MBYMC, the employees get the benefit of attending the fun stuff.

This monthly event is held at various locations ‘of interest’ in Marathon.   An informal dinner and drinks are served and the guests are invited to enjoy the venue.   It stormed while were there, but I got just a few pictures; nothing great, though.

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Giant Grouper

The fish, turtles and crustaceans on display there are all from this area.  Flip and I have actually seen the Giant Groupers in the wild, right near our boat.

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File Fish

We have not seen these File fish in the wild, however.  They are very thin, with a grotesquely small opening for their mouth.

Aquarium Encounters offers just what the name implies.  For a steep price, a visitor can buy various packages of interaction with the fish.  With the cost of the $20 admission, however, there are a few areas where you can touch and feel.  There is a ray pool where you can feed and touch, as well as another ‘pool’ with horseshoe crabs, anemones, starfish, whelks and shrimp.

While I was waiting in line for the food, feeling like I was wasting my time, I observed the following:

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Mangrove roots
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Anole (?)  I have seen these in North Carolina

Then the rain came…

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And the thunder and lightning.

Did you know that Florida is the lightning capital of the US?

 

Sunday, July 10, 2016

This weekend, we did nothing exciting.  Unless you consider cleaning bathrooms, going to the grocery store, washing the boat, and performing ‘spring’ cleaning interesting.  Even down here, in the Keys, I guess one cannot, and should not, expect to have any degree of excitement every day.  Don’t get me wrong, cleaning is what I do best.  It’s a gift from God.  The gift-from-God part is that I truly love doing it.

Oh wait.  I forgot.  Something great did happen.  Last night, when the sun was shining just right on the water by our boat, I realized that we have our very own saltwater aquarium!  There is live coral along the banks and if you take enough time to look, you will see various species of tropical fish, too.  The kind people pay good money for in the pet stores!  I must figure out a way to ‘capture them on film’.  I don’t know the names/types of everything I have seen, but parrot fish and sergeant major fish are abundant.   I am determined to learn what each fish is before too long.

I have no new photos to post, so what follows is an old picture (well, from about 3-1/2 months ago) that is MY favorite.  And, I remember at Elaine’s wedding, Brent Gable mentioned that this is his favorite. Thank you, Brent! You have good taste.

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July 5, 2016

I don’t know what it is with me and birds, but here we go again.  We sailed out to Looe Key on Sunday to spend the night and get in some snorkeling.  Two young cormorants took a liking to us and our boat.  Here is one of them trying to balance on our life-line, which runs the perimeter of our boat.  boatbird

He jumped around the boat, trying to get comfortable, I imagine.

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Soon, his mate joined him.

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And here is where they spent the night… on our boat… all night.

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The next morning, I had to shew them off …

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Later in the morning, we saw this beautiful flock:

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Being July 4th and all, I felt the need to photograph something patriotic:

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Here are just a few random photos from the weekend:

still more green

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more green

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The End. Of the Fourth of July weekend of 2016.