Sunday, November 23, 2014

And by water...

After getting back from riding the scoots, Joan read the forecast to me for this evening...

"It's going to be windy... all night and most of tomorrow."

"Well, I guess I better toss a kayak in the water.  I saw some dolphins when we were crossing the bridge - maybe they will have come up the waterway some?"

Joan gave me a hand getting the Hobie into the water, and I shoved off.  Heading down our canal...


I pedaled to the east after our canal; into the "lake area."  In the distance, you can see the highrises on South Padre Island...


Turning down another canal from the lake...


Under the low bridge...


A beautiful day - folks were out on their patios and decks; plenty of smiling and waving, and some questions about the kayak (How do you steer that thing?)...


This community used to be an Outdoor Resorts - an RV resort where you buy the lot.  Over time, it has morphed into mostly small homes, Sea Cottages, park homes, and some RV lots...


I made my way into the ICW - no dolphins, but the pirate ship was pulling away from its temporary dock...


They must have a sunset cruise today; should be a perfect evening for it.  Looking to the west, you see the end of the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway...


That is the Port Isabel Turning Basin.  What looks like a tower in the distance is a drilling ship that was docked there a year and a half ago, with the premise that it was going to undergo refitting.  No sign of that.

There are a couple RV lots left that front the ICW...



Not much boat traffic in the ICW.  I turned up another canal on our island - a couple pelicans sitting on top of a house there...


Someone is getting a new house built...


I passed under another bridge and slowed down as I passed our friends Mike and MJ's lot - they just got in yesterday.  No sign of them outside, so I pedaled on.  Down our canal and up to our dock...


Joan grabbed the bow line and gave me a hand pulling the kayak up on the dock.  I hosed it off and joined Joan and Izzy up on the deck, watching the sun drop.



Crisp...


A beautiful start to the day - sunshine, crisp blue sky, no wind.

Within a half hour, the fog moved in...


It lasted about an hour, then back to sunny skies.  After a leisurely morning (Joan cleaned while I provided music), we got the scoots out.

Someone on one of the forums was asking about the GoPro - it inspired me to get it out today.  Heading across the causeway...




Any use of the GoPro is not complete without a shot up the nose...


Seriously, I don't try to take these dumbass up-the-nose shots... but the menu screen on the camera is SO small, you have to turn it towards you to even see it.  And, this is what you get.

We ran up and down the island... the developed part is only 4 miles, the width of the island is less than a half mile, so it doesn't take long to cover all the roads.

We stopped at Pier 19 for lunch, but there was a 45 minute wait to get a table.  Good to see people on the island, but we weren't willing to wait; during the week, there will be no line.  We rode north on the island to Blackbeard's and got seated right away.  Lunch was good.  Some more riding around, then back across the causeway...


This is the prettiest the water has looked in a couple weeks.


Saturday, November 22, 2014

Pretty sure of themselves...


We occasionally hear the weather weasels say, "Zero percent chance of precip today."  Most of the time, it seems they'll throw in a "10% chance" just to cover themselves.

Today, they are calling for a "100% chance of rain" for later today... well, around 10:00 this evening.  With predictions of heavy thunderstorms.  A chance of hail.  Tornadoes may be possible.  I don't recall seeing hail around here, but I'm sure it is possible.  Tornadoes sometimes get spawned off of hurricanes.  What, no plague of locusts?

Could be worse: there is no mention of "the S-word"... as we all know, Snow SUX®. ;-)


Friday, November 21, 2014

Did you get that around here?


Into the upper 70s, mostly blue sky, and breezy.  We took the scoots out for lunch.  Well, they didn't each lunch - they barely sip gas - but, we rode the scoots to have lunch out.

The purpose was two-fold.  First, and most important, we wanted to ride the scoots.  Second, there has been a "sports park" scooter tag on the scooter forum I frequent, and no one has posted anything.  When the tag was changed to "anything with the word 'sports' in it," I knew I could snag that... if I got back with the photo soon enough.


Here's a close-up of the sign, clearly showing the word "sports"...


Lunch was good; tried a different pizza than our usual.  Yeah, living on the edge.  Maybe, the crust?

We rode a bit, then stopped to do a little shopping.  Walgreens usually has Russell Stover milk chocolate covered marshmallow Santas.  Joan did her shopping while I perused the Russel Stover section... everything but milk chocolate covered marshmallow Santas.  Seriously - raisin oatmeal Santas?  Red velvet Santas?  Sugar-free crappy Santas?  No milk chocolate covered.  Joan said, "They will have them somewhere else in the store."  She was right.

Whew!  Man does not live by pizza alone.

While in the store, an older gentleman came up to me and asked "Are those your scooters in the parking lot?"

No, he wasn't a psychic, pretty sure I was the only one in the store carrying a helmet... the leftover pizza was in my storage under the seat of the scoot.

I figured we were going to have the "How fast/what kind of mileage/how much?" talk.  We get that a lot.  Instead, he asked, "Did you get those around here?"

"No, we were visiting our daughter in Arizona, and bought them there.  But, any Honda motorcycle dealer can get them."  We visited for a bit... he used to be a motorcycle cop, and he had a Bergman 650 scooter, until it got too heavy for him.  He said his dog really misses riding on the scooter.  He also said, "I saw you move those things around when you parked - pretty easy, huh?"

"Yep.  Like moving a bicycle around."

"I'm going to check into one of those.  Are those brand new?"

"No, we've had 'em for almost two years now."

"Wow - they look like new."

"That's Honda for you.  And, we keep 'em clean."

The scoots do get a lot of interest.  Most people don't know anything about scooters, though; this guy was different.  You meet the nicest people on a Honda.  ;-)


Thursday, November 20, 2014

A look into the future...


Some of you know I play guitar.  For 50 years now.  I really should be better than I am... but, I digress.

One of my guitars is made from carbon fiber.  Wood guitar purists haven't embraced the carbon fiber technology.  I like, and play, both.  On a carbon fiber guitar forum where I participate, someone asked "What are your thoughts on carbon fiber guitars 50 years from now?"

You're probably thinking: "Musta been a slow night on the carbon fiber forum, huh?"

Yep.  But it did make me think...

----------------------

I am firmly convinced that the mostly forgotten theremin will catch on at last and overtake guitar somewhere between 44 and 47 years down the road. All those carbon fiber and wood guitars we currently covet will be relegated to planters... probably for the "home brewers" of the day, to grow their genetically altered marijuana plants. The songs of the 60s that many felt were "life changing" will be looked at as amusing, but the hair band tunes of the 80s will have come back around. High school marching bands will be playing "We're Not Gonna Take It," "You Give Love a Bad Name," and "Girls, Girls, Girls," arranged for theremin and wireless electric clarinet at half time for the Extreme Hoverboard Soccer Games.

Well, that's how I see it.



Jim

(On the bright side, I won't be around to experience it. Unless my kid has my head cryogenically frozen... at which point I won't have any arms, so it still won't matter.)


Well, that was creepy...


Another movie date.

More typical for a November "crowd" at the 4-plex: there were 5 of us in that particular theater.  Today, we saw Jake Gyllenhaal in Nightcrawler.  No, it wasn't about getting worms for fishing.  The gist of it is: Gyllenhaal plays a very creepy character who films gory things for TV news... the saying was, "If it bleeds, it leads."

It wasn't a particularly enjoyable movie, but Gyllenhaal did a fine job of portraying a creepy character.

Oh, and the popcorn was good.  ;-)


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Can't take you anywhere...


Have you heard that before?  Yeah, me, too.

Today was supposed to be a "moderating" day, according to the weather weasels - not up to our normal daytime highs, but partly sunny and a high of 69º.  Pretty close... except for no sunshine and it didn't get that warm.  ;-)

We planned to go out for lunch, taking the scooters.  Well, it was barely 60º, but a plan is a plan.  Oh, I know what is going on in much of the country... this is still 15º or so cooler than usual here.  We had jackets on, riding to our favorite local Italian restaurant.

What I generally order takes a while, so we have time to visit.  I told her I had been e-mailing with one of my captain buddies from Friday Harbor - he has a new boat driving gig and was asking if we were coming back next summer.

"What did you tell him?" she asked.

"We haven't made any decisions, yet."

"What is going on with all your internet forums?" she asked.

"Oh, some bullshit on one of the scooter forums," I said.

"You need to watch your language!"

"No shit?"

;-)

She said it was chilly in the restaurant.  We were sitting by a window, but could see a thermometer inside... 74º.  I said, "If you can't take that temperature, I can't take you back to the Pacific Northwest."

She said, "I can't take you anywhere."

She may have a point.

Heading back home, we stopped to pick up mail.  With the parking lot still torn up, it is about a block walk to get to our post office boxes, from a parking spot by the tennis courts...


We had just come from dropping off mail at the Post Office; yep, there was a "pink slip" in our box, letting us know we have a package to pick up at the Post Office.  Back into town, back to the Post Office.

Joan was a happy girl...


Oh, you can't see the box in that photo above.  This is a better view...


Keurig.  "I was getting low," she said.  "My favorite things: coffee and riding my scooter."

"And me?"

"Oh, yeah... and my man."