The local TV news channels last evening showed quick photos of the ice jams on the Connecticut River as well as the Hoosatonic River. The river ice has been reported to be 6″ to 9″ thick +/- and was jamming up at the “Swing Bridge” in East Haddam after the rain and quick thaw that had followed two weeks of constant sub-freezing temperatures. I think the jam reaches up to Hartford and beyond.
Sooooo, after a quick lunch I headed first to the Mall to return something I’d purchased a couple of days ago, then a quick visit to the MD (everything’s fine). Yes I had a warm hooded coat on, LL Bean boots, so I thought I was well protected from the cold. Let’s not forget the heavy jeans, turtleneck and sweater as well. My almost ready for retirement GPS got me to East Haddam. Not surprisingly, I was not the only one foolhardy enough to be there on this 30°F afternoon with a nice strong NW wind blowing.
Sure enough the ice was piled up all over the place. There were traffic jams and horns blaring in the tiny parking lot and to get across a lane of traffic took more patience than a lot of drivers had been blessed with.
The USCoast Guard ice-breakers were nowhere to be seen. Apparently they never left Essex. These had been ordered after the local public officials had declared an “emergency state”. And rumor has it that the Swing Bridge has been damaged by the jam and will be unable to open to allow boat traffic to venture up stream or come down to Long Island Sound. There has even been talk about dynamiting the Hoosatonic River jams.
All-right, enough! Let’s see the pictures. Please note, the young boy sliding on the ice is wearing shorts. Where was his mother?? The triangular wedge of ice that’s pushing up the dock in front of the Shad Shack is enormous and the rest of the photos are simply surreal.
As always, just click on an image to start your slide show. CP, this one’s for you!
An altogether too short trip to Cape Cod renewed my love for the Cape.. I was attending a CAFCA conference of Community Action Agencies throughout New England at the Sea Crest Hotel on Old Silver Beach in North Falmouth, Massachusetts..
The topics of the session were timely and were tailored to be appropriate to either Board Members (me), Directors and other staff from these agencies.
The hotel was lovely and the staff extremely pleasant and helpful. When I’ve traveled in the past and brought a bathing suit, my room has been miles removed from any swimming pool or beach and I’m not one to waltz through an entire hotel lobby to get to a pool. Well, we all know who did not bring a suit.
Yes, my room looked out onto a lovely salt water pool accessible through a door conveniently located beside my windows and the beach was maybe 100′ away and readily accessible as well.
I had arrived early on Sunday morning and planned to do some sightseeing since the weather was spectacular.
I drove to Woods Hole specifically to see and photograph the the Nobska Lighthouse. Yes, that’s it totally wrapped in some protective covering as it undergoes major restoration.
I have memories of staying with a girlfriend and her family when I was around 10 years of age at a beautiful home in the area. My parents had come down from the Boston area to visit as well and I still remember walking down the hill from the house with my dad, crossing some railroad tracks that are now a bike trail while singing “Down By the Station….” at the top of our lungs. I found the site once again and as I was driving down the hill, yes you know what I was singing.
I stopped at one of the many beaches, took my shoes off and rolled up my pants legs. The beachcomber in me wanted to find treasure but I think the just passed storm had washed everything out to sea. nonetheless the water was lovely. Crystal clear and calm.
I’ve included some photographs of the views at Nobska Lighthouse. the Sea Crest and Old Silver Beach.
As always, click on any image to start a slide show. Enjoy. ep
Plans were made, cancelled and remade. Buttonwood Farm was having it’s annual “Sunflowers for Wishes” event all week. If you’re not familiar with this event, it is the farm’s fundraiser for the “Make a Wish Foundation” raising well over $100,000 every summer from the sale of the farm’s sunflower bouquets.
The weather has not been great. (major understatement). But by
Monday the weather gurus were promising a glorious day today (Wednesday) and I took them at their word.
I picked Shel up at 9:15 this cool, sunny, low humidity morning, arriving at Buttonwood’s shortly before 10:00 AM. We were not the first to arrive but as the morning wore on, we were glad we had arrived as early as we did.A new feature had been added since my last visit. A “cow train” for the youngsters. Each child has his or her own “cow” to sit in. It was really quite cute and the little kids loved it.
We bought our tickets for the hay wagon ride to see the layout of the farm stopping to feed some beautiful cows with hay that had been conveniently left under our seats and another photo-op in the middle of 450,000 sunflowers. The driver had explained to us that the farm had planted that many seeds at staggered intervals in May to ensure a continuing bloom during this special week.
Well, Shel and I got separated in the field of blooms but we eventually emerged and agreed that it was quite a site to behold.
Did I mention that in addition to the sale of sunflower bouquets that this is a farm known for miles around for it’s ice cream?? Have you ever had ice cream and only ice cream for lunch?? We did! Shel had a scoop of a peanut butter concoction and a scoop of “dark and stormy” I believe. It looked delish! As for me, I passed on my usual chocolate chip types of Ice cream and opted for “tropical”. A scoop of key lime pie ice cream topped with a scoop of coconut ice cream. Sublimely delicious. Yes, a pun intended!
The parking lot by then was filled, infants to grandparents by the score, the road out in front chock-a-block with cars but everyone was smiling and enjoying themselves. The Buick was well behaved as we extricated ourselves from the parking lot and headed back to Colchester.
I’m a volunteer receptionist at the Senior Center on Wednesday afternoons and I had made them aware that I might be a few minutes late. The AM receptionist kindly stayed on until my arrival (only about 5 minutes behind my scheduled start time). it was a quiet and uneventful afternoon following our morning of kids, cows and cones. If you have “bee” issues, please be aware that they are in the fields with the flowers.
Enjoy the images, make a trip out to the farm this week..google will give you all the information. As always, click on any image to begin your slide show. ep
It’s been almost 2 years since I have visited Lavender Pond Farm in Killingworth, Connecticut. My friend Inge mentioned that she would like to visit this locale so off we went yesterday morning! It’s an absolutely stunning locale with multiple varieties of lavender stretching as far as your eye can see. What is the cost of admission you ask?? Free!
There are plants in full bloom, plants just waiting to burst into bloom, tiny little plants just starting to fill out. But that’s not all, there is a lovely gazebo where you can sit and people watch as many of us are wont to do, another sitting area with some shade and new since my last visit…..a chess board and chess pieces approximately 3’…yes 3 feet tall for your enjoyment and or amusement.
A word of caution, there are bees by the hundred feasting on the pollen of the lavender blossoms.
For you shoppers out there, a charming gift shop awaits you with everything lavender available for purchase including lavender plants and garden ornaments soaps, essential oils, sachets and pillows.
And yes, as you drove up, you may have heard a rooster announcing your arrival. All I can say is feel free to look around, don’t rush, it’s a very tranquil, sweet scented place to visit. If you walk down the sloping driveway, there’s a beautiful little pond and a stone bridge over a trickling brook.
And by now it was lunch time so thanks to a call phone GPS I think we visited parts of Kansas but ended in Montville in a new Asian restaurant for a very tasty lunch with another pal, Bill.
And as always, click on any image to start your slide show. Thanks for stopping by. ep
Well, Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are our rear view mirrors now. The overdosing on turkey, stuffing, gravy, green beans of every ilk, cookies, fudge and pumpkin whats?…please say you’re kidding.
This past Sunday I met with my friend Inge at The Shack in Groton for breakfast. I had no plans for the rest of the day other than to watch the New England Patriots sometime after 4:00 pm. (the couch was calling) However, when Inge suggested a visit to the Mystic Aquarium followed by a visit to the gift shop at the Mystic Seaport: off we went!
We were the first guests to arrive at the aquarium. It was cold and windy but we had parking spots in front of the entrance and warm coats
. Inge is a member of the Aquarium and I was her (+1). We saw beluga whales, Stellar sea lions, fur seals (big guys) jelly fish and patted rays in their own heated area. I was totally enthralled by the multitude of habitats, colors of so many sea creatures that lost count shortly after arrival along with the delighted faces and voices of the youngsters as they viewed the same scenes.
We capped off our visit to the aquarium by viewing in 4D (3D plus sensory effects) a shortened version of “Polar Express” complete with flying snowflakes, rattling seats as our train headed north and the joy again of the youngsters both in the film and in the audience.
Mystic Seaport’s Gift Shop is a shopper’s delight. But first we stopped in their café, sampled some super delish fudge then ordered clam chowdah. Oh my goodness; rich-creamy-piping hot yumminess. The store wasn’t particularly crowded so we were able to pause frequently to really check out many of the offerings. As we were leaving, it was a different story with lines in the café and many shoppers arriving.
I love spontaneous adventures like this! Plans made far in advance often fall victim to other issues resulting in changes and disappointments.
Now, we look forward to the Christmas Season and other holidays and the joy they bring. Wishing you all the joys and happiness of the season and a sincere wish for a healthy, happy and safe New Year to all friends and followers.
What a great evening. Close to 100 guests attended a superb buffet at the St. Andrew’s Church Parish Hall here in Colchester. A number of the attendees walked away as winners of some great tea cup raffle baskets, received awards for a variety of successes on the Chanticlair Golf Course and were absolutely blown away by the results of Luke Hajdasz’s fund raising efforts to benefit the Colchester Senior Center over the past 3 years. The exact dollar amount eludes me but it was announced last night that it exceeded $14,000. This young man, with awesome Hajdasz family’s support came up with this idea, created the game plan, solicited donations, worked diligently with the Senior Center staff and of course the management at Chanticlair. His goal was to reach $10,000. Well done Luke!! The image with Becky holding her “smart phone” with Luke and Patty Watts (Director of Senior Services) looking on are seeing for the first time the results of his labors.
The generously donated tea cup raffle baskets were amazing, lots of golf related items, a football signed by Patriots player J Edelman, sporting event tickets, restaurants, spa treatments and many, many more. I will add that there were several very, very lucky attendees. You know who you are 🙂
The buffet was prepared by Papa Z’s restaurant including salads, crusty bread and butter, pasta creations, (the alfredo chicken was my favorite) and slices of pizza. A number of people went back for seconds. Dessert was a huge cake decorated with a golf theme of course accompanied by a fizzy pink punch.
There were many workers behind the scenes throughout this 2 day event ranging from checking in the golfers as they arrived to setting up and cleaning up at the Parish Hall and a multitude of tasks in between. Thank you to all of these committed ladies and gentlemen.
And my final reminder: click on any image to start your slide show.
Friday’s kick off time was 9:30 am. We’ve already discussed Friday’s weather conditions.
Today (Saturday) kick off time was 12:30 pm. That factoid should give you a little indication of today’s weather conditions. In my most unmeteorological language, today was at lease ten times hotter and 200% more humid. And I did something I swore I would never do…appeared in public in a tee-shirt and knee length shorts. I’m very glad I’m the one who was taking the photos and not the other way around!
There aren’t nearly as many photos today as there were yesterday and I apologize for that but It was simply too hot and humid to stay out on the course for more than half an hour. However, I don’t understand why the ducks weren’t taking advantage of the fountain.
As always, click on an image to start your slide show. ep
After weeks, no…make that months of planning by the Senior Center Staff. Luke Hajdasz and his family, the days have finally arrived. Last year at this same event, the weather was glorious, reasonable temperatures, cool breezes and low humidity. Today’s tropical temperatures and humidity as well as concerns about T-storms put a small crimp in the festivities. I’m not a golfer and don’t plan on becoming one at this late date but I do know that these players have indomitable spirit and I’ve been told that heat or cold, rain and probably snow does little to stop them from taking one more swing. Thunder and lightning may be a different story.
This is the first of 3 posts for me today. Friday’s 9 hole event, Saturday’s 18 hole event and the celebratory banquet this evening where beautiful gift baskets will be raffled, speeches will be mad trophies will be presented and lots of food will be consumed.
So please enjoy the photos, and remember that by clicking on any one image, you can start a slide show to view larger images.
PS: The blue heron released the frog back into the pond.
It has been said that one picture is worth one thousand words. That certainly makes writing this blog easier today.
I recently spent a few days up in Mid-Coast/Down-East Maine. Pictures will certainly outnumber words today. I’ll try to caption most to give you an idea of where/what you’re looking at. I will say that the weather maven gave me everything but snow/sleet during my stay. Thunder, lightning, pouring rain and wicked winds in the middle of 2 nights, dense-very dense fog banks that rolled in and out on a whim, and blazing sun as well.
It was certainly time well spent. I had an opportunity to re-energize, renew acquaintances, revisit some previous favorite spots in the area and yes: take a few photographs.
As a reminder, click on one of the images to start your slide show.