weekly photo challenge: foreign

I live in Florida, but I have only been here for a few years; before that, I was a true Yankee, a New York girl born and raised.  So there are many things about my new home that are foreign to me, even after being here for awhile. For example, the whole surfing thing–completely foreign to me.  I can’t imagine the bravery, the confidence, the physical stamina and endurance that it takes to be able to swim out into a rough ocean and ride the waves.  I am fascinated…and surfers are one of my favorite subjects to photograph.  This past weekend was a double-win for me:  not only did Hurricane Sandy leave us with crazy wild waves after she blew past our coastline, but there was also a pro surf tournament going on in nearby Cocoa Beach–the Slater Brothers Invitational. ImageImageThese are pictures of a couple  of amazing professional longboard surfers taking advantage of the waves that Sandy left behind.   As I watched them, out of the corner of my eye, I saw something even more foreign to me; a little surfer dude, maybe 8 years old, donning his wetsuit to go out and join the big boys in the surf.  Now, I am momma to three boys, all with a certain degree of daredevil in them, but I cannot imagine watching them…or encouraging them…to go out into the ocean in conditions such as they were that day.  The waves were 8-10 feet high, and the ripcurrents were fierce–there was a double-red-flag warning (meaning stay the heck out of the water ’cause it’s super-dangerous!) It’s one thing for the pros to be out there, I suppose they have the experience (and the size/strength) to know what to do and how to do it. I am a little afraid of the ocean, not knowing it all that well; I suppose we are all a little afraid of what is foreign to us. But this little man seemed familiar enough; he had no fear, and his dad helped to usher him out to where the waves were breaking.  The current pushed them down the shore out of my sight…I wish it hadn’t, ’cause I really wanted to see the little dude do his thing…ImageImage

another sunrise silhouette

Imagemy favorite time to be beachside is at sunrise…it doesn’t happen very often, since this time of day usually coincides with getting the boy ready for school…but sometimes on the weekend, i can broker a deal…cinnamon waffles with whipped cream for breakfast in exchange for a minimal amount of grumbling   from the tweener-of-the-house when we drag him out of bed to go and watch the sun come up at indialantic beach…such was the deal on a saturday morning in september…if i’m being honest, the boy’s tweener brain is thinking far better than his momma’s non-caffeinated brain does at this time of day…this shot was his idea, and he set himself up and had me shoot it…normally he’s not a fan of having his picture taken, but this was different…one that he actually likes 🙂

gopher turtle 10/21/12

Imagesuch a beautiful day yesterday…the first real day of fall weather in central fl…took a trip to gleason park in indian harbour beach…the man went for a run, and the boy and i went for a walk around the lake…the gopher turtles were out enjoying the sunshine and a bit of lunch…i love trying to capture their faces…i’m fascinated by their tiny little teeth and their expressions…this guy was way more interested in eating his lunch than the fact that I was trying to take his picture, so he didn’t stay still for more than a moment…just long enough for me to capture this portrait…

yesterday’s surf @ 2nd light–satellite beach, fl

Imagei made it out to 2nd light yesterday…so glad…good surf, talented surfers, pretty light…kind of awesome…filled a 4G card in half an hour…haven’t had time to sort through them all yet…so far, this is one of my favorites…

friends and family

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yes, he does abide…

school started yesterday here in brevard county, fl…the boy is in 6th grade, his last year of elementary school…he came home from school yesterday with some forms from his teacher to be filled out, and some papers that they’d done in class, ‘getting acquainted’ kind of games for the kids to get to know each other better…on one of them, each child answered a series of questions (like ‘what’s your favorite food?’ and ‘who is your favorite musician?’ etc.) and then went around the class to see which of their classmates had similar ‘likes’…as i read the questions and his answers, i smiled…and kind of cringed…for my boy’s ‘likes’ are somewhat different than your average 11-year-old…for example…his favorite actor? leonardo dicaprio…his favorite tv show? ‘it’s always sunny in philadelphia’…his favorite movie? ‘the big lebowski’…his favorite music group? the beatles…what he wants to be? ‘happy’…apparently this wasn’t meant for the teacher, only for the kids to do amongst themselves…not sure what the teacher would make of his answers, having just met him…i’m sure they’ll make sense to her as she gets to know him…for my boy is definitely a little dude…a peaceful, happy little dude…and yes, he does abide…

viera wetlands

finally...a river otter! 5/2/12finally…a river otter! 5/2/12

when we pick the boy up from school, we have a ritual of asking how his day went…usually we’ll say something like “did you do anything exciting at school today?” to which he will usually reply “no”…and then he will ask us, in turn, if we did anything exciting during the day…today when he asked, i told him about how i finally, after over a year of trying, managed to get a picture of a river otter at the wetlands today…he listened, and said, “um, that’s great…did you do anything else?” …really, i do know better…he doesn’t get nearly as psyched about this kind of thing as i do…:)

wednesday @ the wetlands

IMG_5483vogue! anhinga @viera wetlands, 2/29/12

breeding season is in full swing for the birdies at viera wetlands…this means (so i’ve learned) that they’re even prettier and more colorful than usual in their quest to attract a mate and, well, breed…this anhinga was sitting on top of a tree flapping his wings, shaking his tailfeathers, doing a crazy dance…I suppose this is all part of the game…i wish i knew more about it…the blue-green patch around their eyes is stunning…hope it all works out for him 🙂