Saturday, December 31, 2022

Friday, December 30, 2022


Grandpa, driving:  "I haven't seen any deer since I have been back."

Granddaughter #1 from the rear:  "There are two fawns on the right."

Granddaughter #2 from the rear:  "And their mother is on the left."

Thursday, December 29, 2022

Small, Medium, Large

 A small house on New Street puts on a show with Christmas lights.

OK, this Main Street home is bigger than medium, but "Small, Pretty Big and Huge" didn't sound right.

Wednesday, December 28, 2022

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Lola and Sequoia

 Lola (in front) is eleven years old.  Sequoia is six months younger.   
They have been together since Sequoia was eight weeks old.  

Monday, December 26, 2022

The Fountain is Dressed for the Holidays

The Cass Gilbert Fountain is encased in protective glass in the winter.

Poinsettia plants ring the fountain to give it a holiday vibe.

Sunday, December 25, 2022

Merry Christmas!

 Even though I am not a religious person, I love the warmth, friendliness and family focus of the Christmas season.  Hence, the recent trip to Germany and Prague to visit Christmas markets.

The creche display in the Connecticut living room.  These are small clay French figures called "santons."  In Naples the creche has fewer and bigger Italian figures.  (The painting is of the main intersection in West Hartford Center, and it also reminds me of an intersection in German Village, Columbus, Ohio, where I lived and worked from mid-2004 to mid-2010.)

Saturday, December 24, 2022

Merry Johnsmas!

 Son John's birthday was today, which he called Johnsmas.

We went to West Hartford to put a wreath on his memorial arch at Elizabeth Park, as we have every year since we lost him in 2017.

The girls couldn't resist deep puddles.  Could you?  It was warm and dry in the car on the way back.

John specialized in colorful socks.  I was ready for Johnsmas.

Friday, December 23, 2022

Thursday, December 22, 2022

More Recent Birds

 White ibises are everywhere.  But, when they are young they have blotchy white/brown bodies.

Roseate spoonbills are favorites around here.  Note the pale pink and hairy neck and head of the juvenile in front and the darker color and bald head and less hairy neck of the adult behind.

Wood storks often raise a wing to shade the water and help them see the small fish on which they feed.

Back to Connecticut for the holidays.

Wednesday, December 21, 2022

Some Recent Florida Wildlife

 My Naples home is in an Audubon Certified Sanctuary.  That means that lots of the areas without homes, golf course or other amenities are left as preserves.  I wander often, looking for birds or other wildlife.

This nest was blown away at the end of September by Hurricane Ian.  The tree was still bare two weeks ago.  But, the ospreys have now rebuilt it and begun nesting.  I am hoping for chicks in the spring.

This is a Florida soft-shelled turtle, waiting to cross the road.

A snack for a great egret.

Great blue herons are often in the company of other birds like egrets, other herons, spoonbills, wood storks and ibises, but I don't often see them fishing with other great blue herons.

Tuesday, December 20, 2022


 Underneath the Caloosatchee Bridge between Fort Myers and North Fort Myers.

Monday, December 19, 2022

Louis Armstrong and Friends

 A mural on a wall beyond a field on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in Fort Myers.

The wall is behind McCollum Hall, where Louis Armstrong, B.B.King, Duke Ellington and others performed in the 1940s and 1950s.

The hall and the wall are in the Dunbar neighborhood of Fort Myers, a predominantly Black neighborhood of the city.  This post is linked to Monday Mural.

Sunday, December 18, 2022

Saturday, December 17, 2022

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Old Town Square

The medieval Astrological Clock might be the most frequently visited and photographed object in Prague.  It was installed in 1410 against the side of the Old Town Hall, the third astronomical clock in the world and the oldest still in operation.

It is lovely to see the details.

And from lunch on the second floor of Cafe Mozart, across the way.

Old Town Square at this time of the year hosts a fairly large Christmas Market, with more "permanent" looking booths than in many other cities.  There are fewer gift shops and more food and beverage shops.
I prefer the markets in Dresden and Berlin.

One feature of the Old Town Square that I loved was the Jan Hus Monument in the approximate center of the square.  Hus was the dean of Charles University in Prague.  A hundred years before Martin Luther, Hus criticized the Catholic Church for selling indulgences.  The Pope's followers invited Hus to renounce his views.  He declined and was burned at the stake in 1415, setting off waves of wars.  This memorial by Ladislav Saloun was installed on the 500th anniversary of his death, in 1915.

Tuesday, December 13, 2022

The Charles Bridge

 In Prague for two days at the end of this trip.  The first place to visit, of course, is the Charles Bridge.

A medieval stone bridge across the Vitava River, the Charles Bridge connects the Lesser Quarter (behind me in this image) and the Old Town.  The bridge was begun in 1357 under King Charles IV and took 45 years to build.  It features 30 statues and countless pigeons.

It was cold and overcast like most days on this tip when I started across.

But, the sun started to come out halfway across.

The statues were created in the years before and after 1700, but the elements have taken their toll and all are now replicas.  The originals are displayed in the National Museum.

Walkers face and the proceed through the Old Town Bridge Tower at the end.

"HANDS OFF UKRAINE PUTIN" is a welcome banner entering Old Town.

Monday, December 12, 2022

The Elbe

 There was a cruise down the Elbe River in Lower Saxony on a cold, gray day.

One highlight was seeing the Konigstein Fortress up above the river.  This is a massive structure up high and difficult to reach.  In the second world war, the Germans hid the important artworks from their museums and wealthy families in Konigstein.  The word "impregnable" comes to mind.

Sunday, December 11, 2022


Went to a wonderful classical concert with five young artists at night.  Dresden has several prominent concert halls for the many groups that perform in the city.

 There was heavy bombing in the late days of World War II, but it appears that the center of the city, at least, has been rebuilt successfully.

And there was a big, crowded Christmas market.  With the biggest pyramid I can remember seeing.

And, of course, there was gluhwein.

Saturday, December 10, 2022

San Souci, Potsdam, Germany

 Sorry, Weak wifi and some other inconveniences have kept me from daily posts during this trip.

Here are a few from San Souci, the odd palace of the very odd King William the Great.  The exterior is in rough shape, though the interior is in good shape but with limited lighting because of Germany's inflationary high electric rates and limited availability.  San Souci is in Potsdam, just south of Berlin.

William was impressed by Versailles though he never saw it.  He had small pavilions built at each end.

The view through the gardens.  No fountain this season and the statues are protected in winter.

The entrance hall is the only well lit interior area.  The paintings were considered great in their day, but they were not to my taste.

Just to illustrate the limited interior lighting.  Can't blame them and can't blame Germany.

It is Putin's fault.