Spotted this elephant far off and because we had such a long view he stayed in sight for more than you usually get on this safari ride. He is hauling a cut log and was working very hard to move it "somewhere." I have no idea where or why.
The most dangerous animal in Africa is the hippo. This one seemed massive, an average male weighs in at over 3300 pounds. They are aggressive and highly unpredictable. An egret was hitching a ride on his back.
All these images were captured at a zoo, but a special zoo that does not feel like a zoo, Animal Kingdom at Disney. Most of the photos were taken on the Safari ride first thing in the morning. I love that you get to ride through the reserve and see animals in a more natural manner, no bars or concrete moats. It is not easy to photograph because the vehicle is always moving and it is a very bumpy ride. But now they have done away with the "we have to catch poachers" story and just let you focus on the animals. So, the ride actually stopped four or five times, usually for 3 or 5 seconds but still it stopped. So, this trip I managed slightly better images, still handheld and still often moving but better. Photos this week all come from that first morning - I have more that I will save for a bit later.
Might as well start really big!
This image is taken at the Virginia War Memorial in Richmond. I focused on the names instead of the eternal flame or the memorials people leave like the rose because it is the people who matter. There are walls of glass and marble with hundreds of names from several conflicts of men and women who died serving this country. Great place to think.
The Richmond skyline along the James from the new pedestrian bridge over the James River. Richmond is such a neat place and the largest city in the US with class 4 and five rapids right in the midst of an urban setting.
One of the many "colorful" denizens of New Orleans. I was on a scouting mission on Frenchman's Street to look at the potential music venues in the daylight. Not too impressed. This was but one of the people talking loudly to people I couldn't see. And you never know when you will need that third horn. Bike, however, missing the can caddy. Hope he had a good week.
Each time I am in New Orleans I seem to find at least one cool bike to photograph. Love the retro look and the colors on this one and its "never going to misplace me" neon lock. It has all the NO essentials: cup holder.
If you can read the sign it says there are luxury apartments for rent here, newly done and commercial space as well. Lots more of this sort of view in New Orleans than our visit some years ago.
On the way to the top of the lighthouse; only 177 steps to the top light deck. These stairs were really narrow at this point, with the end toward the center being only a few inches wide. The light keeper had to make this trip four times a day often with a load of supplies. Of course he did not need a gym membership, so there is that perk! His wife was required to do so if he were ill.
The Pensacola Lighthouse was completed in 1858 and the first light was lit on New Year's Day of 1859. It stands 159 feet high and provides a great view of both the Pensacola NAS and the Gulf and bay. It is still in use.
This one was not as accomplished as the last one I posted but they tried to make up for that with enthusiasm. Did not really succeed for me to listen too long. But still fun.
This is the heart of the French Quarter and the epicenter of New Orleans. This is taken from a levee. You can see church and state here, centers of power in the age. The square is full of artists, homeless, tourists and lots of people living to a different drumbeat who are not in the mainstream of society.
Coke's new digs at Disney Springs.
Another Disney show, this one at Animal Kingdom. Lots of colors and drums and the sounds of animals. There were four of these floating lotus flowers that opened and changed colors while shooting water high into the night sky.
Fireworks seem to be a trademark at Disney now. These we watched were at the Magic Kingdom. We were on the sand at the beach in the Fort Wilderness Campground. They even broadcast the music at the beach. Nice touch.
From the top of the old (1859) lighthouse (coming later this week) we were able to watch the pilots in jet aircraft training at Pensacola Navel Air Station. The more traditional looking jet in the first photo was doing touch and goes, the other plane is an initial training jet. At least that is what the volunteer at the top of the lighthouse said! I was impressed with both and with the men and women who fly them, kudos.
This was clearly her band, but the other four were also quite good. So much fun walking the street - it was closed to traffic - and hearing group after group. When I came to this one, I stopped. Then 20 minutes later they opened the street and the concert was over. Rats.
Many of the performers you see and hear on the streets of New Orleans are good, some very good and then there are those who excel beyond any expectations of what you would hear just walking along a street. This lady was one of those, just exceptional. And having a lot of fun. Treat plus hearing her.
Four of us ate a super meal outdoors and watched the sun slowly set over the water at Bass Harbor, Maine. Perfect temperatures, no bugs, good company - everyone needs to eat like that occasionally.
There are boats in the harbors that dot Mt. Desert Island and lots of them are quite expensive and used occasionally for pleasure. And there are others, some also expensive, that are used for work. Lobster boats, ferries, fishing boats, Coast Guard ships, tenders and dredgers. There are also lots of "getting to" boats, as in from the dock to the boat. These are two that have seen hard service, years of back and forth carrying anything and everything and gaining lots of character. These two are in Northeast Harbor, Maine.