The summer heat is upon us with days being spent either sweating like a dog if doing anything outside, or escaping into the comforts of the A/C. Problem is once you go into the house and cool off, it only makes going back outside even more miserable. It’s easier to just stay outside all day long and allow your body to acclimate to the oppressing heat.
The only way to really enjoy these days is to go out on the boat and keep it moving. Once away from the mainland, it seems the temperature drops 10 degrees and there always seems to be a slight breeze keeping the sweat off of you. The water doesn’t even do that good of a job of cooling you off as it’s right around 90 degrees too. Cindy and I spent the day floating around the islands just relaxing and swimming in the salty, warm water trying our hardest to keep cool. When you started to sweat up on the boat, you simply jumped overboard to try and cool off. It was a great routine and something that we both just repeated every few minutes.
We stopped this tiring process for awhile to head into town and grab some lunch. I walked over to the Hardware Store and bought a few plastic scrapers before we came back out and hung out in the bath water till the late afternoon with little to no clothes on.
With the water this warm, the barnacles on the bottom of the boat are growing really fast, so once back at the sandbar, I spent about an hour with my mask and fins on scraping the bottom clean. Cindy held onto the side while floating on her Noodles and scraped the sides and the first foot along the bottom, but refused to put her head under to scrape anything underneath. I was fine with that as any help was good help. Plus, the current was ripping through the sandbar so fast, that trying to keep myself in place was a serious workout.
While we scraped, we sat listening to thunder and watched lightning bolt after lightning bolt hit back in the mainland. We kept checking the radar, but like usual, the summer storms just roll down the coast drenching a few miles of earth further inland, but almost never come out into the open water. That offshore breeze always keeps them a few miles inland so we really had nothing to worry about. I couldn’t think of a better way to waste away a sweltering summer day…floating in the water watching the storms while the wife is skinny dipping beside me…My idea of heaven!
Around 7pm, Cindy suggested we head back in so we wouldn’t get stuck out at low tide. We were out last night doing a photo shoot and stayed out a bit too late. Luckily Heath was at home to come save the day. He met us at the boat ramp where Cindy and the couple we were photographing jumped into his car; he got on the boat with me to see what kind of trouble we could get into.
I suggested that we tie the boat up at his dock and have Cindy come back and pick us up, but he said “I bet I can make it into your dock.”
You know me, I simply said “If you think you can make it, then lets go, I’m not scared to walk in if we get grounded in the muck.” We have done this before.
I gave him the controls and sat down like old times when he owned the boat. Needless to say, he made it in with a nice rooster tail of mud being slung behind us.
So tonight we didn’t want to have a re-cap of last night, so I agreed with Cindy and we headed back to the Low-Key Hideaway.
While we were heading back, she pointed to a sandbar and said “OMG! That looks like a big flock of White Pelicans!”
She was right, but we NEVER have white pelicans here this late in the year so of course I laughed and told her she was wrong. A few nights ago, a good friend was telling me that he had been out fishing on his new boat and saw a big flock of white pelicans, but I laughed at him and said “You must have been drinking too much, because they haven’t been around since late April.” We’ve been out on numerous occasions since April and have yet to see white pelicans.
I told her that it was probably a big flock of Great White Egrets, but as we got closer to the sandbar, one of them started to flap its big set of wings and we could see the distinct black feathers they have on the undersides of their wings. WOW, why on earth is there a big flock of white pelicans here this late in the year?
We were talking about them a few weeks ago at the tiki bar and a woman who was visiting from the 10,000 Islands area of Florida told me they have a few big flocks that never leave. Who knows? Maybe they’re the elders in the flocks and don’t want to fly North, or maybe they’re the young ones who don’t know to follow the rest of the flock when they leave to make their migration. Either way, it was a treat to see these birds here this time of year.
They didn’t look as majestic as they do in the winter months when they’re in their breeding plumage. Their whites are a dingy gray, their bills and feet that are normally a bright yellow are very pale and those big horns they grow on their bills are gone making their bill look much smaller.
Cindy grabbed the controls while I fired off a few shots. We didn’t want to disturb them, so we just idled by and let them be.
Once back at the motel, we tied up the boat in the slip and unloaded the camera equipment. A few friends were in the Tiki Bar so we hung out with them for awhile when all of a sudden the sky went black and the wind started blowing something awful. Everyone went outside to see what was going on.
A big wall cloud was right over top of us and bringing in some crazy wind with it. The temperature dropped a good 10 degrees within the first minute of the cloud passing overhead. Palm fronds were blowing out of the trees and birds were having trouble flying back to the islands to their nightly roosting grounds. What a change from the absolutely perfect day we’d been experiencing earlier.
Not that this was an issue, honestly I was loving it as the sticky, humidity was now gone and the wind was keeping any bugs away from us. The show it was putting on was magnificent too, so we just sat out in the hanging chairs on the end of the dock and ended the day with a wonderful stormy sunset.