1. 1.
    traveling from place to place, especially working or based in various places for relatively short periods.
    "the peripatetic nature of military life"
    synonyms:nomadic, itinerant, traveling, wandering, roving, roaming, migrant,migratory, unsettled
    "I could never get used to her peripatetic lifestyle"
  2. 2.
  1. 1.
    a person who travels from place to place.
  2. 2.
    an Aristotelian philosopher.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

"Though Much is Taken, Much Abides"

Even "the unemployed" find it necessary sometimes to travel roads once familiar and then left behind to visit loved ones, familiar, and now residing in distant "homes."

The unemployed find strength in things like wildflowers on dunes on barrier islands.

An invitation to drive on the beach once again proves too tempting a pleasure to forgo. The slow pace required and the current paucity of visitors on Anastasia Island reminds one that progress is not always an optimal thing or even long-lived.

Structures built to withstand the fury of Atlantic storms, like this hacienda we once referred to as the Hotel California, aspire to great strength and resilience, but they will ultimately not last.

Gaillardia, though, have proven their resilience and ability to withstand the most adverse of conditions.

Starfish find themselves washed ashore sometimes and, if they're lucky enough to not be plucked from their temporary environment, may eventually regain their former comfort and nourishment provided by the sea.

Some objects do not fare so well when the tide returns to claim the space they occupy.

Dunes like the ones on Anastasia Island need protection because they render protection when it is most needed, during hurricane season.

At the end of the day, a peace offering from the sea is held up for inspection and admiration.

Favorite eateries and watering holes still stand as welcome stations on an island once considered home. This former bastion of bacchic sports celebrations, though, seems to be barely holding its own in this season of scarcity. Even the battle between Sooners and Gators does not command the high ticket prices it might have in years past.

The object of a journey to the East Coast of Florida still holds her own in the face of advancing age and retreating cognition. Born in 1917, she has lived through many tough times it would be nice to forget. A son's wife of 29 years, when asked "Who are you?," decides that memory loss, either short- or long-term, is not a blessing, at least as far as humans are concerned. Governors from the Land of Lincoln and their cohorts should take note that history, at least, keeps track of untruths and will never yield to forgetfulness.
...Though much is taken, much abides; and though
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are--
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.
--from Alfred, Lord Tennyson's poem "Ulysses"--


  1. I like the way you blog..Not everyday, but when you have something to say, it is said so very to ponder...

  2. I agree with ramblingwoods. Now I can understand why this visit was meaningful...

    Love your descriptions of the photos. Wildflowers on dunes on barrier islands are what I may never get to see in real life. They look so beautiful! Some of the beaches I've been to, seemed to have more people than sand!!
    A beautiful post!

  3. "Ask and ye shall be answered..." I mentioned Tennyson last time, and you picked out my favorite lines!
    It was good that you visited your mother-in-law, though I'm sure it was not an easy visit. Alzheimer's or dementia in a loved one is hard to accept. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could all age like Ulysses, not to "rust unburnished in use."

    On a lighter note, I was intrigued by that gaillardia; I posted a very similar photo of one I saw in the Arizona desert. They are definitely a tough plant!

    Hang in there, W2W; the job situation will hopefully get better soon, and it's only a matter of time before our "Governor" gets booted out of office.

  4. I see from your last sentence, you are following this circus in IL;) What an embarrassment, the whole world must think we are a state of mobsters and corruption.

    Enjoyed riding with you along the dunes. That's an area of Florida I never had time to visit. Maybe someday...

  5. Thank you, Michelle. I'm blushing right now. I'm still thinking about your take on Winnie-the-Pooh and his wish for more honey-pots. ;>}

    Kanak, you're welcome to come visit and see the dunes anytime you like now. Unfortunately, we don't get to see these magnificent ones very often since they are on the east coast of Florida, and we live in the NW corner. I guess dune protection has not been as aggressively pursued here.

    Rose, I watched Blago's press conference in utter disbelief last week, and it wasn't just because of his blatant disregard for the truth. I thought my head would come loose from shaking so much while he recited Tennyson's lines. Age like Ulysses? Hmm. He really just wants to sail away into the sunset again. I'm for staying put right now. It would be nice to stop rusting, though. Thanks for your encouraging words.

    Marnie, you know, I hope I'm not enabling Blago's megalomania by mentioning him again. His actions lately were just too helpful to ignore. They offered the thread to stitch my patchwork thoughts together on this post.

  6. What a beautiful (tearful) post for me today. Brought back the memories of watching my grandmother slowly fade away in life. Then the smiles of other memories made with her! You have such a wonderful way with words. Hang in there, it is a new Year…

  7. You always say such meaningful things and blog truly wonderfully! I enjoyed every bit of it and your words ring so true.

  8. Thank you, Skeeter! Visits with elderly parents can often be bittersweet. Mother-in-law finally remembered me after a few hours of talking. She just needed a boost of conversation. Maybe someone will discover that blogging can delay certain effects of aging.

    How about it, Tina? Think you could spearhead a government-funded study? I seem to remember a lot of interest in your study about Christmas lights. Thanks for the compliments, both of you!

  9. Yup, you know me. I simply love studies. Wait until I get around to preparing one on successful blogs. Gotta word it just right....Suppose I'd get any help with the research. hmmmm.

  10. Nothing scares me as much as the "Who are you?" question. I like to think we're living at a strange time: when science has learned how to keep our bodies alive, but has yet to learn to keep our minds whole. I like to think someday, the sciences will keep up together. Then again, forgetting some stuff might be a good thing.

  11. There's such a compelling flow to your storytelling, Walk2Write - and lots of meaning packed into phrases. Although the words "Even the
    unemployed" made me wince in sympathy, we were lucky enough that both mother and mother-in-law never forgot who we were.

    As an ex-Illinoisan with lots of family still there, I should keep up with the Blago stories - missed hearing he quoted Tennyson.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose.

  12. Tina, I think you've already got a headstart on it with some excellent words on TC's recent post. If you need someone already proficient in combing fur the wrong way, I'm your woman. Just ask Joe L., the successful blogger. I seem to be especially good at raising eyebrows and maybe even some hackles.

    WS, I'm afraid if I try to forget, then I might start seeing Tralfamadorians. And I wonder if we wouldn't be better off without some of what science has wrought. Synthetic this-n-that. What's wrong with what's real? Not that I'm a Luddite, mind you. Just thinking you are right: make haste slowly.

  13. I am reminded of why I really love to blog...for similar reasons as you. Your thoughtful prose and wonderful photos take me into paradise where you are, either physically, or in your mind--it always touches me:) What a gentle and uplifting post!!

  14. Hi W2W, heroic is the word, sigh, we are all so fragile, like the objects on the beach.


  15. Skeeter, the music was chosen especially for this post. Tom Petty is originally from Gainesville, and he and his (former?) drummer own homes on the beach near where most of the pics were taken. The house we rented on the island was just a couple of blocks away from where one of them lived. Hubby swears he saw Petty (or maybe his twin) walking his dog one day and letting it take a dump without bagging. A very big no-no for obvious reasons. For some reason, Petty had a rather blank expression on his face at the time. Maybe he was thinking of a new song.

  16. Thanks, Jan. Some (okay, most!) of my posts have been anything but uplifting. Maybe I'm mellowing/thawing out here in the FL sunshine. Jobless or not--hopefully not very soon--I'd rather be here than anywhere else on earth. And you can probably tell it's not just for the sunshine.

    Frances, I know exactly what you mean. And the most fragile ones often turn out to have been the most heroic. Tested by fire and not afraid of the flames, so to speak. Thanks for sparking my interest in Helleborus. I'll probably never find a bargain one in the grocery store like you did, though.

  17. Skeeter, I forgot to add this info:

  18. I love those shadows in your "peace offering from the sea" photo. Is that yours on the right?

    Nice sand sculpture by the way. ;~)

  19. TC, I wish I could claim the sculpture, but I would be lying, which I find particularly abhorrent for some reason. How did you guess which one was me? Must be the pear shape that gave it away. That picture is my favorite one too. Thanks.

  20. I think a walk in nature is good for all that ails you!

  21. It hasn't failed me yet, Monica. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Like I told Rose, I enjoyed looking at your pics of snow from a safe distance! As I've heard it said, "been there, done that," and had more than enough of it in my lifetime.

  22. Great Article! I hope Petty was deep in song thought as it is a big NO NO to not pick up the poo. I would totally freak out if I stepped in poo while walking barefoot on the beach! Icky to the Max! lol

  23. Skeeter, we'll grant him artistic immunity this one time. If he does it again, well, there is no telling what might happen. Consider yourself warned, Petty! Especially if Skeeter is around and freaks out!

  24. Thank you for the lovely stroll along the dunes. It's very cold up where I am even though sunny today. :)

  25. You're quite welcome, Mary. I wish you could be where I am. Tomorrow, the temp should be in the mid 60s here. We did have a chill the past few nights, down into the upper 20s and low 30s. Enjoy the sunshine. It does make things a little more cheery anyway.

  26. I feel like I've taken a cozy stroll along the windy Atlantic.

    I got the notice that you left a comment on my other blog but I didn't catch what the post/topic was. Do you remember?

  27. PJ, I think it was on a post you did about a Sunday morning walk (Big Lagoon area?) Thanks for visiting again.

  28. Hey, I just wanted to let you know about a Josh Schierling who teaches digital photography. He has a class in Milton coming up. You can reach him through his website:

    Email me at pensacoladailyphoto(at)gmail(dot)com if you need to. I hope you had a great day. Can't wait for your newest walk.

  29. w2w,

    Great post like usual.

    My fave pic is of the sand sculpture. Love the way it is eroding.

  30. Thanks, PJ, for the info. I could probably use some instruction on photography. Have you taken one of Josh's classes, and if so, what was your opinion of it? Thanks for following, by the way.

    MBT, sand sculptures were fairly common sights on the beach when we lived on Anastasia Island. Pensacola Beach, sadly, is not known for this ephemeral art form. I'm wondering if the composition of the sand has something to do with it. The sand on PB is almost pure silica sand (quartz) while the sand on the Atlantic side has more shell fragments and other impurities, making its grain size more variable and apparently easier to pack into shape. (Information obtained from geologist and former driller Hubby). I am glad you enjoyed the post. I'm still dreaming about trains in the garden since I read your post about them. Thanks for the visit!

  31. It is good that you are using the free time to enjoy the treasures of nature and spend time with family. You are rich indeed. I adore that starfish photo.

  32. Thank you, Sarah! I do count my blessings and find new ones all the time. It sure is tempting to pick up a starfish. They are fascinating creatures. Much better to capture them on camera, though.

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