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, November 24, 2009

Oysters to Pearls--Why are Those Sands of Time So Irritating?

The worst of sluggards only ask for a little slumber; they would be indignant if
they were accused of thorough idleness. A little folding of the hands to sleep
is all they crave, and they have a crowd of reasons to show that this indulgence
is a very proper one. Yet by these littles the day ebbs out, and the time for
labour is all gone, and the field is grown over with thorns. It is by little
procrastinations that men ruin their souls. They have no intention to delay for
years--a few months will bring the more convenient season--tomorrow if you will,
they will attend to serious things; but the present hour is so occupied and
altogether unsuitable, that they beg to be excused. Like sands from an
hour-glass, time passes, life is wasted by driblets, and seasons of grace lost
by little slumbers. Oh, to be wise, to catch the flying hour, to use the moments
on the wing! -- Morning and Evening Daily Readings by
Charles H. Spurgeon --

I don't eat oysters, at least not raw ones, but I always find pearls at the beach in Pensacola. When I saw this elasmobranch--a ray of some kind--slowing its pace to a crawl within inches of my feet on the morning of the new moon's appearance, my mind started racing. The old mind took a while to warm up. What was that book I read years ago about a giant manta ray--Manta Diablo--and a pearl? Was it Steinbeck's novella? No. I read that one again. Kino did not battle a ray, though there was some kind of devil dogging his footsteps. Why rack the old brain or follow loose ends online when someone at the library probably knows the answer? Scott O'Dell's The Black Pearl. Yep. That's the one. I'm not too proud to ask. Now if only I could figure out what kind of ray this is!


  1. Your posts are so interesting! Love the last line of the poem, "to use the moments on the wing"!
    How ultra cool that you can find pearls on the beach there!!!

  2. So exciting to have one of these glide right by you! I read Steinbeck's 'Black Pearl' and loved it. I loved all of his books actually. One of the few authors I do remember from high school. The other big book was 'A Separate Peace' and several others I guess I can remember. I like the reading too. I procrastinate far too much-I really need to stop too.

  3. Wow, to see a ray like that so close up! I've only seen rays at the Fort Fisher Aquarium. That shallow clear water is so different from the beaches here in NC.

  4. Thanks, Julie. The selection by Spurgeon wasn't really a poem, but Blogger made it seem so. I used the block-quote function, and it did some kind of funky thing with the text. The "pearls" are everywhere. You just have to look carefully and watch your step!

    Tina, I've never had this happen before with one of the rays coming right up to the shoreline. Maybe it smelled something on my skin that it liked--or disliked. Steinbeck's The Pearl and O'Dell's The Black Pearl both pit man against nature to a certain extent, but I think The Black Pearl has a better grip on the slippery question of what it takes to really be a man--okay, mature human. And you do not procrastinate. I can testify...

    Hi, Sweet Bay! The water at the beach is never the same. I'm pretty sure it was low tide when I took the pics, and the storm known as Ida changed the shoreline quite a bit since the last time we were there--November 1. I've never been to North Carolina's beaches. I'll have to go there someday.

  5. Just be sure to never bite into a pearl! I really liked the video ... I've never been to a panhandle beach (or up on the panhandle for that matter.) Have a great weekend!

  6. I loved the verse and the video. I've never seen a ray in real life. anything to do with the beach is fascinating to me.

    Oh my, I just checked to see whether you'd found the ray's name and I read about Blogger doing the funky thing.I tend to procrastinate too. Some of the lines could've been meant for me;))

    Hope your Thanksgiving was lovely!

  7. Mr. S, I've heard that the way to test for a real pearl is to scratch it against the tooth. If it's a scratchy feeling, it's real--al dente put to the ultimate test. By video, do you mean the one I linked to in the text? You really need to come to the Panhandle. Nothing else like it...

    Hi, Kanak! No, I'm not satisfied with what I've found about the name of the ray. I keep thinking someone will see this pic and help me out with a definite ID. I hope you're doing well with all the disruption that a renovation can bring.

  8. Wonderful to be able to see a ray like that up close. I've never found a pearl on a beach, but I once bit one in a raw oyster I was eating... I kept it for a while, have no idea where it is now.

  9. I remember the Black Pearl..not that I could have pulled that title out of my chilled brain. LOVED the ocean sounds, I may have to get a copy and play it to myself this winter ...Michelle

  10. That beach looks very tempting right now, and how exciting to see this ray close up! I know the frustration about trying to remember some little detail, whether a name or something from a book...I usually think of it hours, even days later. As for procrastinating, I'm guilty there, too. As I've gotten older, I realize how much time I've wasted just putting things off!

  11. To see a live ray.... that is so neat. We saw a squid on Vancouver Is. but it was long deceased.

  12. That ray is pretty awesome. How lucky of you to see one so close!

  13. Claude, I've never found the gem kind of pearl on the beach either. Once when SAM and Son were snorkeling near the spillway of a lake we used to live on, they found a gold ring! I've got another gold ring story to tell one of these days...

    Michelle, the YouTube video I linked to in the post pretty much says it all for those of us with chilled brains. Glad you liked the ocean sound. If I could put smell in the post, I certainly would. A nice sea breeze would really transport you.

    Rose, I'm thinking that my bad habit of procrastinating has something to do with my memory problems. They both seem to get worse with advancing age, anyway!

    TB, was it one of those giant squid? Now that would be something to see, dead or alive!

    MBT, I kept seeing groups of the critters some distance away playing and jumping out of the water, and then this one darted over and surprised me by coming right up close. Maybe it was curious about that strange looking extra eye I had focused on it.

  14. You were at Ft Pickens? What a lucky day for you. As for procrastination, we're not going to talk about that. Maybe later. Maybe.

  15. Paula, we couldn't drive out to Fort Pickens because the road was still closed from Ida but parked at the last picnic area before it. I think we walked at least a mile on the beach towards the fort.

  16. Intriguing title. Steinbeck's noevel... I have eaten and enjoyed oysters, a delicacy tried in adult years. How exciting to find pearls! That has never happened to me.
    As for stingrays, that reminds me of a story...
    Those photos- you know, by now, how much I adore the beach. I was meant to live by the beach. (That has not happened, I say...yet! :)

  17. I forgot what I was goin to say. But I do remember reading Orwell's "1984" in 11th grade English, but I don't remember any character names or places. Was "Big Brother" a character in that book? Or was that the name of a band from the 60s? Geesh, if I weren't such a sluggard, I'd take a class on mnemonics!

  18. Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!