"I could never get used to her peripatetic lifestyle"
a person who travels from place to place.
an Aristotelian philosopher.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Day-Tripping--Not Lotos-Eating--in Florida: What Will POTUS Think of Pensacola?
I wonder what the President's impression of Pensacola will be after his visit today? He ought to be allowed to take a dip in the Gulf, immerse himself in it, taste its brine, feel its warmth on his skin, and be in awe of its Life-force to know what it really means to the "folks down on the Gulf Coast." Secret Aging Man and I made a point of day-tripping to the beach this past Saturday. We didn't see any tar balls on the sand or in the water, but we did see plenty of other interesting things. Just after I took this pic of SAM entering the water, some people walking by yelled out that there were rays, dozens of them, swimming around him. By the time I got down to the water's edge, the creatures were gone, heading west down the shoreline.
After SAM's immersion, we took a long walk on a deserted stretch of sand toward Fort Pickens. We didn't drive all the way out to the end but parked at the last pavilion before the gate. Our annual pass expired at the end of May, and we aren't sure that we want to renew it. It does save you money in the long run if you visit the place regularly.
By the time we got tired of walking, it was time for lunch, and we decided to splurge on a sandwich at the Pensacola Pier restaurant. I recommend the shrimp PoBoy. The shrimp have a light, tempura-like batter, and they're not exactly shrimpy. I was pleasantly surprised by their size, quantity, and fresh taste. A cold, 99-cent draft beer or two was a good choice to wash it, the sandwich and fries, all down. I was also surprised, though I shouldn't have been, that there were few customers at the restaurant and down on the beach to rent the umbrellas and chairs. SAM and I both thought that the restaurant manager ought to consider sending someone down to the beach to take food and drink orders. Maybe it's not allowed, though. There are lots of rules and regulations in place on the beach to keep things under control. Lifeguards and beach patrol vehicles--see the yellow truck?--do a good job of maintaining order and safety, even when there aren't many people out and about.
We didn't see many fishermen or women on the pier. It was eerie to see it so empty on a beautiful, summer Saturday.
The emerald-green water was calm enough that the surfer dudes found another use for their boards.
This little kayak dude seemed oblivious to the rule about not paddling directly beneath the pier. It could be dangerous to him because of the fishing lines and hooks dangling down and frustrating to the fisher-people trying to catch something. I was one of the people who called down to him to stay clear of the pier. He paddled away with a smile and without a care in the world.
It was a good thing the kayak dude was out of the way when a young man on the pier hooked this beauty. I think it's a kingfish. While he fought it for about 15 minutes, following its movement around the end of the pier, we talked to his mother, who occasionally yelled out encouraging words to him. She said they were from Gulf Shores, Alabama, and couldn't fish there anymore because of the oil slick. We were all rooting for the fisherman, but, alas, the fish broke the line by swimming underneath the pier. It was pretty quiet on the pier after that, and as we walked back to land, I stopped along the way and took this pic looking down into the Gulf waters. The sun was getting high in the sky, the air was getting hot, and I couldn't see what I was focusing on. I think it's a pretty cool shot, though--of what, I don't know.