Friday, December 31, 2010

the 6th day of christmas

According to the song, today is "the 6th day of Christmas" and, if had a true love, I should be expecting "6 geese-a-laying" to show up. But since I didn't find "5 golden rings" under my pillow yesterday, I figure "true love" just ain't in the cards this year.
All the same, I'm forever an optimist and I'll be keeping an eye out for those
"8 maids-a-milking" to come knocking the day after tomorrow.
Anyway, on Christmas Day I made my way north to Sugarloaf Key for brunch with friends Joseph and Mary; Scrambled eggs, Belgian Waffles and a Sangriento Maria that couldn't be beat. Mary, it turns out, is fairly pregnant. So, it being Christmas and all, there was no shortage of good natured quips and comments about building a manger in the yard, moving to Miami for the census and whether or not to name the baby, you guessed it, Jesus.
We all had a great time.

After our feast I stepped outside to a beautiful day and decided, with nothing much going on until dinner back in Key West later in the evening, I'd explore a bit.
That's when I noticed the skydivers falling out of the clear blue sky and, a few minutes later, the perfectly good Cessna they'd just jumped out of on approach for a landing at
Sugarloaf Airport.

Naturally, I followed my nose down the old road beside Sugarloaf Lodge and past the bat tower to the well worn runway that is home to SkyDive Key West and Fantasy Dan's Airplane Rides.

As I was watching the Cessna taxi in for re-fueling before taking another group of jumpers up while the divers in the sky were growing larger as the fell closer to their drop zone, I got into a conversation with Ed, who I gathered, was one of the pilots at Fantasy Dan's.
Ed and I solved as many of the world's problems as we could in about 20 minutes until he mentioned that Christmas dinner would be served up pretty soon but there was plenty of time for a Christmas cup of rhum and something if I had a mind to join him.
Naturally, in the spirit of the season, I was obliged to accept.

Back behind Dan's I found a trailered old boat, the stripped fuselage of an even older airplane and an RV/trailer home from which came the delicious smell of the coming feast.
I was met also by four of Ed's friends; Beverly, Keith, Len and Tibo and with Captain and Coke in hand, I joined Len, Keith and Ed leaning on the bow of the trailered old boat to shoot the breeze while Beverly worked away on dinner in the RV and Tibo laid down at my feet.

The four of us spent the next hour or so giving up our background stories, finding common interests and solving a few more of the world's problems.
I enjoyed my afternoon visit to that anonymous little corner of the universe very much. . .

. . .As nearly perfect weather as you could hope for, the peace and good cheer of Christmas in the air and the welcome vibe of new friendships.

from left to right: Beverly, Len, Ed, Keith & Tibo down in front

At the end of the day, Len said it best (and I'm paraphrasing here), "in this world, the best you can do is find a quiet place to be and carve out a niche where you can live an easy life under the radar.
As for the problems of the world, it's really too late
to fix anything."

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

lunar eclipse

Earlier today, when everyone with any sense was comfortably tucked away in bed. . .

1:40 am

3:10 am

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

before & after

As happens more often than not, I found this frame
while I was on my way to shoot something else.
She (and her twin sister) are in meditation outside the entrance of Mike and Dow's floating Thai restaurant
next to CharterBoat Row on the boulevard.
I've eaten there many times and it's really good eats.

Anyway, she put me in mind of Buddhist mealtime prayers.
One for before meals and another for after. . .

The unsurpassable teacher is the precious Buddha.
The unsurpassable protector is the precious Dharma.
The unsurpassable refuge is the precious Sangha.
To these Three Jewels, we make this offering.

Through this goodness, may omniscience be attained.
May every enemy be overcome.
May beings be liberated from the ocean of samsara,
which is troubled by waves of birth, old age,
sickness, and death.