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"Happiness always looks small when you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and at once you learn how big and precious it is."
Maxim Gorky

Friday, March 14, 2014

Tales from the blue lagoon...

Yesterday was the most glorious of spring days here on the Island
so my pal Irma and I took our cue and headed out with the dogs
to Esquimalt Lagoon. Long been a favorite spot to 
ramble and wander on the beach and through the woods.
We started out on the more busy side where it was evident that
so many others were enjoying the sun.
The lagoon is divided between the ocean side...
...home of the Fisgard Lighthouse at Fort Rod Hill...
 ...and, of course the lagoon side...
A stretch of road runs between them and signs of it's sea level dangers are posted here and there.
 You have to be careful here because you never know what may happen!
In other words...RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!
 This side is a bird sanctuary, home to many water birds.
More on them later.
We scrambled along the coastal trail, through the arbutus lined groves...
 ...scrubby, old little oaks line the cliffs...
...skeletons of the old...
...perfumed blossoms of the new...
Leftovers from winter...
 Striking patterns from the choke cherry trees bark...
...Indian plum just starting to bloom...
 The walk along the upper road was glorious and at many turns
we were in awe of the beauty of the weather and the scenery...Ahhh spring on the coast!
We sat on the beach with our picnic and caught up on each others lives.
We hadn't seen each other since Christmas so we also celebrated each others birthdays
which had come and gone.
Quite a number of years ago I had done a little water colour of Griff's brother Frank
and this year Irma reciprocated by giving me this fantastic
rendition she painted of Griffin in a typical Griffin pose...
 If you know Griffin, you'll know that he'll sit in the water like this forever and
not give up the stick. Not much of a fetch game but he seems to get a thrill out of it!
She also gave me the sweetest little art mirror...
 How cute is that?!

 As well as this card...
We'll forever inspire each other through the beautiful things we find and do.
After our picnic we made our way back to the other side and were treated
to some close visits by the birds...
 There were lots of different ducks but the stars of the show were the swans.
The black beaked ones are trumpeter swans. They are the largest and one of the rarest swans in the world as well as being an 'at risk' species...
 The other orange beaked ones are called mute swans.
So named not because they're mute but because they're less noisy than other swans.
They are introduced and a bit of a threat to the native species of trumpeters...
How impressive they are!
How these birds even get off the ground is truly amazing!
Irma stayed up top of the beach with the pups, while I got down close to them.
Some people were feeding them so I was treated to some pretty close encounters...
This one was really curious about me and got pretty close...
A wee tiff over food...
 How gorgeous!
Pin tails, mallards, Canada goose came to feed as well...
When you're this close you really get a sense of their size...
Aside from their smudged colouring, the young mute swans are
almost as big as their parents...
hello!
Their feet are so incredible...
REALLY big and very reptilian.
In cases like this, you can see how birds are related to dinosaurs...
Look at those nails!
So a gorgeous day to be thankful for this beautiful place we call home.



4 comments:

Nancy Kay said...

Is it really turning spring .... somewhere???? LOL. Oh, these pictures of your walk are BEAUTIFUL. What a gorgeous day...nature's beauty is awe-inspiring. You captured it well. Getting the close-ups of the swans is fantastic. What unusual birds...and the feet...yes they really do look reptilian. Love today's post!

Mairéad said...

You are truly blessed to liv in such beautiful place and doubly blessed that you appreciate that beauty.
Love the birthday gifts you got - especially the drawing of your best buddy.

acornmoon said...

Gosh, what an amazing place to live. Those mountains in the distance, the intense blue of the sky and lake. I love the patterns on the leaves, the reptilian feet of the geese. How lovely to share it with a kindred spirit too.

Lucinda Keller said...

Awesome post! Yes, lucky you! It's so beautiful there. Thanks for taking me into nature today! I can't get over those swan shots! Beautiful and amazing. (the birds as well as your fab photos!)