Along the Natchez Trace

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Day One of 2014

Since we weren't up late last night to see the New Year in, we were up fairly early this morning.  I will admit that around midnight I heard loud "booms"...  got up and went outside...  saw fireworks throughout the valley.  This hill may be a pain to walk up, but the view is outstanding.... especially for fireworks!

So...  around 5:30 am we're ready to greet the day.  And...  we had running water!  I wonder if maybe they didn't even bother to turn it off at 10 pm because they figured folks would be up all night.  Whatever...  I could get a shower as soon as I got up...  didn't have to wait for the morning shift to arrive.

We had planned to walk down to Ocotal Beach and wanted to get an early start as we thought the crowds would arrive around 10am or so...  

After breakfast we headed over the hill...  upon entering the beach area, one of the first things we saw was this....
There are massage therapists set up at the beach all the time....  but this young lady got set up early today...  and with last night's overindulgence by some, she probably made a day's wage way before noon today.  Actually, looking at my photo, I wonder how much this guy wanted his back pounded and beat on...  looks like he got a pretty good sunburn the day before....

We had already planned to walk around the rock.  I even wore my sneakers instead of sandals today as my balance isn't very good.  Bill carried my Leica over the really rough rocks....  I've never had very good balance, and even flunked the yoga class I took....  but, by gosh, that doesn't keep me from trying.  I can hear the "bone on bone" scraping in my knee as I walk...  I suppose knee surgery will be on the agenda one of these days.

Nevermind...  while my problems may slow me down a bit, I refuse to let them stop me..     How else would I see these sights...  like this huge sailboat out in the bay?
We've come to recognize some of the fishing boats....  and some of the smaller recreational boats...  so when a boat this size is moored we immediately know it's something different.

I'm sorry that I don't remember who answered me.... (thank you!) ....  but these are as hard as ... well... rocks!  So they are most likely coral....
It's not like they have just broken off their mass...  these guys are long weathered...  been in the water a while.  They almost look like skeletons or fossils....  but, oh, so lovely!

And, again, the tidal pools have so much in them that's alive!
Can you see all the crabs?  They scurry out of sight as soon as the water recedes....  

More interesting things...
These star-shaped "things" had a mollusk-type bottom.....  (that, to me, means, kind of slick and smooth like the bottom part of a snail).  I had to pick one up, but I carefully put it back in the same spot I found it.

As we got to the far end of the rock and were starting to turn around the end, we came across this...
A man and his two dogs were also hiking around the rock, but from the opposite direction.  The man was from Spain...  had lived in Barcelona and a couple of other places, but now lives in Costa Rica.  The black and white dog made me think of Al's dog, Pheebs......  gentle and friendly.

This one, on the other hand, was hyper and really anxious to get into the water....

He's a swimmer....
Looking for the right spot to jump in.  Just after I took this, he did, indeed, jump in and start swimming to the beach.  Last we saw him he was just a little dot in the water.

As we rounded the end, we came across this guy...
We'd been watching him for a while...  and saw that he caught a fairly large fish.
We watched him reel it in....  and reel it in....  and reel it in.
Finally, he landed it...
He told us it was a tuna...  and although he had a scales with him, he didn't weigh it...  said it was probably about 5 pounds.

He cut the line and extracted the hook....  put the fish back in the water...  we thought he was washing it off.  And...  darned if he wasn't "catch and release" fishing!  Heck, if we'd known he was going to turn it loose we'd have quickly offered to buy it.  Oh well.....  maybe another time.

We do see a few shore birds while walking around the rock, and of course the pelicans and frigates....
Today we also saw....
A Royal Tern....
Not a very good photos, but does have all the "tern" characteristics.  

We made it all around the rock...  even stopped for a pina empanada (pineapple bread) snack along the way.  Headed back up the road and was home well before noon.  The traffic was beginning to get heavy, so we did pretty good.

And, while I'm talking birds etc here, I want to say that Judy, the Blogger of Birdland, offered to send me a hummingbird feeder.  WhooHooo...  you always know the hard-core birders out there.  Don't think we have to take her up on it as we have a hot lead on purchasing one (fairly) locally, but...  what an offer!  Thanks, Judy!

And.....  that's the way we spent New Year's Day!  Couldn't ask for much better...

That's All For Today!


  1. Another great day with awesome weather, that tuna would have made an great meal or two.

  2. Your walks certainly are interesting!

  3. Love your walks. I have such lousy balance I've about decided I need to buy me some walking sticks. I can't believe that guy was letting anyone near his back with that sunburn. Thanks for the great pictures.

  4. Your blog has taken me to places I will never see in person and you are the best guide in the whole world!!! Thank you, I really enjoy reading it every day.

  5. Lovely, lovely first day of 2014. Yup, that's coral you've collected. To me it always looks more beautiful when you see it underwater. the guy having the massage looks like he could use a rest from the sun!

  6. Another great post. Since I know I'll never get to that place, I really enjoy reading your adventures and seeing your pics!

  7. What another fun day for you! You certainly see lots of interesting things and sights on your walks.

  8. What a great way to start the year!

  9. You flunked yoga… lol? and you picked up a star shaped thing … you kill me… could have been poisonous … if you call it a thing ~ that means you don't know what it is and so… well, you could have died.

    Great rock walk! hiss on your knees… it's always something with this aging business

  10. Very interesting place you're in there. Never a dull moment. Certainly enjoying all of your photos and commentary. Great way to start the new year. Keep it up!

  11. You've inspired us. We're going to look into spending next winte r in Costa Rica. How did you locate your condo? We lived there for three months years ago when we were in training for Peace Corps. We spent two years on Nicaragua. Your stories of your daily experiences bring back a lot of memories for me.

  12. Your posts make me think I perhaps shouldn't have given up on moving to Costa Rica years ago. Family kept me rooted. What a delightful place and I understand a lot of Americans have moved there.

  13. I am just glad I am not the guy on the table:)

  14. Cool walk on the beach. At least you do not have to put up with the cold back in the U.S.

  15. Great way to start off the New Year, walking putdoors among beautiful sights. Our best wishes to you and Bill for a Happy New Year full of adventures.