Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tale of A Squirrel---Through Pictures

Moral of the story:   Bird feeders are for birds!

My Happy Place

If you follow my Instagram feed, you know that one of my "happy places" is on the deck in our backyard. I particularly love to eat my breakfast out there when things are quiet and calm and the light is so soft and pretty.  That's another reason I've enjoyed this summer so much.  Since I am not working this summer, I have had time to eat outdoors almost every morning.  AND, I've had time to catch up on reading the blogs that I enjoy!  That is a real treat!
The last few mornings, as I have enjoyed my breakfast over my iPad, I've seen our neighborhood hawks (there are 3 that live in a tree nearby) getting closer and closer.  Lately they've been perching on the wires that criss-cross across our backyards
and even sitting on the rooftop behind me.
Young squirrels in a nearby tree, obviously had not learned the danger they posed as they scampered up and down the tree and around their nest.   Finally, however, their mother (or dad) led them away from the predators into the safety of another tree.
And this morning, this was one brave squirrel!!   The hawk had already made an attempt to catch him earlier, but was unsuccessful, so I guess he decided it was worth the risk to scamper across the wire one more time.
Meanwhile, the hummingbirds have finally arrived!
They aren't yet eating at the backyard feeders, but they've been checking them out.
They are enjoying the red salvia I planted this spring, however.
They also love the fig tree, most likely enjoying a bit of the juice from some of the riper figs.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Exploring Ketchikan

Our last port of call was Ketchikan.  I had enjoyed each stop so far, but had been particularly looking forward to Ketchikan.
Ketchikan is a quaint old city, set on the side of a mountain in the Misty Fjords, and is known as the "Salmon Capital of the World."
As we disembarked,  I could tell by the stained glass "flags" along the marina that I was going to like this place.
It did not disappoint.  The flowers in Ketchikan were bountiful and just beautiful.
We meandered through a tunnel and the borough's streets as we made our way to Creek Street, which is infamous for its former life as the "red light district".
The brothels situated over the creek now house a variety of antique and souvenir shops.
Ketchikan is also home to the world's largest collection of standing totem poles.
In the early afternoon, we made our way to join our last excursion, a flight-seeing trip on a sea plane.  Ron had been looking forward to this, but with some nervousness as he tends to get motion sickness fairly easily.  But, neither of us had any trouble at all with it and this was his favorite excursion.
We boarded planes at Taquan Air

and took off for a aerial tour of the city, the surrounding Tongass National Forest and mountains.
This picture shows a pair of shipwrecked boats.  We were told that after the first ship wrecked, the owner sent out another ship to replace it.  Unfortunately, it wrecked in almost the exact same place.
It was so neat to glide through the air so close to the snow-capped mountain tops.
We saw several Dall sheep grazing on the sides of mountains.

There were lakes of water and lakes of ice.

There was amazing, natural beauty as far as our eyes could see.

Soon, we arrived at our destination, George Inlet Lodge.
There, we were warmly welcomed and served a wonderful all-you-can eat meal of fresh dungeness crab.   It was SOOOO delicious!
Cracking the crab was a challenge for me, so Ron helped me out.
Our excursion concluded with a bus ride back to the ship, with full tummies and lots of memories.