“Merry Drink-A-Lot” sang out some boisterous boaters this past weekend during the Holiday Boat Parade…
It was about 80 degrees Fahrenheit outside with a flimsy breeze.
“More flamingos and palm trees than Christmas trees and reindeer!” one man observed exuberantly, as a boat fluttered by, sporting an illuminated string of rather awesome LED flamingos pulling a sled, with great green and gold, swaying bloaty palm trees billowing up from the stern.
“HALLLOOOO! MERRY CHRISTMAAAAAAAS!” came some soggy, sonorous voices, slopping up from the brackish darkness. What were these strange things?
“Oh my…those are paddle-boarders!!” a wee lass cried out.
Indeed they were. Paddle-boarders completely saturated with blinking, twinkly little battery-operated LED lights. One man waved his red illuminated paddle high in the air and the crowd squealed with delight. I felt a strong urge to burst into a husky-voiced and rather guttural Christmas carol, but resisted…
“This is better than fireworks!” someone suddenly exclaimed. With the air of a serene sage, I nodded to the black night in agreement, as more and more brilliant, light-adorned, sirening boats shimmered by.
She was rapidly removed from the dangerous spot.
I strode up and swaggered about the slick, rigid pavement where the child had been, in order to scrutinize the sea of boats a little more closely, when suddenly I found myself slipping.
Whale…I was planted there until, suddenly, a twinkly boat came careening up and I bolted into the air, only to find that my left leg was out of order. Apparently, it had gone to sleep. With an astoundingly obnoxious and rather obvious old sailor’s limp, I managed to hobble out of the way.
A hound barked behind me.
What a sight. Yes, it was grand. It was brilliant. It was blazing (and me flash was so violent it nearly sent a poor man tumbling into the rainbow-glinting drink below, blinded by the beam…I do not think he was all that comforted when I spat out, “Oh oopsie daisies! I had no idea it was that bright!”)
Yes, blazing indeed, and…far more exemplary than fireworks, I’d have to agree.
the harmony of the sea
tickling the Surfer’s soul,
saline breeze against His back,
breaking waves beneath His toes.
Glitters what is born of Pastel Dawn.
recall no concept of finality,
spill like a wingless cherub
smiling inside the curling blue.
Surfer, encompass the ride eternally-
the ocean pulses through Your veins.
“All day long in fog and wind,
The waves have flung their beating crests
Against the palisades of adamant.
My boy, he went to sea, long and long ago,
Curls of brown were slipping underneath his cap,
He looked at me from blue and steely eyes;
Natty, straight and true, he stepped away,
My boy, he went to sea.
All day long in fog and wind,
The waves have flung their beating crests
Against the palisades of adamant.”
-Carl Sandburg “All Day Long”
“There are no Strangers, here; only Friends you haven’t met yet.”
-William Butler Yeats
I ambled along in November afternoon, the murmur and chatter of the crowd mingling with the cool, easy wind. Booths sprawled before me, art glittering in shards of lemon light. I came upon the words, “Sunrise Greeting Cards” and found myself amongst a glossy scene of flitting photos pinned up in a glorious display of majestic beach sunrises. Lissome slate-blue shadows of oaks and palms filtered through the white, billowing sides of the inviting tent. And then a friendly voice, rife with jubilance and bonhomie, beckoned me. Sue, the sapphire-eyed, winsome photographer invited me to take a more intimate look at her passionate captures.
“It all began with a photo-a-day e-mail list. I thought, ‘why not share some of this incredible beauty we get to see every day here in Florida with some of my Northern friends?’ It just spread from there,” she said smilingly, photo-cards of glorious pastel and neon sunrises, and gamboling sea, scintillating all around us.
A life-sentiment I could not help but profoundly admire- not only to share captures of our daily splendor here, but also to share beauty of Spirit and Passion; and to ignite and inspire such in others- such was my encounter with wonderful beach photographer with the lilting name of Sue Dafoe. Aye, she certainly inspired me as I tottled away in my typical ibis-fashion, and continued down the path of tents, that brilliant November afternoon.
“the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars.”
Event was the Annual Gleason Park Arts and Crafts Show, in Indian Harbour Beach, Florida.