Saturday, December 21, 2013

Monday, December 09, 2013

Bellport Beach, Fire Island

Ho Hum Beach, aerial, taken in 2008

This is "Ho Hum Beach", across from Bellport. 
It's a 'resident only' beach, accessed by limited ferry service. 

Thursday, December 05, 2013

season's greetings

season's greetings by Alida's Photos
season's greetings, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

Hope you are enjoying this busy holiday season. I know it does get hectic, but really, if you didn't have the family gatherings, the shopping, the cooking, etc., wouldn't life seem just a little boring?
Holidays have been celebrated by all cultures since the beginning of time. There is a reason for it. 
It's part of who we are!
So, enjoy it. Find the joy in everything you do!
And happy holidays!

Sunday, December 01, 2013


Wildlife by Alida's Photos
Wildlife, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

"I sing of brooks, of blossoms, birds and bowers..."
-Robert Herrick (1591-1674), British poet

I live by the water, so as I exit my home and walk outdoors, the birds on the river look at me and fly away.

There is such abundance of wildlife here....various species of ducks, geese, herons, grebes, coots, muskrats, snakes, eels, and of course, fish. Sometimes I'll watch a diving duck disappear under the water only to emerge with his dinner. There have been times when I will see a new unidentifiable  creature, only to find that it's an migratory bird, a new one for my life-list.

And always, there is the quiet.

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron by Alida's Photos
Great Blue Heron, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.
Just resting in a nearby tree.....(on one leg), in my neighborhood. Are you surprised to see such a large bird in the area? Don't be! This beautiful Great Blue Heron is a frequent visitor to my suburban backyard and is often seen 'hunting' near the river and pond.

Long Island has an abundance of wildlife areas: county, state and national parks, wetlands, the pine barrens, undeveloped areas, which are all natural habitats for a variety of creatures.

Take a walk or drive to the park near where you live and witness this for yourself. Take a break from the shopping and crowds! You may be pleasantly surprised!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Autumn to Winter

autumn in Bayport by Alida's Photos
autumn in Bayport, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.
I love autumn, but I'm not very happy with this cold, windy weather. The cold is bearable without the wind, but when the wind picks up, I'm back indoors. Do you feel the same way?

There was a time when I looked forward to winter. I was a skier in my younger life (well, actually  about 18 years ago, which only seems like yesterday) and looked forward to winter and the snow. I would even travel out west to Colorado in early spring to take advantage of their longer skiing season.

Now in retirement, I'm looking forward to my trip to Florida, the Sunshine State! It's where I can have coffee on my balcony, barefoot! And, when the "cold front" arrives, as the Floridians like to report, all I need is a light jacket to walk on the beach. Skiing? "Been there, done that" as they say, and loved it, and now it's time to move on.

Friday, November 15, 2013

November boating

Arboretum bench by Alida's Photos
Arboretum bench, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

The last boat ride 'till spring.
This photo is from 2011, taken on November 2nd. We were able to keep the boat in the water for a little longer this year, but the cold weather has settled in and it's time to put the boat in dry-dock.

last of the boating

duck box by Alida's Photos
duck box, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

The fisherman are still out in the bay, but for me, it's just a little too cold. Time to put the boat on dry land.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Fire Island Bayside

Fire Island Bayside by Alida's Photos
Fire Island Bayside, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

This is the bayside of Fire Island, at the Sunken Forest.

September and October are the best months on Fire Island, in my opinion, because the summer crowds are gone. It was quiet except for the sound of the ocean waves and birds. An occassional plane or helicopter passes overhead. It is warm between the dunes and a long walk is the perfect way to spend the day.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Waverly Place Crosswalk

The Freedom Tower as seen from Waverly Place in Greenwich Village....

We took a walking tour of "the village" this weekend. So much history and a great sky for photography, made this day a perfect one for me!

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Davis Park in 2009

Davis Park 2009 by Alida's Photos
Davis Park 2009, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

I wanted to have a before photo since by next year, the Davis Park beach will not look the same. This photo was taken back in 2009.

Many of these homes will be torn down, or have already been washed away, all from the erosion of Sandy.

Connetquot River in Autumn

Monday, October 07, 2013

Sunflower Rows

Sunflower Rows by Alida's Photos
Sunflower Rows, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

Sunflowers in the Bayard Cutting Arboretum. Such beautiful weather in October, it doesn't feel like autumn!

Sunday, October 06, 2013

the Winslow Boy

I just have to comment on the play my husband and I saw yesterday. It was Roundabout's "The Winslow Boy." This is not a musical or a play for the tourist crowd. It is serious drama that kept us on the edge of our seats.

Why was this so good? First and foremost, the acting was excellent, so believable and real. I felt the pain of the mother and fear of the young boy. I became part of the family, happy one moment and angry the next. The story was based on true events in England. The English accents were excellent also and almost un-noticeable once the play started, a credit to the actors.

The story of a young boy accused of something, (no spoilers here), parents defending their child, siblings who are independent of the story and yet have stories of their own, an ailing parent, husband and wife relationship, occasional moments of humor, hints of romance, well developed character development- this play has it all. I thought that being a play of 2 3/4 hours would be too long, but it was over before I knew it. It was a rich story that I hated to see end. 

The period costumes, early 1900s, were beautiful and added to my enjoyment. Rich fabrics and elaborate hats of the time, were so gorgeous! 

I'm not a theatre critic but I know what I enjoy. There were no gimmicks, or special effects, just great acting! It's not often that I rave about a play, but this had to be the exception. I hope you get to see it!

For more information: Click here.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Fire Island Dune Grass

Fire Island Dune Grass by Alida's Photos
Fire Island Dune Grass, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.
The best time of year on Fire Island: Too chilly to invite the sun-bathers, but it's a haven for the nature lovers!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Are the Osprey migrating?

oprey Florida by Alida's Photos
oprey Florida, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.
I haven't seen the local osprey this week. Have they left us for warmer climates?

All summer, I've seen them flying overhead, sometimes with fish in their talons, chirping their squeaky little voices to call their mates or chicks. I haven't seen, or heard them recently and think they have left Long Island for the winter.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Is it true?

montauk lighthouse by Alida's Photos
montauk lighthouse, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.
A friend recentely sent this information along. Are these true facts? Well, I'd have to check each one, but they sound convincing to me! Check them out!

Mastic was the home of William Floyd, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence.

Long Island's first two settlements were Southold and Southampton, in 1640.

Deep Hollow Ranch in Montauk is the site of the oldest cattle ranch in America, built in 1658, and birthplace of the American cowboy.

The Lighthouse at Montauk became NY's first coastal beacon in 1796.

The first radio transmission, by wireless inventor Guglielmo Marconi, was in 1901 on Fire Island Avenue in Babylon.

In 1927, Charles Lindbergh took off from Roosevelt Field, as he embarked on the first non-stop solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean.

Americas first supermarket, King Kullen, started on Long Island in 1930.

Levittown, the first suburbia in the U.S., was built on Long Island in 1947.

The Lunar Module which landed men on the moon in 1969, was built on Long Island by the Grumman Corp.

Long Island is the largest island among the 48 contiguous states.

The only working water mill and windmill in the US are located in the Long Island community of Water Mill.

Richard Nixon's deceased dog Checkers is buried at Long Island's Bide-a-Wee Pet Cemetery.

When the Brooklyn Bridge was completed in 1883, it became the first land-transport route between Long Island and mainland USA. Before that, the only way to travel between the two was by boat.

Long Island was sculpted by melted glaciers, which is why there is a clear difference between the hilly North Shore and the flat South Shore of Long Island.

Long Island is the most populated island in the United States and the 17th most populated island in the world. Interesting fact: Long Island is more populated than the entire country of Jamaica and of Ireland!

If Long Island was its own state, it would rank 12th in terms of population.

The largest industrial park in the US is located on Long Island - The Hauppauge Industrial Park which houses 1,300 companies and employs more than 55,000 people.

Together Nassau and Suffolk counties' nearly 180 fire agencies possess more fire trucks than New York City and Los Angeles County combined.

Suffolk County is the leading agricultural county in New York State based on the wholesale value of its farm products.

More 7-Eleven coffee is purchased on Long Island than in all of California.

Friday, September 06, 2013

sailing ignatz

sailing ignatz by Alida's Photos
sailing ignatz, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

September, Fire Island
Some small sailboats on the bay-side shore of Davis Park

Ignatz is the name of a comic book character in Krazy Kats:

Monday, September 02, 2013

My Fox Experience

fox kit by Alida's Photos
fox kit, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

There's been so much talk about the recent fox sightings that I thought I would share my personal experience. I've lived on Long Island since 1979 and until four years ago, had never seen a fox in the wild. Never! 

In 2009, one early spring day, my husband and I took our boat to Barrett Beach and there, sunning himself/herself in the vegetation was a full grown and very healthy looking fox. I was so excited; I grabbed my camera and took some shots. It wasn't the best time of day, so the next day and a few days after, we went back to take additional photos, with a longer lens and in the early morning light. 

A few weeks later, we went back to the same area and the smell was over-powering. We could see the remains of fish, skates, crabs, gulls and even something that looked like a muskrat. We quietly sat in the sand and waited for the fox to return. Well, to our surprise, out came three little fox kits! Apparently, this was their fox den and the mother had been bringing food to her babies. When the mother returned, she was not happy to see us sitting there, even though we kept a safe distance. They all returned to their "nest" and we did not see them again for the rest of the day!

We often see fox on Fire Island and have since 2009. I often laugh when the caution tapes go up to protect the shore birds. Look behind those tapes and you will see lots of fox prints. I guess foxes don't know the shorebirds are endangered! 

In 2010 I saw a fox for the first time in Bayport. One of our neighbors had some chickens in a chicken coop. The fox returned more than once for those chickens. One day I got a shot of him walking down the street with a chicken in his/her mouth. Needless to say, our neighbor no longer has the chicken coop.

We continue to see a fox in the neighborhood, often just after sunset or very early in the morning. I don't rush to take photos anymore. Sadly, the fox I've seen recently doesn't look as healthy as the fox I saw that first time on Fire Island. Lack of food, living among people, or some fox illness has apparently taken its toll. I'm not a veterinarian but the fox just doesn't look as healthy to me. I hope they do survive here on Long Island. It's nice to see a little wildlife here in our suburban community.

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Bannerman Castle Ruins

castle outpost1 by Alida's Photos
castle outpost1, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

Took a recent trip up the Hudson River to Bannerman Castle & Arsenal, built at the turn of the century. 
You can read more about it here and see some older images here

It was a fun day with a group of photography friends and I learned some local history. 
I had never heard of this arsenal or this island,  Pollepel Island, a 6.5 acre island off the shore of the Hudson River Valley. 
Check it out and visit, before the ruins fall into the river, never to be seen again! 

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

highline undone

highline undone by Alida's Photos
highline undone, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

Went into the city this week to photograph the High Line.
This image is the next section of the High LIne to be developed, at 34th Street.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Leaving the Bay ©

Leaving the Bay © by Alida's Photos
Leaving the Bay ©, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

Sunrise, leaving the Great South Bay and entering the Ocean.

Sore Thumb, Long Island

We sailed from Sayville/Bayport on the South Shore, west, in the Great South Bay.
First night anchored in Sore Thumb, near the Fire Island Inlet. Tomorrow the Ocean....

Check out the map to see the journey of our sailing adventure.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Sore Thumb twilight

Sore Thumb twilight by Alida's Photos
Sore Thumb twilight, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

Morning twilight on the Great South Bay.
Last year in July, the experience of a lifetime!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

absent but here

Where have I been for the last few weeks? Right here.

Life has cycles that sometimes are beyond our control.
 One Monday you're busy in the garden and the next day, it seems, waiting for the plumber and then you're at the car service station.
Then it's Friday. How did that happen?

I've had a few weeks like that so I must apology for not posting anything new here.
Life just happens sometimes.

All is good, so no worries. Just busy.......

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

the river

the river by Alida's Photos
the river, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

The golden hour, just before sunset, on Brown's River......

swim nets on Long Island

I've often wondered, is this to keep the swimmers in, or to keep the fish out?

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Jedediah Hawkins Inn

Jedediah Hawkins Inn by Alida's Photos
Jedediah Hawkins Inn, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

A group I belong to was given a special tour of the Jedediah Hawkins Inn, in Jamesport.  
All I can say is "Amazing, amazing!"
The last time I was there was in 2007 for a birthday celebration. So much has changed since then.
First of all, the landscaping and gardens are beautiful! The flowers this time of year are a treat for the eyes. There is a barn and pathways which are lined with wisteria, my favorite vine. The hanging purple flower clusters are beautiful!

The food was good back in 2007, but now they have a new chef, Lia Fallon, who produced the most amazing dishes.
After getting a tour of their herb garden, which is open to guests, we had those herbs incorporated into our sample dishes.
We began with a drink made with Vodka, lemonade and Lemonbalm, which looks and grows like mint but has a lemon taste. It was a refreshing drink while sitting on the porch overlooking the beautifully kept landscape. 
Then we were treated to a Duck Summer Roll, with duck cooked rare. Almost raw, this very unique spring roll, was a treat, paired with Pellegrini Vineyard's 2007 Cabernet Franc. 
We had this while touring the wine cellar with Pellegrini's chief winemaker, Tom Drozd!

Amazing, amazing!

We were given a tour of the Inn's guest rooms including the top floor suite which has access to the widow's walk. What an spectacular view! Each guest-room was decorated for a designer's showcase when the Inn first opened. The tour was given by Pam Hunt, a descendant of Jedediah Hawkins, who showed her passion for this historic building. 

Our tour of the kitchen included a demonstration by chef Lia Fallon, who made a salad with rare tuna, the Tuna Nicoise. What a delicious dish and the kitchen is, yes, you guessed it, amazing!
So modern and upscale, it was a dream kitchen for any chef!

The tour ended in the new solarium, with dessert. We had the chocolate marquise with pistachio anglaise, assorted macaroons and a lemon rhubarb parfait! 

Amazing, just amazing!!

Was the tour a success? You bet! Would we return for dinner and perhaps a special weekend retreat? It's already in the plans!

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Davis Deer

Davis Deer by Alida's Photos
Davis Deer, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

Be careful of the deer on Fire Island. They certainly look cute, but they do carry ticks which transmit disease. Enjoy the experience at a distance, and do NOT feed them. Hope you all enjoy Fire Island this summer in good health!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Tavira cyan door

Tavira cyan door by Alida's Photos
Tavira cyan door, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

Note the traditional tile work on the facade.

Tavira green door with tree

This is a photo from a previous trip my huband and I took a few years ago. Our neighbor just went to Portugal, and I couldn't stop raving about how she is going to LOVE Portugal. 
It is such a great country. The people were friendly and the culture was familiar and yet so unique! 
If you are wondering where to go on your next trip, go to Lisbon and then the Algarve coast (southern portion of Portugal.) 

This could be a door in any city in Europe. 
It is in fact, Tavira, Portugal which is known for its colorful facades and tile work. This has the door and windows framed in marble. Notice the electrical wires and details in the door, as well as the design in the street paving stones, very common throughout Portugal. I like the addition of the tree. 

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Memorial Day

Bill in fatigues by Alida's Photos
Bill in fatigues, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

Memorial Day is always a sad holiday for me. Although we all have barbecues to "kick-off" the summer fun, the true reason for the holiday is to remember. Remember those who have fought in our wars, especially those who have died. Thank you to all those who served!

I'm including a photo of my father-in-law, during World War II, such a young man. This is a scanned image of when he was in Europe, 1945. He survived the war to return home and raise a family. Not all servicemen and woman are so lucky. Enjoy the weekend and remember!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Using my iPhone

It seems I use my iPhone for photos more often these days. The iPhone camera is amazingly sharp and produces very large photos. The hardest part is holding the thin "camera" steady.

We went into the city yesterday to see The Big Knife one of our Roundabout Theatre plays. It was very dramatic, with no comic relief, which put me on edge and produced feelings of anxiety and sadness. The acting by Bobby Cannavale and Richard Kind was amazing. I was impressed with their endurance for such long stretches of arguing and dramatic expressions.
It's always a treat to go into the city and see a live performance. Being Roundabout subscribers is a way to insure our seven or eight visits into the city each year.
The photo above, taken with the iPhone, is of Times Square. 

Friday, May 17, 2013

sunset boat ride

sunset boat ride by Alida's Photos
sunset boat ride, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.
We took a quick boat ride on the Great South Bay to watch the sunset. 
It's still a little cool on the water but summer is not too far away! It was just nice to be out there in nature, to enjoy the salt air and the promise of better days to come!

Monday, May 13, 2013


sanderlings 2 by Alida's Photos
sanderlings 2, a photo by Alida's Photos on Flickr.

The weather is warming up and that can only mean one thing. It's time to get over to Fire Island! The ferries are running and the beaches are not crowded. Cleanup from Sandy has been taking place all winter. Check it out soon. Start planning...Memorial Day is just two weeks away!

Monday, May 06, 2013

juno beach fishing pier

As the clouds come, so starts the raining season here in Florida. It's time to come home to Long Island. I miss my home, my friends and family. It's the place I feel most comfortable and truly feel "at home."