Photo 101: Solitude

The author chillin' on the rocky bank of the Eno River.
So solitary, this is actually a selfie!

Photo 101: Water

A small stream running between old rock walls.
A stream flows between old rock walls to join the Eno River

Photo 101: Home

When I first moved to North Carolina, I didn’t have a place to live lined up. I figured I’d camp out at a park for a few days until I found one. Lucky for me, NC has approximately a bazillion state parks, and I found one nearby with a campground.

A few days turned into two weeks, during which it rained the ENTIRE TIME and I got more and more frustrated as various possibilities fell through. At one point, I posted this extremely green photo on Instagram and Facebook:

Home sweet home…

A post shared by Bethany Harvey (@bethanyaharvey) on

My concerned friends back in Florida replied that they hoped this was just a temporary situation. It did turn out to be temporary, and a friend who lived in the area called some of her friends, and they offered me a place to stay for a couple of days. Then I finally managed to find someone with a room to rent who didn’t sound creepy and didn’t think I sounded creepy. And after a year of that, I moved into a little house all by myself, and I still live there.

So, this photo? This is not home. This is just the spot where I was camping this weekend. For fun. And it didn’t even rain!

tent

Not a single cloud

Bright, vibrant colors in winter can be hard to find, but sometimes all you have to do is look up.

Wolf Spider vs. Green Anole

Lizards eat small invertebrates. That’s what lizards do. Insects, spiders, ticks, grubs– all tasty morsels for your local lizard population.

When I lived in Florida, I had geckos in the house. I didn’t put them there, but they came in, and I happily let them stay. Because of them, I never had spiders on the ceiling. Lizards eat spiders. It’s the way of the world.

But sometimes… Sometimes, a spider defies its destiny.

Victory goes to the spider this time.

Passionflower

This week’s DP Photo Challenge theme was “Ornate.”

Sometimes you see a flower and think, “Oh, isn’t that pretty?”

And then there are the times you see a flower and think, “Whoa, Nature! You’re just going overboard now.”

This Passiflora incarnata flower is an example of the latter.

I don’t do this often enough.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Treat,” here’s something I never seem to do anymore. I have a kayak; I know there are rivers and lakes around here, and yet my kayak has been used more often as a container in which to carry my belongings on top of my car than as an actual boat in the past few years. It makes a really good car-top container, but it’s a lot more fun as a boat.

So here’s a picture from several years ago, on the Econfina Creek in northwest Florida. There are actually two rivers called Econfina in northwest Florida, and they are not connected. This is the one north of Panama City. It’s a beautiful little river, overhung with greenery and fed by deep, clear springs that keep it cool. If you ever get the chance to canoe down it, do so — and stop and swim in the springs on the way.

Everybody has something they enjoy but somehow never get around to doing, right? What’s yours?

Be careful — it’s a long way down!

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Careful.” I don’t think this one needs an explanation.

cliffgroup

It really does freeze in Florida sometimes

Frost on turkey oak leaves.
Frost on turkey oak leaves

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “(Extra)ordinary,” here are some leaves from an extremely ordinary tree. Turkey oaks are all over Florida. They’re so common you kind of stop seeing them after a while. They are scrubby, brittle trees that fall over if you look at them wrong. But that’s fine, because a hundred little saplings will sprout from the roots.

I took this on a cold morning a few years ago, when I was helping with a bobwhite quail survey in the Florida panhandle. I arrived at dawn, took up my post on a specific point at the edge of a field. It was a very cold morning for the area, and there was still frost on the leaves and grass as the sun rose. It made even the ordinary, scrubby, weed-like turkey oaks beautiful.

I took a couple of pictures and then stood there, shivering, and listened very hard. After a while, I almost started to hallucinate possible quail calls. Then I heard some real ones that reminded me of what they really sound like. You can hear it, too.

Fireline

No Featured Creature post today. School has taken over my life for the next few weeks. I’ll have some guest posts to fill in the gap. In the meantime, here’s my submission for The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Boundaries.”

It would be hard to think of a situation where boundaries are more important than in prescribed fire! Here’s one of my professors making sure a fire in the North Carolina sandhills doesn’t cross the road and re-ignite all those fallen needles on the other side.

Fireline
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