To Be Awake is to Be Alive

“The millions are awake enough for physical labor; 

but only one in a million is awake enough for effective intellectual exertion, 

only one in a hundred millions to a poetic or divine life. 

To be awake is to be alive.” Thoreau


My family and I just returned from a stay at my favorite place on the east coast. We managed to coordinate seven different jobs in order to share time together for my big 50 birthday in Oak Island and Southport, North Carolina.

Every time we go there, I have a lot of grand plans for making art, sketching, doodling, etc….but those plans wash straight out with the first day’s tide. 
Once I get my toes in the sand with the cool relaxing breezes blowing strong with salty sweet smells, well,  that is it for me. I am officially on island time. 
I did find time for one drawing which I added to the “from where I sit” sketch book: 

There is something about Oak Island for me, and, the rest of my family. We’ve shared many years of memories from there and add to the list with each visit. This year, being no exception, the additions are both good and not so good, but memorable nonetheless.   

1) Shark Sitings: While sitting beachside, we observed three different baby sharks in the waters edge, one who almost seemed to be playing with my oldest daughter (perhaps he was sizing her up for a tasty treat?!) 

2) Dolphins: Watching dolphins chase the fisherman in their boats one day (not a new experience, but always an enjoyable one)

3) Aquarium: There is a wonderful new exhibit called the Butterfly Bungalow, be sure to check it out if you get a chance. It is guaranteed to bring a smile to even the guys in your group. During our aquarium visit I filmed some of the fish and reptiles for a certain young friend I have who loves animals and sea life. There was a large cotton mouth snake lazily watching people come and go by his tank, so I decided to make a short video of him. He began to slowly navigate toward the water and I thought he was oblivious to me as he had been the others watching him before, WRONG! As I recorded, he slide gracefully into the water and BAM! before I realized what was going on, he sprang out of the water at me! Not once, nor twice, but three times. Of course I didn’t get a great video of this actually attack attempt, because I nearly jumped out of my skin….

4) Sea Gull Christening: While riding the ferry back from Fort Fischer, and our visit to  NC Aquarium (I highly recommend) I was christened by too closely following sea gulls! (they say this is good luck, I am here to tell you it really doesn’t matter either way, it is gross! All in all, worth it to see my family giggling and trying to hide the fact from me)

5) Under Water Adventure: And, the mysterious brush with either an unfriendly specimen of fish or jelly (the more exciting version of this story is a shark attack, depending on how imaginative you wish to be, resulted in a not so pleasant burning, stinging, itchy rash on my ankle/shin area.  I will refrain from sharing any photos. (you may post your thank you’s in the comment section) 🙂

There were many more moments of laughter, joy, sun worshipping, seafood eating and beach time enjoyment. After I get some of our photos organized and edited please check back and I will add a page where I may share them with you as well. 

Until then,
 and Happy Labor Day Weekend!