I’ve been in one of those creative moods and just churned out a 28 page photo book that is both biographical and a nature photo book! In brief paragraphs I share how nature provided healing at each of several traumas or losses in my life. Not a book for the larger public maybe, but a good cathartic expression of the ups and downs of a life full of both adventure and tragedies, plus the healing of nature at every turn. I use quotations throughout to highlight the healing. You can preview the book electronically at Life Tranquility by Charlie Doggett | Blurb Books or just click this image of the front cover:
Today, July 24 is National Cousins Dayin the United States and for those interested in family history or just family memories, it could be very important, for almost everyone has at least one cousin who keeps up with family memories and history or genealogy and then there are the many times we played together as children, almost always outdoors as most of my old photos show. And there’s a brief article on the National Days Archives site. And the feature photo at top is at a 1948 Hardgrave family reunion with me in the very center.
You may not see cousins much, but you have a lot in common. Spending Thanksgiving at “the kids table.” Avoiding the great aunt who wears too much perfume. Helping Grandpa learn to text. Because cousins don’t live with you, they probably also know a family story you haven’t heard. It’s a good day to find out. HAPPY COUSINS DAY! See my “Cousins Gallery” below, mostly from the 1940″s! 🙂
And though I have no specific cousins pages or stories, they are generally included in my Family History Pages on this website and photos in the Family History Photos Gallery. So “Hello!” out there to all my Hardgrave and Doggett cousins who actually read my blog! 🙂 I have lots of memories of us as children together and should have already written those down! Maybe I will before it is too late! 🙂
“Nothing has ever been said about God that hasn’t already been said better by the wind in the trees.”
With that, I renew an old adventure that will certainly become an even grander new adventure . . .
It was in October of 2018, the peak of the rainy season, that I first visited Esquinas Rainforest Lodge at La Gamba Research Station, Piedras Blancas National Park, north of Golfito, Puntarenas. It rained pretty hard every afternoon with the mornings and short spaces between rain full of wonderful birds to photograph! And the planned boat trip to Rio Coto Mangroves turned impossible with high winds and heavy rain on Golfo Dulce, but the ingenious boat captain took me back into the smaller Gulf of Golfito (shielded from heavy wind by trees) for some of my better bird shots in between downpours – an unplanned but excellent substitute for an always good mangrove tour! Making Lemonade from Lemons! 🙂 And how could you not in this incredible rainforest? See more photos from my first trip there & a video link below . . .
This day is part of a month-long U.S. celebration of the outdoors and the benefit of spending more time there. Picnic with your family at a local park. Go kayaking or paddle boarding. Ride on a bike trail you have never explored. Whatever you do, do it outdoors.
PERSONAL NOTE: Tonight I will be at one of my favorite nature lodges, Maquenque Ecolodge in Boca Tapada on the Nicaragua border from which you can expect weeks of nature photos and maybe one tonight! 🙂
This celebration is part of someone’s idea to stretch Valentine’s Day into a week. No need to buy flowers or candy for this day, thankfully. Just offer friends and family something that has been scientifically shown to lift their mood: a hug.
New Trip Blog Posts Start Tonight!
Also TODAY is the day that I fly on a little Sansa Airlines 12 passenger plane to one of my favorite wilderness places in Costa Rica, Tortuguero National Park, as mentioned yesterday. So most likely you will get a post from there tonight, assuming that their internet WiFi is as good at this most expensive lodge in Tortuguero as they claims it is. 🙂 Tortuga Lodge & Gardens
So expect a week or more of photos and comments from what travel magazines call “The Amazon of Costa Rica” and one of the few places in the country where travelers have actually seen a Jaguar (from a boat) though they are mostly nocturnal like all the wild cats here. Plus I expect a lot of birds, some butterflies and several other animals, along with the tropical rainforest and rivers/canals and of course some great Caribbean food and 4 good nights of sleep! 🙂
From the top of a volcano to the mangroves at the ocean’s edge and even in the tiny garden behind my casita, I’ve daily photographed nature for 8 years here and called that photography “Nature as Art!” and shared it in this blog. 🙂
I like this Collins Online Dictionary definition:
Nature is all the animals, plants, and other things in the world that are not made by people, and all the events and processes that are not caused by people.
Thus in nature I worship God and find my peace & inspiration from Him, the creator of it all!
Each year I find it difficult to select only 12 photos from the year and I first tried to come up with 12 “categories” of nature to make sure I selected a variety, but that became as cumbersome as trying to have a “photo-a-month.” So I decided to just stick with “12 favorites,” even if more than 12 are favorites! 🙂
So, however labeled, here’s 12 photos I made in 2022!
Happy New Year and Pura vida! 🙂
To the nearly 500 email subscribers: I hope you read on for the other 11 favorite photos . . .
The carnival people arrived in town yesterday and started setting up for the central Catholic Church’s Patron Saint (San Rafael) Fiesta which, with donated food and entertainment on a stage in church parking lot, plus daily Bingo will all raise a little bit of money for the church. And the cheap carnival rides? Well I can’t see how anyone makes money off those, but evidently they do! 🙂 One set-up shot here followed by a 6-shot gallery of the carnival people setting up things in the street in front of church.
With (1) the lesser popularity of the Caribbean side of Costa Rica from the Pacific side for both tourists and residents. (2) Lesser development on this side of the country (not a single chain hotel). (3) My chosen hotel being away from the other hotels and more popular white-sand beaches further south, and (4) therefore we who stay at Banana Azul Hotel often have the beach all to ourselves! And that’s nice for the tranquility and for the photos! 🙂
I no longer swim or surfboard in the ocean for many reasons, but I love to walk on beaches and also here I walk on a beach road with glimpses of the ocean through the trees. Plus my favorite beach photos here are my sunrise images which I shared daily each morning last week, so you’ve seen those. But here are a few others shot this year that I basically liked.
Tomorrow I will share a few “People Shots” that I sneaked of people on this beach and the beach road. “People watching” can be fun! 🙂 Here’s one beach shot for the email and 6 more to follow online below . . .