Taking It All In

This is False Creek in Vancouver where I sat one evening to take in the sights of the city. Seems there’s so much to see that you have to take it all in one little chunk at a time. If you have nothing better to do (or even if you do) you can just sit here on a bench and scan from left to right. I’ve spent a lot of time walking around here at night and it feels safe, lot’s of people do it, strength in numbers. The other thing is that if I walk too far I can always catch the subway or a cab, the city is about as cosmopolitan as they come. And I thought Cosmopolitan was a cocktail, silly me.

This is False Creek in Vancouver where I sat one evening to take in the sights of the city. Seems there's so much to see that you have to take it all in one little chunk at a time. If you have nothing better to do (or even if you do) you can just sit here on a bench and scan from left to right. I've spent a lot of time walking around here at night and it feels safe, lot's of people do it, strength in numbers. The other thing is that if I walk too far I can always catch the subway or a cab, the city is about as cosmopolitan as they come. And I thought Cosmopolitan was a cocktail, silly me.

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Anna Maria Island

This is Anna Maria Island, which is in Manatee County Florida. It’s a quiet beach community along the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Normally people will sit here to wait for the free trolley, enjoy an ice cream, or just catch a little shade as they plan their next move. However if you get up at the crack of dawn you can have the whole place to yourself, unless of course you run into someone like me taking photos. I never get tired of Anna Maria Island, and the next time you go there you’ll know what I mean.

This is Anna Maria Island, which is in Manatee County Florida. It's a quiet beach community along the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Normally people will sit here to wait for the trolley, enjoy an ice cream cone, or just catch a little shade as they plan their next move. However if you get up at the crack of dawn you can have the whole place to yourself, unless of course you run into someone like me taking photos. I never get tired of Anna Maria Island, and the next time you go there you'll know what I mean.

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Leaving Port

Not too long ago I found myself leaving out of a port on a ship. This is my impression from the back of the ship with the lights of Barbados in the distance and the full moon as it reflected on the ocean. Life should be like this, and from time to time it is. Moments like this are few and fleeting and I like to think that if I can capture the essence of a moment with an image, then I can go back to it from time to time.

Not too long ago I found myself leaving out of a port on a ship. This is my impression from the back of the ship with the lights of Barbados in the distance and the full moon as it reflected on the ocean. Life should be like this, and from time to time it is. Moments like this are few and fleeting and I like to think that if I can capture the essence of a moment with an image, then I can go back to it from time to time.

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Harbour Sunrise

In addition to cruise ships, a convention center and sight seeing, Vancouver Harbour is a busy shipping port. This morning I focused my lens on the industrial side of things as the sun was rising behind the cranes. Despite all the boat and seaplane traffic, the water remains crystal clear. I’m not sure how they manage that but thankfully they do. In any case, if you’ve ever seen pictures of English Bay (including my own) which surrounds Vancouver, you’ll notice many container ships docked offshore. My guess is they are waiting to take on a shipment of containers from here and head back out to sea. If you climb up one of the surrounding mountains and look back, you’ll see these ships lined up end-to-end for miles out into the bay. The first time you see them it’s quite a site, but in time you grow accustom to their presence and you almost forget they’re there. Day in, day out, they file in and out this port and this was just the start of another busy day.

In addition to cruise ships, a convention center and sight seeing, Vancouver Harbour is a busy shipping port. This morning I focused my lens on the industrial side of things as the sun was rising behind the cranes. Despite all the boat and seaplane traffic, the water remains crystal clear. I'm not sure how they manage that but thankfully they do. In any case, if you've ever seen pictures of English Bay (including my own) which surrounds Vancouver, you'll notice  many container ships docked offshore. My guess is they are waiting to take on a shipment of containers from here and head back out to sea. If you climb up one of the surrounding mountains and look back, you'll see these ships lined up end-to-end for miles out into the bay. The first time you see them it's quite a site, but in time you grow accustom to their presence and you almost forget they're there. Day in, day out, they file in and out this port and this was just the start of another busy day.

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Guarding the Fort

A couple of weeks ago I was walking around the old fort in San Juan, Puerto Rico. You couldn’t go inside because the park service was closed due to the federal government shutdown. Since the fort was shut down there were police at all the gates, guarding the fort. It was a little ironic and a little bit of a flashback to a few hundred years ago when there would be guards at the gates also, probably on the inside and dressed somewhat differently. Despite the guarded fort, it’s a nice walk along the outside. This is one of the many iconic lookouts that line the walls. As far as I know, the fort wasn’t attacked this day.

A couple of weeks ago I was walking around the old fort in San Juan, Puerto Rico. You couldn't go inside because the park service was closed due to the federal government shutdown. Since the fort was shut down there police at all the gates, guarding the fort. It was a little ironic and a little bit of a flashback to a few hundred years ago when there would be guards at the gate also, probably on the inside though dressed somewhat differently. Despite the guarded fort, it's a nice walk along the outside. This is one of the many iconic lookouts that line the walls. As far as I know, the fort wasn't attacked this day.

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Hidden Beach

This was a recent sunset at Emerson Point in Manatee County, Florida. Emerson point is more about mangroves and wildlife than beaches. However, if you know where to look you can find a couple of secluded beaches like this one in and amongst the mangroves. The evening I shot this I had a couple of raccoons amble by. I think they were a little surprised since these little hideaways tend to be deserted, especially as the sun is going down. They decided to wait patiently from a few feet away as I took my pictures, probably wondering if I had any scraps of food to leave behind. The other thing I like about this spot is that we can bring our dogs here on a hot day. Most beach areas in Florida prohibit dogs, but since this isn’t strictly a beach, dogs are allowed and they love to wade in the shallow water to chase fish or just cool off.

This was a recent sunset at Emerson Point in Manatee County, Florida. Emerson point is more about mangroves and wildlife than beaches. However, if you know where to look you can find a couple of secluded beaches like this one in and amongst the mangroves. The evening I shot this I had a couple of raccoons amble by. I think they were a little surprised since these little hideaways tend to be deserted, especially as the sun is going down. They decided to wait patiently from a few feet away as I took my pictures, probably wondering if I had any scraps of food to leave behind. The other thing I like about this spot is that we can bring our dogs here on a hot day. Most beach areas in Florida prohibit dogs, but since this isn't strictly a beach, dogs are allowed and they love to wade in the shallow water to chase fish or just cool off.

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Old Town

This is the old town section of San Juan Puerto Rico where I recently found myself on a Friday night. After an authentic meal at El Jibarito we spotted a coconut vendor who provided fresh coconut water, something I could get used to. By the time we left this section of town it was filling up with Friday night party goers and it took our cab about a half hour to navigate the narrow oneway cobblestone streets. Not that I minded that slow ride one bit.

This is the old town section of San Juan Puerto Rico where I recently found myself on a Friday night. After an authentic meal at El Jibarito we spotted a coconut vendor who provided fresh coconut water, something I could get used to. By the time we left this section of town it was filling up with Friday night party goers and it took our cab about a half hour to navigate the narrow oneway cobblestone streets. Not that I minded that slow ride one bit.

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Memories of Lake Louise

If I had this view out back I’d never leave home. Nonetheless, this is the view you see from the Chateau Lake Louise in Alberta Canada. The last time I was here the lake was frozen and I was with a climbing party where we scaled a frozen waterfall towards the back on the right. It was an all day affair and since I was not qualified to lead I stayed below as the lead climber secured a route up the fall. If you can imagine being chained to a rock in subzero temperatures followed by brief periods of adrenalin rush, that would pretty much summed it up. Aside from that, my other memory is of how good the peppermint schnapps tasted once we finished. Our party must have been quite a site as we walked into the five-start hotel outfitted with ice axes, crampons and all manner of climbing gear. In fact, it was probably a common sight as this is a popular winter sport destination. Anyway, back to the present day. Winter or summer, the view here is about as good as it gets.

If I had this view out back I'd never leave home. Nonetheless, this is the view you see from the Chateau Lake Louise in Alberta Canada. The last time I was here the lake was frozen and I was with a climbing party where we scaled a frozen waterfall towards the back on the right. It was an all day affair and since I was not qualified to lead I stayed below as the lead climber secured a route up the fall. If you can imagine being chained to a rock in subzero temperatures followed by brief periods of adrenalin rush, that would pretty much summed it up. Aside from that, my other memory is of how good the peppermint schnapps tasted once we finished. Our party must have been quite a site as we walked into the five-start hotel outfitted with ice axes, crampons and all manner of climbing gear. In fact, it was probably a common sight as this is a popular winter sport destination. Anyway, back to the present day. Winter or summer, the view here is about as good as it gets.

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Public Pier Dawn

Near the end of Anna Marie Island in Manatee County Florida is the public pier. It’s a little out of the way, and the speed limit is posted at 25 miles per hour. It’s a sleepy little area and an idyllic seaside retreat for anyone looking to escape from the harshness of life for a while. There are a couple of piers, and this is the public one which is owned by the county. In the summer it’s not uncommon to see manatees, dolphins, stingrays or even the occasional shark swim by. If it’s hot, and it usually is, there’s an ice cream parlor just across the street, or you can sit at the end of the pier and order a cold drink. So, next time your in Florida, check it out, just be sure to slow down and roll the windows down, things move a little slower down here.

Near the end of Anna Marie Island in Manatee County Florida is the public pier. It's a little out of the way, and the speed limit is posted at 25 miles per hour. It's a sleepy little area and an idyllic seaside retreat for anyone looking to escape from the harshness of life for a while. There are a couple of piers, and this is the public one which is owned by the county. In the summer it's not uncommon to see manatees, dolphins, stingrays or even the occasional shark swim by. If it's hot, it usually is, there's an ice cream parlor just across the street, or you can sit at the end of the pier and order a cold drink. So, next time your in Florida, check it out, just be sure to slow down and roll the windows down, things move a little slower down here.

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Tangle Creek Falls

This last summer I took a trip down Highway 93, the Columbia Icefields Parkway in Alberta Canada. It’s no wonder it’s considered one of the most scenic highways in the world. I’ve been on Highway 1 in California and driven through Yellowstone in Montana and Wyoming, however never have I seen such breathtaking views for so many miles. This was just one of many stops and I think that if I didn’t have a day job I’d still be here photographing. Nonetheless, I’ll surely come back here, if not already in my dreams.

This last summer I took a trip down Highway 93, the Columbia Icefields Parkway in Alberta Canada. It's no wonder it's considered one of the most scenic highways in the world. I've been on Highway 1 in California and driven through Yellowstone in Montana and Wyoming, however never have I seen such breathtaking views for so many miles. This was just one of many stops and I think that if I didn't have a day job I'd still be here photographing. Nonetheless, I'll surely come back here, if not already in my dreams.

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