Background Switcher (Hidden)

Joy on the Beach

Sunday, December 2, 2012

It wasn't a classic beach day. Coolish, with a 35-mph sustained gale, with higher gusts that threatened to tip me over. But it was our only day to go to South Padre Island, TX, and we meant to make the most of it. So the family went in the water, roiling and wicked as it was. 

I'm a Leo. I like to keep my feet on land. So I took photos. 

 Out they waded. 

The sound and scent and feel of the ocean transformed them. My, he's getting leggy and long. A rocket, leaving the earth. Can that be my once-spherical infant Liam?

Pull your knees up, Liam, and catch some sweet air.

Like this!

They've both run the meat off their bones in cross country competitions. They rested for two weeks, and are starting to train for track in spring. Ribs showing. I doubt mine ever will again, but if I stay off the carbs, there's hope.

There was a ferocious undertow so they didn't go far out. And Daddy went with them. I was still pacing and clucking in the shallows. My family's all water signs: left to right a Cancer, a Scorpio and a Pisces, and fiery Leo on the shore, shaking the drops off her paws and roaring into the wind to COME BACK IN DAGGONIT There's a rip tide!! You'll get carried away!!

Which, when they were finally exhausted, they did. Come back in, that is. Bill body-surfed, like a long white shark coasting by.

It felt so good to be on the beach in November! Even if the Texans had sense enough not to be.

Wouldja look at them! Ha ha ha ha hahahahaha

We went behind the Convention Center to scope some snowy plovers and reddish egrets.

And the laughing gulls  flew in one place  like Jesus in the sky.

I especially loved the tail on this subadult bird. A laughing gull is a two-year gull, so this one was born in spring 2012. 

Such fun to finally be all together and birding.

We found some peanuts in the car and offered them to the gulls, who gladly took us up on the unaccustomed protein. Most people feed them Cheetos and similarly craptastic junk.

A willet snuck by...

and, being unafraid to be nipped hard by hungry gulls (it feels like scissors), I got lost in the flock.

You can keep the crashing waves and the undertow; wild birds trusting me to hand them food is my idea of heaven. 

Photo by Bill Thompson III


Love that last shot!... but I think you left out the very next picture... of you toweling the bird poo out of your hair ;-)

You sure are making me anxious to get back to the coast with these wonderful reports. Getting up a camping/birding/paddling to trip Freeport and Goose Island State Park, with a trip on the birding boat, the Skimmer, included, in January. Want to come? I'll cook.

But us Texans, we call them laughing gulls, even when they're old an cranky. :)

No, you have it right. The bare beaches of winter are an AWESOME place to be!
This post is full of fun photos, but I really like the shot of the whole crew. Great memory shot for such a fun day.
Glad you and Bill have surf sense. Too many visitors get in trouble on high energy beach days like that one.
You were right across the Gulf of Florida from us.

Quite a pair of white legged stilts you are raising. Cool that they are runners like the mama hen.

Okay, one last thing ... I loved the birdian image of you pacing and clucking on the shore.

You channeling Jackson again? Love it. Got to get down to the sea somehow.

As I grew up my family visited South Padre Island. As an adult I've mostly visited North Padre Island, but it's pretty much the same. Late in the year is just fine for us (now) Northern folk . . . you get the beach to yourself, and we don't really notice that it's 'cold'! Always fun to feed the gulls!

We have an 2 Aquarians, 2 Pisceans and a Cancer, everybody's in the water. Love the polkadot tailfeathers on the overhead gulls.

Looks like everyone is having fun1 :)

Hello, I read your Zick Dough suet receipt that you posted last year. Do you have any updates on the receipe? Any updates on effects on birds?
Thank You
Bernie Paquette
My blog web site is

[Back to Top]