Monday, September 27, 2010

Election Time: Craziness.

Political Science Masters and PHD Candidates listen up: come to Dewey Beach for the Summer and in the Fall return with your Thesis!
For a town that is not even 2 miles long our month-long campaign election season craziness could fill any vast city!
The evening before the election, I took my place on the curb holding up candidate's signs. I was not getting any action until I held my sign high, swiveled my hips, danced, and asked for trucks to beep their horns!
I got more attention doing the above than at the Starboard! I've missed my RTE #1 calling as a mascot! I say pay me cash $25/hour and I'll wear the fuzzy suit and dance on the street!
This year the Starboard's new digital billboard flashed it's favorite candidate...... who did not win; yet immediately after elections the sign did flash a congrats to the winning opposition!
Voting is inside at the Life Saving Station....... but first get past the candidate set ups....... my favorite was a Martha Stewart-esque setting of seasonal flowers, pumpkins, hay, a watering can, a painted stool, and a bowl of candy corn!
Then inside after signing in, it is chat-time with the election board officials and observers.
I am glad I asked how the physical voting worked. It seemed dead simple...... but a mistake in a close election could be a cause for rip-roaring contention and more fighting.
Happy I was to attend a very Dewey-style "after the election" party!
I've heard there is for all candidates and councilmen a "Bury the Sand Hatchet/Shovel" ritual. Hope they do not forget to do it!

Beach Blessings,

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Yom Kippur: Sermon on Hawk Watch!

My Dear Sweet ILDB Blog Reader,
Please read the prior post on Rosh Ha Shonah and Hawk Watch to truly appreciate this post.
I wanted to be at Yom Kippur's Morning Service more than I wanted to be at Hawk Watch, but it did not stop my mind from it's wandering desires! I knew that day would be a record day for raptors counted: a front moved in the night before, Kol Nidre, with excellent NW winds and clear skies. Indeed ~ 1,500 raptors were counted; a record day.
A visiting Rabbi was introduced for the Sermon; he took the podium with a stack of papers and a magazine, his topic for the first five minutes or more was devoted to: Hawk Watch!!!
Bursting out laughing, I looked to my fellow Cape Henlopen Volunteers who were also doing the same. We gave high fives each time the Rabbi said the words, "Hawk Watch"!
The Rabbi reminisced about his "Mother The Naturalist" who would never let him walk a step without doing bird and plant identifications. Then, the Rabbi gave kudos to the local Hawk Watch , held up for validation his own birding magazine, and then the "official" Hawk Silhouette Identification Chart!
Having just the week before blogged about the marvels of combining High Holidays and Hawk Watch: I was amazed with the coincidence and beyond giddy.
Giddy is not a term normally described for Yom Kippur emotions...... but there it was.
Later I thanked the Rabbi and learned that he resides at Cape Shores with easy access to witness the daily Miracle of Fall Migration.

La Shanah Tova,

Monday, September 20, 2010

Ocean City's Bike Week, Yom Kippur @ SJC, Shofar Blasts

In Fall of 2004 at my beachy-cottage, my very first night was to the accompanying rumbles of bikes, bikes, and more bikes. As my cottage is near a street light: it was more like hearing the idling varooms gear into blasts.
I was very unhappy. I assumed this was the " nightly norm". I had not a clue about the once a year event of OC's: Bike Week!
I was kinda happy when a tricked-out Harley broke down right in front of my cottage and spent the day in my driveway!
This year, Bike Week occurred the same week as Yom Kippur!
The Shofar is a ram's horn that is ritually blown in certain named notes and patterns to announce the beginning of Rosh Ha Shonah and the end of Yom Kippur.
I spent a wonderful day with Seaside Jewish Community (SJC) in services at our host, Epworth Church, I left in a prayerful mode, but as I drove back to my cottage, I was surrounded by blasts of bikes!
For the weekend 250,000 bikes descended on Ocean City! Again my cottage was besieged by the noise. I was very unhappy.
Oddly the varoom-varooms reminded me of the Shofar blasts!
One Blast: Tekiyah!
Three Short Blasts: Shevarim!
Rapid Line Blasts: Teruah!
The Blast of All Blasts: Tekiyah Gedolah!!!

Then I was happy, and happy even during the night of rumbling, and almost sad when morning came, and not a Bike Blast around to remind me of the Shofar and the call to The New Year: 5771.

La Shanah Tova,

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Rosh Ha Shonah and Hawk Watch

For the Erev Rosh Ha Shonah evening service, I made certain I was dressed up: Simply Vera Wang dress, fancy drop-pearl earrings, gold circle bangle, and Italian sandals, ruched-black handbag.
Because...... The next day, for Saturday Morning Rosh Ha Shonah services I was dressed in a tee-shirt, capris, and a backpack.
Fashion format follows the function: I was positively giddy from the effect of going between Hawk Watch before and after services.
I was more proud of my fat-with-binoculars backpack than the fancy black leather-tasseled handbag. This memory brought back the wonderful youthful moments of picking out a new outfit to wear for Rosh Ha Shonah. .... And now as an adult I am in a tee-shirt!
The morning service sent me off with the Shofar Blasts exciting me to charge into the new year ahead.
After Hawk Watch I attended, just around the corner, the Tashlich ceremony at the Lewes Cape Shores Pier where we threw our leafs inscribed with our woes to the Delaware Bay.
Combining all the above activities can only happen in Sussex County! The effect of which made me for the entire day beyond grateful for my beachy-life.

Beach Blessings,

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Mission Impossible: Find Hurricane Earl Survivors!

Please start to sing the theme song to the now so impossibly retro TV show, "Mission Impossible". Too young? You Tube it!!!
The Tuesday after the passing of Hurricane Earl off the Delmarva Coast, there I am on the Hawk Watch platform enjoying my day. Nothing to do but watch the ocean, bay, sky and a few raptors! After duty, descending the steps, my cell gets in a voice mail. Oddly the cell call never came in on the platform. Oh, well.
My "Piping Plover" Director of Endangered Species, Birds and Plants, implores a call back. I do.
Theme Song Please:
Your Mission if you choose to take it is to find the Survivors of Hurricane Earl! Find the Endangered Species Wild Beach Amaranth Plants that made it thru Hurricane Earl's High Tide!
Why yes, I will take on the mission!
In 25 mph winds with stinging sand I crawled the Dune Line between Key Box and Conquest beach. I was truly bummed as I started the crawl. There were 25 plants..... I was finding none.
And then I found one...... a tiny water-logged survivor.
And then I found one the size of a small butter plate!
And then I found one the size of an appetizer plate!
With each find, happier, and happier I became despite covered with the flying gritty and filmy sand.
20% survivor rate!

Ta Da!

Monday, September 13, 2010

The Consensus: Starboard, The Cove, Nalus, North Beach

The "Until Death 'Till We Part-y Summer House Group" have decades together of group parties; they know each other very well. Yet, I am equally amazed and not that at the end of every party, or even a Saturday Happy Hour, there is a "Group Grope Consensus" as to where The Group will grope and end the evening. Labor Day weekend Saturday we all piled into The Starboard, and on Sunday evening we piled into The Cove.
We know what we enjoy, and know what live music is playing where, and at what venue. The GROUP always picks out the most FUN choice.
This is how it works. Saturday at "The Party" mid-way thru everyone starts to say, OK, see you later @ XXX, right? And thus it gets repeated, and indeed half the party does end up at the agreed location.
The Summer House Group even has it's own "real-estate" at each bar; in particular, The Starboard! Packed sardine-full as always, there we were, packed into our own little can-bar space. One party member, not knowing the above, came in with a mylar-baloon from the party as if to say "find me". Yet, somehow among the thousands he found our space.

Beach Blessings,

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Lewes's: The Buttery: Old School and Pub Life

Once long ago after walking in blustery conditions, with a date, we walked into Lewes's "The Buttery" hoping to just get a cup of hot tea. My date's face turned to horror. This restaurant is for THE BIG DATE. But maybe not?
The patrons match the decor: High Class/Old School, varnished woods and flowers are abundant. Ask to be seated in the semi- circular "Garden" window, as there you can catch the street scene.
I finally made it to The Buttery.. again..... but this time for a celebratory birthday brunch! As the gals were late, I sat waiting at the empty but beautiful old school- varnished bar flirting with the bartender, discovering the bar life that not even the locals know exist!
The Buttery, if seated at the bar, offers up a Pub Menu from 5 PM to closing! The creative menu also entices as the prices are a fraction of a dinning room dinner!
Lovely, lovely is the chef's presentations for either menu.

Beach Blessings,