Starfish, hummingbird frolicking in hose spray and other underwater adventures

Our daughter took this photo of starfish in the San Juan Islands off the coast of Washington last month

Good morning, dear multi-colored and multi-faceted starfish! I have missed you as you shine your light over and under water. I hope these late spring days (we call it summer here in the short season of the Upper Peninsula) find you less constrained and more hopeful than in the past year or so.

Our son pulled this pike from underwater in the Adirondacks

I uploaded these pictures with an underwater theme over a week ago. And then…hmmm…couldn’t think of any words to write. Not even an underwater bubble arose from the depths to share.

Until a magical mystery unfolded last night. There are no pictures to illustrate this true story, so let your imagination illuminate, please.

I water our newly-planted carrot seeds. Heat drenches the nearby poplars, maple, and oak in hazy after dinner ambiance. Soil dusts itself in our near-drought conditions. The little itty bitty seeds need moisture to sprout, so the cold hose water obliges in rainbow evening light.

When–suddenly–what appears? A green and red glint of a hummingbird. And he frolics–yes frolics!–in the hose spray. He shakes his sweet wings. He dips and dives in the cold water like a Weeki Wachee mermaid. He puddles down in the mud and picks seeds (not the carrots, thankfully). I move the spray and he chases the water like a thirsty heat-crazed imp, circling round and round with unbridled glee.

What fun! What relief! And what magic to watch a hummingbird underwater in the hose spray, soaking up beloved moisture.

Cedar underwater in Lake Superior

Then this morning I scurried downstairs to find an onion in the food room. What to my wandering eyes doth appear–but a black bear standing outside the basement sliding door. Yes, I admit I flashed on tales of grizzly bears breaking into Rocky Mountain cabins, but this fella–and I blush to type the words–only lifted his leg and peed before wandering into the woods. Barry called, “Hey, bear!” and the furry guy glanced back askance and waddled further into the poplars, maple and oak.

I figured he had to pee to fit into the theme of this blog post, although it’s a little challenging to figure out the underwater connection.

Lake Superior underwater rocks

Speaking of getting out from underwater–today is Barry’s last day of work! Yes he retires today after 42 years at our local newspaper, the L’Anse Sentinel. He’ll be as happy as a hummingbird frolicking in hose spray come tomorrow.

A fallen tree jutting out, half underwater and half above

All is well with us. I drove downstate last month to visit all my kith and kin. First visit in 18 months! It was so lovely to see everyone again–and my mom and I zipped all over the Thumb of Michigan chatting and hugging everyone, vaccinated or un.

It feels like emerging on the surface of a pond after being underwater for a long time. No, you’re right, the covid may not be over yet. But I trust that the vaccine is helping to ease our virus concern. Even though the vaccine does not totally eliminate our chances of getting sick, it sure mitigates it, and I’m grateful. The statistics suggest we can paddle above water now, at least some of us.

I’m sure someone will know if these are loons or Merganser ducks, right?

Are you perching on a rock above water now, or still enjoying the rocks beneath the surface? Are you refreshed or sodden? Treading water or rejuvenated?

Are you cavorting and playing in unexpected magical moments, keeping your eyes open for them, even as life challenges us with waves, lightning, storms?

Are you skipping stones or sitting still admiring them?

Wishing you all a fine week enjoying the gifts of water, dear unique and beautiful starfish!

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
This entry was posted in June 2021 and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

45 Responses to Starfish, hummingbird frolicking in hose spray and other underwater adventures

  1. LaDonna Remy says:

    Congratulations to you and your husband on his retirement. These are beautiful photos. It sounds like nature is all around and communicating with you. This is lovely post.

  2. Susan D. Durham says:

    How lovely to see you surface, my friend, and with such a wonderful post! Love every word (drop). Thank you for this gift today. Loving you from atop my sweet rock.

  3. John K says:

    Well, at least we have the writings of one Drue to look forward to … thank you for your post! Please wish Barry a happy retirement for us.

    • Kathy says:

      I read Barry your comment, John, and he said thank you! It’s been quite a week as he’s said goodbye to his colleagues and friends at the Sentinel.

  4. jodiczt says:

    This was just the thing to wake up to this morning. Lovely, poignant, apt. I’m glad you took up your pen and shared yourself with us today. Much love to you.

  5. Stacy says:

    Wonderful to read your words again, Kathy!

    We took a trek to the Atlantic Ocean recently and found a few jellyfish and lots of seashells. It was wonderful to reconnect with family we had not seen in forever – to introduce Granddaughter to them. XOXO

    • Kathy says:

      Stacy, I have been thinking about your trip to the Atlantic Ocean several times in he past week in between retirement gatherings. How fun! I can hardly imagine the joy you felt as you watched your granddaughter frolicking on the sand. Hope no one stepped on jellyfish!

  6. Carol says:

    How delightful to see some words from you again – and about my favorite thing – water. Large bodies of water rejuvenate me, so thank you for your contribution. My family is rejuvenating, and part of that rejuvenation will be a trip to the coast for a week in a house that has an ocean view, and easy access to an ocean beach. We will venture out – cautiously, hopefully, joyfully.


  7. Hi Kathy, it’s good to see you. I’m glad you’re well and having magical encounters with hummingbirds and bears 🙂 And Happy Retirement to Barry!

    • Kathy says:

      Andrea, it seems like there’s a special time here in the spring where we’re more likely to see bears (not a regular occurrence, for sure!) It has been a very interesting week. I shared your retirement wishes with Barry, too. Thank you so much.

  8. leelah saachi says:

    Loved the freshness of these photos, and the delicious stones in rippling light. And that bear,,,since animals mark “their” territory, i wondered if this bear just made it clear for other bears that you belong to him. Or not

    • Kathy says:

      Leelah, I kind of relate the bear with Barry’s energy because of his name. I think he showed up to wish Barry a happy retirement 🙂 Thanks for enjoying the photos and sharing your spirit here.

  9. So GREAT to see you here (or for me to be here and read your marvelous words). I’ve heard of hummingbirds frolicking in the spray of water – we’ll have to try that, since we’re having a heat wave here in NE and I’m sure the tiny dancers are thirsty. They do stop by at our watering hole for them (ie, hummingbird feeder) and peer at me through the window every now and then. Congrats to Barry! It’s a big step, as is traveling and seeing family and HUGGING. I feel like a new woman, doing so to everyone I meet on the street. Well, no, I’m exaggerating, but if I know the person, I hug. Sending you a huge hug. xo

    • Kathy says:

      Pam, you wouldn’t believe it–the same male hummingbird has appeared almost every day we water the garden. He flies toward the spray of water and dances and dives. Loving that you’re enjoying the hugging energy–and the freedom of it–and that we’re “out in the world” once again. xoxo

      • Of course I totally believe it! I think hummingbirds – once they get used to us – really enjoy our company. And I am sure he feels your vibration and sunshine energy.

  10. Val Boyko says:

    Lovely to join you in this underwater and watering time in nature. I’ve never seen a blue starfish! May you feel revived from your water adventures💧 🙏💧

    • Kathy says:

      Val, I have never seen starfish these colors ever before! You know, it’s raining right now…so more water adventures continue. Which is good considering the drought in so many places.

  11. debyemm says:

    I’m thinking they are Merganser ducks since no one else has chimed in.
    Today was my grocery day (you’d probably like some of our endless – at least it feels endless – rainy days – I got drenched putting the last load into my vehicle). In the stores, people were smiling at me and I at them. To a couple of those I said it feels good to smile again and they agreed.
    Being able to go without a mask because my whole family is fully vaxxed feels like a reward for being conscientious throughout the pandemic. I still watch the stats and I know its no guarantee but from the beginning my instinct was I wasn’t going to get infected – not that I was arrogant about that. I did take precautions. Phew – it feels like forward motion again !! Nice to “see” you again today.

    • Kathy says:

      Thanks for your vote, Deb. I was thinking loons…Barry said it was one loon and one Merganser and I said, “No way!” Isn’t it fabulous to be able to smile at people again? It sounds like you feel the same way. Your phrase “forward motion” brings a smile to my face right now. 🙂 Nice to see you, too.

  12. Love your hummingbird magical mystery! Congratulations to Barry!!! It will be interesting to see where retirement takes him. It must have been such a joy and relief to spend time with your mom again. That 18 month separation was hard to endure, hopefully never again. Looks like we’re back on the “every three months” visiting the grandchildren schedule — they’re coming back again in August. So I’d say we’re happily perching on a rock above water. 💕

    • Kathy says:

      Barbara, I think perhaps we will never take our time with other people for granted again. If we ever did before. I loved being with my mom so much! And your “every three month” schedule sounds just perfect. Perching on that rock above water with you, too!

  13. sherrysescape says:

    Wonderful! Thanks, Kathy!

  14. Ally Bean says:

    Congrats on your husband’s retirement. I suspect that you two will have some great adventures ahead. Always love to see you in my feed. Also love the underwater rocks photo. Way cool.

    • Kathy says:

      Ally Bean, it’s been way too long. I am hoping to stay dedicated to blogging–but we shall see. Hoping all is well with you and looking forward to reading about your thoughts and world soon. Soon, I hope! My usual schedule feels all tilted with Barry home every day. Usually I blog or comment when he’s at work…hmmm….life will require some adjustments. 🙂

      • Ally Bean says:

        I had to make the same adjustments when my husband started working from home [now for 15 months]. Before I had time to blog uninterrupted now it’s catch when catch can. You’ll figure it out.

  15. Debbie says:

    Still giggling over the story of the peeing bear — and part of me is glad to hear I’m NOT the only one cleaning up after an animal, ha! Congrats to your hubby on his retirement — best wishes for him finding something meaningful and enjoyable to do with his time now. Isn’t it amazing how relieved one feels, now that vaccines are more readily available??

    • Kathy says:

      Wasn’t that bear story a hoot, Debbie? I am glad you enjoyed it, too! Thanks for the retirement well wishes. He had two retirement get-togethers last week, so now we’ll see how things change as the summer progresses…

  16. Barb says:

    We have our water feature (the stream) up and running, and birds come daily to bathe and refresh themselves. I still haven’t seen or heard the Hummers though – they are probably waiting to visit until some of my perennials bloom. We’re keeping an eye out for bears but so far haven’t spotted any. I love your photos, especially of the starfish and the Superior rocks. Glad you could travel to see family. We went to Denver yesterday to take a friend to the Dr. So many people – so much traffic – it was culture shock. We masked as a precaution just because we rode elevators with people and couldn’t maintain distance. Congratulations to Barry. I know you’ll be planning some grand, new adventures.

    • Kathy says:

      Barb, it IS kind of culture shock to be back among so much activity! Maybe it will take awhile for all of us to get used to it. Especially those of us who have hung out in the woods for many months. Do you have a date when the hummers usually arrive? Ours usually come–the males–around May 10th. The females come a week later. By the way, your blog was lovely. Spring finally does come to your area–eventually!

  17. jeffstroud says:

    Kathy, what fun you had with this theme! Even nature came to offer you some inspiration.
    I’m still wading in the shallows, through I did have lunch with a friend in a restaurant with no mask. When food shopping last week, with a mask or no mask option if you have been vaccinated… Life goes on…

    • Kathy says:

      Jeff, most of our stores say that the fully vaccinated don’t have to wear masks. I think I saw on Facebook–maybe–that you had a lunch out with a friend. To celebrate a special anniversary, right? Congratulations on that, my friend. Such an accomplishment!

  18. When I clicked on your page, a hummingbird came flittering at my window. They are so fun!
    I have never seen such colorful starfish!!
    Happy retirement to Barry!

    • Kathy says:

      Lunar–now that sounds magical! It sounds like you love hummingbirds, too. And I have never even ever seen a LIVE starfish–just dead ones. Did not know they could have bright colors like that. Thanks for the retirement wishes!

  19. Tilly travel says:

    I have never seen star fish that colour before, how lovely, and how lovely those close encounters with our wild family members sound. Even if the bear simply came to relive himself 🙂
    Happy retirement to Barry, now you can spend more time together .
    Bright Blessings

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