This week the Sunday hike was on Saturday.
This week it was not super close to home.
A day trip away.
This weekend I was on the coast.
I went to visit a very dear old friend.
These visits always last for hours and hours.
They include a walks, meals, gifts, visits with other friends and former students.
They include laughter and sometimes a few tears.
We share news of the day, memories of our shared past, inspiring ideas and life worries.
We share stories.
We share ourselves.
I treasure these days.
I am extremely grateful for these visits and for this friend.
This is where we go to walk...
The beautiful Pacific Ocean...can you smell the salt air?
Open Spaces...love that big blue, cloud holding sky!
Can you see all of those Butterflies?
Click on photos to enlarge.
Even though it was mid-day, most of the butterflies were clustered together for warmth.
The population is very low this year, only about 1500, instead of thousands.
The only thing they eat is milkweed. These are West Coast Monarchs. They can travel up to 2000 miles in a season. They will stay at this location until about February. They come for the location, not the Eucalyptus trees. I never knew this! I also learned this year that the females will mate with many different males and can do so for up to 14 hours at a time! Wow!
Click to enlarge photos to learn more
I loved seeing this group of tween girls completely engaged. They asked and tried to answer questions. They listened attentively, as did their parents. Two even wanted to hold the stripey caterpillar!
This is learning at its best!
In the gentle hands of a child
The trail as we head back out
Light dances on the surrounding mountains
Heading home, I try to capture the amazing moon.
This is what I get!
Thank you for coming along (again).
You all may never truly know how very grateful I am for my online community.
You'll just have to take my word for it!
Whether or not you celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday, I hope you'll pause for a moment during the following week to feel the gratitude I feel & share with all of you...
and maybe share some of your own.
Photos by Nancy A. Erisman ©2013
You can also see this grove of Monarchs here (includes informational links).