Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Robert Moses Beach June 2015

This was our first trip to Robert Moses Beach, 2015, which is on the south shore of Long Island.
 It was a really windy and gray day when we got there around 10:30 in the morning.
 The snack bar was not ready for the new season's customers.
 The Sea Gulls were flying above hoping not to miss anything, especially food scraps.  They can be very aggressive, so hold on to your food.
The Italian inspired "Pencil" tower at the entrance to the parking lots.
 City friends walking on the beach
 Gull just sitting, not paying much attention to me.
 Remains of shells and flotsam and jetsam as the tide recedes.  I did trip over some fishing line that was buried in the sand.  I wound it up and tossed it into the nearest garbage can.  It can be dangerous if there is a hook on one end, but this line , fortunately was just a line,  no hook.  It is dangerous to animals and birds.
Rockweed, or Fucus,  a Seaweed we used to call "poppers" which when dry from the sun, produces small pops when the air bladders which keeps it afloat are pinched between kids fingers or toes.  It is a very common seaweed on the cool and rocky North and South shores of Long Island.
This is a fragment of a Moon Snail's sand collar egg nest, where masses of eggs are laid by the snail.  Usually it is a complete circle made from the spit of the snail and sand.  It is flexible when wet, but very crumbly when dry.
 A sand dune and snow fence
 A fisherman was surf casting.  I had never seen anyone actually catch anything, but today he caught a Striped Bass.
After his wife measured the catch and found it too small to keep, the fisherman returned it to the sea, much to my relief.  It was a beauty, and swam quickly away.  I had  hoped that it had learned a lesson;  hooks are dangerous.
 The surf was wild from the aftermath of a southern hurricane.

 Waves dwarfed visitors, but people went into the water which was about 65 f. degrees.  Too cold for me, to too early to get in beyond my feet.
 The American Flag was full out, indicating probably around 15 to 20 mph winds.
The lifeguard's flags were up
 These are images of the shells that I brought home, featuring the Moon Snail shells.
 This is part of the Moon snail, the Operculum, or trapdoor, which seals the opening of the shell.  It is thin and horny and feels like a finger nail.
 This is an egg case from a Skate, or perhaps some sharks.  It is also known as the "mermaid's purse," or "devil's purse."  Probably by the time it washes up on shore, the young fish have hatched out, and it is empty.
 Over the years I have walked the beaches on both shores of Long Island, and inevitably collected, carried home in my pockets, and sketched and painted shells and other beach items.
 I have sat on the sand and painted the "pencil,"
 and people in their chairs between the blowing flags

 These beach remains find their way into all of my drawings and paintings.

 Just a wonderful day, the first of many this season.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Van Morrison at Forest Hills Tennis Stadium June 19, 2015

On Friday, June 19, 2015, I got the chance to see Van Morrison perform at the iconic Forest Hills Tennis Stadium.
 If you live in Huntington, the way to get there is on the Long Island Railroad, and I have to say they did a fantastic job getting us there and home again.  The round trip cost only $15.00 to Forest Hills Station!  Since only four cars platformed at Forest Hills Station, the train cars were so crowded that the conductors could not punch our train tickets.  They did that at the end of this line.
 When we got off the train there were many guides, police, and event workers helping the crowds to walk the side streets to the stadium. They were ready for us.
 There was a ticket booth, but we had gotten our tickets on line and printed them out.
 Gates split the crowds.
 Conveniently located food and beverage court inside the gates.
The stadium.
 Before we went up to our seats, I got a New York Style pretzel.
 Up the stairs in portal seven
 The stadium looked great.  The last time that I came to Forest hills was in the 60's to see the Supremes and the Four Tops.
 The Forest Hills Tennis Club could be seen in the background with people wearing their "whites" and playing on the grass.
 Bleachers filled up,
so did the folding chairs and  green seats.
 Taj Mahal was supposed to be the opening act, but due to illness, another band replaced him.  Their lead singer's style was a cross between James Brown and Muddy Waters.  They warmed up the crowd as it came in and was seated.
 After about an hour, the roadies removed the instruments from the first band and replaced them with the Van Morrison band's equipment.
 Van Morrison came out playing the sax.  I inserted these Getty images because I was farther away in a bleacher seat.
 Out from a not so large man, came the unique and very loud sound of Van Morrison to the delight  of his fans.  The people danced, sang along, and jumped all over the place to his rhythms.  The went crazy when he belted out "Brown Eyed Girl."
 The evening ended with his "Gloria" and the fans were standing and singing and loving everything about this summer outdoor concert.  By the way, the Long Island weather which is often unpredictable was perfect.
Another great concert experience.  There are many You Tube videos of the concert on line to enjoy.