Its coming. Spring that is, and although it will reach some of us quicker than others, we are all ready. Its been a long winter this year and this is really true for those folks in the northern parts of the country. It seems like they just can’t catch a break. I thought I would post some floral macro shots and hope they produce thoughts of warmer weather to come. Its always easier for me to express with pictures rather than words. Imagine that.

Feb 242010
 

Not much going on today. I know that some may have started their day feeling like the photo above. I’ve had those days as well. Work piling up, rainy weather, no motivation, yadda yadda yadda. Hey, don’t despair. If you are reading this, or anything for that matter, then its a good day already. Love yourself and go out and smile at someone. Call an old friend. Play with your dog or cat. Pray or meditate. Hug your kids. Hug your significant other. Hug yourself. Take someone to lunch. Tell the boss you appreciate your job. If not tell them anyway, he or she will still smile. Buy yourself some flowers. Eat chocolate and lots of it. Listen to your favorite music, loud. Do something nice for someone and for yourself.

Most importantly, be grateful! Just saying.

 

Earth movers that is. The beach nourishment is on at Wrightsville Beach and the rumbling of diesel engines, and sounds of a major project underway disrupt the peacefulness of the beach on a Saturday morning. It is somewhat of  a welcome sight, because the end result will leave, once again, a nice wide strand of sand that the locals and tourists alike will enjoy. With any luck we will not have a Northeaster storm any time soon, so that the beach nourishment can settle without loss to erosion. It doesn’t, however, come without someway upsetting the balance of the beach. After the last nourishment it seemed that the birds were less plentiful, probably because their food source changed because of the infill of sand. The fishing may change, because the structure of the inshore ocean floor will be different. Theres always a price. If you talk to those who fish off the beach, they often comment that the sand flea population here has dwindled. This seemed to happen right around the time of  the last project. Those who surf will take note of how the nourishment may or may not affect the break. While we know it is something the beach sorely needs, messing with natures scheme often has other results as well. I think we can’t lose sight of the impact anytime we try and change natures path. I hope the nourishment solves the initial problem without leaving to heavy a footprint. Just saying.

Feb 182010
 

Yesterday I was on the beach and stopped to watch the earth movers as they were pushing sand as part of the beach nourishment here at Wrightsville Beach. The sound is so distinctive, the rumbling diesel engines and that incessant beeping when they throw it in reverse. Usually when you here that sound it means that something is being changed. It could be something as welcomed as the nourishment of our beaches, as they try to reinforce the inevitable progress of Nature and stem erosion, if only for a brief period. Unfortunately, it also is the sound of progress, as old buildings are torn down for new along with their memories. Soon you have nothing but old photos or stories about what was there and how it may or may not have been a part of our lives.

I remember when I lived in Charlotte I often commented on how the city seemed to lack soul, as it was so quick to tear down the old and replace it with new steel and glass. Now I am a realist and understand that regretfully and economically, most of the time it is the highest and best use of a building to start anew. I like old buildings and their history and always cringe when the wrecking balls come and change both the face of the landscape, but also its history. In a city like Charlotte and its incredible growth, many embrace the new, and this is especially evident with its commercial buildings. Its just that with the new coming in, the soul and character dissipate. Now this is the opinion of yours truly and nothing more. It just seems to ring so true for me.

In Wrightsville Beach, as small a community as it is, we see this progress often, mainly in the tear down of the older cottages and their replacement with the much larger homes. Because of the land costs here and the strict building codes, this has almost become a necessity for homeowners who want to heavily renovate a structure. There are still some grand old beach cottages on this island, and hopefully they will endure. Many have not and some were such mainstays of WB that it is sad they have gone. The same can be said for the loss of businesses that were old friends to many of us. Who wouldn’t want the Middle of the Isle, or the MOI as it was known to many, back on the island. Sure the building was falling down and the land is being considered for a shiny new development that will maximize its value. Unfortunately, the owner had to make a decision and move and with that went the fried shrimp and squash casserole everyone loved. The MOI was the light that never failed as far as local restaurants were concerned. But its just a memory, like so many things. Its sad to drive by the vacant building that once had so much life. Progress is good, don’t get me wrong. Its necessary for us to prosper and grow. Its just that often we have to sacrifice in order to promote growth. Maybe a little soul. I’ve included a few photos of those gone from WB. I guess they won’t be the last.

 

Well, the dredging of Masonboro Inlet continues and  they are starting to get ready to install pipe from there to the Northern ends of the island. The pipe will carry the sand from the South end to be spewed on the beach strand. I was out this afternoon with the dog and spotted this piece of equipment on our end of the beach. I first saw it on the South end and thought it was a make shift observation tower for the dredging company to view its boats in the inlet and on the Banks Channel side of the island. There was one man on the equipment and another on shore. The guy on shore was getting a lot of attention and questions. Not wanting to be left in the dark I had to ask what purpose it served. At first I  thought they were taking soil samples. As it turns out it is used for surveying. Plus it is also used to determine how much the dredging company charges for the work. It was cool to watch and evidently there are few companies who use this particular equipment. Soon the pipes will reach this end of the island and they hope to finish the project by the start of the season. The other good news is that they are supposedly constructing another berm in front of the existing berm to create more protection between us and the ocean. Hopefully we’ll not have to test how well that works. More later.