•April 27, 2007 • 1 Comment

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Quiz Tuesday part 21

•April 24, 2007 • 2 Comments


 See that pile of brush on the right? That’s an alligator nest, also known as the mound.

In June, the female lays about 40 eggs which take 65 days to hatch (higher temperatures during incubation result in males, while slightly cooler temperatures, result in females). The mother alligator will actually assist the hatchlings to break out of their shells. She hears the baby grunt from inside the shell and lifts the egg in her mouth and rolls it around against the roof of her mouth with her tongue. This cracks the egg and the little one is able to escape.

The mother will stay with her offsprings for several months and protect them from predators, including daddy dearest, who will fed on them ;-).

Today’s question: How many alligators can you find in the photo (feel free to enlarge it)?

PS If you are really good, next time I’ll describe the alligator courtship 😉

Sarko on top

•April 23, 2007 • 2 Comments


When I lived in Paris, my apartment in the 7th arrondissement (district) was practically next door to the French Ministry of Interior. In addition to several political manifestations, I witnessed many comings and goings of the Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy. Once we even came face to face…or should I say face to chest (his face, my chest, since he is rather short).

At that time (2003) I wrote to my family back in the States, that I just met the next President of the 5th Republic.

Fast forward to April 22, 2007. M.Sarkozy, the conservative candidate garnished the most votes in the first round of the Presidential Elections in France. Whether he will win the second round in May and whether he will prove a worthy President, only time will tell.

But I just love bragging to everyone “I told you so!” 😉

PS This statue of a short, stout gator with a big mouth, in front of the City Grill Restaurant downtown Naples, has nothing to do with M. Sarkozy. Or does it?

Earth Day 2007

•April 22, 2007 • Leave a Comment


Today we celebrate Earth and her (sorry to say) dwindling resources. A lot will be said and written, before the day is done, about the sad state of affairs and what we can do to save the Planet.

But as I’ve gotten to know my visitors (you!), I realize that most of you are already Green (environmentally aware and active) – riding bikes, practicing vegetarianism, recycling, being vocal about polluters and other culprits…so I will refrain from preaching.

As I was deeply in thought about which photo to post today, and even deeper into Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Fudge Brownie ice cream (in a recyclable container!), I sensed a slight movement within my field of vision. I peaked through the glass panel out my front door and discovered the reason my flowering impatients look so…well…deflowered!

So here’s my small contribution to the environment – I feed rabbits! Well, technically it’s a self-serve, but you know what I mean 😉

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

-Margaret Mead- 1982

What’s green and red and blue all over?

•April 21, 2007 • Leave a Comment


in the ‘hood

If you regularly visit Christophe in Bastia – and you should, his photos are so eclectic! – you know that all his Sunday posts sport the same laconic commentary: “bon, ben c’est dimanche alors…”. I can actually visualize him, giving us the famous Gallic shrug, a little curl of his upper lip and the characteristic hand gesture: “hey, it’s Sunday, what do you expect?”

So here’s hoping that he won’t sue me for plagiarizing, but hey, it’s the week-end, what do you expect? No hand gestures here whatsoever 😉
Peaceful week-end, everyone!

Into the night

•April 20, 2007 • Leave a Comment


photo taken last evening

“Oft did I wonder why the setting sun

Should look upon us with a blushing face:

Is’t not for shame of what he hath seen done,

Whilst in our hemisphere he ran his race?”

– Lyman Heath

Doing wheelies

•April 19, 2007 • Leave a Comment


OK, so you don’t want to take the Historic Trolley when touring Naples. You want to get up-close and personal with all the beautiful natives…Well, here’s another alternative – a Segway Human Transporter! This self-balancing,two-wheeled Segway sports a high-tech gyroscopes that automatically respond to your body’s movements, “sensing” when it should speed up and slow down.

You stand on a small platform between left and right wheels as you hold onto handlebars at a waist height. The Segway handles the balancing for you, so that you’re always upright as you glide through the city.

And if you fall (!) in love with this form of transportation – you can take one home with you. For the right price, of course 😉