Saturday, October 2, 2010

Pic of the Day

     American Egret – Fort Myers Beach, Florida:  It was a rainy March morning in southern Florida as the alarm blared its clanging wakeup call.  Four o’clock A. M., shown in bright red number and it seemed as if I had just gone to sleep.  It was raining outside and I did not want to get out of bed; just a few more winks I told myself.  But I was in Florida to shoot, rain or shine I should be in the field.
I dragged myself out of bed and was soon on the road to Fort Myers Beach.  A beautiful stretch of sand on the mainland that looked west toward Sanibel Island.  By the time I arrived the rain had stopped, but a dense impenetrable fog thickened the landscape.  Why did I get up, I kept asking myself, knowing full well that there were no images to be taken this morning.
     Still, I got my gear together and headed toward the beach.  I could barley tell which direction to walk as the fog obstructed all landmarks.   As I listened in the quietness of the early morning I could hear the waves lapping against the shoreline giving me directions to follow.  After a short walk I was standing at the waters edge.  
     The sun had not broken the horizon nor had the beachcomber yet raised to scourer the beach for shells; for now it was just me and the birds. As I stood on the beach the only sounds audible were the lapping waves ,  and peeps of sanderlings and Ruddy Turnstones as they scurried to and fro along the edge of the incoming tide.  As the eastern sky began to glow I could tell that the clouds that had brought the nights rain were breaking, and perhaps my earlier haste to remain in bed was truly unfounded.
     As the day grew brighter and the fog began to thin a group of American Egrets foraging in the shallows began to materialize out of the vapors.  Occasionally one of the birds would stretch out its huge wings and with a few effortless flaps leap ten or twenty feet to a new fishing spot. The white birds set within the foggy veil were faint ghost, barely visible to the eye. The scene became a perfect blend of pastel blue and white plums; an ethereal quality that only nature can produce.
     I was drawn to the simplicity of the scene; its forms, pastels and motion.  The view before my eyes made me very happy that I had not lingered in my earlier slumber.  For what I thought was to be a dull ordinary morning was quite different than what I had expected.  In fact, as nature often provides, the ordinary had become the extraordinary. 
Nikon F4, Nikkor 500mm f4, Kodachorme 64

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