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Once in a Blue Moon

For as long as I can remember, oh wait, I don't remember anything for very long! Seriously, I've been thinking for ages and ages that I wanted to shoot the full moon over the ocean. In what seems like a long ago time now, a photograph I took about four years ago in Daytona Beach of the sun casting early morning light over the ocean sold a bunch before I quit putting it out. I thought having a moon shot like that might be fun. When I heard about the "blue moon" in August, the time seemed just perfect. Plus, it was on a Friday making it all the better because Mr. Bruce could come with me. And then there was this about Neil Armstrong. As I've told many folks, when you live so close to the Space Center you definitely take it for granted, but when I do take the time to look up into the night sky, the thought of a man actually walking on the moon is downright incredible.

So, here was the plan: Knowing how little time Mr. Bruce has for any leisure, I booked a room at the Cocoa Beach Doubletree on Monday. Through the week, after listening to all the complications Bruce faced, I had my doubts that the plan would work. He convinced me that it was a good idea, so after getting the lawn done on Friday, and of course, him working away at his computer, we took off a little after three in the afternoon. So far, so good. We stopped in Cocoa Village, which I'll tell you about tomorrow because, Lord knows, I never like to get off topic do I?

Arriving around 5, Bruce did the check in because he is a Hilton member and with that comes a few perks, such as a nicer room and a cocktail reception right on our floor. We had a drink, and met a very nice young couple who were visiting from Tampa to celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary. So sweet. Afterwards, Bruce took a little rest and your favorite blogger went down to to the beach to see what she could see. What she saw was the beginning of the sunset. As you well know, Cocoa is on the East coast, and the sun sets in the West, however, the reflections on the Atlantic can be quite lovely.
Woo hoo!! Now, here's where things got a little dodgy. Like the dummy I can sometimes be, I went back to the room and we decided to go somewhere besides the hotel for dinner. Dumb move. Meeting the woman who worked in the reception room at the elevator, I asked her where was a good spot for dinner. Giving us directions to the Pompano Grill, she assured us it was a local favorite. Great--we love to eat local. Stepping outside I glanced towards the ocean and what should I see but the blue moon rising. Of course, I only had the Olympus in my handbag with the fixed lens..
This is not doing it justice I can tell you that much.

As we sat by a window during what turned out to be an absolutely horrible meal, at least as far as the food was concerned, I kept peeking through the blinds, seeing the moon rise higher and higher. Despite the horrible food, which apparently does not bother the locals because there were plenty, we had a wonderfully relaxed time. As we made our way back to the hotel about two hours later, it all of a sudden dawned on me that I didn't think the whole thing through very well because, by now the moon was so high, the reflected light was not what I was envisioning at all.

Running upstairs, I grabbed my Nikon as well as the tripod. Except it was too dark on the beach to see what I was doing. Fortunately, a Boy Scout accompanied me, and you know what that means. Indeed, he had a flashlight in his bag which helped immensely as I tried to turn all the stupid cranks and knobs on the tripod. But what to set the camera on? By now, I had no idea. I put it on a long exposure which made it look like daylight.
I won't belabor the story except to say I never got a thing worth a damn! It sure wasn't from a lack of trying I'll tell you that much. And they say photography is easy.....

Because I stayed up way past my bedtime making a fool of myself, I did not want to get up at sunrise when the alarm went off. But I did anyway. You know how cold a hotel room can be in the morning? It's great if you want to snuggle, not so much when you want to take your camera outside and the humidity is high. More camera troubles to contend with!
Not only was the lens fogged over, but as time wore on, changing the lens, the mirror inside fogged up!
I couldn't tell what I was getting. Naturally I was disappointed because it was an awesome sunrise, what with the sun peeking through the clouds as it did. Another trip up the elevator for the Olympus which dried out pretty quickly.
The above photo is taken in what is called in photography lingo,  the "golden hour." Lovely indeed.

After a nice breakfast it was back down to the beach for a stroll and some play time in the waves.
It's been far too long since we shared a walk on the beach for sure. While in Key West during the Spring, there is really no beach to stroll, so this was a real treat. Someone had nicely stacked what appears to be some lost items.
Body surfing followed and let me just tell you, the ocean was very refreshing. September is a fine month to visit the shore in Florida.

We meandered a bit on our way home, stopping first at Ron Jon's for some t-shirts and this adorable new little case for my market money.
Super fun, right? For years now I've been using an orange pencil case from my Valencia days, so the time was right for something new.

Following A1A, we made our way to a much improved Jetty Park in Cape Canaveral. When the children were young we took them there, however, neither Bruce, nor I can recall if we camped. These days there are some cute little cabins for those who have neither a tent or RV, both of which we saw plenty of as we drove through the campground area. We took the long walk on the new fishing pier.
Although I'm not showing it, to the left of the pier, in the distance is the Vehicle Assembly Building and what looked like two launching pads. As we walked on the pier, I saw a woman photographing something inside a cooler. Asking her if  I could as well, I give you a flounder, a fish I've never seen, however, I suppose that's not saying a lot because I've seen very few fish!
It was a fine day for sailing:
To the right of the jetty is the beach which was filled with folks enjoying a gorgeous Florida day.
I could hardly believe it myself, but for the first time in recent memory, the weather was picture perfect--tolerable temperature and humidity, with not a drop of rain in sight!

It's been awhile, but I'd read in the paper about a new restaurant in Cape Canaveral and we made it our mission to find it. Of course I couldn't remember the name, but by process of elimination, we found it. Or, let's just say Bruce is the one who found Milliken's Reef. Lucky for us, a wonderful waterside seat was available under the cool shade of the Tiki bar roof. There was a lovely breeze, fine shrimp and scallops, and a great view of the boats-- coming, going, and standing still.
That is a Disney boat on the left along with two Carnival cruise ships. If we'd hung around for a few more hours they would have been making their way out to sea right in front of us.

A quick 45 minute drive and we were home just about exactly 24 hours after we left. It was a super fun mini-mini-vacation, which happens about as often as a blue moon.....
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