When my kids were little, some of the neighborhood moms and I would get together and take our kids to the beach the week before school began. I must be missing the tradition, because I went out on the kayak again last week. This time my friend Kay and I went in search of dolphin. Wow! We managed to paddle right into the middle of a feeding frenzy! There must have been about 20 dolphins just off Indian Rocks Beach. All I have is this wimpy shot of a dorsal fin to prove it. I was safely back on shore when it occurred to me that dolphin aren’t the only sea creatures with dorsal fins!
I have kayaked in the salt marshes off North Carolina and canoed down several rivers on Florida’s west coast, but I have never kayaked in the Gulf off our own beaches! So when a friend invited me to meet her for a kayak trip taking off from her Indian Rocks Beach house, I said, “I’m there!” We launched the kayak at about 9:00 a.m. and already there were many people out. Most were walking. Some were fishing. It soon became clear that something in the water close to the shore was attracting a lot of attention. It turned out to be stingrays. The orange tape surrounding two turtles’ nests on shore was clearly visible from the water. The early morning storms we saw on radar off shore were moving in. The wind picked up and we saw the dark clouds, lightning, and heard thunder. So we decided to cut our trip short. Within 15 minutes of our return, it was pouring rain. I rarely go boating, so cruising down the shore in a kayak, as opposed to driving down Gulf Blvd. was a fun diversion.
Pass-A-Grille celebrity Evander Preston is now serving up Evander Beer! I’m always up for trying a new local beer, so I’ll be sure to order it next time I’m at Salt Rock Grill (among other restaurants listed on his web site). The label is kind of scary, but very cool. By the way, you can discover the history of Pass-A-Grille, one of the last isolated little beach communities around here. Check it out on the Pinellas Beaches Tour. Or, you can download just the Pass-A-Grille track for 99 cents from iTunes or Amazon.
I went to see a Sunday afternoon performance of Doubt, the play by John Patrick Shanley at the new American Stage Theatre. I went with a friend who is a first grade teacher. She was lamenting that the summer has slipped away because she’s already gearing up for the new school year. Half the fun of going was inviting her. She really needed a day of escape. First we went to Café Alma for brunch. Then we walked about 4 blocks to the new American Stage Theatre. I know, you’re thinking it’s too hot to walk anywhere in the middle of the day. But, the 4- block walk really wasn’t bad. The show is a 90-minute production without an intermission. All the actors are good, but Christine Decker as Sister Aloysius was the absolute embodiment of righteousness! This play will get you talking! It’s on stage until at least until August 16th. Rumor has it that it might be extended.