13 November, 2022

Moon, Sun, Clouds, and Lunar Eclipse

We've been busy working on several projects.  Biggest one is repairs to our seawall and replenishing the sand on the beach after Hurricane Julia (no, not Lisa, Julia was the one before).   That will take a month or more of hard work by our crew to finish.  More fun is monitoring sea turtle nesting activity.   So far this year there have been 18 crawls, the most we have ever seen.  Of course that doesn't mean there are 18 actual nests; some crawls seem to be primarily exploratory.  I'll do a separate post on turtles once the season is over.  Another ongoing project is documenting birds and I am having great fun with the Merlin App using Sound ID.  They have recently added more Belize birds to the Sound ID feature.  

Did you know there was a lunar eclipse November 8?  The best viewing time for us was between 3:00 and 5:00am.  The sky was crystal clear at 2:00 and I got my first photo at 3:00 with just a tiny edge of darkness showing up.

This is with my phone.  Mitchell should have been here - his moon photos are superb!
Clouds were just beginning to show up and within 15 minutes, the view of the moon was blocked.  So that was it for me.  I went back to bed and didn't get up again to see if the clouds had blown over.  

Two days later, the moon was in her glory rising over Great Monkey Cay.

The moon is looking right at me!

Reflection on a calm sea.
Followed by the every day miracle of sunrise.
Also reflections on a calm sea.
When a light breeze comes from the west, the trees block the wind from the disturbing the surface of the water closest to shore - it can be almost mirror smooth at times.  A little farther out, and you can tell the sea is slightly ruffled.

This morning's sky view was of these super cool clouds.

Like UFOs.

Then all hell broke loose, so Clove and I made a mad dash for home.  No aliens, just 1/3rd an inch of rain in 15 minutes.  Always something exciting going on.

07 November, 2022

We Are All Good

As they say - we dodged a bullet this time.  What a relief for us - Hurricane Lisa shifted north prior to making landfall in Belize.  Our relief was at the expense of Belize City - which experienced a sudden but impressive storm surge followed by extensive post-hurricane flooding.  The brunt of the damage was to the poorest communities with sub-standard (even for Belize) housing.  Although there was property damage, I have not heard of any lives lost.  The only real impact Lisa had on me and Dennis was the nationwide outage of telecommunications.  We had some limited phone service restored on Friday (Lisa made landfall on Wednesday) and then on Sunday had full phone service and internet again.  Power was out over most of Belize for about a day, with it mostly restored by Sunday.  That didn't affect us since we have our own solar power system.  

Looking to the southeast this afternoon - clear, calm sea.

Barnie enjoying a little sit-down after her walk.

Just look at her gorgeous Little Richard eyes!

Happy Clove.

Happier Clove.
Clove thinks that everyone would benefit from a good roll in the sun-warmed sand.  I think she's on to something.

01 November, 2022

Hatches Battened

Tropical Storm Lisa will make herself felt in Belize starting tomorrow afternoon.  Will she be a hurricane then?   Almost certainly.  Landfall is estimated to be to our north, so it is unlikely that we will experience hurricane force winds, but we are expecting winds as strong as 50mph and a possible storm surge.  We plan to stay put unless the forecast changes dramatically for the worse.  

These shutters serve as shade awnings under normal conditions.

Inside one of the screened -in verandas with the sheet metal hurricane shutters in place.

The other sea-facing screened in veranda.  It's like being inside a container unit!  The sheet metal panels are numbered because they are custom-fitted.

If you look closely, you can see the hurricane shutters inside the screen.

Our workers got up all of the hurricane shutters, so our hatches are battened except for the few that Dennis and I will put up tomorrow morning.  Everything that could blow away has been moved into sheltered space - kayaks, wheelbarrows, plant stands, etc.  Battery-powered tools are fully charged as are flashlights, power packs for computers and other electronic.  With any luck,  the wild weather will pass overnight Wednesday while we and the dogs are snug inside.

Right now the weather is beautiful.  Hard to imagine that Lisa is just over the horizon.  Our hatches are battened and we are as ready as we can be.  See you in a few days or perhaps longer if the internet goes down.