OnTheGoWithAmyO.

"Live The Life You've Imagined." ~Thoreau

Archive for the tag “photo journal”

A True Story: Four friends, an old Cajun man, a Hanging Tree, some vultures, a rural cemetery, and- a dog!

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Last Saturday, we found this little dog all alone in a rural cemetery halfway between Seguin and Nixon, Texas. He sitting in front of a tombstone as still as a statue. It was pure luck (or serendipity!) that we found him.

So grab some popcorn, and settle in for a true short story about four friends, an old Cajun man, a hanging tree, some vultures, a rural cemetery, and- a dog!

It all started when Lorelei and her friend Kim drove from Waco to Seguin last Saturday since they had tickets to an evening tour of a haunted hotel. Since they were so close by, my friend Cheryl & I drove from San Antonio to meet them for an early dinner at Tavern on the Creek in Seguin. (So delicious!)

Apparently an “old Cajun man” told Lorelei and Kim about a haunted Hanging Tree on a dirt road near the town of Nixon that was a must to visit if you wanted a genuine hair-raising paranormal experience.

So, with a couple of hours to kill (no pun intended) before their evening haunted hotel tour, we decided to drive in search of this Hanging Tree. (Which in itself is a big deal, because I tend to stay far, far, far away from all things haunted, but for whatever reason I was game for the adventure… anyway…)

As we turned down side roads, traveling farther and farther away from town, we saw a couple of vultures! But Lorelei assured us vultures actually have a positive connotation* (see footnote), so we all took deep breaths, shared a few nervous laughs, and continued on.

A few minutes later, I spotted a Texas Historical Marker sign and asked if we could stop at it. (In hindsight, don’t horror movies always start with someone saying, “Hey, let’s stop”?!)

Lo and behold, the marker was in front of a small, very quiet, gated cemetery in the middle of nowhere with large oak trees that I’m sure look spooky at night.

As we read the historical sign, I saw what looked like a stuffed animal in front of a headstone. “Is that a dog?” (Famous last words to an animal rescuer, ha!)

Yes, it indeed was a little dog. All alone.

He was very scared, and didn’t make any movement until we got close to him, then he crawled submissively to us and rolled over on his back.

We whistled in case maybe there were other dogs or puppies (there weren’t). The little dog had a few fleas, but otherwise looked to be in excellent health.

So we loaded up the pup, and – with fingers crossed for luck – went looking for his family. We drove a quarter mile here, a quarter mile there to see if any neighbors recognized this little guy. No luck, so we ditched our search for the Hanging Tree and headed back to town.

Since everyone else had a husband or boyfriend saying, “Cute, but NO!”, the little dog went home with me.

I named him “Spud” and he is a wonderful dog! He’s about a year old, potty-trained, crate-trained, doesn’t bark, doesn’t whine, doesn’t chew things up or scratch on the RV bathroom door. He’s friendly, walks well on a leash, and all around happy (but like a magnet to me).

I took him to Banfield on Sunday morning for a microchip scan, and since there was no chip, he got a collar, dog food, flea treatment and dog bed at PetSmart thanks to a farewell gift card a couple of months ago from my Waco rescue friends, Michelle, Fallon, Julie, Dot, Kim, Danielle and Casey.

On Tuesday, I took Spud to a Vanguard low-cost vaccination clinic for full vaccinations, heartworm test (Negative! Yay!), heartworm prevention and dewormer. I have requested an appointment from the local low-cost spay/neuter clinic for neuter and microchip. Hope to hear back from them soon.

Spud gets along “like peas and carrots” with my rescue dog Sofie Darla, and people keep asking if I’m going to keep Spud. For now, my answer is “I’m keeping him until he gets neutered, then we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.”

I am still checking lost/found pet sites near the area, just in case anyone is looking for him, but I know the odds are low.

On the bright side, this whole experience has spurred a couple of new short story ideas about puppies in the cemetery… paranormal is not my usual genre, but I’m always open to new ideas, especially when there is a happy ending for a little dog.

By the way, I wonder if we were to go back to look for that old Cajun man if he’d still be there. Maybe he was that little dog’s guardian angel. Or maybe the little dog saved us from paranormal ambush at the haunted Hanging Tree… We’ll never know. (Insert Vincent Price evil laugh here!)

#PhotoJournal #WriteOn

* Vulture Animal Totem: The Vulture is the symbol of death and rebirth, the mother symbol, and represents purification. For those with this totem, you will be noticed more for what you do than how you appear… The Vulture promises us that no matter how difficult things are at the moment, rescue and change are imminent. (~http://linsdomain.com/totems-t-v.htm)

A Dragonfly’s Message

SONY DSC“The dragonfly spirit animal invites people to keep a light, positive outlook no matter what.”
~Elena Harris, SpiritAnimal.info Editor
 
Change is sometimes uncomfortable, yet it is needed for growth.
 
There has been significant change and challenge in my own life these past two weeks – losing a beloved 21-year-old kitty, unexpected repairs to the truck and RV, and severing ties with a non-profit that was dear to my heart.
 
As I spend time outside when it’s cool to mediate near the creek behind my RV, colorful dragonflies dance in flight around me, easing my heart. They land on nearby branches to observe me, and I observe them right back.
 
In the world of symbolism, which we as writers carefully and subtly insert into stories, the dragonfly represents the following:
 
• Change
• Adaptability
• Transformation
• Joy, lightness of being
• Seeing clearly through illusions and deceits
• An invitation to dive deeper into your feelings
 
It’s interesting to note that in the midst of chaos and change, I didn’t notice these beautiful, delicate creatures. Now, I see them everywhere!
#PhotoJournal
 

Goodbye for now, Mustang Island.

♫ TIME TO SAY GOODBYE ♫

After an amazing seven months at various locations here on gorgeous Mustang Island, it’s time to hitch up the RV and move on down the road.

One of my personal goals for 2016 is to haul the RV outside of the Texas state line, so this is a step in the right direction!

While I’m sad to leave Port Aransas, I’m equally excited about the new adventures yet to come…

Here are a few final photos from Mustang Island, 2016… See ya down the road!

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#MondayMotivation motivates me!

For the past few Mondays, I’ve posted inspirational and motivating quotes along with some of my favorite photos. These can be found at both my Facebook page and Twitter account for @OnTheGoWithAmyO, with the hashtag #MondayMotivation.

I take great care to match the photo with an inspirational quote; it’s almost therapeutic. Plus, it’s a fun way to kick start the week on a positive note!

This is today’s Monday Motivation:

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Thought you might also enjoy some of these previous Monday Motivation posts:

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If you’re on Facebook or Twitter, I’d like to invite you to Like/Follow @OnTheGoWithAmyO for #MondayMotivation and other fun posts.

Otherwise, I’ll blog them as a collection like so every 1-3 months, for your enjoyment.

Feel free to share!

Make it a great day,

AmyO.

http://www.OnTheGoWithAmyO.com

Sea Turtle Release!

It was a packed beach on Mustang Island for the sea turtle release this morning!

Staff and volunteers from the Animal Rehabilitation Keep (ARK) at UT Marine Science Institute released 6-9 large rehabilitated adult sea turtles, and three sea turtle hatchlings.

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One turtle (pictured) apparently had a chunk bit out of him from a shark, but luckily he got away.

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Members from the local Coast Guard were also on-hand to assist in the release.

It was a wonderful opportunity to bring awareness to the wonderful work the ARK does to rehabilitate injured and vulnerable marine life, and then return it to its home in the wild as soon as the animal is healed/recovered.

Many thanks to the staff and volunteers who coordinated this event, and to those who cared for the sea turtles until they could be returned home.

Swim free!

~AmyO.

Happy Halloween!

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My canine model & traveling buddy Sofie-Darla was a good sport during our “photo shoot” this morning.

She was paid handsomely in treats for her time and effort.

Behind the scenes: Her sticking her tongue out at me was a pretty good indication as to how she really felt about the Costume Photos idea!

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Happy Halloween from me, Sofie-Darla, & the Kitty Crew!

AmyO.

Following “A Feeling” – Saving A Life

Do you ever just *feel* like you’re supposed to be someplace, and even though you initially resist, you go anyway, only to realize there was definitely a reason for your being drawn there?

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Earlier this week, I went in search of a new location to take photos of the full moon rising.

First stop was the Marina, but I didn’t like the view of the horizon. Next, I drove to a pier, but it was too crowded.

Instead, the “feeling” led me down a deserted side road with a great view of the horizon, but after setting up my tripod, I kept hearing rustling coming from down in the gaps of the large red jetty rocks. Upon closer inspection, I spotted a scared, injured trapped seagull.

Fortunately, the renowned wildlife rescue facility on Mustang Island was just up the road, so without hesitation, I ran to get help.

The professionals came quickly, and it was an easy catch for them. They said the injured seagull’s wings were sorely battered, where s/he had probably been trying to get out of there all day. Luckily, they expect the seagull to make a full recovery after some TLC & rest.

There’s no doubt “Intuition” led me to that deserted spot this evening, and there’s one lucky little bird with one heck of a guardian angel.

After all, angels have wings, too.

By the way, here is one of the photos I got of the full moon, complete with a pelican may have witnessed entire rescue scene.

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Are You Still A Writer Or What? The Struggles of a Writer/Photographer

For the past month, my life has been consumed with photography – bordering addiction, I happily admit. When I’ve got a camera in hand, I find myself excited, soothed, inspired, focused and alive!

My newfound passion for photography has left little time to write fiction.

So am I still a writer?

Since childhood, I’ve enjoyed dreaming up stories about characters who cross my imagination, then putting those visions into words on paper. So why would I question whether I was still a writer?

Back in June, I completed a feature-length Romantic/Comedy screenplay that I’d been working on for about 18 months. It was a joy – and a relief – to send it off to three screenwriting contests.

My plan was to jump right in to the next major project, yet I could not seem to “commit” to any one story. I tried a variety of tactics to force myself to choose a new writing project: bribing myself with goodies, denying simple pleasures, and everything in between.

So I picked up my camera in order to redirect my frustration.

WOW! I had forgotten how much fun this could be!

Granted, my Journalism degree required several photography classes, and my job as a sports editor and reporter at newspapers and magazines usually required that I provide my own photos for the articles. However, so much has changed with the introduction of digital photography that it’s been like a whole new adventure!

With my camera in tow, I could spend hour after hour taking pictures of sea shells and sand dollars…

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…or capturing images of photos of sailboats on a sunny Saturday afternoon…

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…or dolphins as they bring a ship into the channel at dusk…

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…or a pelican on the jetty waiting for a fisherman to throw her a fish…

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…or delicate flowers radiant after an island shower…

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…nightly festivities at a popular marina hangout…

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…or slow shutter speeds to create unique “painting with lights” images.09222015_AntiqueWhiteLights_BEST

The hours spent taking photos seemed to fly by in a blink of an eye – much like when I’m writing.

Therefore, instead of fighting this passion for photography, perhaps my current project isn’t writing, but instead seeing the beauty all around me with fresh eyes and new perspective though the lens of a camera.

Artistic expression is limitless, abundant and evolving. I am and always will be a writer, but that’s only a part of my creative soul.

Where will photography take me? I have no idea, but I promise you that I’m going to enjoy the ride!

Make it happen,

AmyO.

Photography Opening A Whole New World

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These small ordinary white flowers had gone unnoticed by me for the past few weeks.

Today they caught my attention, so I stopped to take their photo. I never realized how delicate and colorful they are.

My renewed passion for photography is helping to “open my eyes” to the beauty that is surrounding me, if I’ll simply slow down to notice it. I feel like I’m seeing a whole new world!

#PhotoJournal

Finding Graceful Balance

Aug. 17, 2015
While walking on the beach this evening, I pondered why so many things in my life still seem out of control. Wasn’t the beach setting supposed to bring much-anticipated balance back to my world?

As I continued to stroll along the breezy shoreline, I was softly reminded that Balance, just like Happiness & Peace, is not a destination; it’s a journey. The ups and downs in life are as natural as the sea’s ebb and flow.

The key, I heard the wind whisper, is to be gentle on one’s self during the process.

“Breathe,” said my soul. “Balance is earned, not given. Every day you will work towards it, but not because it’s a race. Now, breathe again. Do you feel better?”
“Yes,” I said.
“Good. There’s your Balance.”

Moments after having this splendid epiphany, the local sand artist Kenny walked right next to me and built this gorgeous yet simple masterpiece. Graceful balance.

08172015_Sandman01I am grateful, and blessed, and on a wonderful journey! I’m thankful to those joining me for the ride!

‪#‎Balance‬
‪#‎Breathe‬
‪#‎PhotoJournal‬

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