Friday, February 24, 2012

5 Minute Friday - GRIT: An Essay with Photos

Wowza. It's Friday again. Whoosh - that week just flew by. But every Friday, we try to write like we believe we can fly (Lisa-Jo's fine words). So I'll give it a whirl, one more time. Take a prompt. Set a timer. GO. Write. STOP. And see what comes out. Try it, you'll like it. And check out a few others who've got it going on over at The Gypsy Mama's place.            

This week's prompt? GRIT

I got some grit between my toes today. Yes, I surely did.

It was bright and beautiful here.

And I had a ton of errands to run. But not so many that I couldn't take a break at lunchtime and run down to the beach.

I went to the slough - an engineered salt water river and estuary that draws the water birds, by the hundreds.

And I walked right down onto the sand with my camera in hand, and I started pointing and shooting.

And smiling inside.

In a big, big way.

Because when I'm tired.
Or when I'm worried.
Or when I'm feeling insecure, or out of place, or not at all sure that I'm doing what I 'should' be doing...

what I need is a little bit of that gritty stuff between my toes.
And some time with the birds.

I don't know a whole lot about them, but I surely do love to watch them do their bird thing.

They know exactly what to do. And they know when to do it.
They don't battle insecurity.
They don't wonder if they're living up to their potential.
They don't try to be anything other than what they are.

They do what their Creator designed them to do.
Every moment. Of every day.

And they do it with beauty, grace, humor and a fair amount of noise.


Lord, help me to be exactly who you've made me to be. Nothing more. Nothing less.

And help me to do it with grit between my toes.


Writing time, exactly five minutes, including fixing two spelling errors.
Adding pictures? Well, a few more than five. :>)

 Where the slough comes from the ocean.
 The 'big picture' of the major sand bar, the eucalyptus grove, the Goleta hills behind.
 A gathering of gulls, all facing into the warm sunlight.
 Cormorants cooling it on some old pilings, watched over by a great blue heron.
 A trio of pelicans, resting on a sand bar.
 A great blue begins to circle around, seeking out his particular nest among the dozens of 100# twig collections in the tops of those trees.
 The circle gets a little bigger...
 ...makes another loop...
 ...and then settles right in at home.
 See that greater egret over there by the cliff? He's my favorite.
 Except maybe for this guy - a male red-breasted merganser.
But that tall one, back there in the shadows. He's fascinating, don't you think?
 Now he steps forward, surrounded by black-winged stilt birds, with their knees all backwards. (Does the egret's pose remind anyone of Steve Martin doing the Egyptian? Or are none of you old enough to remember that old act of his?)
 Sort of a stately guy.
 And I'm eternally grateful to him for flying, just for a moment.
 And for staring at himself in the mirror...oh wait, I think he's looking for lunch!
 Yup, he's goin' for it!
 And I watched a couple of stilts do a little doe-si-doe...
 Shall we dance?
 Nah - way too risky!
Got one shot with a full reflection - what a gorgeous creature.