Thursday, March 30, 2006

Jcondo Progress

2 weeks since the last photo, and 2 more floors. Going up fast! Posted by Picasa

Friday, March 24, 2006

Photo shoot in DUMBO

You just never know what you are going to come across here in nyc, which is one of the reasons I started this blog. Today I came running out of the Empire Fulton Ferry Park, and there under the Brooklyn Bridge, was a ballet dancer being photographed against the gritty street back drop. (click to enlarge!)
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Rocket Factory Lofts

Hunting for a loft in Williamsburg, we checked out Rocket Factory Lofts, just off of Bedford Avenue at S. 4th st. Beautifully renovated open lofts with huge windows. Nice place, but a bit far from the Bedford L stop.

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Thursday, March 16, 2006

The crooked building

New construction across from Chelsea Piers. check out the phrase in the lower right hand corner "Brave By Design". How apt. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Walt Whitman, DUMBO resident

This remains on the side of the building in DUMBO that used to house ABC Carpet & Home outlet. It is on Plymouth street, between Pearl and Jay streets, alongside a cool painting of a map of the neighborhood. I have always enjoyed these as I ran by, and now wonder how much longer they will be there since this building looks like it may go condo soon. Posted by Picasa

Friday, March 10, 2006

Jcondo Progress

First floor of Jcondo construction site.
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Brooklyn Bridge Park Construction

Yeah! This looks to me like a new swing set is being parked in Brooklyn Bridge Park. It still has the Keep Out tape on it, but hopefully it will soon be swingable. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Sunset run on Hudson River

New Jersey can be beautiful at this time of night. View from the hudson river bike path, just south of Pier 40.
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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Deutsche Bank in disguise

First time I have seen this. The new scaffolding and lighting they have put on Deutsche Bank (at Ground Zero) to ready it for demolition is surprisingly beautiful at night. Posted by Picasa

Friday, March 03, 2006

Early morning snorkel next door at Kahalu'u Bay

Decided to take advantage of the fact that we were staying right next door to one of the most well-populated (both with fish and people) snorkel destinations, Kahalu'u Bay. Unfortunately, the plethora of people thrashing around there tends to disturb the water, which ruins the visibility for viewing and photos. Dying to beat the crowd and see what the bay would be like in a more quiet, natural state, LocalTourist got up early, and headed into the water. Here is a rare photo of the place sans snorkelers.

Even though I was heading into the water at 7:25 (am!), two others beat me to it.

Lucky enough to see a Christmas Wrasse. These guys go by pretty fast, but I finally caught one with the camera.

Close-up on the beautiful pattern and colors.

A pair of Sailfin Tang Surgeonfish.

Here he comes! The infamous stripebelly pufferfish!

And there he goes. Here at Kahalu'u, some of the fish are fed by the snorkelers. Not something I agree with, but the norm here. These guys are so used to it, they come looking for it. They are goofy, but they grow on you.

This one scared the daylights out of me. I was focusing the camera on another fish, when this guy appeared RIGHT at the side of my left cheek. What no food for me?

Male trunkfish, beautifully blue on the lower half, unlike the more muted brown of the female.

Yellowstripe goatfish.

What type of fish is this? Bright yellow tail, bright blue dots, and green stripes flaring out from the eyes, it is very dramatic.

This has to be the most interestingly colored fish. A yellowtail wrasse.

A couple of colorful tails.

Another of the many variations of Butterflyfish. This one is a Saddleback Butterfly, one of the least commonly seen in my experience. Very intricate designs on this one, especially the wavy blue horizontal lines on the lower part of the fish. (Again, click on photo for a better look.)

School of fish just passin' through. Have not been able to put an exact name to this group, but believe it is in the Surgeonfish group.

This coral was the prettiest lavender color. My reef identification book has much less extensive information on coral than on fish, but I think this is a type of Cauliflower Coral. In general, the fish are much more colorful here than the coral, but this was an exception.
Check out finnage on this fish, a Moorish Idol.

Two Moorish Idols, very exotic looking, but surprisingly common.
Here are a couple of Fourspot Butterfly fish. By my count there are two white spots on this fish. Just one of the many undersea mysteries.

Heading toward the beach, a small younger green sea turtle turtle swims by me out to deeper water.

The larger mother turtle grazing on the algae on the bottom of the bay. This was about 5 feet from where many of the snorkelers enter the water from the beach. There is a very large group of these turtles that live here in Kahalu'u Bay, and seem not to mind the many snorkelers that swim there every day. Maybe because it is against the law to harass or touch them. They seem to understand that.

Coming up for a breather in between underwater bites.

Sea Paradise's Manta Ray night dive

We headed out for a night Manta Ray dive, with both snorkelers and divers, from a bay 5 miles out of Kailua Kona.

On the left in this picture is Keahou Bay, where our catamaran left from. On the right is a near by hotel (seen also in next pic). In the background is the most colorful pre-sunset sky.

  • Sheraton Keahou Bay. See the two very bright lights on the ceiling of the large balcony, second bay in from the left. There are people standing on the balcony(click on pic to enlarge), just above the rocks of the shoreline. They are there watching for the Manta Rays that come in to feed on the plankton that are attracted by the very bright light. Its a chain reaction.

One major perk of going out for a night dive, is a beautiful view of the sunset.

Tons of bubbles as the 6 scuba divers are directed to sit on the bottom of the ocean and remain still, shining their light up toward the surface. We snorkelers (19) were instructed to stay at the top , very quiet in the water, and try not to bump into one another, a feat which was not accomplished.

Our resident Manta Ray expert, Jim "Wingman", who has taken almost any footage of Manta Rays you have seen on Discovery and the Travel channel, moved around on the bottom of the with 3 intense movie type lights, which attracts lots of plankton, which in turn attracts the Manta Rays for dinner. Two join us tonight.

Manta Ray flying in front of Jim's very bright lights. You can see the huge right wing (they are 8-10 feet across in total), as it flys away from us.

Money shot. This is the best photo of the bunch, and though you can't really see the Manta well, you can really tell how close it was to all of us snorkelers.