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Saturday, February 27, 2016

"Gator Got Yo' Granny" ...

"Chomp, chomp... Gator sketch by Ben Bensen III

Good "Gator Got Yo' Granny" Saturday, y'all.

I arrived early at Fontainebleau State Park yesterday, for a change, and decided to scope out an interesting bayou scene to paint. Mary MonkCarol Hallock and Laura Fischer Saxon were to join me on a rather wind swept afternoon at the lake.

I found this trail through the reeds paralelling the lake that lead me to an interesting little cove protected from the wind and perfect for a plein air extravaganza. As approached closer to the waterline, a blue heron gracefully headed for the skies. A few steps closer and then there was this big explosion of water and reeds. Apparently, I had startled this five or six foot gator that was no more than a "first and ten" away. 

I didn't take the time to see if it was gonna chase me, but I did freeze momentarily enough to see "what big teeth Grandma had."

I didn't look back until I was back on the sandy beach. I found me a park ranger to explain to him the size of that dinosaur as he nonchalantly explained why the reptiles were not hibernating. I was huffing and puffing so I didn't completely hear him say something about the spillway opening up fresh water into the lake...

"Yeh, I said between adrenalin gasps of air, "that makes sense, but I thought it was still too cold for them to be out and about!"

"Nah," he said. They're as confused with this weather as much as we are!"

"Oh okay, I guess so," I replied.

As I walked away down the sandy beach, I turned back toward the reeds and thought to myself, "yeh, but what'cha gonna do about that monster back there sitting in that cove!"

First cup of "glad to be alive" coffee!

Copyright 2016/ Ben Bensen III

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

"Ah Yes, Pierre's Playmates Are Back!"

A quickie sketch...

So nice to have our dog's friends back so they can keep him entertained and out from under my feet.
That lizard kept Pierre transfixed long enough for me to sketch him... the rest was just to fill in the blanks!

                                                           Copyright 2016/ Ben Bensen III

Monday, February 22, 2016

"Just Wondering About Garbage"...

Missing opportunities...
Good early morning blues and grays, y'all on a Monday morning!
We, here in 'da Bayou, are gonna get wet for a few days.
That old matchbox hole has me thinking about garbage. Not just any garbage, but that kind of reusable stuff that we all throw out instead of recycling.
Therese started recycling when I was away on location for the summer and it is amazing how little garbage we have to leave out for the garbage men. There's a huge recycling bin in Mandeville where you can discard plastics, styrofoam, tin, aluminum, glass and paper, but, as of yet, no cardboard (I don't know why not!).
We'd throwout food stuffs into our compost pile if our dog wouldn't be in a race with the raccoons to get to the "leftovers" first. It is truly amazing how little garbage we give for pickup on garbage day.
I wonder if our "waste management" company would give us a discount for only picking up our garbage once instead of twice a week?

First cup...

Copyright 2016/ Ben Bensen III