Weekly Photo Challenge: Sea

Sara Rosso poses the question on what emotions the sea evokes for this week’s photo challenge: “… do you remember the first time you went in the water; had a wave crash on you… do you feel more peaceful around water, feel the sand burn your feet?”
As a child, my siblings and i spent summers messing about in water. Holidays were spent near a river leading to the sea and there we learned the ways of currents, tides, waves. Later i learned to scuba dive and sail and that was the start to messing about in boats. It forged a passion and yearning, a way of life which follows natural rhythms and a respect for the elements.
This week i returned home from a trip abroad to be greeted by a growling sea with a deep pounding beat; the Peninsula had been racked by a low weather system which brought with it a startling dump of snow to Table Mountain and wrought raging waves.
Now, living so close to the water’s edge, it’s the voice of the sea that holds me in it’s thrall…. some days it’s the sheerest of whispers, gentle lullabies. Sometimes the mood is percussive, with a tympanists’ beating rhythm, like castanets rumbling over the pebbly beach. The songs are forever changing, subscribed symphonies to lift the soul.
Jacques Cousteau summed it up …. ” the sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.”
The-growling-voice-of-the-sea

Zither-tones

To check out more posts on the challenge check out the site here

False Bay: Autumn’s alchemy

The first of the Cape’s seasonal Nor’westerly storms came barging in this week bringing strong winds of up to 70 km/h, battering the city and dropped 50mm of rain in just 24 hours.  But this morning False Bay was wreathed in gold as an autumn dawn spread it’s magical touch.  The birds were up bright and early with the claxon call of the Egyptian geese cutting through the morning’s quiet harmony. They’re broody at the moment, and two pairs are vying for territorial rights.  Testy for sure and with their heightened decibel levels letting the whole world know.  Less insistent and more melodious were the varied calls of the sunbirds, wagtails, blacksmith lapwing, prinia, hadedah ibis, but yet there was something else…… a plaintive, bleating call – much like a small child crying …..

Autumn's golden rays herald in the day.
Autumn’s golden rays herald in the day.
The Egyptian geese lose no time in getting going at first light.
The Egyptian geese lose no time in getting going at first light.
Keen foragers, check over the intertidal zone.
Keen foragers, check over the intertidal zone.
Foraging for 'greens'.
Foraging for ‘greens’.
Sea lettuce.
Sea lettuce.
Simple green algae for breakfast.
Simple green, nutritious algae.
The oyster catchers have a distinctive call,  a 'beebah' siren call.
The oyster catchers have a distinctive call, a ‘beebah’ siren call.
An exhausted seal pup takes a nap.
An exhausted young seal pup mewls quietly as it struggles with exhaustion.
Cape fur seals pups are weaned by nine months, but remain vulnerable at this young age.
Cape fur seals pups are weaned by nine months, but remain vulnerable at this young age.
There tend to be more seal casualties when the seas are rough and stormy.
One that didn’t make it. There tend to be more seal casualties when the seas turn rough and stormy.

 

False Bay: Unruffled

Some of our best days come at the back end of summer.  This morning’s dawn crept in with a silvery sheen; a light gossamer veil. 01_A-silvery-dawn 02_Dawn-slips-in-with-a-silvery-light. 03_Sun-sparkle

The sheerest whisper from the sea set a gentle tone, a backdrop for the dawn chorus.  The feathered fraternity set to with great gusto from the raucous call of the Egyptian geese to the sweetest of tweets from the little White-eyes.  Out too were swarms of bugs (the miggie brigade), butterflies, bumble bees, flies.   Right in front of our patio we were treated to aerobatic displays as sunbirds, sugarbirds, chats  swooped in diving and chasing after a protein breakfast on the wing.  The Cape Sugarbirds stole the show with their elegant long tails.  The choreography was as complex as a gymnast’s engaging in a floor routine with a long set of ribbons.

04_Sugarbird-on-bug-watch 05_Chasing-bugs

By mid-morning the clouds rolled in, unfurling a meteorological text – forecasting a low front for tomorrow….. rain’s coming.

07_Morning-light 08_Mares-tails 09_Rain-coming

The Cape of Storms: heady seas.

For the past month the peninsula has been wracked by low pressure frontal systems bringing strong gales and icy rainstorms.   On the Atlantic side the seas have thundered in, an unfettered sweep with swells up to 9 metres.   It’s a dynamic weather system – winter has been trying for many people, especially those living on the flats where there has been much flooding.   But after the storms have cleared the air sparkles and there’s a beach i favour.   Here the piles of kelp washed up high and attract much attention.

After the storms, the kelp is piled high on the shoreline.

The birds are drawn in to feed.

The restless seas are still full of power.

The bontebok are drawn to the shoreline.

Delicate female ostriches are on the move too.

After the storm, the waves still churn up spume.