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Tuesday, October 31, 2006
London 6, October 31, 2006

It hasn’t rained in London for the past two days so Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. have made the most of the opportunity to walk around which is half the fun of being in London. Sunday afternoon they took the No. 24 bus out to Hampstead, a charming old village right on the edge of Hampstead Heath, a huge wooded park high on a hill overlooking London. They wandered around the picturesque streets of Hampstead for a couple of hours looking at the homes of famous former Hampstead residents like Keats and Freud and John Constable before repairing to a charming Greek restaurant for dinner. At 7:30 they joined the rest of the audience at the New End Theater for a one-woman performance of a play about Dorothy Parker, the American short-story writer and wit who is still remembered for such short verses as “Men rarely make passes at girls who wear glasses” (or something like that).

What she really wanted to be remembered for, as the play suggests, was her attempts to “do something” about the sorry state of the world through political activity. Much to her credit she was on Senator McCarthy’s blacklist for a while and she stuck her neck out to try to save the anarchists Sacco and Vanzetti from execution for murders they did not commit. It was a fascinating play beautifully acted.

On Monday they walked through Hyde Park to the Victoria and Albert Museum to see a special exhibit about home life of the rich nobility in Florence and Venice during the Italian Renaissance. It was a bit of an anti-climax after their month of visiting various magnificent palazzos in Rome last winter but there were some wonderful paintings on display that they had not seen before. After all the rain of the past two weeks the grass in Hyde Park is dazzling green and the leaves are beginning to turn. All in all a most enjoyable day.

Happy penultimate day of October to all.

P.S.  Scroll down to the next entry for some more pictures left over from the last few days of wandering around London.

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On the way to Hampstead we passed through the Camden Lock area which is a favorite hangout for teen-agers who can shop for T-shirts, etc. in the many shops and stalls catering to their needs.

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A typical Camden Lock emporium.

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And another. Camden Lock is mobbed every week-end, a kind of Petticoat Lane for teen-agers.

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Somewhat more affluent folks live on houseboats moored in the nearby Regent's Canal.

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Need a fairy costume or a magic wand? Head for this shop in Hampstead.

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Hyde Park in the middle of London. The chairs are free for the sitting.

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Part of the famous Serpentine Lake in Hyde Park. On warm days it would be full of people rowing boats around or swimming.

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The controversial Princess Diana Memorial Fountain. Closed for renovation. The least inspiring memorial in all of London in our very humble opinion.

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In the courtyard of the Victoria and Albert. The model bridge is from a design by Leonardo da Vinci.

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Uncle Jack snuck a covert photo of this charming 400-year-old painting of two sisters playing chess. It was in the special show depicting home life in Renaissance Italy.

posted by Uncle Jack at 5:53 AM

Comments [4]

Tuesday, October 31, 2006
London, October 31, 2006 More pictures.
Here are some leftover pics from the past few days of wandering around London.

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This shop in Marylebone caters to folks who like their clothes on the gaudy side.

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This uplifting tableau overhangs Wigmore Street.

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Gridlock on Wigmore Street. Driving in Central London is an absolute nightmare. Drivers are charged $16 per day just to enter the central zone but they keep on coming nevertheless.

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Every year we check to make sure this shop is still open on Marylebone Lane. If you live in London and need a very special button this is where you find it.

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One of the prettiest pubs in London---on Marylebone Lane.

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A happy Englishman emerging from La Fromagerie, a wonderful cheese shop just off Marylebone High Street to which we make a pilgrimage every year.

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The student symphony orchestra of the Royal Academy of Music just after performing Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 2 last Friday.

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York Hall on the Academy's campus is a lovely venue. The portraits are of great musicians and composers.

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On the way home from the concert we picked up some sausages from Mr. Biggles whose shop is directly across the street from the Button Queen.

posted by Uncle Jack at 5:52 AM

Comments [1]

Sunday, October 29, 2006
London 5, Sunday October 29, 2006

Saturday wasn’t sunny but at least it didn’t rain so Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. decided to walk a couple of miles to the National Theater where they had tickets for a matinee performance of a marvelous play called “The Seafarer” by the Irish playwright Conor McPherson. They never did figure out why it was called “The Seafarer” because it nothing to do with the sea or sailing but it was the best play they have seen so far---and the only one that wasn’t a revival. It was also first time they have seen a play in the National Theater complex which is a concrete monstrosity dating back to the post-war period located on the south side of the Thames. It’s one of the ugliest buildings in all of London but it appears to work as a theater, or more accurately several theaters of various sizes. They will return to the National in a week or so to see a revival of Ben Jonson’s “The Alchemist”.

The sun is shining brightly today (at the moment, anyway) and they are looking forward to a bus ride to Hampstead Heath and a stroll through that wonderful park before they take in a play at the Hampstead Theater based on the life of Dorothy Parker. Never a dull moment in London now that the rain has stopped.

   We have heard rumors that the weather in Nags Head is fabulous.  Enjoy it while you can!!

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Rear entrance to the Savoy Hotel on the Strand near Charing Cross. Still one of London's prestige accommodations. If you have to ask how much it costs you can't afford to stay there.

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Memorial to Sir Arthur Sullivan whose operas were performed at the Savoy Theater by his "Savoyards" troupe of singers and actors. Apparently he was greatly missed.

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A lovely park that runs along the Thames Embankment just west of Charing Cross Station.

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Looking downriver from Waterloo Bridge. St. Paul's Cathedral and the Swiss Re building (looks like an artillery shell) stand out on the left horizon.

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Upriver from Waterloo Bridge. The Houses of Parliament and Big Ben on the right, the "London Eye" ferris wheel on the left. The latter was supposed to be dismantled five years ago but it has become one of London's top-drawing attractions.

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National Theater from the middle of Waterloo Bridge.

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National Theater close up. It's all poured, unfinished concrete. "Brutalism" is what the English call this postwar architectural style. It seems to fit.

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This Halloween Shop on Shaftesbury was jammed when we went by. 20 people were queued up waiting to get in. Halloween has become a major event here in recent years, much to the dismay of the police who have to cope with the attendant vandalism.

posted by Uncle Jack at 6:34 AM

Comments [2]

Friday, October 27, 2006
London 4, Friday October 27, 2006

The sun reappeared (off and on) on Thursday, encouraging Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. to venture forth more than a block from their flat in Soho Square. They spent the morning food-shopping (sea bass from the Chinese fish market on Shaftesbury avenue and fruits and vegetables from the Berwick Street open-air market). After lunch they strolled a mile or so west toward Regent Street and visited the Handel House Museum where the great composer lived and worked for most of his life and where he died in 1759. It was a thrill to stand in the same room where he composed his great oratorio “Messiah” and all the other magnificent choral and orchestral works that are still revered today.

It is one of the odder quirks of history that more than 200 years later a girlfriend of the American rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix lived in a room in the house next door which Hendrix shared with her for a year or so. Both houses are now adorned with the blue plaques that signify that something of historical importance happened in this place. According to the Handel House docent, more people come to Brook Street to photograph Hendrix’s plaque than Handel’s. Go figure.

Weather permitting they plan to walk over to the Royal Academy of Music tomorrow to catch a Free on Friday concert by one of the Academy’s marvelous student groups. On the way they will stop at a cheese shop on Marylebone High Street and pick up some gorgonzola and bread for lunch which they will wash down with a pint of Boddington’s real ale in a pub on the corner before the concert. Old habits die hard.

London looks a lot better now that the sun is shining.

The sun reappeared (off and on) on Thursday, encouraging Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. to venture forth more than a block from their flat in Soho Square. They spent the morning food-shopping (sea bass from the Chinese fish market on Shaftesbury avenue and fruits and vegetables from the Berwick Street open-air market). After lunch they strolled a mile or so west toward Regent Street and visited the Handel House Museum where the great composer lived and worked for most of his life and where he died in 1759. It was a thrill to stand in the same room where he composed his great oratorio “Messiah” and all the other magnificent choral and orchestral works that are still revered today.

It is one of the odder quirks of history that more than 200 years later a girlfriend of the American rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix lived in a room in the house next door which Hendrix shared with her for a year or so. Both houses are now adorned with the blue plaques that signify that something of historical importance happened in this place. According to the Handel House docent, more people come to Brook Street to photograph Hendrix’s plaque than Handel’s. Go figure.

Weather permitting they plan to walk over to the Royal Academy of Music tomorrow to catch a Free on Friday concert by one of the Academy’s marvelous student groups. On the way they will stop at a cheese shop on Marylebone High Street and pick up some gorgonzola and bread for lunch which they will wash down with a pint of Boddington’s real ale in a pub on the corner before the concert. Old habits die hard.

(London looks a lot better now that the sun is shining.)

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A bodacious BBQ joint in Soho. We haven't been tempted to try it.

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Remember Carnaby Street? It's still here, minus Twiggy.

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Typical mob scene on Regent Street. On the first Saturday in November both Regent and Oxford Streets will become pedestrian malls for one day. This should be fun to watch.

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Hamley's Toy Shop on Regent Street. You have to see it to believe it.

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Back entrance to Handel's house. He was extremely wealthy from his composing but lived in a modest, middleclass neighborhood in a modest, middleclass house. Never married so it was a bachelor pad.

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Plaque at 25 Brook Street.

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Plaque at 23 Brook Street. From the sublime to the ridiculous.

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A bespoke tailor in Savile Row, home of some of the most expensive gentlemen's clothing in the world.

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"Liberty", one of London's most elegant and expensive department stores. Part of it is scheduled to be converted into a posh boutique hotel.

posted by Uncle Jack at 5:40 AM

Comments [9]

Wednesday, October 25, 2006
London 3, Wednesday October 25, 2006

Uncle Jack has more or less recovered from what ailed him but the weather is not helping him resume his headlong pursuit of culture. He and Mrs. U.J. did dash through the raindrops to Ray’s Jazz, a record store housed within the nearby Foyle’s bookstore, to attend an album-release concert by a strange jazz group called Oriole Monday evening. The band consisted of a cellist, a tenor sax player, an acoustic guitarist, an (over) amplified bassist and a conga drummer who produced music which they described as “jazz” and Uncle Jack will just have to take their word for it. After sampling three of their original compositions he and Mrs. U.J. graciously gave up their seats on a table in the corner to some younger people who seemed more appreciative of the obviously sincere efforts of the musicians, all of whom were quite accomplished on their instruments but who seem to have met only recently.

Yesterday they took in a matinee performance of a quintessentially British farce by the veteran playwright Michael Frayn called “Donkeys Years”. It involves a group of Oxford graduates who return to their old college digs for a reunion 25 years after graduation with hilarious consequences. It was first produced 30 years ago but it seemed very much up to date inasmuch as life at Oxford does not seem to change very much over time. The acting was marvelous, the slapstick humour inspired, and there was never a dull moment---all of which brightened an otherwise gloomy afternoon in London considerably.

After the play they stopped for dinner at their favorite Chinese restaurant, Y Ming, where they gorged on crispy duck rolled in thin pancakes with shredded spring onions and doused with hoisin sauce. This is not something they can normally get at Sam and Omie’s so they always look forward to it when they are within walking distance of London’s “Chinatown”.

This morning they got out the umbrellas again and hiked down to the National Gallery to take in the current show of paintings by the Spanish court painter Diego Velazquez (1599-1660). It is being hyped as one of the greatest shows ever at the National which is possibly why they were both a little disappointed. While it contains a number of excellent paintings, their cumulative effect fell far short of what they had been led to expect by the extravagant praise showered upon it in advance by the newspaper art critics. Perhaps they have been spoiled forever by the many Caravaggios they saw in Rome last February or maybe the incessant rain is getting them down.

Uncle Jack has continued to try to find a good solution to the dearth of internet hotspots offering broadband connections at reasonable rates. He has reluctantly reached the conclusion that broadband-wise England is definitely a third-world country. London is no more advanced than Dare County. He is going to try an internet café a couple of blocks away this afternoon which offers two hours of broadband for the equivalent of $2 and see how that works.

In the meantime he is really beginning to miss the occasional day of sunshine which usually graces the Outer Banks at this time of year. He couldn’t have taken a sunrise picture here for the past week even if he wanted to. He is not sure any more that Dr. Johnson was right about this place. (Anybody know his famous brag on London?) (Besides the all-knowing Emily?)

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This was taken from the rear entrance of the National Portrait Gallery the last time we saw the sun, five days ago.

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Determined art lovers queue in the rain this morning for the Velazquez exhibit at the National Gallery. The place was packed.

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Admiral Nelson stands watch over soggy Trafalgar Square from his damp plinth. Even the pigeons stayed home this morning.

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This ancient church is right behind the Portrait Gallery.

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Simple but beautiful.

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This adorable little battery-powered car is about half the size of the Mini. They are whizzing all over London these days. Two of them can park in one space which is good when you have to pay $12 an hour to park.

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The jazz band "Oriole" hard at work in Ray's Jazz Cafe.

posted by Uncle Jack at 10:40 AM

Comments [7]

Monday, October 23, 2006
London 2, October 23, 2006

Uncle Jack has been out of commission for the past couple of days with his annual bout of London Disease. Every time he has come to London his respiratory system has collapsed briefly under assault from London air which seems to be made up of equal parts of diesel fumes and pulverized pigeon poop. His lungs, accustomed to processing the pure ozone of the Outer Banks, simply cannot function in this dirty environment and he is always laid low for a couple of days while they make the adjustment and this has made it impossible for him to get to the neighborhood wireless “hotspot” to check his email or file a blog entry.

Before he was smitten they did manage to take in a couple of uplifting events, namely a show of portraits by David Hockney at the National Portrait Gallery and a performance of Samuel Beckett’s enigmatic play “Waiting for Godot” at the New Ambassadors theater nearby. Hockney has been one of Uncle Jack’s favorite living painters for a long time because he actually paints pictures that are recognizable, i.e., his portrait of his friend Andy Warhol looks amazingly like Andy Warhol.

Uncle Jack saw “Waiting for Godot” about 50 years ago when it was first performed and he has to confess he didn‘t have a clue as to what it was about. When he saw it again a couple of days ago he still didn’t have any idea what was going on but the acting was so magnificent he didn’t really mind. Next time he gets connected to the internet he is going to Google it and see if there is anybody who can explain it to him.

They also dropped into the Westminster Reference Library’s huge book sale on Wednesday where Mrs. U.J. picked up a large bag of hardback novels for the equivalent of $3.75. Uncle Jack was astonished to find a book called “Pamlico” written by a man named Billy Carter who is a lawyer in Washington, N.C. It is a delightful reminiscence of growing up and living as an adult along the shores of the Pamlico River which he really enjoyed reading. What it was doing in the collection of a reference library in Central London is a mystery.

The big news here, though, is the articles that have appeared in two of London’s finest newspapers (The Guardian and the Observer) in the past the past two days. Here’s the shorter piece from the Observer which appeared on the editorial page Sunday:

Just Can’t Twin

Pity Manteo, North Carolina. It thought it was twinned with Bideford in Devon. But when David Riley, a Manteo goodwill ambassador, crossed the Atlantic for a visit bearing a commemorative clock and mugs in tribute, he was rebuffed. Manteo’s place had been usurped by Landivisiau in Brittany. Bidefordites claimed no knowledge of the long-lost sibling over the water. But according to Manteo’s records, as recently as 1984, 15 of the town’s citizens---1.4% of the entire population---visited Devon to celebrate the union. Town-twinning is a tired old institution that might be livened up by a dose of competition. So we recommend that Mr. Riley offer his clock and mugs to Landivisiau in a bid to poach the twin from perfidious Bideford.

P.S.  Sorry no pictures with this entry.  Will try to do better next time.

posted by Uncle Jack at 8:02 AM

Comments [10]

Thursday, October 19, 2006
London, October 19, 2006

Uncle Jack is pleased to report that he and Mrs. U.J. are safely ensconced in their flat in Soho Square in the heart of London and have already recovered from jet lag. Uncle Jack had hoped that his apartment would be equipped with wireless internet this year but it was not to be. He did discover that all of Oxford Street a block away is now a free “hotspot” courtesy of the Borough of Westminster so he is sending this blog entry from a coffee shop on the corner of Oxford and Soho streets to which he will repair occasionally from now on.

Their pursuit of culture in all its myriad forms has commenced. They walked to the National Gallery this morning to purchase tickets for the Velasquez exhibit that opened today and which they will view a week from today. Tomorrow morning Mrs. U.J. will hit the half-price ticket booth in Leicester Square to see what she can snag by way of a Thursday afternoon matinee in one of the neighborhood theaters.

Last night they shook off jet-lag to walk to the White Hart Tavern on nearby Drury Lane to hear the great jazz clarinetist Wally Fawkes. He’s 82 now but you would never know it to hear him play. In addition to being one of Britain’s finest jazz musicians he is also one of the country’s best-known political cartoonists, a career which he had to give up last year when he started to lose his sight. A truly remarkable man and a delight to talk with.

Look for another installment in a couple of days if they don’t throw him out of the coffee shop.

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Wally Fawkes and friend at the White Hart pub.

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St. Martin-in-the-Fields is getting a facelift.

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Neal's Yard Cheese Shop. The greatest.

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Berwick Street Market. Almost as good as Tarheel Produce.

posted by Uncle Jack at 5:08 AM

Comments [8]

Saturday, October 14, 2006
Sunrise in Sonag, Saturday October 14, 2006

    A lovely morning on the beach even though the sunrise didn't amount to much.  It's chilly but the wind is negligible and the sand is great for walking.  Uncle Jack was hoping the sunrise would be spectacular because it will be the last one he will be able to photograph for a month or so.  He and Mrs. U.J. are heading for Baltimore in the Mini early tomorrow morning and thence to London on Monday.

    He is not sure when he will be able to post another weblog because he doesn't know yet what the internet connectivity situation will be in his apartment house this year.  He refuses to deal with British Telephone's dial-up service again so he is going to have to find a free wireless hotspot somewhere in the neighborhood.  He got all excited when he learned that the borough of Westminster has installed hotspots in all its libraries but his enthusiasm waned when he learned that it costs $ll.50 a day to use it. Needless to say nobody is using it so perhaps they will make it a free service one day. We shall see.

    In any case look for a blog from Jolly Old sometime next week.  Cheerio 'til then.

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6:55 a.m.

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The usual suspects had gathered by 7 a.m.

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A little color began to show by 7:05.

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By 7:15 the sun had finally topped the clouds and Uncle Jack could go home to his Twining's Earl Gray tea.

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This lethal weapon was washing around in the surf near Seagull Drive yesterday afternoon.

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This cypress stump nearby is no less dangerous to swimmers. Fortunately there will be very few of those from now on. Swimmers, that is. There are lots of stumps.

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This wall of sandbags protecting the south end of what's left of Seagull held up pretty well against last week's onslaught.

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A gent was fishing from the deck of this cottage on Seagull but he disappeared around the corner before Uncle Jack could get his picture. Nothing like having your own private fishing pier.

posted by Uncle Jack at 7:47 AM

Comments [6]

Friday, October 13, 2006
Sunrise in Sonag, Friday October 13, 2006

    What a difference a day makes.  Yesterday was balmy enough for sunbathing in bikinis and this morning was cold enough to freeze Uncle Jack's socks off if he had been wearing any.  An icy wind is blowing out of the northeast which nearly drove him off the beach before the sun came up.  Time to get out the long pants again.

    Yesterday was something else.  They had lunch on the deck at their old house on James Street and then went for a stroll up to the Outer Banks pier.  As the pictures suggest there were lots of folks out on the beach making believe it was August again. It was Indian summer for sure.

     Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. have some friends who are visiting from California and Georgia this week.  Yesterday they drove up to the Maritime Museum in Newport News to see the Monitor exhibit where  various pieces of the Civil War ironclad are soaking in big tubs of some kind of liquid that is supposed to keep them from falling completely apart.  The liquid is very murky so they couldn't actually see anything and the whole thing reminded Uncle Jack of something he wrote a few years ago, to wit:

                             Let Her Lie

Uncle Jack has a good friend named O’Brien who lives up in New Jersey where you can get the New York Times delivered every day if you want to. This has never seemed to Uncle Jack to be a good enough reason to live in New Jersey but O’Brien seems to think it is and Uncle Jack is glad about that because whenever an article about the Outer Banks appears in the New York Times O’Brien clips it out and sends it to him.

This is good because the New York Times tells you everything you could possibly want to know about something and then some and you always get a fresh perspective on the subject no matter how much you thought you knew about it.

This week O'Brien sent a clipping about the wreck of the Civil War ship called the "Monitor" which sank in a storm off Hatteras at the very end of l862, one hundred and thirty five years ago this month. The reason the New York Times is writing about the Monitor now is that various "experts" are saying it is now or never if we want to try to salvage the wreckage and get it into a museum someplace where people can stare at it in comfort instead of risking their lives to dive down 230 feet in a rubber suit to stare at it. The experts say it would cost about $50 million to bring up the all the pieces that are left but it would only cost about $22 million to bring up the propellor and the turret which are about the only things recognizable after l30 years of damagefrom saltwater and fishermen's nets and maybe even a depth charge or two during World War II. Uncle Jack was in the navy and he knows that with the sonar they had in those days it would be easy to mistake the wreck of the Monitor for a German submarine or even a large tuna.

Anyway it is not easy to raise $50 million or even $22 million to do something that is not going to make a lot of money for somebody so the people who want to salvage the wreckage are trying to make the Monitor sound like it is the most important ship ever built and that it would be a crime against civilizationnot to spend a paltry $22 million or whatever to haul it up.

One man who wrote a book about the Monitor went so far as to say that when it comes to being important the Monitor is "on the level with the Wright Brothers' airplane" which is funny enough to make Uncle Jack wonder if he shouldn't be the main speaker at the next meeting of the Man Will Never Fly Society.

This same author suggests that maybe the U.S. Navy should put up most of the money because of its pride in its "high tech history" which suggests to Uncle Jack that he doesn't know as much about the navy as he should. Uncle Jack spent most of his waking hours while he was in the navy reading Samuel Eliot Morison's "History of U.S. Naval Operations in World War II" from which he concluded that the less said about "high-tech operations" the better---including dropping depth charges on the Monitor which was perfectly capable of falling apart without any help from the Navy.

If you ask Uncle Jack it would be better to let sleeping turrets lie and spend the money on something really worthwhile like moving the Hatteras Lighthouse to the moon, and eventually to Mars if the Park Service can scrape up the money.


It's Friday the 13th so watch out for black cats and don't walk under any ladders.  At least it's Friday and that's some consolation even if you get run over by a fish truck or something






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6:55 a.m. Not much going on in the sky yet.

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Getting a little more interesting.

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The 3x zoom brings out some of the color but it's cheating a little.

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Uncle Jack nearly froze to death waiting for this to happen.

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He made sure it was here to stay and then headed for hearth and home, eschewing his usual morning walk.

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No crab is safe from this fierce predator. They can run but they can't hide.

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Yesterday's balmy breezes were ideal for surf fishing. If you're not going to catch anything, which you aren't, you might as well be comfortable.

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It's hard to believe this picture could have been taken in South Nags Head in mid-October but there you are. Think of the rent money they're saving.

posted by Uncle Jack at 8:16 AM

Comments [5]

Thursday, October 12, 2006
Sunrise in Sonag, Thursday October 12, 2006

     This morning's sunrise was not quite as colorful as yesterday's but both were blown away by last night's sunset, a picture of which is provided below.  The surf is completely back to normal this morning allowing surf fishermen to get out and do their thing (which does not seem to include catching fish as far as Uncle Jack can tell).  The beach in most places in his neighborhood has a fresh, new carpet of sand which makes walking a pleasure.  It's still warm for this time of year so it should be a great day to be out frolicking in the sand and surf.

      Yesterday started out the same way but clouds moved in after lunch and South Nags Head picked up another inch or two of (not) badly needed rain in the afternoon.  It cleared up later and permitted Uncle Jack to take a long bike ride down to the bottom of South Nags Head and back.  He may have to have his bike fitted with pontoons if we get any more rain today.

      Have a very nice day wherever you are.

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Lots of what Uncle Jack believes to be willets were on the beach at sunrise but no sandpipers and very few pelicans. There were more grackles than pelicans which is not a good thing.

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The sun was obscured by heavy clouds at dawn but there was a little color in the sky.

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It managed to climb over the clouds by about 7:15.

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Puny compared to last night's sunset which was even more magnificent than this photo can suggest.

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This trawler was dragging off the end of Whitecap Street when Uncle Jack got to the beach this morning.

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Nice to see a wide, flat beach again after the turmoil of the past few days. The narrow part at the top is in front of some sandbagged cottages.

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This fisherman at least had the sunrise to enjoy even though he caught no fish while Uncle Jack was watching.

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This cottage near Pelican Street seems to have weathered the recent storm but it looks like bulldozing is in order once again.

posted by Uncle Jack at 8:05 AM

Comments [6]

Wednesday, October 11, 2006
Glorious Sunrise in Sonag, Wednesday October 11, 2006

     What a pleasure to see the sun again at sunrise after so many days of black clouds and rain.  The ocean continues to subside and it's amazingly warm for this time of year so it looks like a great day for beachwalking and surf fishing and any other outdoor activity you can think of with the possible exception of swimming and nude sunbathing.

     The rain stopped yesterday afternoon so Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. took a stroll up the beach to the Comfort Inn which is as far as they could get.  Mother Nature has removed a lot of sand from that section of beach in the past few days as the pictures show but all in all she was not as ruthless as she was in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.  As the last picture shows they have lost most of the sand so expensively dumped on the beach up there last year. 

     Uncle Jack was mildly amused by the words of comfort issued by one state official after the storm, to wit:

"The beach at the north end of the Rehoboth boardwalk shows damage from a weekend storm that packed high winds and heavy rain. Anthony P. Pratt, the state shoreline and waterway administrator, said beach erosion is not necessarily a bad thing because the sand that erodes is deposited in the sand bars and helps to break waves farther out."

      Which makes Uncle Jack wonder why they didn't leave that sand offshore in the first place instead of spending $18 million to pump it onto the beach where it promptly washed away again.

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Looking east at 6:55 a.m.

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Looking southeast at the same time, a few minutes before sunrise.

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Right on time.

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Here to stay, we hope.

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The beach was strewn with parts of walkways yesterday like this one which apparently floated down from about four blocks north.

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The rubble of the old Comfort Inn swimming pool will not stay concealed for some reason.

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This pool in front of a condo a few yards south may be joining it before long.

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Mother Nature is making a sneaky end run around the sand bags in front of the Bodie Island Beach Club. The struggle goes on.

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South Nags Head is seaweed city this morning, at least until the next high tide which might take it away.

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Rehoboth Beach on Monday after three days of pounding by the same kind of waves we have had. Most of last year's $18 million worth of replenished sand has vanished.

posted by Uncle Jack at 8:20 AM

Comments [6]

Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Unrise in Sonag, Tuesday October 10, 2006

     Uncle Jack has learned his lesson.  He will never complain about boring, beautiful weather again, even facetiously, the way he did last week. From now on he will complain only about the kind of weather we have had for the past four or five days, of which he is growing extremely weary.

     He did walk up to the beach this morning but he didn't stay long because of the imminent threat of rain from several different directions. The ocean has calmed down a lot but the wind is still strong enough to discourage walking.  The part of the sky in which the sun was supposed to rise was blocked by a phalanx of ugly black clouds that seemed to be heading in his direction so he fled.

     This cowardly retreat did give him a little extra time to do a quick run-through of this morning's headlines in the New York Times.  Along with all the dreadful news out of Iraq and North Korea there was a piece about the purchase of a website call YouTube by the recently minted multi-billionaires who brought us Google.  The latter are sufficiently awash in cash to have paid $1.6 billion for YouTube which is only about a year old and has yet to produce a penny of profit.

    Uncle Jack had never heard of YouTube so he clicked on the link to it in the NYT article and he has to say that he is baffled as to why anybody would think YouTube is worth $1.6 billion.  As far as he can tell it is a website where you can go to look at (mostly) silly video clips about everything under the sun.  Apparently this is what millions of people do every day, though, so Google plans to sell advertising on the site and get their $1.6 billion back in no time.

    It doesn't help Uncle Jack's sense of justice any to learn that the chief beneficiaries of Google's big bet are a couple of twenty-somethings (very much resembling the twenty-somethings who dreamed up Google a few years ago) as well as a handful of venture capitalists who are already filthy rich from their investments in other unpromising start-ups like eBay and Amazon.com.

    Anyway Uncle Jack would like to take this opportunity to announce to any venture capitalists who might be reading this that he is ready to move his weblog into the mainstream of cyberspace where the potential profits are virtually limitless.  All he needs is an infusion of cash to get the technical ducks in a row and he will be off to the races.  About $150 ought to do it as nearly as he can figure which looks like a real bargain when you stack it up against $1.6 billion for another website that has yet to make a dime.

     For an offer of $11,800 he will thrown in his low-mileage 2003 Chrysler Voyager which could come in handy down the road for hauling money to the bank.  Uncle Jack looks forward to hearing from you. Don't let Google beat you out of this once-in-lifetime opportunity. 

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7 a.m. The sun is over there somewhere but obviously it is not going to make an appearance this morning.

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In lieu of the sun the lights are still on at the Outer Banks pier.

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This was the only break in an otherwise totally overcast sky this morning.

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The beach was not a pretty sight this morning. Mostly gravel beds and seaweed.

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These recently uncovered sandbags add to the beauty of the scene near Whitecap Street. Mother Nature is starting to make an end run around this pile so more will be needed soon.

posted by Uncle Jack at 8:11 AM

Comments [6]

Monday, October 9, 2006
Unrise (again) in Sonag, Monday October 9, 2006

         Not a nice day.  It has been pouring all night and light rain continues at would-be sunrise.  Uncle Jack can hear the roar of the ocean from his house so he knows what is going on up there.  No point in leaving the warmth and comfort of his home this morning. (Mrs. Uncle Jack should be back from the 7-11 any minute with milk for his bran flakes. He graciously allowed her to use his umbrella).

      They did go for a walk down to the Outer Banks pier yesterday afternoon at low tide when a bit of the beach was visible under the foam but the wind was blowing so hard it wasn't very pleasant.  He kept the Sony in his pocket most of the time to protect it from blowing foam and sand. They walked the mile back home on the Multi-use Pedestrian Facility (aka the sidewalk) which is protected somewhat from the wind off the ocean).

       Mother Nature has obviously moved a lot of sand around in the past couple of days.  The last remaining shreds of the post-Isabel FEMA berm project have vanished in most of South Nags Head and many hitherto concealed sandbags are now visible again in all their glory.  Presumably a new round of bulldozing will begin as soon as the ocean subsides enough to let the dozers take to the beach.

        The never-ending battle between Mother Nature and ocean-front property owners goes on. And on.  And on. If the rain ever stops Uncle Jack will try to get out and take a few more pictures.  In the meantime have a nice Columbus Day.  Eat some pizza or something.


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This odd-looking construction consists of a pre-berm stairway overlaid by a post-berm stairway. The former was revealed again by the powerful waves of the past couple of days.

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Maybe some day we will have another sunrise like this to look at. Hang in there.

posted by Uncle Jack at 8:46 AM

Comments [0]

Sunday, October 8, 2006
Unrise in Sonag, Sunday October 8, 2006

     Not the kind of day the Visitors Bureau would prefer to anchor a four-day holiday week-end.  The sky is completely overcast, black clouds are racing around driven by a stiff wind out of the north, and the ocean is still on a minor rampage. Needless to say the sun has not made an appearance and is unlikely to.

      Members of the Chamber of Commerce, however, should be cheering because this is the kind of weather that encourages visitors to start their Christmas shopping early.  Uncle Jack predicts an overflow crowd at the Tanger Outlet Mall today. 

       Here's a short piece from the archives that seems appropriate for a day like today:


At the end of each working day Uncle Jack puts on his celluloid eyeshade and gets out his quill pen and his ledger and records the financial transactions that have transpired in his humble framing shop and gallery by the sea.

For the past 20 years it has been his custom to note briefly the state of the weather on each page of his ledger. In August this is usually something like "hot and humid" or "very hot and humid" or "incredibly hot and humid" or even more extreme expressions of the level of hotness and humidness that are unprintable in a family newspaper.

He is pleased to report that September has been something else. Each day for the past three weeks he has had to ransack his tattered Funk and Wagnall's for new words to describe the total perfectness of the weather and he has to say he is exhausted from the effort. He congratulates those astute visitors who wisely eschewed the heat, humidity, and general all around hurly burly of the "high season" in favor of vacationing here during the past three weeks. Uncle Jack cannot think of any place in the world that he would rather have been and he doubts that anybody else could either. With this in mind imagine his surprise when he awakened this morning to a sky full of ominous clouds, gusty winds from the northeast, and mountainous waves in what had been a glassy pond just l2 hours earlier. What a glorious day!!

Moral: Who really cares what the weather is like if you are lucky enough to live on the Outer Banks all the time.



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Mother Nature has been conducting her own "Operation Clean Sweep" for the past couple of days.

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The Sandbagged Sentinel of Surfside is holding up well under the current onslaught of wind and wave.

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Seagull Drive is, as usual, a repository for floating debris.

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Nobody on the Comfort Inn deck this morning. The yellow tape is out again.

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Foam City. The noise is deafening.

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Looking south from the Comfort Inn. This too shall pass.

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In a day or two it could look like this again. (Taken December 3, 2005)

posted by Uncle Jack at 9:47 AM

Comments [1]

Saturday, October 7, 2006
Sunrise in Sonag, Saturday October 7, 2006

     Mother Nature is putting on a show this morning.  Despite the fact that not a breeze is stirring the ocean is as riled up as Uncle Jack has seen it in many months. Obviously something is going on farther out in the ocean to churn up these huge waves but he knows not what it is. Rain came down in buckets during the night but the storm clouds have cleared out and it's dry at 9 a.m.  He hopes to get out and take a few more pictures if the rain holds off.


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This ghostly apparition appeared briefly at about 7 a.m. and then promptly disappeared into the clouds and mist and has not been seen since.

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Whitecap Street is aptly named this morning. This is the stairway at the end of it that Uncle Jack normally uses to reach the beach.

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Looking north at Whitecap.

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Looking south at Whitecap.

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The sideways current is so strong that this piece of wreckage was swept south about 100 yards in less than ten minutes. It will probably wind up in Oregon Inlet later today if it doesn't break up.

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The Bodie Island Beach Club will need a new stairway for perhaps the 100th time.

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Guests at the Comfort Inn South have an excellent view from the deck.

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Getting to the beach is a bit tricky, though.

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The sand fence guys will have a busy couple of weeks after this storm subsides.

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As will the stairway specialists. Lots of these floating around this morning.

posted by Uncle Jack at 9:14 AM

Comments [2]

Friday, October 6, 2006
Sunrise in Sonag, Friday October 6, 2006

     It's a peculiar morning in South Nags Head. The surf is up for some reason even though there is little wind.  Huge clouds on the horizon blocked the sunrise but parts of the sky were lit up in pink.  At 8 a.m. the sun is out at last but it doesn't look like it's going to hang around long.  Clouds are moving in from all directions and the wind is supposed to pick up as the day goes on.

    Exactly how all this will affect the Nags Head Surf Fishing Tournament today remains to be seen.  In any case here is another reminiscence from the archives about fishing tournaments past:

                           Fishing for Dollars

Uncle Jack took a pleasant walk down memory lane last week when the 50th annual Nags Head Surf Fishing Tournament, or part of it anyway, wound up practically on his doorstep in South Nags Head. He and Mrs. U.J. went for their usual walk on their usually deserted beach last Thursday morning and there they were---a dozen or so SUVs and pickup trucks and six times as many earnest fishermen, surrounded by their essential gear---rods and rod holders, plastic pails, lawn chairs, bait boxes, and beer coolers. Lots of coolers. World-class coolers as befits a world-class event.

It was a little after 7:30 and the tournament had just begun. Every fisherman in view was fully engaged: pole in hand, attentive to the slightest nibble that might suggest the presence of a point-worthy fish. The sun was blinding, the ocean flat, the fish, apparently, elsewhere.

By 10 a.m. when Uncle Jack checked again, the scene had noticeably changed. Half the fishermen were slumped in their chairs, their rods languishing in sand spikes, lines limp and unwatched. Already dehydrated by the relentless sun, their hands now unencumbered, many were fully engaged in the serious business of replenishing their bodily fluids so as to be ready for the afternoon session when---who knows---a fish could show up.

Anyway the whole scene took Uncle Jack back 20 years to the heady days when he served as a judge in this very same tournament, tooling his new secondhand Jeep up and down his assigned section of the beach and measuring fish with the kind of cool confidence and authority only a high school graduate could bring to this exacting task.

How could he ever forget the morning that one of the teams on his station lucked into a bluefish blitz that lasted for two hours during which this five-man team (one team-mate was too hung over to fish) caught more fish than had ever been caught in one session in the whole 30 year history of the tournament.

They were so busy catching bluefish that not one can of beer left their cooler until Uncle Jack called time at 11:30, ending the morning session. That in itself deserves at least a footnote in the annals of the tournament as it is very probably the only time this has ever happened.

Uncle Jack’s Jeep was so full of fish that the axles dragged in the sand and his heart was fairly bursting with pride when he pulled in to Jimmy Austin’s fish market to unload the morning’s catch. His hubris was short-lived, however, when Jimmy informed him that another team had also gotten into a blitz and, having their full complement of six fishermen, had caught even more. He would not be surprised to learn that those two teams caught more fish in one session than all the teams in this year’s tournament together will catch in two days.

On the other hand he will not hesitate to guess that more beer will be consumed in this year’s tournament than in any other to date which is what would be predicted by Uncle Jack’s Law, to wit: beer consumption in the Nags Head Surf Fishing Tournament is inversely proportional to the number of fish caught. Ergo and ipso facto this year’s contest will be a history-making event that should be long-remembered by the contestants except that many of them will be incapable of remembering anything at all. It also occurred to Uncle Jack that if the tournament had been scheduled for a few days earlier there would have been no fishing in South Nags Head at all for the simple reason that the beach was frequently under water. It goes without saying that one cannot fish properly if one has to worry about one’s cooler floating away all the time.

This is another powerful argument for beach repenishment if you ask Uncle Jack. Maybe some of the big brewers would be willing to pick up the tab once they realized how important the Nags Head Surf Fishing Tournament is to their bottom lines.

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6:55 a.m. It was pretty obvious that the sun would not appear over the tops of the clouds on the horizon for at least a half hour so this will have to do for this morning's sunrise picture.

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Not all the pelicans have forsaken the Outer Banks as this pretty formation proves.

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Even with no wind pushing it the surf has pretty well covered the beach in the vicinity of Whitecap Street.

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Fortunately none of the tournament teams were assigned to this section of beach. The "No Beach Driving" signs are somewhat superfluous this morning.

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The spot population around the Outer Banks pier was severely reduced yesterday afternoon. Fishermen were filling their coolers with the delectable little critters at a furious rate.

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Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. went for a stroll yesterday afternoon and encountered this large gathering of shore birds who were apparently taking a reverse lunch break.

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Uncle Jack spotted another godwit yesterday and hastened to establish his credentials as the No. 1 godwit photographer in South Nags Head.

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Rare photo of godwit with beak open.

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Godwit deeply immersed in his work.

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Godwit up to his knees in foam. And that's the Godwit Gallery for today.

posted by Uncle Jack at 8:30 AM

Comments [5]

Thursday, October 5, 2006
Sunrise in Sonag, Thursday October 5, 2006

      Uncle Jack is running out of things to say about the preturnaturally perfect weather we have been enjoying on the Outer Banks this week. He is not complaining but he has to confess he is almost glad that the forecast for tomorrow calls for rain and strong winds out of the northeast for a change. 

     The 51st annual Nags Head Surf Fishing Tournament is underway.  Uncle Jack will try to get up to the beach this morning and take some pictures of the excitement. (He can always count on somebody getting his $40,000 SUV stuck in the sand with the tide coming in).

     Twenty years ago Uncle Jack would have been right in the thick of it instead of just watching as this selection from the archives suggests:

                   It's Nice to be a Judge

If you ask Uncle Jack, one of the best things about living in a country like the U.S.A. is that almost everybody has a chance to be somebody when he grows up. You do not have to be born rich and you do not have to have a father who is a county commissioner or some other important person like that.

All you have to do is go to school and pay attention to the teachers and learn how to do those arithmetic problems where the trains start out from different places and also memorize the capitals of all the states and if you can do this you are sure to be a success. And if you can hang around long enough to graduate from high school there is almost no limit on how far you can go. Uncle Jack knows.

He has been thinking a lot this week about how lucky he was to be born in the U.S.A. because something happened to him this week that would never happen to an ordinary run-of-the-mill person like himself in most other countries. What happened was that Uncle Jack was picked to be a judge of the Nags Head Surf Fishing Tournament which starts on Thursday and goes until Saturday.

In case you do not know what this means he will explain that the judges are the people who drive up and down the beach for two days, picking up dead fish and measuring them so the scorers can figure out who won the tournament.

He should not have to tell you that this is a very important job and not everybody can get to be a judge. For one thing you have to be highly respected in your community and for another thing you have to own a four-wheel-drive vehicle. Uncle Jack is not sure which is more important but he can tell you that as soon as he bought his new secondhand Jeep they picked him to be a judge, no questions asked.

Anyway this is the highest honor Uncle Jack has ever had and he can hardly believe what has happened. Who can believe that an ordinary, average child of poor parents, born in the north woods of Wisconsin, thousands of miles from the nearest ocean, would one day grow up to become a judge of the oldest, largest and finest surf fishing tournament in Dare County?

If you ask Uncle Jack this is real proof that the American Way of Life is working just the way the Founding Fathers hoped it would.

Uncle Jack is not taking this honor lightly, either. He is doing his best to get ready so he will be able to do a good job of judging. For one thing he has sworn off all spiritual beverages until after the judging is finished because he knows how hard it is to measure fish accurately when your hands are shaking or when you have impaired your faculties with foreign substances such as Scotch whisky.

He knows he has to measure every fish very carefully because the outcome of the whole tournament could rest on how well he does his measuring. Also he knows he could be assaulted by some irate fisherman if he does it wrong.

Uncle Jack knows that different kinds of fish get different numbers of points so he is studying hard to learn the various kinds of fish so he does not make any mistakes that way. Yesterday he finally mastered most of the main differences between the tarpon and the flounder and he plans to keep studying right up to the time he has to start judging.

Uncle Jack does want to warn all the contestants about the new state law that says you cannot drink beer or any other spiritual beverages in a motor vehicle even when the motor vehicle is on the beach and not on a highway. He wants all the contestants to know that he is planning to keep a sharp eye out for anybody who breaks this law and he will not hesitate to report them to the police. As far as Uncle Jack is concerned beer-drinking has no place in the Nags Head Surf Fishing Tournament anyway and he knows the vast majority of the club members will back him up on that.

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6:50 a.m. looking east.

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Ditto, looking north.

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7 a.m. Right on time.

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3x optical zoom.

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The dawn of a new (yawn) day.

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It's beach driving time again, except where buildings have been allowed to encroach on the beach to the point where vehicles can't get around them most of the time.

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This picture doesn't really do justice to last night's sunset. It was a doozy.

posted by Uncle Jack at 9:02 AM

Comments [3]

Wednesday, October 4, 2006
Sunrise in Sonag, Tuesday, October 4, 2008

    Boring, boring, boring.  One flawless day after another.  Picture-wise Uncle Jack could have stayed in bed this morning and used yesterday's sunrise again inasmuch as it was nearly identical to this morning's.

    The ocean has subsided to nearly flat calm which will no doubt disappoint the surfers. If you're having a house built anywhere on the Outer Banks you can expect that considerably more progress will be made today than yesterday when the surf was up.

     Uncle Jack does not ordinarily use his weblog for crass commercial purposes but he did want to let his Outer Banks readers know that an ad will appear in tomorrow's paper announcing the sale of his beloved Chrysler Voyager which he and Mrs. U.J.  need like a hole in the head since they got the MINI.  It's too nice a car to just sit in the driveway and sulk every day so they have decided to let somebody else enjoy it.

     If you happen to be looking for a really good used car at a terrific price please let Uncle Jack know before the unwashed public starts to call. See the pictures below for additional info. 

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6:55 a.m.

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Five minutes later.

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The beginning of another spectacularly lovely day on the Outer Banks. Wish you could be here. The two pelicans in the picture were the only ones Uncle Jack saw this morning. They are definitely in hiding somewhere.

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Peek-a-boo! This swimming pool belongs to one of the condo developments just south of the Comfort Inn. One more storm and it will become a saltwater pool.

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An excellent example of how sandbags cause accelerated erosion on adjacent lots that are not sandbagged. This is near Whitecap Street in South Nags Head.

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These folks are out on the beach at 6 a.m., not wasting a minute of their vacation by sleeping in. (It may have been the little guy's idea to get up so early).

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2003 Chrysler Voyager. 25,000 miles. Like new inside and out. Not a speck of rust. A.C. Radio and tape deck. Seven passenger. Cruise control. Power steering. 6 cylinder engine. $11,800.

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Price includes the coveted "Dr. Jazz" plate. email Uncle Jack at yelnag@charter.net

posted by Uncle Jack at 8:57 AM

Comments [4]

Tuesday, October 3, 2006
Sunrise in Sonag, Tuesday October 3, 2006

     It's a glorious morning in South Nags Head. Lucky are the folks who picked this week for their vacations because it looks like one perfect day after the other is in store at least through Friday.

     Uncle Jack went over to Manteo yesterday to get the Mini's tires rotated and while he was over there he dropped into Manteo Booksellers to say hello to Steve and ask him if he was by any chance up in Nantucket last week.  When Uncle Jack was on a jitney tour of the island last Thursday he saw a man walking down the street who was a dead ringer for Steve Brumfield which would have been an amazing example of the "small world" phenomenon.

       Turns out that is what it was.  Steve is on vacation in New England and Nantucket was one of the stops on his itinerary last week.

        Uncle Jack is doggedly plowing through a month's worth of newspapers, magazines, and junk mail and by tomorrow he should be out from under.  Some day he is going to sign up for all those credit card s they keep offering him, max them all out and move to Brazil under an assumed name and live like a king for the rest of his life.

   Have a nice day y'all.

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6:55 a.m.

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6:59 a.m. Everything's peachy.

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7:00 a.m. sunrise. The birds seem pretty nonchalant about it.

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The only pelicans Uncle Jack saw in a half hour on the beach. Either they are sleeping in these days or they have started to migrate. He doesn't know which. Allan?

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Love springs eternal on the Outer Banks.

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Meanwhile back at the altar, time for one last sip.

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The Comfort Inn South must have taken a beating while Uncle Jack was gone. This sign apparently applies only to the sagging deck above, not the entire hotel.

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It does seem a bit askew.

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Rube Goldberg must be the maintenance guy over there.

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10 seconds of bliss followed by several minutes of exhausting paddling. It doesn't compute for Uncle Jack but it's fun to watch.

posted by Uncle Jack at 8:11 AM

Comments [9]

Monday, October 2, 2006
Sunrise in Sonag, Monday October 2, 2006

         Uncle Jack is very glad his vacation is finally over so he could come home again.  With weather like the Outer Banks is enjoying this week who would want to be anywhere else?

         He and Mrs. U.J. strolled down the beach to the Outer Banks pier at sunset last night and they were out again before sunrise this morning. Whoever said the best things in life are free must have been talking about beaches and sunrises.

     There are exceptions, of course.  New York bagels are not free but they certainly are among the best things in life which is why he is going to get some right now.

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6:55 a.m.

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6:58. Official sunrise.

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7 a.m.

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The critter on the left is the Jimmy Durante of South Nags Head. What a schnozz.

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With his bill he could come up with egg foo yung on his face all the way from China.

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Mother Nature has been moving sand around while Uncle Jack was away. This collapsed stairway is just south of Whitecap Street.

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Should he walk south?

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Or north? Either way he won't be tripping over people.

posted by Uncle Jack at 9:01 AM

Comments [7]

Sunday, October 1, 2006
We Be Home, Sunday, October 1, 2006

     Just a note to let readers know we are home safely after an accident-free trip from Ocean Grove, New Jersey with an additional overnight stop in Dewey Beach, DE. En route we visited the "lady from New Jersey" from whom we rented the delightful "treehouse" in Camden, Maine at her equally delightful house on Barnegat Bay in Harvey Cedars, New Jersey.  She is not only the author of four best-selling books but she makes a very good tuna fish salad sandwich, too, as we learned firsthand.  Margaret Buchholz's family goes way back on Long Beach Island and she was kind enough to take us on a tour of her hometown Saturday afternoon. It's an interesting area with many similarities to the Outer Banks.  The Ash Wednesday storm nearly wiped it out but it's all built back up again, ready for the next big one.

     As far as Dewey Beach, Delaware is concerned our advice is forget it. It's nice to be home again, however briefly.  Look for a sunrise picture or two on Monday, weather permitting.

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Two Minis in front of the Manchester Inn in Ocean Grove. The antique Mini belongs to the owners of the Inn who bought it on Ebay.

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We tried Captain Jack's restaurant in Ocean Grove on a lark and were delighted to learn that it's a first class eating place. Excellent food, neat decor and wonderful service.

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Captain Jack's fish tank has more interesting and exotic stuff in it than the N.C. Aquarium.

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Ocean Grove has a lot of old Victorian houses in it but this one takes the cake. Or at least the gingerbread.

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Barnegat Inlet lighthouse. The sand in the foreground accumulated as a result of a jetty being built to protect the lighthouse from erosion, much like the groin protecting the south abutment of the Bonner Bridge.

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Barnegat inlet is fast-flowing and has lots of traffic, including fishing trawlers, speed boats, sailboats and you name it. Barnegat Bay is very wide and accommodates a huge number of watercraft of all kinds.

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This first order Fresnel lens is the pride of the Barnegat Light museum, a former one-room elementary school which Margaret Buchholz attended as a child.

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The lovely beach at Harvey Cedars. It may or may not be renourished in the fairly near future depending on who wins the battle over whether it should be done or not.

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The last sunset of September over Delaware Bay. Taken from the windy deck of the Lewes-Cape May ferry Saturday night.

posted by Uncle Jack at 3:59 PM

Comments [11]

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After retiring in 2005 after 35 years as owner/operator of Yellowhouse Gallery and Annex on the Beach Road in Nags Head, Uncle Jack, accompanied by Mrs. Uncle Jack (a.k.a. Susan), commenced to travel extensively. This blog is a chronicle of their ramblings around the U.S. (in their redoubtable Mini Cooper convertible) as well as visits to England, Ireland, France, Italy, and Malta, interspersed with lengthy stays in South Nags Head and Baltimore between trips. He took a lot of pictures along the way, many of which are posted along with each blog entry.
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