I had a strong case of sleep deprivation for a couple of days last week thanks to getting up in the wee hours to get out to the beach at Cape Canaveral for a rocket launch. Rocket launches are a bonus of living on the Space Coast of Florida, and the pre-dawn launches have the potential to be especially spectacular. This Atlas 5 launch on August 8 by United Launch Alliance lived up to its promise!
Note the “sparkles” in the detail shot of the end of the plume. Those are the rocket boosters tumbling back to Earth after separation.
I recently had the chance to visit the beautifully restored TWA terminal at JFK airport when I went to New York for the Romance Writers of America convention. Now the terminal is the TWA Hotel and a great place to stop in the 1960s for a cocktail on your way to somewhere else.
Originally designed by architect Eero Saarinen, the retired terminal is pure art, with graceful lines, gorgeous views everywhere, and not a square corner to be seen. Click on the thumbnails to see bigger images or go through the whole gallery.
A severe storm blew through Florida’s Space Coast on June 19, 2019. I awaited it at Port Canaveral and shot it coming in over Exploration Tower. Then I watched it make conditions gnarly for boats in the port. It wasn’t a great day for boating, to say the least. I’ve never seen waves like that on the water there.
I do my best each spring to try to capture the magic that is night-blooming cereus. This cactus vine produces flowers that each bloom for just one night. The plant comes in various forms; the one climbing up our deck and a palm tree looks kind of like a snake the rest of the year.
Honeybees retire in the evening, so I’m not a hundred percent sure if those were the bees so excited about the pollen in the bloom I captured on video. The flower begins to open right at sunset, so there was still some light in the sky. I’d never seen anything like it in my time-lapses from previous years, and it was really amazing! Once it got dark, the bees went home, and the flower finished opening, still covered with ants and other insects.
May 18 was one of those chase days that was pleasantly low-pressure. Alethea Kontis and I chased with old friends, and we didn’t find any tornadoes, just beautiful storms from Alva to Enid, Oklahoma, culminating in amazing sunset colors in the turbulent clouds.
The time-lapse video is hypnotic, and I was delighted with the photo opportunities on the beautiful farm road where we wrapped up the chase as golds, oranges and blues roiled through the clouds.
Today was the first real chase day for Alethea Kontis and me in 2019. We’d driven out from Florida a couple of days before. It was Alethea’s second year of storm chasing, and she hadn’t seen a tornado yet. This day would deliver a beautiful one near McCook, Nebraska, that we saw from just south of Culbertson. At times it had a “Wizard of Oz” appearance. We met up with more chaser friends, and later that night, we saw a gorgeous lightning show from Lexington, Nebraska.
We drove about 450 miles this day – some of which was a large and frustrating circle. Pretty much par for the course on a storm chase.
Roll over the gallery images for more information about each photo, and click on a photo to see larger images.
A morning hailstorm on March 27, 2019, took Florida’s Space Coast by surprise. I saw it coming and got a few shots from U.S. 1 in Rockledge before it clobbered our neighborhood and went on to do even more damage on the beaches.
Two-inch hailstones fell in Indialantic, taking out car and house windows and damaging roofs and stucco. The biggest stones I saw at our house in Rockledge were one-inch-plus, right as the onslaught began. Unfortunately, we also had so much rain – especially since another hailstorm followed the first one – that a little water got into the house.