Saturday, April 30, 2022

It Just Exploded


My Irreparably Damaged Baseball Glove
April 29, 2022
The unthinkable happened at baseball practice on Thursday night. My 50 year old baseball glove literally exploded while I was warming up a pitcher preparing to conduct batting practice.

OK, maybe exploded is a bit dramatic, but as the image shows there was major damage as well as more to laces which are on the backside of the glove. 

I considered repairing the glove with new laces and during the inspection I found the damage even more extensive than I had at first believed. As can be seen from the image, I had fairly extensive repairs done last season with darker lacing along the top. But, as also can be seen, I have not properly cared for my glove over these past five decades and the time it has spent in a hot vehicle has taken a toll on the laces. Looking over the glove, I could see that the laces were worn and broken in many other places.

Bottom line--it was time to purchase a new baseball glove, which I did yesterday. Who knew that some gloves are $400? OMG! As I am not actively playing, but rather coaching I decided on a glove far less costly. The new glove is being conditioned and hopefully I will be able to at least bend it by Sunday when the team plays a doubleheader.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Friday, April 29, 2022



Two nights of  freeze warnings during late-April! The daily highs have been barely 60 degrees. 

This does not seem like late April! I usually am seriously thinking of opening my pool by this time of year, but now I am waiting for temperatures at least in the high 70s. 


Too cold! 

There is at least a forecast of 80 degrees for Wednesday next week--but then the highs are expected to be back into the 60s.

Not a good week to open the pool, yet. 

It has not been particularly good weather for baseball, either.

I'm hoping that warmer weather will soon appear and finally send the remnants of Winter into the distant past. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Tough Loss


On a cool evening in Clinton, Maryland, the 14U Severn Seminoles baseball team played to a hard fought loss. The game ended on a bases loaded steal of home base with a 3-2 count on the batter and two outs. 

Jax on the Mound
Clinton, MD
April 27, 2022

The loss stung--but, the team played well and overcome adversity all night. Although Severn scored first, the home team came back with three runs in the bottom of the first inning. Although the second inning saw the side retired in order, Severn scored a run in each of the next four innings to take a tenuous 5-4 lead when the home team came to bat with time running out. With their backs against the wall, the home team, the 14U Full Count Rockers got the job dome by getting the tying run across the plate and then loading up the bases; setting up the final desperation play to win the game. It was a great call during a at a critical point in the game.

Jax had a good night at the plate going 1-3 with an RBI single and a deep fly ball to center field which was caught. He also was strong on the mound pitching 3 innings and allowing 1 earned run. He threw 67 pitches, while facing 18 batters and striking out 4 and walking 4.

Severn was aggressive at the plate and the hit of the night, by Eric, was a monster double to deep center field which on some fields would have been a home run. The team also turned two double plays--including on unassisted by Jacob, the first baseman.

Too bad the well-played game resulted in a loss because thew boys definitely played like winners. 

Baseball is back and so am I.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Rain and Baseball


Rains came yesterday afternoon. 

I was preparing to coach the 14U Severn Seminoles in a game and mere minutes before the two-hour cut-off for calling a game, it was called due to rain. At least I didn't have to leave the house, but dinner was already on the table at 4PM--which is really early for us.

At least I was able to spend the evening at home and not out in the cold and rain!

There is another game tonight--over an hour drive away. Hopefully, it will not rain! Perhaps it will even be warm. I could use some mid-Summer baseball weather.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

The Canopy Returns

Hidden Building Trick
Elkridge, MD
April 26, 2022
It has been a busy two weeks since arriving back in Maryland. The pace of life is faster with more distractions and Chris and I are getting fewer things accomplished than we had hoped, but the downsizing is beginning. Of course, Easter and then Mom's Celebration of Life Service, with corresponding travel, probably contributed to much of the activity in which we have been engaged. 

With those two events completed, perhaps we can begin to control our activity level more. I have managed only one bike ride since returning, although much of that is due to the cold temperatures we have been experiencing. The 30 degree temperature difference is partly to blame. 

Spring, however, is in full swing. I noticed this morning that the tree canopy has matured enough to hide the building on the hill behind our house. It is not fully mature, but still sufficient to provide shade and seclusion to the yard. I mowed for the second time yesterday and I am beginning the pool opening process. I have some left-over plumbing work to accomplish,  reattach the motor for the pump and then it will be off to buy the chemicals necessary to bring the pool to life. 

Another great day ahead and perhaps, weather permitting, a youth baseball game this afternoon as I make my return to coaching.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Monday, April 25, 2022

Monday Musings - April 25, 2022


1. The last Monday of April has arrived. Wow--it came fast. I was able to enjoy some nice weather yesterday. There are just 35 Mondays remaining in the year. 

2. The quick trip to Upstate New York was blessed with good weather. It was neither as cold nor as rainy as the weather predicted. 

Damiani Winery
Burdett, NY
April 24, 2022
3. I had not traveled Interstate 81 through Pennsylvania for quite a while and traveling it this weekend reminded me that it is really a truckers highway. One of the most frustrating things is when trucks pass trucks on long uphill sections and slow traffic significantly.

4. Wine tasting? Well of course. While in New York, Chris and I tasted quite a few wines. That made the best of the reason we were back in Central New York. Well, of course being with family was another good reason. We enjoyed some nice wines along the east shore of Seneca Lake on Sunday morning as we began our return trip to Maryland. 

5. During our drive yesterday, Chris and I witnessed different aspects of Spring. In Central New York, Spring is just beginning to show as the early Spring flowers are in full bloom and the trees were budded, but bare. Then, around Central Pennsylvania, we noticed the trees were beginning to turn green with signs of new leaves. Here in Maryland, the leaves are large enough to provide shade and canopy, although not yet full in size. 

6. Today in History. On April 25, 1983, the Soviet Union releases a letter that Russian leader Yuri Andropov wrote to Samantha Smith, an American fifth-grader from Manchester, Maine, inviting her to visit his country. Andropov’s letter came in response to a note Smith had sent him in December 1982, asking if the Soviets were planning to start a nuclear war. At the time, the United States and Soviet Union were Cold War enemies.

U.S. Wants to See Russia Weakened, Says Defense Secretary Austin - The Wall Street Journal

Beijing Braces for Omicron Wave With Hoarding and Testing - The Wall Street Journal

U.S. to reopen Kyiv embassy soon, says Russia has failed in war aims - Reuters

Panic buying in Beijing stores amid COVID lockdown fears - Reuters

Analysis: U.S. trucking downturn foreshadows possible economic gloom - Reuters

In Mariupol, echoes of history, utter devastation and a last stand - The Washington Post

France’s Macron wins second term decisively - The Washington Post

Foreign investors are ditching China. Russia's war is the latest trigger - CNN

McCarthy's latest genuflection to Trump paints America's possible future - CNN

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Sunday, April 24, 2022

A Life Well Lived

Etna Church 
Etna, NY
April 23, 2022

 On Saturday, family and friends gathered to celebrate the life of my Mom, Sidney Doan. 

We gathered inside a small church in Etna, New York. The church was filled two overflowing and the service which was planned for an hour took two hours to complete as so many people took time to express their memories of how Mom's impact on their lives. 

The service was at times funny because of the stories being told and other times tearful as we collectively grieved her passing--but in the end it was a celebration and for me it was uplifting to see so many of my relatives and friends gathered together, many of whom traveled great distances to be there. 

Mom touched many people during her life and for this day, for one last time, she was the star and the subject of our gathering. I have to smile about how many people mentioned that she made the best pumpkin rolls.

My Mom
Sidney J. Doan

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Friday, April 22, 2022


My Sandals
I am on the road again headed for New York and a reunion with family. We are attending the Celebration of Life for my Mom who passed during December. It has been a long wait, but we needed the weather to be nice. It promises to be a nice Spring day following 12 inches of snow earlier in the 

As I was packing for the short trip I came across my sandals. I have not worn them since returning to Maryland from Florida. That was over a week ago. Prior to that I think I had worn them nearly every day. It is funny how the weather determines what I wear. I have also been trapped wearing jeans for the past week. I miss my shorts. 

The sandals reminded me that warmer weather is coming. It cannot get here fast enough. I’m sure it will be here soon. 

For the service tomorrow I was advised to wear essentially throw-away shoes because mountains of mud are expected. I did not bring my sandals even though warmer weather is expected. 

Wearing the sandals will come soon enough maybe as soon as I return to Maryland. 

-- Bob Doan, somewhere in PA along Interstate 81

Thursday, April 21, 2022


Finnegan and Louis
Elkridge, MD
April 20, 2022
What could be better on a cold Springtime day than lying in a warm sunbeam on the floor? 

Nothing, it appears.

That is how I found Louis and Finnegan yesterday.

Yes, for those of you who know the saga of Louis, the white cat, he has returned for a few weeks while his human takes a vacation. His return has been very smooth and the greeting he received from the rest of the pack was very touching. He has slipped right back into his old roles of trying to kill me by sneaking up behind me when I am working at the kitchen counter and also serving as the resident trophy cat. 

What is a trophy cat? 

A trophy cat is one which is always around, but does not like attention, to be picked up, or touched. It wants to be seen, but not openly acknowledged. It exists to be admired and cared for. They make good cats for those who do not enjoy having a cat sitting in their lap, except on very rare occasions. 

Which brings me back to the sunbeam. It is one of Louis's favorite spots in the house. Yesterday, Finnegan joined him for some midday warmth. I was sorry that I could not likewise find a sunbeam to enjoy.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Wednesday, April 20, 2022


Image from Somewhere too Far North

 It is Springtime, according to the calendar and not the weather, and there is something exciting about yellow flowers. 

Even in my own house I have yellow tulips and yellow mums, roses, and lilies to brighten the mood and stave off the cold. There is something inherently bright and warm about yellow. Perhaps because it is the color of the sun and the thought of yellow brings imagined warmth.

My Yellow Tulips
Elkridge, MD
April 20, 2022
Yesterday on the news, I saw tulips covered in snow. The Nor'easter left snow across the northern part of the country, temporarily stopping Springtime in its tracks. Fortunately early Spring flowers are resilient and do not wilt or die because of freezing temperatures and snow. The tulips stood strong in the face of Winter's dying gasp.

Fortunately, all I experienced was the cold. And wind. 

I am preparing to travel to the frozen north. I believe the temperatures will moderate before I arrive and that the snow will melt. But, I am looking forward to seeing multitudes of yellow daffodils, tulips, and other Springtime flowers.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Suffering the Cold

Dogwood Blossom
Elkridge, MD
April 17, 2022


It was 39 degrees this morning headed to an expected high of 52, maybe. 

It will be colder tomorrow morning, possibly 36 degrees.

I did not order this cold weather! 

We spent an enjoyable Easter Sunday outside cleaning the yard of the debris left behind by some wild rabbit who thought colored eggs were funny! The weather was cool, but mild. I even flew my drone, Radio Flyer. I also was able to get a nice image of a dogwood tree blossom.

And now--it is just cold! I have not ridden my bike in too many days. I think I will have two ride my indoor bike to stay in shape. 

This weekend we venture north! The weather promises to be milder and this week's Nor'easter will have dumped the last snow of the season on the landscape and moved away. We expect to see snow on the mountains of Central Pennsylvania we traverse the region.

Well, I guess this is Spring!

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Monday, April 18, 2022

Monday Musings - April 18, 2022


1. Welcome to the third Monday of April 2022. There are 36 Mondays remaining in the year. That means we area already 16 Mondays into the year, or we have already lost nearly 31 percent of the year. 

Easter Family Picture
Elkridge, MD
April 17, 2022
2. It is Federal Tax Day! Don't forget--the Tax Man cometh! For you!

3. Yesterday the yard was filled with family as the annual Easter Egg Hunt was completed. The Easter Bunny left eggs everywhere around the yard. A great family picture was obtained, however, sadly, one member was missing as he was visiting his other set of grandparents.

4. Hey, the fun isn't over--it is Easter Monday. I hear eggs will be rolled on The White House grounds during the morning hours. 

5. I wonder if the aggression I see on the highways is related to COVID? Are people acting out their frustration in their cars or have they lost a sense of society and collegiality due to the isolation caused by the pandemic?

6. Today in History. On April 18, 1906, at 5:13 a.m., an earthquake estimated at close to 8.0 on the Richter scale strikes San FranciscoCalifornia, killing an estimated 3,000 people as it topples numerous buildings. The quake was caused by a slip of the San Andreas Fault over a segment about 275 miles long, and shock waves could be felt from southern Oregon down to Los Angeles.

Florida rejects 41% of new math textbooks, citing critical race theory among its reasons  - CNN

The biggest risk to the global economy no one is talking about - CNN

North Korean leader shown observing weapons test as country fires projectiles into eastern waters - CNN

Russia hits targets across Ukraine, fighters cling on in Mariupol - Reuters

Raisi says Iran will target heart of Israel if it acts against Iranian nation - Reuters

Russian Orthodox leader backs Ukraine war, divides faith - The Washington Post

The nuclear missile next door - The Washington Post 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Sunday, April 17, 2022

Hail on the Orioles


The view from 332
OPACY, Baltimore, MD
April 16, 2022

Happy Easter!

The sun is shining although, at 46 degrees, it is a bit cool this Easter morning. 

Last evening Chris and I attended an Orioles game. It was our first Orioles game in two years! I have to admit it felt good to be back at Pickles before the game and then to enter the stadium to see the team. We ate a pork sandwich from Boog's before the game and even had seats in the section where I used to have season tickets.

Looking Out of the Tunnel at the Hail Storm
OPACY, Baltimore, MD
April 16, 2022

The game suffered a rain delay before beginning--it was not much of a storm, that was to come later in the evening. The weather radar was not kind to the Orioles on this Springtime evening. After securing a 2-0 lead, I experienced something that I have never experienced before at an MLB game--a true hail storm. 

Walk to the Car
Baltimore, MD
April 16, 2022

The hail continued for some minutes and actually collected on the field, then it turned to rain and dampened our spirits. We waited for a break in the action, as it was getting late, and made our dash for the car--which was parked about 3/4 mile away--a distance we covered in less than 15 minutes.

We did not run as the rain, fortunately, held off. 

The Orioles ultimately lost momentum, likely due to the rain, and then lost the game 2-5 to the visiting team from the North, whose name will remain unwritten. 

It was good to be back in the park and, I have to admit, there was not a COVID-19 related mask in sight--all night. It was like old times (OK, it was like 2019): the Orioles losing a baseball game and no one seemingly concerned about a pandemic.

Again--Happy Easter to all. May you enjoy the blessings of this special day wherever you are. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Saturday, April 16, 2022

Flowers and Bees


Bumble Bee in Crab Apple Blossoms
Elkridge, MD
April 14, 2022

My allergies started acting up the day after arriving back in Maryland. While I enjoy looking at the Springtime flowers and trees springing to life, they have caused my allergies to go into overdrive. 

Despite the inconvenience of sniffling every few minutes and loading myself up on antihistamines and other allergy drugs, I do enjoy the rebirth happening all around me.

The dark season is over and I am enjoying at least five rabbits racing around my yard in addition to the blooming flowers and buzzing bees. It seems that life is erupting everywhere. I was very surprised to see our Bleeding Hearts in full glory upon our return to Maryland. I have even mowed the lawn, mostly to remove the debris and prepare for tomorrow's Easter egg hunt. 

It is Easter! 

Enjoy the weekend and the Springtime as you celebrate the holiday.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Friday, April 15, 2022

Springtime and Memories

Redbud Tree in Bloom
Elkridge, MD
April 13, 2022

 The redbud tree in our yard is blooming. I know redbud trees across Maryland are in bloom right now, but this one is special. Mom, who passed during December, bought it for Chris and it has been growing larger and more beautiful each year.

And also our gardens host a large plot of Lily of the Valley. We brought these to Maryland years ago from Mom's garden to have something from home with us.

I guess with the celebration of life service for Mom coming next week, I have been thinking more about her and the flowers and trees cause me to remember. As we prepare to sell the house later this year, I know that these memories will remain and that those who move in will not understand their significance. They will become just another redbud tree and a patch of Lily of the Valley. But, Mom's hand will always be there.

We may have to smuggle some Lily of the Valley to Florida--I'm sure the agricultural inspectors will love hearing the explanation for that. 

Oh yea--Happy Easter, today is Good Friday.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Thursday, April 14, 2022


Chris and Ethan
Odenton, MD
April 13, 2022
We enjoyed a birthday celebration last evening. 

Thomas Jefferson, the 3rd President of the United States was born April 13, 1743! Most people don't remember his birthday, but I do

because . . . 

sharing a birthday with the 3rd President is our own oldest grandson. They are a few centuries apart, fortunately.

So we enjoyed an April birthday party and watched the Orioles snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. 

But more importantly, Happy Birthday Ethan!

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Signs of Spring

Peony's in the Yard
ELkridge, MD
April 12, 2022
Robin in a Budding Tree
Elkridge, MD
April 12, 2022
I have made the transition from tropical to temperate. The signs of Spring are everywhere. Budding trees and flowers, birds singing the night away outside of my window, and cold temperatures.

There is not a palm tree in sight. 

The lawn is green and we picked up twigs and branches blown in from the Winter's storms. 

I guess I'm happy to be able to enjoy the Springtime. 

We have a lot of family and friends with which to visit and reconnect. Although we had only been gone three months, in some ways it seems longer. 

And then there is getting the house ready for the season and getting the pool open. 

Lot's of stuff to do and no beach upon which to celebrate Happy Hour!

Sure signs of Spring.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Tuesday, April 12, 2022


Newly Replanted Backyard
Tequesta, FL
April 11, 2022

 Just before noon the truck, loaded with the animals, a lot of stuff, and Chris and me, arrived in Elkridge after an almost 15 hour trip from Florida.

Yes, we departed about 9 PM last evening from Tequesta and drove through the night. I have not driven an all nighter in a long time and it was easier than. remember. Chris helped with the driving and we were excited to see the sun rise over South Carolina this morning. Timing wise--we missed the heavy traffic parts of the day. We had planned to leave about 1 AM, but decided to hit the road since we were fully awake.

The animals were good, although we did lose some time tending to their needs. 

The house looks great and we are getting unloaded and prepared for the upcoming events. 

We were lucky to have been able to see the replanted backyard behind our condo before we left. It looks much better than the gray sand we had before. Hopefully the new drainage will keep the mulch in place.  Time will tell as we will likely not see it again until sometime in August.

And so it begins--a very busy Spring and Summer downsizing and preparing the Elkridge residence for sale.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Monday, April 11, 2022

Monday Musings - April 11, 2022

 1. Greetings again. It is Monday and it is the second Monday of the month. There are just 37 Mondays remaining in the year!

Sailing on a Choppy Ocean
Carlin Park, Jupiter, FL
April 10, 2022
2. For my final Happy Hour on the beach until likely August--or maybe June in St. Maarten, I saw a sailboat illuminated by the sun in the distance. It was sailing away much like my time remaining in Florida. 

3. The Master's is over. Tiger made his return to competitive golf and that was amazing. Sadly, the weather was not kind to him and his scores were well below what he would have liked, but he made the cut and completed the four-day event. Congrats to the winner. 

4. I was reminded over the weekend that words can cut and hurt. Too often I read emotion into texts, but even so sometimes even the emotionless words typed into a text without further context can drive a knife into the soul of a reader who was not the intended recipient--or then again, maybe I was.

5. Congrats to the Severn Seminoles 14U (wow, I have a Florida connection even in Maryland) who won their first game of the season and should have won both games of the doubleheader they played yesterday. Hats off to Jax who went 2 for 3 at the plate with a stolen base in the second game--which the team won.

6. Today in History. On April 11, 1814, Napoleon Bonaparte, emperor of France and one of the greatest military leaders in history, abdicates the throne, and, in the Treaty of Fontainebleau, is banished to the Mediterranean island of Elba.

Ukraine’s Zelensky Calls for More Military Aid Ahead of Battles in Eastern Regions - The Wall Street Journal

Everything Costs More, and That’s Disrupting Retirement for Many - The Wall Street Journal

Russians Cope With Ukraine War’s Fallout: Bulk Buying, Jobs in Limbo - The Wall Street Journal

Ukraine repulses attacks in east as Russia presses to control Mariupol - Reuters

Chechen chief Kadyrov says Russian forces will take Kyiv - Reuters

Russian oil embargo could be part of next EU sanctions package, ministers say - Reuters

North Korea celebrates 10 years of Kim Jong Un as top party leader - Reuters

What to know about Russia’s new top commander in Ukraine - The Washington Post

In a major reversal, Elon Musk won’t join Twitter’s board of directors - The Washington Post

Russia defaults on debt as Ukraine braces for assault - CNN

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL

Sunday, April 10, 2022

Palms Against the Evening Sky


Palms Against the Evening Sky
Tequesta, FL
April 9, 2022
I will miss the palms.

Chris and I are preparing our return to Maryland and I know that I will miss the palms against the sky and the warm temperatures in addition to the beach, the sand, the ocean, and the sun. We were greeted this morning by temperatures in the low-50s. I can sum up the experience in one word: cold. However, I am mindful that the expected high today in Elkridge is one degree higher than the low this morning in Tequesta. The weather will be something we will need to learn about all over again: how to be warm when it is cold. 

The trip begins soon and there are many tasks to complete before we close up the condo for a few months. It is a process and it takes patience and thoroughness to ensure everything is complete and nothing critical is forgotten.

In other news, I failed to reach 100 miles on my bike for the week. I finished at a solid 95 miles--which is a personal record. Chris and I completed our biking for the week with a very enjoyable ride through a local state park near Jensen Beach. I expect my weekly biking mileage to fall off significantly upon returning to Maryland as I will be adding in activities such as golf and racquetball at the expense of bicycling. This week, however, was a week of 100 percent bicycling.

Today I will veggie out watching the Master's. I have been impressed with Tiger's return--which stalled yesterday due to the cold conditions, but still was amazing considering the adversity he overcame. He is currently tied for 41st at +7, and not only did he make the cut, but is certainly not the worst remaining on the course. 

Bottom line though, I still need to get my palm tree fix in before we depart. Maybe Happy Hour on the beach will be a possibility if the temperatures rise as expected. 

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL

Saturday, April 9, 2022

Osprey in Flight

Carlin Park, Jupiter, FL
April 8, 2022
Osprey with Boat
Carlin Park, Jupiter, FL
April 8, 2022

I sat on the beach, during Happy Hour, last evening trying to capture an Osprey in flight as it was hunting. It was hard to get the camera to focus in the correct spot as the osprey flew overhead. The focus was slow and the osprey was agile on the light wind.

I did finally get one image that is passable; the osprey with its wings outstretched in flight--but that is all that can be seen. I had tried to get something else in the field of view to make the scene more exciting, but the sun angle and the flight of the osprey made that difficult. 

But I did manage a couple others that show what I wanted--just not exactly what I was trying to image.

It was fun, and I was actually very lucky because at one time there were three ospreys in flight within my field of view. The evening was perfect.. The lighting was low on the horizon as the sun was beginning to set. And the ocean was nearly flat. A perfect Friday Happy Hour on the beach to celebrate the end of the week.  

Osprey on the Cloud
Carlin Park, Jupiter, FL
April 8, 2022
It was a very good week and I will miss the ability to enjoy a perfect ending to the day on the beach. The turtles have not started nesting in great numbers yet--but I expect that when I return in August there will be many turtle nests along the stretches of sand that I most enjoy.

Wintering in Florida has been idyllic. I have a lot to do as I prepare to return to Maryland and get into a new rhythm there for my retired life. I have been there only 8 days thus far during this year and have not developed a daily rhythm as I have here in Florida. 

Mundane tasks await me in Maryland such as mowing lawns, opening and maintaining the pool, and preparing the house for sale. Downsizing is going to be difficult--but, necessary. I also want to play golf--more golf than I have played here in Florida, but then,  Have really been enjoying riding my bicycle and I don't want to push my stamina too much by riding a bike AND playing golf on the same day. 

But today, I want to enjoy the beach, the sun, the sand and the ospreys soaring overhead.

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL

Friday, April 8, 2022

From the Saddle of my Bike

The Half-way Point of a 20 mile Ride
Hobe Sound National Wildlife Preserve, FL
April 6, 2022
Closing out my last full week in Florida for a couple of months, I am also having a record week of riding my bicycle. I am really putting the miles on the tires and seeing many places in the area. When I summed it up, I have ridden over 70 miles since Sunday with rides planned both today and tomorrow. I doubt I will ride over 100 miles--but 90 is a definite possibility.

Earlier in the week I completed a ride that I had been hoping to get in--riding all the way to the Hobe Sound Wildlife Preserve beach. It was a 20 mile ride, I actually shortened it a bit by parking on Jupiter Island at a public beach park and riding from there. I estimate that I shortened the ride by about 4 miles and avoided riding both ways across one of the local drawbridges.

I have already come to realize that biking in Maryland will be quite different from Florida. There are not nearly as many hills in Florida as Maryland. But, I do know the B&A Trail is relatively flat! I have ridden it in the past.

I was happy to get my ride in yesterday because I spent most of the reminder of the day watching Tiger play at The Master's. Today life is even more complicated because it is opening day for the Orioles who are protected to finish in the bottom three of MLB.

What a great Friday!

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL

Thursday, April 7, 2022

Beach Day!


Coral Cove Park Beach Conditions
Jupiter Island, FL
April 6, 2022
So as we have access continued to the beach, Chris and I are becoming a bit more selective about our beach days--looking for the perfect conditions. 

Yesterday, during the early afternoon our conditions were met. With the temperature soaring to 85 degrees and calm winds our conditions were met. It was just after high tide and the water was relatively calm when we walked onto the beach about 1:30 PM. I was happy to see the info on the be a ch sign that the water temperature has already risen to 77 degrees. Like most other beach days, we had the area almost all to ourselves. 

Chris on the Beach
Jupiter Island, FL
April 6, 2022
It had been a busy morning with the usual dog walk and I completed a 20 mile bike ride along beach road from Coral Cove Park all the way to Hobe Sound Nature Preserve and back. We were also fortunate in that we departed the beach after a couple hours and returned home before the afternoon thunderstorms arrived. 

Funny thing about the afternoon thunderstorms--they arrived rather suddenly and Chris was walking Finnegan at the time. She had not taken her cell phone with her and just as I heard the first peal of thunder and was calling her, I received a call from an unknown number which was her calling from a local shop to ask me to come retrieve her. So I headed out into the thunderstorm to retrieve the duo. 

Today? Did I mention that it is MLB Opening Day AND the first round of the Masters. I doubt that I will be outside this afternoon when the temperatures may exceed 90.

Just another day in Florida!

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Wednesday, April 6, 2022

War Crimes and Atrocities

The verdict is apparently in--the Russian military is as brutal in dealing with civilians as it is incompetent on the battle field.

Putin the War Criminal 
The images and reports coming from Ukraine showing the atrocities committed against civilians is appalling. Putin has leapt into the annals of history as a war criminal and that will become his legacy.

For those who cling to the idea that the Ukrainians staged the atrocities, as has been reported in both Russian and Chinese media, we need only remember that the same Russian military targeted hospitals, schools, and other non-military installations as their assault stalled and their frustrations grew. I recall that the Russians only a few years ago were quick to highlight to the world every American action in Syria where civilians were injured or killed as part of collateral damage. How times have changed.

A CNN report on the Chinese reaction to the atrocities is especially distressing.

As the world reacts in horror to Bucha, China's state media strikes a different tone - CNN

But, we should expect such things as we live in a world where fake news is as prevalent as factual reporting. Even in the U.S. the the validity of the images and reports is being questioned. 

Hopefully, those within our own government who idolize Putin will take another look at the true face of authoritarianism and determine that democracy is a better path. 

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL

Tuesday, April 5, 2022

The Ride

Loop from Tequesta through Jupiter
Tequesta, FL
April 4, 2022
Yesterday I completed my daily bike ride without a companion. Chris took the day off and I decided there was a route I wanted to try which would definitely not be suitable for her.

I have wanted to ride, essentially around Jupiter and Tequesta. I was not sure how long the ride would be, I was hoping for 20 miles, but it turned out to be just over 14 which made me a bit disappointed. 

The ride was fun. The most enjoyable section was along Island Way, which is at the very western portion of the ride. The hardest is along Indiantown Road--which is 8 lanes wide and fortunately is also one of the shortest parts of the route. The biggest problem I discovered was underplanning. I rode backwards, meaning I had a lot of left turns in heavily trafficked areas. Not smart! In these areas I stuck primarily to the sidewalk since it was not worth crossing traffic to ride for a few blocks to cross traffic again. 

I think I actually would have hit 20 miles had I ridden to Indiantown Road, the lower left corner of the route as depicted on the map, and returned, but I wanted to cross the big Loxahatchee River bridge--which I did. It is very high and the sidewalk is narrow with concrete walls on both sides. I was so happy to reach the top that I decided not to stop and take a picture--that was a huge mistake. It is a bit of work to use my phone for a picture because I have to stop, unhook the phone which is running a mapping app, take the picture and then get the mapping app back up and reinstalled in the cradle on the bike. I almost feel as it I need to ride with a separate camera. 

First world problems, wow!

But, I completed the circuit and probable will never do it again because it just wasn't as tough or as long as I wanted it to be.

Looking forward to a sunny and bright day today. Who knows where the day will take me.

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL

Monday, April 4, 2022

Monday Musings - April 4, 2022


1. Welcome to the first Monday of April. There are 38 Mondays remaining in the year. Spring is truly arriving and don't forget it is Federal tax season!

Looking South from the Loxahatchee River Bridge
Tequesta, FL
April 3, 2022
2. Yesterday, Chris and I took a 10 mile bike ride before the bad weather was supposed to arrive. The Loxahatchee River was calm but dark as we crossed the bridge in Tequesta. It was a bit cooler in the morning and the ride was enjoyable. It is likely to be very different from the rides we expect when we return to Maryland.

3. In the news this morning are the reports of atrocities committed by the Russian forces against Ukrainian civilians. Perhaps it is time for western countries to get more directly involved to drive the invaders from that country. 

4. Ikea is about a 1 hour 15 minute drive away (each way), or 60 miles. I have driven there twice now to get a small $60 nightstand. I think I have spent more in gas than the nightstand costs. Yesterday, we actually retrieved the nightstand and today, of course, I get to assemble it! Yay. 

5. I might get some golf in this week. My problem is that I have to trade off riding my bike for golfing. We normally golf in the afternoon and that means dodging rainstorms. Hmmm. 

6. Today in History. Just after 6 p.m. on April 4, 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. is fatally shot while standing on the balcony outside his second-story room at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. The civil rights leader was in Memphis to support a sanitation workers’ strike and was on his way to dinner when a bullet struck him in the jaw and severed his spinal cord. King was pronounced dead after his arrival at a Memphis hospital. He was 39 years old.

The bodies of at least 400 civilians were found in the Kyiv region after the departure of Russian forces, Ukraine says - CNN

Images of dead civilians in Ukraine shake the world - CNN

Completely unacceptable': GOP governor criticizes Trump's request to Putin - CNN

The World Is Piling on Debt as It Battles Inflation - The Wall Street Journal

Masks Come Off, Mandates Loosen as Firms Relax Covid Protocols - The Wall Street Journal

Exiled oligarch calls on other Russian tycoons to break with Putin - The Washington Post

How long covid is accelerating a revolution in medical research - The Washington Post

Republican excuses for rejecting Jackson are absurd - The Washington Post

In Ukrainian street, a corpse with hands bound and a bullet wound to the head - Reuters

Deadly bird flu fears prompt U.S. to consider poultry vaccines - Reuters

Indonesian court sentences teacher to death for raping 13 students - Reuters 

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL

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