Blooming Poinciana Tree

Typically the Poinciana tree (Delonix regia) blooms in May and June, but it was later this year. I took this photo July 11, 2017


It was beautiful in the morning sun. I just had to stop and take its picture.


August 27, 2017 at 10:23 am Leave a comment

Story “The Arboretum”

“The Arboretum”

By Marie Etzler

“Mom, turn on the radio,” Patrick yelled from the back. “It’s so boring in here.”

“Don’t yell, Patrick,” his mother, Charlotte yelled. Veronica turned around and squinted at her older cousin, Patrick, studying him and hoping that his family wouldn’t move to Florida with hers, too. She turned back around to watch as her aunt Charlotte reached out her slender wrist with the thin black watch band and turned on the radio and rotate the dial from a news report about where President Ford was going that week to some music.  . . .


(continued on “Stories” tab)

July 19, 2017 at 5:33 am Leave a comment

The Rescue of Mteto, Baby Elephant, in Tsavo

More good work by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust in Nairobi, Africa:

The rescue of Mteto – 6/8/2017 – watch the video here

This orphaned elephant baby, about 10 months old, was found in the Tsavo East National park, near a carcass of an adult elephant killed for its ivory. Members of the Trust, fed the baby, hydrated her and they continue to care for her and many other orphans at the preserve.


The organization was founded in 1977 by Dr. Dame Daphne Sheldrick D.B.E, in honour of the memory of her late husband, famous naturalist and founding Warden of Tsavo East National Park, David Leslie William Sheldrick MBE. They also help move elephants from farm land to reduce conflicts between people and the animals. I’m proud to sponsor them and encourage others to also.

June 22, 2017 at 12:15 pm 1 comment

Their Chaos will not Reign

Don’t take the bait.

The current administration wants to undermine our belief in the existence of truth, in news, in journalists, and facts by issuing a barrage of bullshit via social media. By not using official White House communication methods, they’re attempting to imply that they’re better because they’re outside the establishment. And it’s also an attempt to assert that the established institutions are not valuable or needed.

This is horseshit.

Do not accept their snow job. Don’t take their chaos toboggan ride down their mountain of b.s.

Stay calm.

America and democracy will survive. We are stronger than some selfish real estate developer.

Continue to keep an eye out. Analyze. Don’t accept everything they shovel. Act locally. Watch globally.


January 30, 2017 at 3:18 am Leave a comment

I Hope the Russian Bread isn’t Stale

When the economy slows down, we can all get jobs building the pipeline. Then we can get jobs cleaning up the toxic spills from the pipeline. Then we can get jobs burying the bodies of the animals and people killed by the toxins. Oh, wait, we’ll be dead by then from working in contact with the toxins because the EPA will be run by a guy who removes all protections. Neither we nor our families will be able to sue or get any financial reparations or help because they will probably change the laws to make it unlawful to sue. Then there won’t be any medical treatment for the illnesses because the hospitals will have closed due to lack of funds after the ACA is ended. The oil pipeline construction companies won’t offer healthcare or have other labor laws in place to help workers. After spills from pipeline that runs through farm land destroys crops, there won’t be any food to eat. We’ll need to import food, but no one will sell us any because the asshole in Washington will have alienated every other country, except Russia. I hope the Russian bread isn’t stale by the time it gets here. I’m sure the asshole in Washington eats the finest caviar – imported of course. Why would he follow his own “buy American” command?



January 27, 2017 at 3:37 am Leave a comment

China to Stop Processing and Selling Ivory in 2017

A great start to 2017: News that China will stop processing and selling ivory.

One of the many sources: Independent of the UK:

which states that between 2006 and 2016, approximately 100,000 elephants were killed by poachers for ivory tusks. We can’t reverse deaths, but I hope this new ruling will give the elephants a chance to survive and that the poachers will not move on to other illegal activity. I wish for a future in which people don’t harm each other, animals or the environment. In my job, I work to add educational opportunities to people in the US and other countries to learn new skills and create new jobs. My hope is that people will have options and not have to kill anything or anyone to earn money. I agree with the philosophy of the organization, Tusk, which states:

” . . . the future of Africa’s unique wildlife relies heavily on our ability to successfully link the livelihoods of the local people with the benefits of preserving their natural heritage. ”

January 1, 2017 at 10:29 am Leave a comment

The Best of All Possible Worlds

“The Best of All Possible Worlds” – A Poem by Marie Etzler

The tree has given me the answer:

“Just because much of the world is in bad shape, doesn’t mean I should be.

I am shining in my fullness.

My leaves are green and healthy.

My trunk is strong.

Together we sway in the tropical breeze to the music of the Earth. We are an example of the beauty that can be.

We exemplify what is possible.”


*This answer came to my recurring question: With all the terrible events in the world, with all the suffering, how do we go on? Where am I to find purpose? How can I possibly make a difference? This has troubled me, and will again, but today, at this moment, the message is clear as I see the palm fronds tossing back and forth in the breeze, just as they were designed to do. They are fulfilling their purpose. Thus I can take purpose from their example. There is no reason to degrade oneself and act like others who do less. There must be examples of good and beauty, and the tree was it for me today. Thank God for the tree.

August 6, 2016 at 8:38 am 1 comment

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