"The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in
its net of wonder forever."—Jacques Cousteau

September 28, 2015

Sept. 28 - Super Harvest Blood Moon

Aransas Bay - Anchorage

We’ve taken Texas Pearl out for short day cruises, but we haven’t had a chance to anchor out on her since we arrived in Rockport last November. With the trifecta of lunar events occurring last night and the weather actually being cool enough to be on the boat with our AC, we decided to cruise to the other side of the bay and enjoy a night on the hook.
Last night there was a total eclipse that coincided with the full moon nearest the fall equinox, known as the harvest moon. This moon was at its closest approach to Earth for the year, making it also a supermoon or perigee moon. Some websites called it a Super Harvest Blood Moon. This confluence has only happened five times since 1900 and according to NASA it won’t happen again until 2033.

The moon appeared to be red during the total eclipse, because sunlight shining through the ring of Earth's dusty atmosphere was bent toward the red part of the spectrum and was cast onto the moon's surface. The next total eclipse of the moon will appear on January 31, 2018.

We had a great seat for the event and luckily our sky was only partly cloudy…in the beginning. About the time the total eclipse occurred the clouds took our moon away and our bright night got very dark. Although we didn’t get to see the total eclipse or the blood moon we had a great time on the water. The clouds disappeared later in the night and we did catch the moon while it looked a little orange…unfortunately it was too high in the sky for me to get a good picture. Using a telephoto lens is a little difficult on a swaying boat, so my pictures aren’t as good as some others I’ve seen on the web today.

While we waited for the full moon to rise we enjoyed a wonderful sunset.
I saw this picture on Facebook this morning and had to share it. It was taken by Mike Mezeul II in Dallas.
Thanks for reading our blog and spending part of your day with us. The Pearl is also on Facebook - stop by and say hi or follow us on Google+

September 27, 2015

Going for a Walk: Rockport Harbor

Rockport Harbor (our neighborhood)
It has finally cooled off a little here in south Texas, so I thought it would be a good time to take a walk around our neighborhood and show blog followers what it’s like living at Rockport Harbor. The harbor is located in the heart of the historic district of the cutest little coastal town in Texas. It’s a popular summer vacation spot and filled with “Winter Texans” October through March. The town and surrounding countryside is full of beautiful vacation/second homes, shops, art studios and wonderful restaurants.

Texas Pearl is dock on the east side of the harbor. Our view is hindered a little by a parking lot, but it provides all kinds of entertainment and opportunities to watch people. The first stop on our walk is just to the right of our boat and at the end of the parking lot. It’s the Aquarium at Rockport Harbor, a delightful small free aquarium filled with all sorts of aquatic life that comes from the Gulf of Mexico. The star attraction is Marley the Moray Eel…he’s the only resident of the aquarium that comes from the Pacific Ocean. I volunteer there and love taking Mayven to look at all the exhibits.
The giant hermit crab
Heading north from the aquarium and just to the left of our boat is the Rockport Art Center. The Center has two smaller galleries dedicated to the works of its member artists, while the main gallery hosts local, regional, national, and internationally acclaimed artists. They also offer numerous workshops, classes, seminars, and open studio sessions. Their backyard is a 10,000 square foot Sculpture Garden, which our grand daughter loves playing in.
Sculpture Garden
Sculpture Garden
Past the Art Center is a path that leads to a jetty where people fish. Another path from there leads down to Rockport Beach. If you’re a little less ambitious you can also drive into the beach through the main entrance just past the Bay Education Center. The Bay Education Center is a great place to learn about the surrounding waters in Rockport. It provides an innovative way to learn how important the estuaries are to the health of a coastline and the ocean. The center also houses Science On a Sphere®, a spherical display system created by NOAA to illustrate Earth science concepts to people of all ages.

Rockport Beach
The entrance to Rockport Beach and Little Bay
Little Bay Rockport Texas
Bay Education Center
Rockport Texas
Rockport, Texas
Rockport, Texas
Heading further west around our little harbor you come to the Texas Maritime Museum. It’s the official maritime museum of the state of Texas and well worth the small charge to visit. The museum tells the history of the Texas coast from its first exploration and settlement to the modern day search of oil. The view from their observation deck is an extra bonus to the visit and gives you a great view of the surrounding area.
Rockport Texas
Rockport Harboar
A view of the museum from our boat one morning
Texas Pearl
The last stop on our walk is the west side of the harbor. It’s home to five bait shops and their shrimp boats. The stands sell all types of bait to the people who fish in the area, but the best thing they sell is fresh shrimp. We can walk over to our favorite stand and buy shrimp for dinner that was swimming in the bay that morning...that's hard to beat. They also sell oysters and crabs when they're in season.
Our favorite stand is Flemings...the owner is friendly and always gives us a good deal.
So that’s our neighborhood, it’s an enjoyable place to live and we have all kinds of things to keep us busy. Just down the street are nice restaurants, little boutiques, a winery and art studios…and just a little further down the road are two of our wonderful grandchildren. We couldn't ask for a better place to spend time when we're in Texas.

Thanks for reading our blog and spending part of your day with us. The Pearl is also on Facebook - stop by and say hi or follow us on Google+