I found the Myopia Horse Show in Hamilton, MA

WELCOME TO THE 2017 MYOPIA HORSE SHOW

Ladies Side Saddle Winners

I haven’t been to a horse show in years with the exception of Equine Affair in 2013. That wasn’t a horse show like I remember them. Still if you have a chance to go and you love horses, it’s worthwhile.

Pinto PonySome Detours bring nice Surprises

I was on my way to Ipswich to check out Wolf Hollow. Traffic wasn’t bad through Boston but once I hit RT 128 we crawled. I’d missed the presentation but figured I’d finish the drive. It would make it easier to find next time I tried. I was almost there when I spotted horses, riders and trailers. The field was packed with cars. I slowed down until I saw a billboard WELCOME TO THE 2017 MYOPIA HORSE SHOW. September 1-3. It was a no-brainier. I pulled in. The nice police officer pointed me to a field and told me to park anywhere. I stayed away from the horse trailers. I didn’t want to get in anyone’s way.

Myopia Hunt Club

The horse show is an event sponsored by the Myopia Hunt Club. Myopia Hunt Club is a foxhunting and private country club, located in South Hamilton, Massachusetts. It’s not all about the horses either. There’s a world class golf course. The U.S Open has been played at the Club four times. But back to the horses, on Sunday afternoons you can watch polo matches. Myopia features one of the oldest continually running polo fields in the nation.

A Perfect Afternoon

This was a good choice. There was no fee to park and no admission fee! The sun out, the temperatures were in the 70’s with a nice breeze. I even managed to get a seat right next to the field. I stayed for Adult Hunters which is a jumping competition and the Ladies Side Saddle, a very elegant and beautiful event. It couldn’t pick a favorite. All of the animals were magnificent! I’m so glad I decided to stop.

 

 

The Great White Sharks are Still Here

Great White Sharks Hang out off Cape Cod

Great white shark swimmingThe sharks of Cape Cod aren’t leaving anytime soon. Our vacations may be over but according to Dr Greg Skomal of the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy August and September are active months for our Great Whites.

 It’s been A busy August

With a cool spring Shark season took its time ramping up but August was a busy month.

  • July 31: A Great White tried to snack on one of the research cameras.
  • On August 10: Chatham beach goers watch a real life “Jaws” as a Great White chomped a seal in half in clear view of the beaches.
  • August 11: Whale Watchers spotted 2 Great Whites feasting on a dead minke whale
  • August 12 : A fisherman had his catch stolen by a shark. The video became an internet sensation 
  • August 21 A Shark enjoyed a seal lunch as beach goes looked on
  • August 24 A shark tasted a paddle board off Marconi Beach.

Great White Shark

Staying Safe with Great White Sharks

There are a few things you can do to stay safe with these apex predators in the water. 

  1. Avoid swimming with the seals
  2. Swim or surf in groups
  3. Stay in Shallow water
  4. Don’t wear shiny jewelry

Great White SharkSurvey Says…..

The good news is that even with this shark activity the beach going public remains fascinated by the sharks. The Polls and surveys show that public opinion is against the politician’s ill advised suggestion that the sharks be culled. According to Chatham natives, at least some of the beaches may be monitored by balloons equipped with cameras to provide an early warning system.

 2 More Months

If the past is any indication we’re looking at 2 more months of Great White activity. The season winds down off Cape Cod at the end of October. I guess the Great Whites don’t like our winter weather any more than I do.

White Shark

 

 

 

 

 

Oh No! Where did the Summer Go?

Summer’s Last Gasp

Picnic table

It’s still summer. August is still summer and it’s only August 31. According to the weather folks tomorrow, September 1, is the first day of meteorological fall. Oh boo hoo! Fall in New England is nice but I miss summer already. Labor Day weekend is the last long weekend, our last chance for summer fun.

Fall leavesSigns of Fall are all around us

The seasons change and the signs are there. School has started. I got stuck behind a school bus on the way to work. The turkeys are getting restless. I saw two big turkeys by the side of the road on my way home tonight. A big maple tree on Route 140 has begun to turn colors! Already! The nights are cool and mornings have a crispness to the air. A sweater or jacket might be in order. I can open a window and turn off the air conditioner. Football is top of mind as the boys of summer fade away. Another fall sign that’s not so nice is the ragweed. Seems like we have a bumper crop this year. Excuse me while I sneeze.

Road trips are callingWaterfall

Along with the cooler nights will be the fall colors. Leaves will be changing. Our roads will be filled with leaf peepers but even I plan to be one of them. Maybe a trip down the Mohawk Trail or back to New Hampshire to visit a place called Diana’s Baths. They are a series of waterfalls and cascades. I have it on good authority that although they are lovely any time of year, fall is especially pretty.

 

Cranberry Harvest Festivals

In Massachusetts, home to Ocean Spray, fall means the cranberry harvest. From mid- September until late in the fall,  cranberries reach their peak of color and flavor. The landscape is dotted with the bright red cranberry bogs as they wait for the harvest. Cranberries can be harvested wet or dry. Interested in visiting a cranberry bog? We’ve got lots of farms for tours or products.

Down on the cape the cranberry harvest season begins around Labor Day and usually runs into the middle of November. The Cape Cod Cranberry Growers’ Association has created a cranberry harvest trail guide.

Cranberry bog

I love cranberries. Maybe fall’s not so bad after all!

The Day has A Seal of Approval

The Seals of Cape Cod

Nothing like spending a day with herd of gray seals in Chatham, Cape Cod. I confess I didn’t just want to see the seals. I thought there might be a small chance that I’d get a glimpse of a Great White Shark. It’s been 7 years since I’ve been back to see the seals so I figured it was about time. Of course it meant another weekend drive over one of the bridges but I was hoping I’d be going against the traffic. Turns out I was. The Sunday exodus from the Cape had route 6, the Cape Highway, backed up for miles leaving the cape.

Beachcomber Seal ToursYellow beachcomber boat

I’d called Beachcomber Seal Tours before I started for the cape. They said they had room for me on the 12 pm tour. I knew it would be close but I jumped in the car and headed off. With luck and traffic on my side I arrived with 10 minutes to spare! The folks at Beachcomber Seal Tours are very warm and welcoming. They make sure the children are fitted with life jackets and everyone gets a “pit stop” before we are all loaded onto a bus for the trip to the marina.

Chatham Light House

Chatham Harbor and waterways

The little orange boat holds about 29 people. We boarded by climbing a little step stool and stepping over the side. The captain stands at a center console to pilot the boat. It makes it a little hard to hear his commentary but the fresh sea air in your face on a sunny day is a pretty awesome way to spend a summer afternoon.

Sleeping SealSeals, seals and more seals

We passed Nauset Beach, recently the scene of a Great White sighting. As we swung toward North Beach the seals were suddenly right in front of us. They looked like they were piled on top of each other but our captain explained that each one has it place. A steady moaning sound came from the piles of seals. A few were in the water. They would rise up from the bottom and then sink back down. This is how they sleep. True enough, none of them had their eyes open!

 

Pile of seals

Before heading back we took a run past the shark buoy and Lighthouse Beach.

Shark ping buoy

 

 

Too soon it was time to return to the dock. The very successful 90 minute tour was at an end. No great whites but lots of seals.

Exotic Animal Sanctuary Right Here In Massachusetts!

Welcome to Animal Adventuresfluffy bunny

The sun came out after all so I was off to check out Animal Adventures. It was really easy to find and only an hour drive. Once you take the exit off 495 you’re practically there. I was anxious to see what they consider exotic as far as animals are concerned.  The parking is minimal and cars lined the street when I arrived. I didn’t expect such a crowd.

First Impressions are important.

Ham Solo the Pot Bellied Pig

Ham Solo

It was a little after 1 pm when I arrived. As I approached the entrance I saw a well built play castle that young children were climbing on. A staff member greeted me and pointed me to the entrance where I could buy my ticket and get an arm band. I passed a pot bellied pig named Ham Solo. He made me think of my friend’s little pig. Those tails never stop wagging!

There was a presentation going on in the next room. It looked like a full house. So far the staff I was meeting were all very warm and friendly. I decided to explore the grounds first and catch the next show at 3:30.

Eurasian OwlWhere do they get all these animals?

As I wandered from cage to cage I felt very bad for some of the animals. The cages were clean but in many cases small and dark. The animals seemed to be well cared for if a bit cramped. They have some really interesting creatures. There are a pair of Eurasian owls, a red fox and a white fox. I don’t think it was an albino because it’s eyes didn’t look pink.Red Fox

 

 

 

 

 

A gorgeous serval  cat had it’s own couch to lounge on.There were bunnies and alligators, an arctic fox. (It looked like a mini gray wolf), a  bobcat, goats, a pony and monkey. (Deep breath) A turkey, a tortoise, some chinchilla’s, hamsters and more. There were snakes and reptiles for the folks that love those scaly creatures . I guess you could say something for everyone. And you know what, all of these animals are abandoned. They come from Zoos, private owners, shelters and breeders. These poor animals don’t know what it is to be wild. They are totally dependent on humans for survival.

I think the staff truly love and care about the animals and try their best. But it’s still sad.

Leopard