Friday, March 15, 2013

In Praise of Water

Thought for the day:  If there is magic on the planet, it is contained in water.  [Loren Eiseley]

[source]

Most of us are fascinated by water. Okay, so we might not go so far as to cast a fishing line into a pothole, but most other bodies of water are usually pretty high on our lists of favorite things.




Even drops of dew.

Everywhere water is a thing of beauty, gleaming in the dewdrop, singing in the summer rain.  [John Ballantine Gough]

The gentle patter of summer rain... the beauty of a glistening flower.



The beauty and serenity of a lake.

A lake is the landscape's most beautiful and expressive feature. It is earth's eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.  [Henry David Thoreau]



The lazy, mesmerizing current of a slow-moving river.


The trees reflected in the river... they are unconscious of a spiritual world so near to them. So are we.  [Nathaniel Hawthorne]


The heart-pounding excitement of whitewater rapids.

The sound of the water says what I think.  [Chuang Tzu]


The endless primal roll of ocean waves.

If there is poetry in my book about the sea, it is not because I deliberately put it there, but because no one could write truthfully about the sea and leave out the poetry.  [Rachel Carson]


And who doesn't love a waterfall, no matter how large or small?

A cheery relaxation is man's natural state, just as nature itself is relaxed. A waterfall is concerned only with being itself, not with doing something it considers waterfall-like.  [Vernon Howard]


Yes, nature's beauty can be found in all kinds of water, but I never expected to find amazement in something man has done with water inside of...  an airport, of all things. Ben Gurian Airport in Israel, to be exact.

                                               
                                                                     Check it out!!!


       Pretty doggone amazing, huh? Have you ever seen anything like it?

Ya know, some years ago, I saw an episode of The Honeymooners (Hush! I SAID it was some years ago, didn't I?) in which Ralph and Ed were having one of their famous intellectual discussions, in which they agreed that the chemical formula for water was H2O.  But they also pontificated that whenever one expressed a chemical formula verbally, one should never ever say the number, so throughout the rest of the program, they kept calling water ... HO. In deference to that show, I considered calling this post In Praise of HOs, but was afraid it might attract the wrong kind of audience...

      So tell me. What's your favorite kind of HO... I mean water? Ocean, lake, river, hot tub?


For this week's Tiny Harmonies haiku challenge, the lovely Suze  has provided us with another single-word thematic prompt. That word is adaptability. Once again, I'm gonna try to tie the haiku in with my post. Here goes my tiny offering:

Relentless water
Carves paths through mighty mountains,
One drip at a time.










                        Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.

I never drink water, because I know what fish do in there.  [W.C. Fields]

[Most images come to us courtesy of morguefile. Thanks to Suze for the kitty pic.]

105 comments:

  1. Being upwards of 70% water myself, I approve of this theme. Beautifully arranged and presented, Susan!

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    1. Yeah, maybe that's it. Maybe because we're so full of ... um, water... that's why we're drawn to it on such a visceral level. Like to like. Thanks. Glad you approve, dude.

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  2. What a beautiful post. My favorite HO? The Great Lakes. I'm surrounded by them and they are breath taking.. And I like swimming in them better than the ocean because there's nothing in the Great Lakes that's going to sting me or try to eat me! :)

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    1. I've never seen the Great Lakes in person, but they sure look breathtaking in pictures. And I can definitely see where the "nothing in there to eat ya" aspect would tip the scale in its favor as a swimming spot.

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    2. Can we ever be truly sure of what lies at the bottom of those ice cold Great Lakes? Could be something that would like you for lunch. You never know.

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    3. That's right! Weren't there some tales a while back about sightings of a Nessie-like creature?

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  3. Maybe it's because we came from water (don't tell those born-again folks) that we find it so fascinating. I think my favourite must be a rocky slow-flowing stream, deep in woodland.

    That airport waterfall is wonderful

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    1. Ooh, that's an interesting theory. I like it! Maybe on some primal level, we experience a yearning to go "home" again. At any rate, it definitely taps into our emotions. I'm glad you liked that waterfall. I was astounded by it.

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  4. There are lots of "Hos" here in West TX but only a paltry supply of water (I just couldn't resist.....).

    Water - in almost any form - is an intriguing gift of nature. I lived near the beach in California for nearly 30 years. Loved every minute of it.
    In the Missouri Ozarks I was enchanted by the many rivers, lakes, & streams.

    Here in the Bowels of West Texas I find myself sorely missing every form of water - - oceans, lakes, streams, rain......and I derive pleasure from running faucets and doing rain dances.....

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    1. HA! I didn't expect any less from you, cowboy.

      Maybe you should dig a small pond in your yard... with a little bitty waterfall trickling over rocks. Get your "zen" on, ya know. After living next to the ocean for so many years, it would be sheer torture to live so far from any water now. You could even stock your pond with fish to provide some protein for all those stray cats.

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  5. I have to admit, that large bodies of water scare the heck out of me. (I'm even scared that I'll drown in the bath) But at the same time, there's something quite transfixing about the way it and ebbs and flows. Whenever we're at the beach, I can quite happily do nothing all day but spend hours sitting by the shore, watching it's movements.

    Beautiful pictures by the way. :)

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    1. I'm not as comfortable being out IN large bodies of water as I was when I was young and bullet-proof, but I, too, am mesmerized by looking out AT it. Especially the ocean, but really, any body of water will do. Except for that pothole...

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  6. I adore water in all its forms. I love the gurgle of creeks as much as some of the larger bodies. Relaxing, invigorating, beautiful, terrifying. It can be so many things.
    The airport waterfall was fascinating, but I think my preference is for a more natural manifestation.
    I loved your haiku too - thank you.

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    1. Me, too. Yeah, I prefer the natural manifestations of water, too, but that airport waterfall fascinated me, because I'd never seen anything like it before. I had no idea.

      Thanks. I'm glad you liked it.

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  7. If I feel the hand of God anywhere it when I can sit on the beach at night listening to the ocean and looking at the stars.

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    1. Well said. Nice to see you letting your sensitive side show.

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  8. Hi Susan .. we had enough water to sink a battleship last year ... I could do with a normal year of rain! Lots of sunshine with some April showers ... but water is essential to life ...

    Gorgeous shots though ... cheers for now - Hilary

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    1. Yeah, I guess you did get your share of rain, and then some. So here's to a sunnier London this year. Cheers!

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  9. I was going to leave you with that WC Fields quote but you beat me to it.

    I rather detest water... It frightens me... I nearly drowned when I was 10

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    1. HA! Beat you to the punch, did I? WC Fields had some really good ones, didn't he?

      I almost drowned a couple of times, once as a pre-schooler, and again, as a teenager, but I'm still fascinated by it. I do, however, have a much more healthy respect of its desire to fill my lungs than I did as a kid.

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  10. I love water, my favorite is moving water, rivers and creeks. I like to listen to it. All my latest novels have revolved around water. I think it might be a theme for me.

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    1. Water... or the lack of it... usually plays a big part in my writing, too. You could be right about it being somewhat of a theme.

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  11. Whoa! That video IS amazing.

    My favorite kind of water? I'd have to say waterfalls, both big and small.

    Love you haiku--it speaks to the necessity of persistence in life. :)

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    1. I'm glad you took the time to check out that video. It blew me away.

      Thanks. Glad you liked the haiku. I never expected to enjoy writing them, but I am. Different.

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  12. That fountain is fabulous.
    My favourite kind of water? Rain at night hammering on the roof, gurgling in the down spouts, giving me a free car wash lol.

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    1. Glad you liked that fountain. And leave it to you to make me laugh. You're right; those free car washes are great. As a kid, my father used to send me outside in the rain with a bucket of soapy water to help the free car wash do a better job of it.

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  13. Ben Gurian Airport is now added to my list of things to see in my lifetime :)

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    1. Cool. It would definitely be something neat to see in person... while on the way to see some of the other amazing things in that part of the world.

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  14. Great post Susan. For me, mountain creeks and waterfalls. Although, I must say there is really no clear favorite. I love being around water, period. I believe I'm a Taoist where water holds a sacred place as the most powerful yet most lowly place on earth.

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    1. Thanks, Mr. C. From some of your posts, I could tell you were a water-lover, too. Now, I'm gonna have to look into Taoism. That sounds intriguing.

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  15. WATER.

    Yes. Surprising, though, how thoughtless we can be with it...

    From the Great State of Minnesota, Home to the Mighty Missi-sip, I salute you!

    Pearl

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    1. Yeah, you're right; sometimes, we really take it for granted. Throw our garbage into it, and behave as though its supply is endless. With the droughts we've had here in Georgia and in other parts of the country, I think that attitude is (finally) changing.

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  16. Water most definitely has mystical qualities. I do my best thinking in the shower. :)

    And another lovely haiku.

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    1. If you don't already have one, you've gotta treat yourself to a rain showerhead. Heaven!! Heaven, I tell ya!

      Thank you. Glad ya liked it.

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  17. I love that video. My favorite would be oceans. Especially on rocky shores where there are lots of tide pools to explore. This is a little sad since I live in the mid-west and we have no ocean handy.

    Of course, last year's drought has made all kinds of water very precious.

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    1. Yes, I'd have to say the ocean is my favorite, too. I can't imagine every getting tired of looking at it. There was also a place in Delaware I used to particularly love, where the ocean met the Indian River. Talk about mesmerizing! Whirlpools everywhere!

      Let's hope none of us have that kind of drought this year. Dreadful.

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  18. The first pic reminds me of an album cover from Foghat called. FoolnFor The City.

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    1. That must be quite an album cover... and with an appropriate title, too.

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  19. Nice post! Water is an excellent theme. I like your haiku as well - to the point.

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    1. Thanks. Glad ya liked the post and the poem. By the way, I'm not sure how you chose your "armchair squid" moniker, but when our kids were growing up, a lot of their classmates called them "Squid" as a strange shortening of our last name.

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    2. Squid has been my online identity since college - nearly 20 years at this point. It's just habit now.

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  20. I loved your haiku, Susan.

    And all day I have been dreaming of a piping hot bath. The Mistral wind has picked up here and the temperatures have plummeted. I did ballerina in a jewel box twirls under the shower to try and warm up after walking the dogs to no avail...And speaking of walking the puppers, the power of the Rhone River--with its violent current and Roman treasures buried in the bottom--gives me confidence and peace each morning...

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    1. Merci beaucoup.

      I love your "ballerina in a jewel box twirls" description. Walking beside the Rhone each morning sounds like a glorious way to start your day.

      Happy weekend.

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  21. I love water features...it's so soothing.

    I have a big slate fountain in my office, and a nice waterfall/pond in the backyard. Koi are waking up from their slumber.

    I don't mind cleaning up some of the algae and shoving my hand in ice cold water to clear out the filter. It'll be worth it in the Spring!

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    1. Yes... soothing is the perfect word for it. How wonderful to have the waterfall/pond in your own yard. Listening to the water and watching the fish would be a wonderful stress-reliever. There are so many cats wandering our neighborhood, though, I'm afraid a pond in our yard would serve as a food source.

      I was surprised you didn't participate in the wormhole blog hop this week. That would've been right up your alley.

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  22. Sus, there is so much to love about the post as a whole. Honestly, leave it to you to tie together so many images, thoughts, quotes and a the perfect haiku at the end.

    I think my favorite image, though it frightens me a bit, too, is that of the rapids.

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    1. Thanks, Suze. What can I say? I've always been an annoying over-achiever.

      Could be the double-edged sword of fear and fascination draws us in even more. Kinda like being attracted to the "bad boy".

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    2. Ha! I was never attracted to the bad boy -- but I have long been profoundly enamored of the boy who puts up a good fight. :) :)

      Also, I wanna hear the wise-ass thoughts Cygnus' riddle inspired.

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    3. The bad boys in my day were a little different from today's bad boys. Think of Fonzie from "Happy Days". You know, the big head of hair, the motorcycle, the cigarettes, the grease under the fingernails from working on cars. That sorta thing. (And I just described my husband in the early '60s. Very intelligent, but also a bit of a non-conformist. Didn't care about being "cool", which made him all that much more cool to me.)

      HA! I may have overstated. The things that came to my mind regarding that riddle were actually more inane than wise-ass.

      Happy weekend, kiddo.

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  23. I like the sense of inevitability of your haiku. It feels very organic.

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  24. I've never been more intrigued with the life-giving properties of water than when I visited Arizona. The desert plants were gorgeous and the landscape was more beautiful than I expected it to be.

    www.GirlwithaNewLife2.com

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    1. Yeah, I can imagine how living near a desert would make you even more aware of what a dramatic difference water can make. Like those documentaries about Africa... have you seen the ones where a barren desert turns into a paradise overnight when it gets a bit of rain? And then, afterwards, everything dries up, and the seeds go dormant again, and wait patiently... for years and years... until the rain falls again. Amazing!

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  25. Great pics...and I love the latin motto up top ;)

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    1. Thanks, Mark. Glad ya liked the (ahem) "Latin".

      Thanks so much for signing on as a new follower. I do appreciate it, dear sir. Welcome aboard!

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  26. I love water of all kinds, but I think my favorite is the aquamarine ocean of the tropics. I love the beauty of that color!

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    1. Oh, I know what you mean. There's a snorkeler's dream area on Oahu that has the most gorgeous aqua-colored water, and it's crystal clear. (Or at least it was in 1970.)

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  27. You mean up full of more than umm sh...it?
    Wow that means I have 70% water to spit
    Hope I don't hit you in the eye
    LOL to the pot hole guy
    Water is sure loved across the land
    Unless it's the Hudson where you'll come out bleached in toxic sand

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    1. We don't want any toxic sand;
      Just clean water across the land.
      Kick those polluters in their rears
      So we get clear water one of these years.

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  28. "Out of the cradle endlessly rocking"
    I like ocean waves.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. Oh, yes. I love to lay back in a boat and let the waves rock me. (Not talking about any of that "Perfect Storm" stuff, though.)

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  29. I spend a lot of time taking pictures of our ocean, but to tell the truth, give me a clear still crystal lake with a dock perched on it's edge for me to sit on...and I'd be one happy woman!

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    1. A still crystal clear lake would be nice, but I'll bet it wouldn't be too long before you missed the ocean waves. But to tell the truth, I'd settle for either one. I'm pretty landlocked here.

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  30. I've never seen controlled water drops! That was fab! Love your haiku, too. Water and I haven't been the best of friends in this lifetime. Let's say I have a healthy respect for it.

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    1. There you are! I was worried about you, kid.

      Aren't those programmed patterns in the water amazing? I had no idea such a thing was even possible.

      Take care, and happy weekend!

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  31. Wow Dude. That was some cool waterfall! And what a beautiful post my dear. My own personal favorite water was just sold on the real estate market for under market price. I have since found a new source, smaller, closer and Not. For. Sale.
    ~Just Jill

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    1. No, no, no. Not a dude. I'm a dudette. Or, an old fartessa, if you will. But no dude... (HA!)

      Not. For. Sale? That stinks.

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  32. Your water post reminded me of the first vacation my husband and I took together when we visited a replica of the Mayflower at Plymouth Rock. The ship was staffed with actors in period clothing (and period attitude) and they tried really hard to get people to talk to them and ask questions. One kid finally wore me down, and I asked the first question that came to mind.

    Me: "What did you do about having fresh water?"
    Actor in Period Clothing and Mind Set: "Water???"
    Me: "You know, for washing..."
    AiPCaMS: "Washing???"
    Me: "Well, OK, what about water for drinking?"
    AiPCaMS: "Drink water??? Why drink water when we have beer!"

    Me, I like the soothing sound of ocean waves. Has set my mind straight a number of times...once I came back from Myrtle Beach and quit a job that was just stressing me out.

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    1. HA! That is too funny. Kinda reminds me of something to happened to me at a Renaissance Festival, where the staff was also dressed in period clothing, and acting accordingly. My hubby and I were considering getting something to eat, and I was looking at what they called "fully stuffed" potatoes. With bacon, chees, sour cream, and butter. Maybe some other stuff, too, but you get the idea. So I said something to my husband about how I'd loved to get one of them, but they had way too much cholesterol. One of the gals turned to me and said, "Oh no, milady! Cholesterol hasn't been invented yet!"

      Hmmm, I love the sound of ocean waves, too. In fact, one of my favorite CDs is called, "Endless Ocean," and it combines classical music with the sound of waves rolling into shore. Imagine "Moonlight Sonata" combined with ocean sounds. I think you'd love it.

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  33. Hey Susan,

    'Water' you talking about? Such a poetic and finely crafted posting and the words flowed like a gentle stream. Of course, my stream is more like a certain creek without a paddle.

    I love water. Being in England, I probably see more than even I love. It rained so bad last year that I had to canoe my way around my garden. The wee folks were wearing life jackets.

    I've been to Viagra, sorry, Niagara Falls and I was a bit disappointed, not as big as I'd thought it would be. The falls that is. However, it was still bigger than Horseshoe Falls, which is on the American side. So that's good.

    I'm now going to the beach and listen to the sea and that's for shore.

    Have a good weekend, Susan.

    Your starstruck fan,

    Gary :)

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    1. You made me smile with this whole comment... and THAT'S for shore.

      Take care, and you have a wonderful weekend, too.

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  34. A post that starts with the majestic Loren Eiseley and ends with a cool haiku that reminds me of the Grand Canyon? What's not to like?

    I'm not sure if I have a favorite body of water, but one of the prettiest and most serene that I've ever seen can be found if you type "46.672351, -73.840070" into Google Maps. (Then probably click the "minus" button a few times to see where you're at...) It might not be too far a drive for Armchair Squid!

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    1. Boy, you're full of riddles today, aren't ya?

      Speaking of which, I'm gonna pop back over to your blog and see if you coughed up the answer yet...

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  35. Lovely haiku.
    Being a desert dweller in Arizona, I learned growing up to respect water. Unfortunately many people today just take it for granted.
    I lived by the Pacific Ocean for many years and loved it. I still miss it everyday.

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. Thanks, parsnip. What a culture shock moving from beside the Pacific to the desert. Not gonna get to do much surfing in your new digs. I hope your pooch is feeling better now.

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  36. I like water. I don't like it as much as I like Irish Whiskey but, I do like water.

    That waterfall / fountain at the airport in Israel is really fantastic (I'll need to show that to my Brother tomorrow).

    >> . . . So tell me. What's your favorite kind of HO... I mean water? Ocean, lake, river, hot tub?

    Well, despite the fact that I grew up body-surfing in the Pacific Ocean, I would have to say my favorite kind of HO is rivers. I could just sit and watch a river flow for hours. Of course at some point during those hours I would begin to interact with it, like, by throwing in leaves and twigs and stones.

    But rivers are especially "cool".

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

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    1. I like LOOKING at all kinds of water, and I drink a lot of it, but, aye, there's a place for other beverages as well.

      So now you prefer a calmer river over the excitement and danger of the ocean, huh? If you think about it, it's kinda like an analogy for growing up. As much as I love the ocean, I probably wouldn't enjoy getting out in it any more. I got tossed around by the waves enough when I was a kid. I don't miss the salt water sinus cleansing and nose scraping on the ocean bottom, but I do miss walking on the beach and simply sitting there, watching the waves roll in. Rivers are nice, too. Especially if you like to skip stones.

      I'm glad you liked the video.

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  37. Water is the most important ingredient to life. Look at all the range wars that were fought out west in the name of water.
    As far a large bodies of water, my favorite is a calm, placid lake. My least favorite would be an ocean. They are so noisy and drown out every sound except the annoying pounding of the surf.

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    1. With all the droughts we've had, I think more people are becoming aware of just how important water is. Georgia, Florida, and South Carolina are forever squabbling over water rights, and who should get to draw how much water out of the rivers. Droughts make it even worse.

      I'm surprised you don't love the ocean. So much adrenaline, and such an exciting rhythm. To me, it's like the surf is performing a high-energy dance.

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  38. I feel the same way about water, and have a big file of photos entitled "Water." Talk about adaptability! Your haiku is perfect. Beautiful photos too.

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    1. I'll bet those pictures are gorgeous. I hope to see some more on your blog. (minus the jelly fish...)

      Thanks. Glad ya liked it.

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  39. Another lovely post Susan! I love every bit of water from the cold rain (well, when I'm dressed for it, or watching from the warm side of a window) to the terrifying ocean swell. Would be a mermaid, ideally. Have been paddling in the surf today, on the North Cornish coast, and admiring how water transforms rock :-)

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    1. You dropped your alias! Cool.

      Thanks. I'm glad you liked the post, and yeah, it would be pretty cool to be a mermaid, wouldn't it? Only I'm afraid I'd look more like Shelly Winters than Darryl Hannah...

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  40. Rain is my favorite water, followed by the many lakes of Sweden. Thank you so much for this wonderful post.

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    1. Soft sweet summer rain that makes everything perk up and immediately look more green is my favorite. The delicious smell of wet soil that rises with the first big plops of water. Alas, I've never seen any of Sweden's lakes, but I never saw a lake I didn't like, either.

      Thank YOU.

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  41. Oceans are my favorite. I also love rain. Both of these energize and calm me.

    Great haiku!

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    1. With you sipping margaritas in your tiki hut, of COURSE you're partial to oceans and rain!

      Thanks. Happy weekend.

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  42. Hi Sue. Awesome post...so many lovely images and quotes, both of which are high on my "like" list! I've always referred to water as "Nature's Blood"...it's what God put here for us to drink! Rainy days are my favorite sort of day, and a morning kayaking is one of the best mornings to be had.

    Also, I love the "Cogito ergo spud" reference...it speaks volumes to an old Irish philosopher like me!

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    1. Thanks. I'm glad you liked it. I never heard the expression before, but "Nature's Blood" is the perfect descriptino for water. (You smartie. Must be yer philosophical side coming out.)

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  43. Amazing photos. I loved this brilliant cascade of water, thanks for sharing.

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    1. I'm so glad you liked the pics and video. You're right' that airport waterfall is brilliant.

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  44. Lovely photos. I do love looking at water, lakes, the sea, but not so all this rain we're having. Enough is enough! The UK will sink if we get much more!!

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    1. Yeah, you've had so much rain, I don't imagine you exactly wax poetic about how "lovely" the rain is when you see it falling... again. (But just think how GREEN everything will be!)

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  45. Thank you for sharing such beautiful photos. I love to sit and watch the ocean when it is angry. Makes you realise just how nature has two sides....gentle and wild.
    Right now I would enjoy any type of water as it has been such a hot, dry summer in Perth. Water is so precious to all of us in any form.

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    1. My pleasure. I'm glad you liked them. Yes, water definitely has the ability to demonstrate both the gentle and wild sides of nature. The most peaceful stream can become a raging swollen torrent after a heavy rain. And speaking of rain, I do hope you see a slow steady rainfall very soon.

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  46. Those pics are beautiful, Susan. I can almost hear the water in the waterfall pics. I can't say this is my favorite water, but I like the look and sound of a hard rain. It fascinates me. :)

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    1. I know what you mean about a hard rain. I don't want any parts of a tornado or lightning strike, but I love thunderstorms with lots of booming and psychedelic flashes. They terrify me and fascinate me all at the same time.

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  47. WHOA, cool! I think that sight would make me miss my flight. LOL

    I'm an ocean girl all the way, followed by bay, followed by lake. :)

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    1. Yeah, I think I'd be likely to stand gawking at that waterfall too long, too. Lucky you. I imagine where you're living, you don't have to go far to see all three... the ocean, the bay, and a lake. The best of all worlds.

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  48. My favourite kind of water comes from the sky (much needed in NZ!), quickly followed up by flowing waterfalls and gurgling streams - lovely :)

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    1. I know you guys need some rain, and I hope you get it real soon. Slow and steady-like. That'll make your waterfalls and streams even more beautiful.

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  49. Hi Susan!

    Congratulations! You won the Aditi Chopra giveaway on Romance Book Paradise, please click on the link for your gift instructions!

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    1. Woo HOO! I am one lucky duck. Thank you so much.

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  50. My husband's mother, aunt and endless cousins live in Israel, and of course you're the first person to mention this amazing waterfall! Now we will definitely be on the lookout for it, and you know I'll be getting lots of mileage out of this one! Thank you so much Susan!!!

    Julie

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    1. Hot dog! It'll be so exciting if you get to see it in person. (And kinda funny if you and your hubby see it before the family members who actually live there do.)

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