Getting Wild Around South Padre Island

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better. Albert Einstein

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While working during the lunch shift at Blackbeard’s restaurant, on the island, it wasn’t a strange thing to see a table of four occupied by two humans, an impressive camera and a great set of binoculars. When we first arrived in January, the island was flooded by Winter Texans, people escaping the frigid cold of the north. Who can blame them?  That’s how we ended up in South Padre Island. South Texas is a mecca for “snow birds”. I always envisioned our first winter in Florida, with all the other people running from the cold and snow. The type of weather which leaves you with a desire to hold up inside your camper until spring arrives. Turns out south Texas became that spot for us, while others were freezing I was wearing shorts and enjoying a nice cold beer at a beach bar.  I spent a good bit of my time working to save money when it was available but when it came time to play there was a plethora of activities in the great outdoors. So “Getting Wild Around South Padre Island” is all about the wildlife! We will save the other “Gone Wild” for a discussion about Spring Break.

thumb_DSC_6787_1024 South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center

The Rio Grande Valley is a hot spot for birdwatching. On South Padre Island you can stroll the beach in the morning to watch the sun rise, bird watch by day, then be ready for dinner, live music and dancing by light fall. The nature center features 3,300 feet of boardwalk and will also give you an opportunity to see one of the many SPI sand castles. I bought a set of binoculars for my 35th birthday, own a decent camera but I am by no means a “birder”. Maybe one day… it seems like a super cool hobby. Yes, I said super cool. Flash forward 30 years and I’m an expert birder, having lunch with people I met on Facebook, and rendezvoused with, in SPI to bird watch. True story, just not mine, you hear great stories while waiting tables.  A visit to South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center is guaranteed to give you a front row seat to a variety of different birds, with glimpses of turtles, fish and alligators.
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South Padre Island: Dolphin Cove Therapy for the Soul

I feel at ease and, in an indefinable way, at home, when dolphins are around. I now know when they are nearby before they appear. I dream after they leave.~ Virginia Colye

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It was just a normal day in April, on South Padre Island that three full time campers decided to play tourist, we had a great time but one of us was forever changed. Okay, it was me and honestly, typical me, but I fell for the dolphins at the cove. After the dolphin cruise I realized I could just walk over to the cove which was part of our campground at Isla Blanca.

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South Padre Island, I’m on a Boat

Travel becomes a strategy for accumulating photographs. ~Susan Sontag

I love taking photos, and overtime as I watch the numbers of photos stored on my laptop rise, I “try” to make better choices. Yes, I can sit and delete, delete, delete which I do often but when I look back on photos from years ago I really have to ask what significance that had. To take my time to frame, snap, store, then just review to delete. I fear the delete key. I might never see that person again, what was their name? I might never return to that location so I must store hundreds of photos in case my memory fails, did I really enjoy it that much? Where am I going with all this? Good question, I have tons of photos of memories still left to get out there in blog land but I also want to get caught up to current life. That being said I had planned to just dump some photos here and then I felt compelled to tell a story. But In an effort to catch up to real life, have fresh stories and share the real me… here is South Padre Island, Texas from the deck of a boat for a dolphin watch with Breakaway Cruises.

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Celebrating… The Days of our Lives

The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate. ~ Oprah Winfrey

 

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Tabby out on the prowl. This cat is the energizer bunny of cats, she turns 17 this year. When I met my husband he had a Doberman and I had three cats, the story has always been interesting since Sadie, our Doberman, hates cats. We managed to survive living in a house and unfortunately over time lost two of our cats. Tabby the lone survivor and the oldest was blessed with the chance to go on the road and become a traveling cat with her beloved Doberman sister Sadie. To this day we still keep them separated which always keeps life interesting.

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Island Life

Our memories of the ocean will linger on, long after our footprints in the sand are gone. ~Unknown

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Moving to South Padre Island, Texas we quickly jumped into the work force but always tried to squeeze in a stroll on the beach before work or head to a great spot to watch the sunset and grab a beer on a day off. Our campground Isla Blanca Park offered great beach access and our sunset bar of choice was Laguna Bob’s. Continue reading

To the Island we go!

I got my toes in the water, ass in the sand
Not a worry in the world, a cold beer in my hand
Life is good today. Life is good today.~Zac Brown Band

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When we first left Asheville, NC,  where we called home, we had jobs lined up with Amazon before we left and I swore I wouldn’t move somewhere without a job lined up. Never, say never because here we come South Padre Island, TX, jobless. The island is a hot tourist destination and home to a ton of Winter Texans so we crossed our fingers and winged it. We had made reservations just in time, the park was almost full months in advance. We stayed at Isla Blanca Park which was located on the southern tip of the island, surrounded by water on three sides and offered over 600 sites. Continue reading