Tuesday, February 24, 2015

American City Building

This work in progress at the American City Building, overlooking the Lakefront, made for an interesting scene over the weekend. I later learned that they are dealing with water damage from burst pipes.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Mango Grove ~~ celestial conjunction

Last night's Mars-Venus-Moon conjunction as it appeared at sunset over east Columbia. Only one of the planets is visible at this point. I found out later that a second planet was supposed to be visible, too -- perhaps, more visible when it got darker.

Columbia has several fine Indian restaurants now. I've been enjoying the Mango Grove Indian restaurant in east Columbia more often recently and had another wonderful dinner there yesterday evening. Currently, they have a lovely seasonal bread delicacy with fenugreek leaves in the dough, posted in the inside cover of the main menu. (The name of it escapes me.) Also, try the badam sheera semolina and almond pudding on Mango Grove's dessert menu -- compares favorably with a similar carrot pudding at Royal Taj. Mango Grove is mainly vegetarian and southern Indian cuisine, but they have retained the Mirchi Wok menu (which includes meat dishes) from their former location.

We like to joke about the parking lot views at our local shopping strip restaurants. Mango Grove certainly has that, but the booths at the back of the restaurant enjoy a view of an office park pond and are situated perfectly for sunset views.

Mango Grove is in the little mostly restaurant strip on Stanford Boulevard off Dobbin Road, south of 175.


A rare planet-moon-Geek Squad conjunction was visible from the Gateway Overlook center last night, too!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Monday, February 16, 2015

Giant and Tiger Swallowtail Butterflies ~~ summer vacation memory

These photos of large lepidopterans (and a smaller one) were taken in the garden at Whistlewood Farm Bed and Breakfast, outside Rhinebeck in the Hudson River Valley. Summer of 2013.
Butterflies are on my mind now as I anticipate helping other volunteers in the Howard County Bird Club with counting butterflies for a continuing survey.

Sunday, February 15, 2015


Lake Kittamaqundi today. There is a surprisingly large stretch of unfrozen water in spite of this weekend's chilling temperatures. Some diving ducks and mergansers seem happy with the situation.

Addendum: I posted another photo of the lake on the Celebrating Columbia Facebook page. Someone explained that the high winds the night before kept the water moving and slowed the freezing process.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

The bald eagle...

-- or one of the bald eagles -- which have been seen around Lake Kittamaqundi and Wilde Lake recently. These photos were taken last weekend.