Last July I got to spend one whole week in beautiful California at Newport Coast just north of Laguna Beach. It's a part of the state that I have visited many times and that I thoroughly enjoy because it's so familiar. On this trip I got to spend a little more time than I have in the past so I had more time to enjoy being by the sea.
Besides just walking on the beach and listening to the waves crash on the abundant rocks, I love to get a closer look at all the creatures who live by the sea.
The pelicans are one of my favorite birds to watch. They are just such silly looking birds but when they take flight, they look so graceful and elegant.
The cormorants are another interesting bird. With their dark feathers and green eyes, they tend to have a somewhat sinister look. They also always seem to preening and taking pride in their looks.
The sandpipers are fun to watch as they use their long legs to wade in the surf looking for tiny tidbits to eat.
And of course, there are the ever present seagulls keeping a watchful eye on everything that goes on. They are nature's scavengers and they are more likely to steal your french fries or Cheetos than to catch small fish or insects.
On this trip I spent some time exploring the volcanic rocks on the beach and searching the tide pools for tiny sea creatures. This cute little crab was kind enough to pose for me.
Of course, people-watching is also good sport while strolling the beach. The children tend to be hyper-active as they run back and forth from the beach to the water. I also notice how people tend to cluster in one spot to set up their beach blankets and umbrellas while I tend to step away from the crowds and watch from a distance. No matter which method is chosen, you can't beat a day communing with nature's coastal offerings.