Monterey Viewpoint

Traveling Adventures

Gas line

I had no clue there was a gas shortage in Tennessee, Georgia, and South Carolina as I ventured out on my trip from Michigan back to Florida…(Could this be due to Ike shutting down refineries?)

After a full hour’s stop-and-go traffic near Chattanooga, I entered Georgia at down to a quarter tank of gas (my car only has a 15 gallon tank.) I stopped for that old universal need to empty my bladder and fill my gas tank – and found that three stations at that stop were all out of gas! Yikes!

Next exit, one station, with long lines – by the time I got to the pump, my needle was touching the red empty. They were only allowing $30 worth per car – and CASH only. Working my way toward Atlanta – three more stops, and NO GAS. Down to about a quarter tank, I figured I better get a motel room and see what I could find out on the news. TV News – Yep, Georgia is out of gas! The shortage is expected to last anywhere from a week to a month.

In a state of panic now, I went to sleep early, so I could get a jump on the situation in the morning. As I left the motel at 5:30 a.m., a station across the street sprouted two huge lines of cars starved for gas. I had to travel a block in the wrong direction and made it into the line. Forty-five minutes later I had a full tank and was leaving the station as they began shutting down the lines. No more gas.

With no traffic, I got past Atlanta and figured I’d better start looking for gas at half a tank, not an-eighth as normal. First stop was a winner – one station out of three had gas, and I got my fill. Showee! Maybe I can make it! I did make it to Florida, where blessedly there is plenty of gas. Hoorah!

Question: How can the entire metropolitan area of Atlanta and north Georgia be without gas for such and extended period of time??!! This is ridiculous to say the least.

In the United States, nobody has built a new refinery in over 25 years, even though existing refineries are producing at near capacity. Investor’s Business Daily provides reasons that highlight persistent environmentalists’ resistance and battles in court as well as the need for hundreds of permits pertaining to required reduction of sulphur content in gasoline. Add to this the poor return on billions of dollars in investment, and it appears that the last refinery has been built. Maybe it’s time for America to wake up.

One thing I can tell you. You don’t ever want to be on the road with no fuel at the pumps.

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MYCC Pond Adventures


Everyone is familiar with Harry Kruff’s intimate relationship with the ponds at Monterey, with a fall into the fourth hole pond, and then another fall into the first hole pond.

Well, Harry is not alone and the much younger Chuck also took a tumble into a Monterey pond. After hitting a terrible 5th hole tee shot into the water at the far right side (near the green), where the fairway slops severely down to the water. Mr. Bessey, not having a ball retriever, and lacking good judgment, leaned over on that steep slope with a 5 iron as his retrieval instrument of choice, in an effort to get his ball. Stretching, stretching and stretching some more in his effort, you guessed it – head over heels into the pond! Completely submerged and covered in slimy water, Bessey scrambled out of the water and back up the slippery slope. Laughing so hard he could hardly catch his breath, when he realize not only was his cell phone ruined, but he had dropped the 5 iron in the water. So, back down the precarious slope to retrieve the 5 iron, and back up the slippery slope to dry land. After the laugher subsided some, he realized his glasses where missing! Yep, back down into the pond he ventured, proceeding very carefully and feeling his way he fortunately located his intact glasses. Needless to say he did not finish the round and swore never to venture near a pond again. Thank heaven for Smitty!!

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It is All in Your Viewpoint

Joe-GolfOne day in January of 1960 some friends and I were playing golf at the Ludlow Country Club, located in Ludlow, (near Springfield) Massachusetts. The weather had been in the brisk 20 and 30 degree range for several weeks. This day was nice and warm with the temperature in the low 40s As we arrived at the second hole, a par 5 dog leg right around the lake some forty feet below the ground level, we observed several men ice fishing on the frozen lake.There were also quite a few young people ice skating on the lake. We each hit our tee shots and start walking down the fairway. At this point one of our group said," look at those damn fools ice fishing on the lake". At the very same time I heard one of the kids that were ice skating say," look at those damn fools playing golf up there". I am sure that many of those reading this will believe that both statements were correct.

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Ten years ago, when June Beyman allowed a friend to move into her home temporarily, she unexpectedly opened a door to a whole new pattern of life – because it so happened that this friend was a bird watcher.  On weekends the two of them would spend most of the day outdoors.  The Akron metropolitan area, with its thirteen parks and inviting hike-and-bike trails, provided a lush background for nature lovers – and for birds – and June began her habit of keeping lists.  In Florida later that year June signed on for a four-day boat trip to the Dry Tortugas, a series of islands southwest of Key West, where the living conditions were primitive, but the spring migration of warblers was passing through.

After five years of watching, June began taking pictures of birds, and, with the help of her daughter, who taught her about scrap-booking, has built up a book containing all her own photos of 175 species of birds.  It is nothing unusual for June, carrying her Kodak with the 12 Zoom, to stay outdoors eight hours at a stretch.  Visiting in Arizona, she added fifty new birds to her list and twenty-five in Oregon.  Her Life List, now numbering 440, just keeps getting longer.

Most of her birding, however, is done right here Martin County, or around her hometown of Akron, Ohio, or around Raleigh, North Carolina, where her daughter lives.  She is particularly attracted to the Boynton Beach Water Treatment Plant, Wakatahatchee, whose boardwalk is a major attraction for photographers. Another favorite trip is to Crane Creek during the second week in May for the Spring migration in Ohio.

Bird counting is now a special interest, and June has taken part in both the Christmas and the Spring counts in Ohio, N. Carolina, and Florida.  These official bird counts, by species and by number, are done throughout the country during the three weeks around Christmas and during three weeks in April.

For June, bird watching has provided an additional dimension to life with most gratifying results.  When traveling anywhere in the world, there is the sight seeing, and then there are the birds.  When staying in Russia, admiring a grand hotel, she had the sudden pleasure of seeing a different looking bird flying overhead and recognized it as a Wag Tail.  On the canals of Amsterdam, she spied a Coot and a Great Blue Heron.  Any day, at any time, she might feel the unexpected thrill of spotting some spectacular bird – or of coming face to face with the most fascinating people just watching the birds.

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The Sluice Gate

Rhody Smith was excited early this morning when encountering other people out walking.  It had rained during the night, so Rhody, who is directly connected to pond number four anyway, decided to follow the overflow just for the fun of it.

You could, too, if you want a lesson in drainage.  

 First you locate the sluice gate at the corner of the pond where Building 48 and 49 both end.  Never noticed it?  The colorful bushes behind it detract the eye, and also provide a barrier, but if you look over from the red tees, you can see it.  Walk  along the edge of the pond.  (Don’t get too close. You don’t want to be one of those careless types who fall into ponds.)  There it is, a wooden gate with an open pipe, the overflow from the pond flowing into it.

The pipe runs underground toward the road and underneath both the public road and the Monterey roadway leading to the Yacht Club.  Rhody had stopped and looked down through the grate near Building 48 and had seen the water flowing.  Same thing at the next grate on the other side of the gate right near Palm City Road.  Then he’d stopped and looked down into each of the three grates along our private roadway, and at the time of Rhody’s investigation, the water was flowing along, maintaining the level of Pond #4.

At the end, the roadway goes down the boat ramp next to the Yacht Club, with a grate at the end from which the overflow flows into the river. 

So that’s why Rhody’s walk took a bit longer this morning and why we got a cheerful  little lesson in Civil Engineering.

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The Monterey Ponds

CourseThe most noticed of Monterey’s landscaping attractions, except for the golf course, is the series of ponds located picturesquely near the outskirts of Monterey.  Besides eliciting tremors from golfers and wreaking havoc on their scores, the ponds are the barometer of rainfall concerns among Monterey’s residents, and their comparative height continually brings forth automatic responses of satisfaction or concern.
“Have you ever seen the ponds so low?”  “Look how high the ponds are!”

If you want to find out about the ponds, talk to Bill Ettenger, who has maintained an interest in the ponds and is savvy to all the events and attempts to affect them through the years and to enhance their esthetic value.

The ponds, originally referred to as lakes, were engineered and built during construction of the property and are interconnected.  The flow is counter clockwise from #8, where a pump sends the water through piping over to #5.

At pond #5, water goes over a weir located at the end of the wooden pier near the roadway, over to pond #4.  From there it flows to #3, then the small pond at #2 green, then back to #8.  Pond #1 was once connected to the others, but the pipe has long since closed up, and it has been on its own ever since.

The sluice gate on pond #4, which was completely re-built a few years ago, adjusts the height of water in all the ponds except #5.  As Rhody Smith noticed following an overnight rain a few days ago, the overflow from the sluice gate is piped under the public road and Monterey’s private road to the river.

When heavy rainfall drains water from the roadways and fills the ponds, the flow can reverse depending on the amount of rain.

Pond #5 poses a problem in perception of the water’s height, since the water table in both #4 and #5 is the same, but the level of the land is higher at pond #5.

Bill can offer solutions.  One is to line pond #5 with a membrane to retain the water.  Another is to eliminate the part of the pond near the entrance and up a ways along Building 1.  Then you could run a pipe from pond #5 to the weir, and it would overflow and continue to work.

The ponds of Monterey, utterly useless otherwise, serve us in many ways as topics of conversation along with beautifying the landscape and providing golfer’s with a interesting challenge.  Where or where would we be without our ponds?

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The Artist Behind the MYCC Pool & CH Murals

mural_002aaJayne is adept in all facets of art, original murals, decorative painting and sculptures are Jayne's specialties. Involved with art all through school, Jayne attended Kent State University, Rio University, Akron University (dropped out when Math was the next subject!!) majoring in psychology and a minor in art. She went on to teach art Kindergarten – 12th grade for 12 years, 13 years at Buckeye Joint Vocational School in New Philadelphia, Ohio. She also taught three years at her alma mater, Kent State. She traveled though out Ohio teaching classes in rural towns, participated in art shows, designed and built state winning floats, large corporation sets and Convention and Visitors Bureau displays. With the help of family, many friends and talented co workers, she led the way to success.

She has owned and operated a working studio and storefront for thirty years in her home state of Ohio. Resigning and closing up her shop in 2000 she and her husband, Rob, moved to Florida in search of an adventure with a tropical view. In addition to art, Jayne's joy in life includes: a daughter, Amy, who owns and operates a day spa (totally art deco tropical theme!!!) in Owensboro, Kentucky; her grandchildren Chris and Taylor, both college students; her three sons Rik, a play write, Christian speaker, and movie maker in Burbank, Raymond, an investment banker in San Francisco, and Robert, who owns his own telecommunications business.

So, whether an original mural in a living room, den, kitchen or nursery of the home….a business lobby, interior or exterior walls…designs on antique or modern furniture, sparkling filigree on a child's face or creating a corporate logo – Jayne has an intuitive ability to draw from her paint the perfect expression each client desires.

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A Thumbnail Sketch of Someone You Know

cloverShe’d always been the determined type.  So nobody was surprised when she left her home and family in Dublin and headed for Newton, Massachusetts  when discovering, upon completing her design school course, that there were no jobs for designers in Ireland.  That initiative quickly paid off. In no time she came upon a perfect position in Boston as one of five designers of children’s clothing for the Hickory Dickory Frock Company.

She and the job were a perfect match. In time she married, and when children came along she recognized that she was cut out to be a stay-at-home mom.  Yet, during those family years she managed to attend summer school and earn a teaching certificate.  When the children were safely in bed each night, out she ventured to teach sewing and cutting at night school and keep her skills intact.

Back to the drawing board.
And then, voila! her oldest daughter left for college, her career timing clicked in, and back our heroine went to the Hickory Dickory Frock Company! There, for the next sixteen fulfilling years, she happily designed girls’ blouses in four size groups for each of the four seasons of the year as the industry dictated. She herself selected the buttons and trimmings and cut the first pattern in each size. Then the sewing process was turned over to a specialist to produce the samples which were sent to the company headquarters in New York for appraisal by the buyers.

Most styles then went into production and bore the labels of stores such as Sears or Lerners.  Some styles were rejected, with the samples available to employees for purchase at cost!  For years she was able to select whatever ones she wanted and send blouses to cousins in Ireland who, to their utter delight, stood out as the best dressed little girls in their school.

An end and a beginning.
At last, changing business practices and the world economy stepped into the picture, imports took over the market, and the company closed.  Otherwise, Ronnie might still be designing, for she’d loved every minute of every day at her job! And perhaps she would not have been a candidate for a new adventure when her Boston neighbors the Sciarinis introduced her and her longtime friend Mae to Monterey.

Now, with the passing of time, the flip side of her nature has taken a firm hold on her lifestyle.  She is Ronnie the Traveler.  She can readily keep track of the years through the many, many trips that have taken her to Spain, to Greece, to Italy – all over the world – and especially to Ireland and to England, where she declares she’ll go at the drop of a hat.

The traveler’s dream trip
What may turn out to be the high point of her travels is coming up soon.  Her sister from Africa will meet her at the end of July in Rockland, and later they will fly together to Ireland from where they will fly to London.  From there, it’s on to Rome, then to Greece, followed by a stop in Venice.  On the twenty-third of September they will leave to travel to northern Ireland, where a huge family reunion is being planned. Here, in County Fernanna, the family will convene on September 27 for a celebration which will include all the cousins from Montana as well as all the cousins from Ireland, and of course Ronnie and her siblings.  On the thirtieth, it’s back to Boston.

This may all be more of a challenge than most would willingly attempt, but with her son at his computer lining up the flight plans, Ronnie is right on target and looking forward to the venture.

Hers is not a life for the fragile and frivolous, nor for the shy and timorous.  It is a life for those curious about others and the way they live…. and those dedicated to maintaining friendship and relationships to the utmost. It is a life of energy and resourcefulness.  It is the life story of Monterey’s  Ronnie Sullivan.

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Where There is a Will, There is a Way


You think you are having a hard time learning to use a computer? Because it is just too hard, or being old is too big a handicap? Well, let me give you some encouragement. I would like to tell you about two people who know something about handicaps that might help strengthen your resolve.

In 2006 the West Palm Beach Veterans Hospital made arrangement with the 20/200 Fellowship to teach me to use a talking computer program for the blind. (20/200 is the visual acuity measurement for legal blindness) The fellowship is an organization which provides services for the blind and is located in Port Salerno.

Upon arrival at the fellowship I was introduced to the person who was to be my instructor.She was a young girl of about 25 and she was completely blind.

She had been blind from birth. She is a college graduate, and can read and write Braille. My first reaction was

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The Ball

In My Hand I Hold A Ball,
White And Dimpled, Rather Small.
Oh, How Bland It Does Appear,
This Harmless Looking Little Sphere.

By It's Size I Could Not Guess,
The Awesome Strength It Does Possess. But Since I Fell
Beneath Its Spell, I've Wandered Through The Fires Of Hell.

My Life Has Not Been Quite The Same, Since I Chose To Play
This Stupid Game. It Rules My Mind For Hours On End, A
Fortune It Has Made Me Spend.

It Has Made Me Yell, Curse And Cry,
I Hate Myself And Want To Die.
It Promises A Thing Called Par,
If I Can Hit It Straight And Far.

To Master Such A Tiny Ball,
Should Not Be Very Hard At All.
But My Desires The Ball Refuses,
And Does Exactly As It Chooses.

It Hooks And Slices, Dribbles And Dies, And Even
Disappears Before My Eyes. Often It Will Have A Whim,
To Hit A Tree Or Take A Swim.

With Miles Of Grass On Which To Land, It Finds A Tiny
Patch Of Sand. Then Has Me Offering Up My Soul, If
Only It Would Find The Hole.

It's Made Me Whimper Like A Pup,
And Swear That I Will Give It Up.
And Take To Drink To Ease My Sorrow, But The Ball
Knows … I'll Be Back Tomorrow.