I’ve been storing up these photographs for a couple of weeks. The first set is a nice depiction of the swing in air quality that I get out my window that faces the sea. Some days it’s crystal clear, and others you can barely make out the ocean. Once last week I could literally see the horizon way out on the sea; this morning it was so foggy that I could not see the building behind me. Some days when I wake up bleary eyed I forget that much of the visibility problems I have is due to the condensation on the outside of my window.

Down by the sea front there is a manmade tidal basin that serves as a reflecting pool for the high-rises behind it. We call it “Stinky Pond” because it is. I often ride down there for the purpose of cooling off after a long bike ride. It adds a couple of miles to my total and allows me to lower my heart rate before heading home. At present there is a big rubber bladder blocking the entrance from the sea, there for who knows why. When the tide is high, water flows over the top; when it’s low, the water is held in check. The basin is at the far end of a nice park and back behind a very fancy badminton/tennis center. Judging from what’s going on there it looks as though someday there will be a nice walkway along a canal connecting the fancy new apartments on the shoreline with the park. Nice for the mosquitoes anyway.

One day last week the water was pouring in like crazy and the surface was covered with jelly fish – no doubt sucked into the canal and carried over the top of the bladder. Black-tailed Gulls were skimming and dipping out any edible pieces of the poor things that were almost certainly doomed to end up on the bottom.

On August 8, the owners of the luxury apartment building going up at the end of my block decided to scare off the evil spirits with a grand fireworks display. I happened to get back from a ride about midway in the event and I took the video during it and these pictures and hour afterwards. All the workers came down from the steel beams and all the pedestrians stopped and watched, covering their ears for the noise. When it was over, everyone went back to work and the passersby went back to passing by. As the cleaners tidied up the sidewalk, the occasional firecracker would go off in one of the smoking piles.