Farewell Chesapeake Bay Osprey, Til We Meet Again….

“Closed the shop,
Sold the house,
Bought a ticket to the West Coast…..”
                                     (from “My Life” by Billy Joel)

I heard those lyrics a few weeks ago and knew they would be the start of this post when I finally had a chance to write it.  Some of you already know…..

Yes!  We closed our business!
Yes!  We sold the condo!
And Yes!  We ‘bought a ticket to the West Coast’!

We listed our waterfront condo on the market the day we left for Florida, and it received a contract quickly.  Since returning, life became a whirlwind of boxes and bubblewrap.  The kids got ‘new’ stuff and charity got even more!   Geez, I never knew we had accumulated so much stuff in 36 years.  I am still trying to ‘unload’ some of it!

Our condo is now sold; and we’ve relocated in Delaware with family and are living in our RV full-time while we tie up loose ends, appointments, help our kids settle in their upcoming new homes, hug the grandkids as much as possible, and finish preparing our RV to hit the road early June for the West with our first reservation at a campground near the Grand Canyon.  And from there, who knows?  We’re still not sure ourselves!!  But we’re super-excited about the new adventures, sights, people, cultures, and all the meandering inbetween we will experience around the United States.   I’ve been telling everyone we’ve become RV road gypsies!

So who’s already thinking, boy oh boy, Donna’s gone cuckoo?!  😲  No need to admit, we’ve already had a few eyebrows ‘arch up’.  On the other side of the coin, in the five years we have been RVing primarily the East Coast, we’ve met so many full-timers who absolutely love it, as well as others who say we are living the dream they would love to do themselves some day.

Maybe we’ll only do this for six months, a year, or maybe five, not sure yet.  I think we’ll know when we’re ready to resettle into a home dwelling when the time comes.  Preparing to leave family is the most difficult.  We’ll obviously return to family for holidays and events.

But right now I am so psyched with our new “home is where you roam” lifestyle.  I’m presently researching places out West and Northwest.  Reading RV blogs that are enriched with info.  And loving the simpler life already!

So now it’s time to say farewell to my beloved Osprey….

Having boated the Chesapeake Bay region for 30 years, we have loved and enjoyed its never-ending beauty, especially Maryland’s Eastern Shore.  When we moved there 10 years ago, it was this Osprey nest platform off my third floor balcony that interested me with photography and recreational birding.

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DSC_7375-1 33016My view of Marshy Creek

DSC_7376-1 33016My view of Prospect Bay

DSC_7378-1 33016My view of the southend of the Kent Narrows Channel

The Osprey quickly became daily entertainment.  Over the years that followed, I bought new cameras.  New lens.  Then bigger lens.  I talked to experts and gobbled up all there was to know about Osprey.  I took probably thousands of photos of just them.

And just as quickly, the Osprey family that lived on our platform became part of ‘my family’.  I knew them inside and out.  What their calls meant.  The facial expressions they made.  How hard they worked.  The heat, wind, & storms they endured.  The success with little ones.  And the committed bond they had for each other.

They were a joy to my heart and soul.

A couple years ago, it appeared both Osprey failed to return from migration.  Our platform tried to attract new ‘owners’ but it wasn’t to be each season since.  Luckily our area was still a summer home to many Osprey, and I certainly continued to get my fill of them year after year as I’ve shared through my posts.  I’m hoping this season a new Osprey couple will find the platform a suitable home for others to enjoy as I did.

Since the reason and beginning of my blog starred the Osprey, I thought it befitting my ‘last’ Chesapeake Bay area post be a tribute of my recent Osprey that were taken from my balcony during the last few weeks before we moved out.

My camera equipment was the last to get packed, surely you’d know that!   🙂

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Never-ending work, even at sunset!

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This next short series are of the same Osprey in the above photo.  He returned to snatch up more nesting materials from our riprap just an hour before we did our final walk-out.  I couldn’t have been more thrilled!  WOO HOO!!  And thank you!!!

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My 3rd floor balcony was sooooooo perfect for the fly-bys of all kinds of bird species I shared with you.  It was certainly special!

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I admit I am already missing my daily Osprey fix.  But although I may have said this was a farewell, I have already seen Osprey flying over Delaware.   🙂

In the meantime, at our Delaware campground, I am chasing Blue Jays when I have time.  They’re providing me my best Blue Jay photos to date.

So as a chapter closes and the celebration of a new one begins for hubby and I, I hope you’re interested in continuing to follow my blog as I share my bird and scenery photos from our RV travels.  I’m sure there will be a few throwbacks from the Chesapeake Bay; I still have folders I’ve never had time to view from last year.

I cannot wait until early June to get our wheels rolling.  The Blue Jays and I will keep you posted!

“To travel is to live.”
       – Hans Christian Anderson


72 thoughts on “Farewell Chesapeake Bay Osprey, Til We Meet Again….

  1. I’m sure that you guys have planned this move very carefully! I’m also sure that you will have a great deal of fun and adventure enough to write books in no time. I wish you my very best for your new stage in your life. Thank you for your beautiful photos! Your friend H.J 🙂

    • Thank you so much, HJ, for your warm wishes! It has been a plan in the making for some time. We’ve never been out West and are excited about our new journey! We’ll keep in touch, my friend! 🙂

  2. Wonderful, Donna! I totally understand the osprey fixation/devotion, as I feel the same about the pair who have returned to our cove and have started nest building anew this year. I look forward to following your travels!

  3. Thank you, dear Donna, for this beautiful tribute to our joint friends! Wonderful farewell pictures! I am sure you will spit Ospreys on your new adventures, but whenever you miss them you can always come to see Sandy and Stanley 🙂 I wish you best of the best in your new life and look forward to seeing pictures of birds from many places!

    • I know you understand the tug at my heart, Helen! I will certainly keep up with Sandy & Stanley, I’ve already become attached and can’t wait until things settle down to follow daily what they’re up to. Keep ’em photos and stories coming! 🙂 Thank you so much for your warm wishes, I almost can’t wait to venture West where we’ve never been to see for real what others have shared through their photos and photograph my perspective. And to think of the bird ‘lifers’ I should see, I love the thought of that challenge!

    • I’ve got a hankering to visit Big Bend after enjoying your photos for years, but it’s not in the cards this trip West. If we do another trip West next year, it might be part of the plan! I’ve heard the gulf of Texas is real nice in the winter. 🙂

  4. That was a bit of a shock. Not because of the choice to become a gypsy RVer, but because it seemed quite sudden. Wishing you great good luck and joy in your new adventures.

    Might I suggest an RV blog if you haven’t found them already? http://wheelingit.us/ Nina and Paul offer some great tips for the gypsy life.

    • I so sorry, Gunta! We really have been planning it for about a year. After working an average of 50-60 hours a week for 30 years with our business, we felt we needed a true break from all that craziness. I guess you could say it’s our sabbatical to discover another the next chapter in our lives! 🙂 Thanks for the warm wishes and definitely appreciate the RV blog shout out, I’ll check them out for sure!

  5. Dear Donna, sometimes decision can’t be easy, but change is good and nice for all of us… I can almost understand your feelings, but this is a new experience and life journey, I am sure it would be so interesting and enjoyable, I will look for your new photographs. Photography is your eyes what you see… and it starts with a travel… wherever you go. Because you have an amazing photographical eyes… Good Luck with your new life style and be sure I wished to do this as you, and please travel in safe… Thank you, Blessing and Happiness, Love, nia

    • Thanks so much, Nia, for your comments! They say change is good, and we’ve needed a change for a long time from the grind of our 30 year business. We are excited and I can’t wait to take photos on things I’ve never seen before, like a tall cactus in the desert! Something so simple that others see on a daily basis. 🙂 We are very excited about the journey, and can’t wait to start rolling across the country in a month! Blessings to you as well, hugs!

  6. Donna, your photos are just magical, as usual!
    Yes, you’re right. Travel is to live, but “partir c’est mourir un peu” too (Edmond Haraucourt, French poet), and we do understand your mixed feelings about leaving children and grandchildren behind. Wish you all the best for your future life and may all the adventures you wish for come true! 🙂

    • Thank you very much, M&R! We are hoping that we leave when we are ready and search out another location to venture just as great to keep experiencing, but I hear you on the french words…. 🙂

  7. Richest Blessings best dear Donna in your sea change experience, may it be a good move for you and the whole family. Your Osprey coverage has been and is beautiful. Love all your pics, and the nest building ones especially. Have a great adventure and an exciting journey:-)

    • Thank you so much, Ashley, we are keeping in mind that every day can be a different experience, and some days might try to ‘hiccup’ the journey, but we’re game at this time and do enjoy the people we meet. Most RVer’s are such nice people we have found! 🙂

    • Hey, you could be right! 🙂 Staying safe is a top priority for sure, that’s part of our preparation on taking things we could need and won’t have to search for on the road. Always important to be prepared!

  8. Good luck in your new adventures! I can’t telly how much I envy what you’re about to do, travel with the weather and wildlife, going when you feel like it, staying when it seems the thing to do at the time. You can always put down roots again if you choose to, so there’s no worries involved, just planning your moves. I will miss the osprey though, not as much as you will of course, but familiar wildlife does become like family.

    • Thanks so much, Jerry, I knew you’d know how I felt and you said it perfectly! 🙂 Getting prepared takes time, but once we start rolling West, it’ll really feel like our dream to travel has finally begun. Most definitely any Osprey along our travels will be a goal of mine to get a photo!

  9. Wow! Donna, your title really caught me off-guard. I had no idea that you were moving away. It must be very hard to say goodbye to your life as you’ve known it for so long, and of course your wonderful ospreys. Great parting shots. I think he was trying to tell you that life goes on, no matter what. God luck with your new lifestyle. I think you’re so adventurous and look forward to following you on your travels. 🙂 xx

    • Hi Sylvia, sorry for late in replying, been so busy! I wasn’t sure how to put ‘it’ out there when we’ve been planning and planning. Both of our kids are buying homes in next couple weeks, we’ve been assisting them. I think I’ve about had enough with boxes and packing, lol. We’re real excited, just wish we were already on the road instead of this ‘limbo’ we’re doing right now. 🙂

  10. How exciting! I look forward to new travels, and seeing what you see through your images. Should you find yourself in Central or Northern California email me perhaps we got out birding together!

  11. Oh wow…the ospreys here will miss you but will never forget you and your camera! 🙂 Good luck with the new chapter in your life and have fun with the new adventure! Definitely will continue to read your blog!

  12. Welcome to the club. We’re approaching our 3rd anniversary of full-time RVing. This summer we’re trying something new – workamping. We’ll be spending the summer in Arco, Idaho helping out friends with their RV Park near Craters of the Moon National Monument and only 3 hours west of the Tetons. I have a list of new places to explore this summer. Be sure and let me know if you’ll be in the area. Happy trails 🙂

    • Thanks so much, Ingrid, and congrats on your three years! I’ve enjoyed following your blog on the road. Idaho sounds great! I most definitely want to see the Tetons as well, I worry we’ll never get to see everything. lol Still trying to get going here, soon as both kids settle on their homes and grandson #1’s birthday occurs, I’m hoping we get these wheel rolling. It’s packed and pretty much ready. 🙂

  13. What a way to say goodbye. I hope that you gypsy life is all that you could wish it to be. My envious but friendly thoughts will waft along with you as you go from delight to delight.

  14. Wow, Donna! Don’t ask me why this post of yours brought me to quiet tears. The beginning of a new chapter? Perhaps. I am so excited about what you are about to embark on. Have thought about it myself! Gorgeous wonderful photos, as always and really looking forward to what you’ll be sharing with us from here on out! Congratulations! (And that song is stuck in my head, what a great one!)

    • Awwwww, Laura, so sorry but I’m hoping they were happy tears! 🙂 Still sorting and packing up things, it’s crazy the stuff we’ve saved all these years. We’re excited to get going soon as the kids settle on their new homes in a few weeks. I’m so anxious to get our RV wheels rollin’! It’s time to put into play our next song, On the Road Again! lol

    • Thanks so much, Robin! Although I’m very excited on seeing and experiencing new adventures, I will always miss the Bay. We may settle back down near it when we’re through being gypsies. 🙂

  15. Uhh, wait – how did I miss this post? I must admit a twinge of sadness at you leaving “the balcony and the osprey” and feel like a friend is moving from next door. But the wonderful opportunities of living on the road and going out west will be mind boggling. Oregon and the northern part of California are some of my most favorite places and you and hubby will certainly enjoy many great adventures. Thank you for showing me your part of the country and for sharing my fascination with birds. Happy trails and don’t forget to blog. I will be excited to see what y’all see! hugs

    • Thanks so much, Beth! I really do miss my Osprey and balcony, it was the best for so long! When we do decide to settle back down, I know the Chesapeake Bay region will be high on the list for locations. Until then, we want to see the country and enjoy being adventurous. I expect it to be mind-boggling too, I am so excited! 🙂

  16. Donna: I have followed your blog for 3 years and always loved your photos. The birds you see on Kent Island are amazing. I will miss your work very much. is there another wildlife photographer in the area whose work you can recommend? – Denise Peach, Art and Ecology teacher, Marley Glen School and Marley Elementary School, Glen Burnie, Maryland. dpeach@aacps.org


    • Hi Denise, I love and appreciate your following for so long! I remember when you first contacted me. 🙂 Here are three Maryland nature blogs that I enjoy: mkjohns.wordpress.com, ospreycamerablog.wordpress.com (Kent Island Osprey Cam), and bellaremyphotography.com.

  17. I’ll miss your osprey updates and posts from the Bay, Donna. I look forward to many wonderful photos from your new adventure. A whole country of awesomeness. Enjoy every minute!

  18. Donna it’s been exciting to read your osprey blog. I am looking forward to read about your adventure going west and the many photos you will post. May God be with you and your family in your westward movement

  19. Pingback: Draw a Bird Day May: Bird Art Roundup! | Create art everyday

  20. I wish I could click the “like” button a hundred and one times for all the inspiration your osprey watching has provided me!

    • Thanks Charlie, you are so right! It has all been so wonderful and time has flown by so fast! We really REALLY wanted to make our way to Washington but one summer is not enough time to see everything. So we’re hoping another trip will be there and Oregon, down through California. Fingers crossed! 🙂

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