Friday, June 24, 2011

How to Attract the Attention of the Coast Guard

A photographer friend of mine wanted to take pics of my daughter near the beach yesterday. It was a lovely time with glorious weather, ideal lighting conditions, and all the things that make a great photo opportunities.

One of the places my photog friend wanted to try was on a picturesque jetty that has a very large bridge near it.

Friend positioned daughter on the rocks just off the jetty and was delighted the waves were whipped up enough  to provide spray in the background. I was holding the bags and my butt and back were soaked from the spray, but anything for art.

People walked back and forth on this narrow jetty also enjoying the scenery and the sea waters. The jetty was slippery and I moved gingerly each time we shifted because I did not want to fall off.

Suddenly, a woman ran, RAN, down the jetty to my friend and urgently said, "Watch out- the Coast Guard will take your camera and equipment if they see you shooting pictures in the direction of the bridge! It happened to my brother. Taking pictures of the bridge supports violates national security!"

My friend was shocked, but quickly shifted her position so as not to be pointing in the direction of the bridge. I reassured her after the woman left, telling her we didn't quite fit the terrorist profile and surely the other woman was exaggerating just a little.

We were soon left alone on the jetty to finish the pictures.

As if on cue,  a Coast Guard cutter eased into view. My friend and daughter were occupied with taking their pictures, but I saw three men on the cutter pull out binoculars when they got closer to the jetty and train them on us.

My friend and daughter are both beautiful, so at first I thought these Coast Guard guys were looking just for the fun of it.

When the cutter turned around and headed back in our direction, this time with more folks with binoculars poointed our way, I alerted my friend and we packed up and hustled off the jetty.

The cutter turned back around and headed out further into the gulf, but lesson learned. Even cameras can violate national security these days.


  1. Wow. I'm sure that bridge must be in open view of everyone, I wonder why they are worried about it? Maybe they have found it on a bad guy's list or something.

    We are spending the night in a town near a military Airforce base. There was a jet doing loops and flying close to the ground and my hubby asked me to get a picture. As I was clicking away I thought, "Oh, oh. Maybe I'm not supposed to do this." so I stopped. We found out later they were practicing for an air show. Thank God. I had an image of the military taking away our camera.

  2. Belle: About 10 years ago in Virginia, they spotted a woman videotaping the supports of a bridge there, got suspicious, and to make a long story short, she and her husband were planning terrorist attacks with the Muslim Brotherhood. Also, beyond our bridge are some major refineries, so they are a little touchy about people taking pictures directly at them. Now I know!

    I'm so glad you are having such fun on your vacation. It sounds like a dream!

  3. I guess we should be glad that they are so protective of us.

  4. Odie: You're right- and I am thankful for them. There are just so many new things- I can't get used to it all!


I love to hear from you! I also love to comment back.