Readers of Alexandria’s Echo Press today will see a photo I took a week ago today at Lake Darling.
Celeste Edenloff called me earlier this week from her desk at the Echo as she had learned of a wedding that took place in between little and big Darling on Friday, June 22nd. She wanted to hear feedback from me as well as ask if she could use the photo I had captured.
Celeste is very nice and a experienced reporter. But, here is some more color to the story she wrote. Any differences in the story are likely my fault and not hers as it was an unexpected phone conversation and I probably could have provided better clarity.
On the afternoon of Friday, June 22nd, 2018 it was beautiful day in Alexandria. Not many clouds in the sky and a light breeze. Not too windy but just enough wind to keep you cool and comfortable. Around 4:30 pm I returned to my cottage on Casa Marina Road, changed into shorts and sandals, and went outside to enjoy an Arnold Palmer and reply to a few emails. Soon after sitting down I noticed what appeared to be a well organized group of pontoons gathering along the sandbar in between little and big Darling. This wouldn’t be unusual at the south end of Carlos or in front of Le Homme Dieu’s Rotary Beach but for this location, it was unusual to see this many boats together even on the a holiday weekend and especially for a Friday non-holiday weekend.
More and more arrived steadily. I was far enough away that I couldn’t tell how many were there so out of curiosity I grabbed my smallest and quietest UAV to fly over and have a look down. I am very aware that not everyone is a fan of ‘drones’ so I stayed high above and took a couple photos.
After returning my UAV to home base I learned via a phone call with a friend that lives on Darling Drive what was going on. The phone call was unrelated to the collection of boats but ended with “did you see all the boats outside your place?”. It was then that I learned it was a wedding and that one of the guests was Andy Akenson. I texted Andy the aerial photo and said something like “looks like fun”. Andy replied and told me it was a wedding involving one of my high school classmates, Michelle (Fette) Thoennes. I replied asking if they’d like me to return and take a few group photos. Andy checked and replied “that’d be great”. With a new battery inserted, I flew back across little Darling and dropped down to a lower altitude for the photo that was shared in the Echo Press.
Michelle sent me a message later on Facebook saying how pleased she was to have aerial photos as she and Randy had talked about hiring someone for them but thought of it too late. It was serendipity as I took quite a few photos and videos during the 2nd flight and shared them with Michelle.
The wedding ending with The Love Boat theme played from speakers while the boats methodically dispersed. The final note is I have been humming “The Love Boat” in my head all week. Thanks Michelle. ; )