Category Archives: Animals

Photo Illustration: Cammanns Pond in Merrick, New York, USA, © Ann Parry,

Cammanns Pond: Or, New Year’s Eve in Space

From LONG ISLAND – by Ann Parry (
December 31, 2018

Cammanns Pond

Tonight, ten days after the shortest day of the year, and hours before the stormy last hurrah of 2018 would become the dawn of 2019, I stopped at Cammanns Pond on my way home.

Struggling through the downpour, the light from the street lamp behind me surrendered before reaching water’s edge.

Merrick, NY, USA. Dec. 31, 2018. A raft of ducks sleeps hidden at Cammanns Pond during rainy New Year's Eve. (© 2018 Ann Parry/

Merrick, NY, USA. Dec. 31, 2018. A raft of ducks sleeps hidden at Cammanns Pond during rainy New Year’s Eve. (© 2018 Ann Parry/

Rain coated the windshield seconds after each sweep of wipers, and dashboard lights bounced on the glass and water, so my bullseye view was light from distant buildings slashing an abyss.

But, after countless visits, I knew waterfowl must be near. Once my eyes adjusted to the darkness and I covered the instrument lights with an infinity scarf, I saw hints of a silent, nearly still raft of ducks midway between shores.

Aiming my iPhone from the space between steering wheel and windshield, I captured rain smeared photos of two bare trees standing sentinel in front of the pond.

Going outside, I stood behind one tree trunk then the other, to avoid throwing a shadow, and leaned out to take photos of the ducks, pond, shores and beyond.

No home is an island

Then I sat silent and still in my car as ducks slept at the Merrick pond, on the deluged south shore of Long Island…

on the northeast coast of the United States on Earth as it orbited the Sun, in a spiral arm of the Milky Way, in the Virgo Supercluster…

as we made our way in the universe this New Year’s Eve –

forty years after the world understood global warming and still had time to avoid crisis.

• NASA: Global Climate Change Resources
• Bloomberg: Climate Changed
• NYTimes: Losing Earth: The Decade We Almost Stopped Climate Change
• United Nations: Climate Change

fyi fLI
What’s the correct spelling of the name of the Nassau County park on the south side of Merrick Road between Lindenmere Drive and Babylon Road? Several versions appear, including on government sites. 

The park’s named after the Cammann family. In 1890 Hermann Cammann bought the Carmen farm house property on the north side of Merrick Road, across from where the park is now located, and he rebuilt a larger version of the house.

So – despite its glaring absence of a possessive apostrophe next to the “s” – I’ll go with the name on the park sign: “Cammanns Pond

Cammanns Pond: MY GALLERY


Where the Heck is Matt? Dance-a-gram for Cleo the Cat

From LONG ISLAND – by Ann Parry (
October 25, 2016

For years, my family’s been a fan of Matt Harding’s “Where the Heck is Matt?” videos where he enthusiastically dances around the world. So I was intrigued when I saw that the Kickstarter campaign to fund his 2016 video included a perk to have him create a Dance-a-gram.

Hamburg, Germany, March 2016. Matt Harding dancing with fans in Marco-Polo Terrassen.

Hamburg, Germany, March 2016. Matt Harding dancing with fans in Marco-Polo Terrassen, his final stop in Europe. This is one of several postcards Matt sent as perks to many of his Kickstarter supporters.

I asked Matt to create a message about adopting animals on behalf of our family’s Cleo the Cat – the gray and white striped furball we adopted from Last Hope Animal Rescue in Wantagh, NY.

Yesterday I received Matt’s Dance-a-gram, and it’s AMAZING:

Matt Harding’s Dance-a-gram for our Cleo the Cat, adopted from Last Hope Animal Rescue in Wantagh, NY. (YouTube:

When I saw the first location in Matt’s Dance-a-gram is Cape Canaveral, Florida, I smiled, since I’m such a space fan and was at Kennedy Space Center in 2000 for Jim Lovell’s talk & book signing for Apollo 13.

And please remember, if you have room in your heart and home, Cleo the Cat hopes you’ll adopt a rescue animal!

Cleo the tabby cat at home on Sept. 1, 2015, after being adopted from Last Hope Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation, Wantagh, New York, USA (Ann Parry/Ann Parry,

Long Island, USA. Here’s a glimpse of Cleo the cat, which will have to do until I capture photo of her dancing for joy over Matt’s Dance-a-gram.  (© 2015 Ann Parry/

Official site of Last Hope Animal Rescue