My first junonia aperture

 Oh my gosh! Who found this beautiful seashell?

pam with first junonia

Move over Clark! There’s a new sheller in town that can find a JUNONIA too….mmmeeeeee! I found one!! Finally! I’m so giddy, I can’t even think straight!

prize junonia

Believe it or not, I was the first one on the beach in Captiva this morning. I know, this is very rare for me but after seeing the piles of shells along every stretch of Captiva beach yesterday I couldn’t sleep. At 6:30 a.m., I layered up my clothes since it was low 60s this morning (for most that’s not cold but for here…. brrr) grabbed my lighted cap and headed for Blind Pass. I was meeting some of my girlfriends but poor Clark had to work so he couldn’t join us.

shell pile before day light

The pile had fresh new shells stacking up so I started to sift through. I found a small piece of JUNONIA so I started to get a little excited but had to keep focused. Digging…..sifting……digging….. sifting. Are my eyes deceiving me? What? No! It isn’t!  YES! It is! It’s a JUUUNNNOOONNNIIIAAAA!

My first junonia in dark

This is my very first JUNONIA. I’ve been shelling for a long time and this is the first whole one I’ve ever found. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like JUNONIAS are the rarest shell ever…..but they just have never been found by me…until now.

My first junonia early morning

The weird thing is, right after I found it and celebrated, I dug right back in thinking I could uncover a whole famly of JUNONIAS. LOL Then the sun broke through and I celebrated some more.  I know, I look like a shelling geek/nerd/dork/dweeb in this “get up” but who cares! I did a few happy dances!

pam happy dance

While I was happily shelling with my buddies, as my good luck today would have it, Dr Jose Leal, Director of the Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum walked up right beside me on the beach with his surf board ready to hit the waves. I got to show my prized shell to him! To me, he’s like the “Seashell Czar”, “The Mollusk Magnate ” (and Surfer Dude!)… oh I’m just being silly, but it really was fun to show him my find. My buddy Ellen took this photo of us.

Jose Leal and pam

See? I think he’s impressed by my find too… heehee

Surfer Jose Leal

 Just another view of this beauty…

my junonia with waves

 To get a shot of my wonderful friends Diane, Becky and Ellen that helped me celebrate, I took this photo “long-armed” so that’s why I’m so close. Remember, it was really early in the morning.

girlfriends with my first junonia

 My luck continued. When I got in my car, my all time favorite song on the planet was on the radio- Madonna’s “Holiday”. It was the perfect song and the perfect time.

If we took a holiday
Took some time to celebrate
Just one day out of life
It would be, it would be so nice

Everybody spread the word
We’re gonna have a celebration

Thanks Ellen for that funny video!  I’m feeling so lucky, I’m buying a lotto ticket today.

morning sky with seashells