The “Island” is Sanibel. “Their Hunters” are Super Sheller Clark (aka Mr Rambo- heehee), me, and YOU in the top National story of the New York Times! Dr. Leal and The Shell Museum were in it too. Wahoo!
How did this happen? Well, first of all, let me introduce you to the talented folks that made this story happen.
The brilliant writer/reporter (17 years with The NY Times) Lizette Alvarez who threaded this beautiful piece together with her gift of words and Angel Valentin top notch photographer from Puerto Rico and South Florida …
I’m still boggled by the whole thing but… Out of the blue we got a call from Lizette to introduce herself and tell us that she would like to do a story about shelling on Sanibel. She said she’d like to come to Sanibel to interview us and she was hoping to get a photographer to cover the story. Heck Yay-ya! Two days later we were hanging out at Lighthouse Beach showing Lizette and Angel the treasures of Sanibel.
It was a gorgeous low tide evening with lots of shells for collecting as well as exposed live mollusks. We couldn’t have placed an order for a more perfect evening to share the wonders of our island. Hunting along side us was my new BFF Isabel (which happens to be Lizette’s daughter) perfecting Sanibel’s signature stance… The Sanibel Stoop.
It turns out that Isabel is an excellent sheller. Within minutes of being on the beach, she found a nice sized unbroken ANGEL WING…
In the article, Lizette wrote about a 13 year old boy that found a STARFISH. This is the BRITTLESTAR STARFISH that Hunter from Mulberry, Florida found…
Hunter and his sister Audrey showed us all of the other STARFISH and CRABS they were finding and learning about too.
Shelling Sistah Denise Kisko from North Carolina made it in the story too!
This next photo is Denise being interviewed by Lizette… meanwhile, “a 13 year old girl” got curious about her abandoned shell pile she had been digging in. Okay, this is funny… Denise was quoted saying “Don’t find anything in my pile” kiddingly to a 13 year old girl. That 13 year old girl was Isabel! LOL Isn’t that so cute?
If you haven’t read the story yet, a black-and-white photo in our house was mentioned (well, Mr. Rambo’s “shell-festooned house” was mentioned- hahaha). We have a wall in our hallway with photos of our families and special memories.
In one of those frames is a photo of Clark’s shell collection on his bed at age 7.
He arranged all of his favorite shells on his cowboy bedspread then asked his mom to take a picture of it. A-dor-a-ble.
After 3 hours of laughing, learning, sharing and seashell hunting, we had to say goodbye. It was an evening that we will never forget especially because we really had a fantastic time. I’m not saying I wasn’t nervous…because I was totally shaking in my flip flops at first. But then after being with such fun down to earth people…
Who genuinely love life…
It was easy to relax and share what we love… Shelling and Sanibel. Thank you Lizette, for contacting us.
To read the New York Times story, click on this next image….
Note to self: remember to get a photo of me too with the gang when something big happens … like being interviewed by one of the biggest publications in the world. ;)