Getting away from busy Miami is always a treat.
This time we headed to Florida's west coast to camp on a barrier island. The cold weather was a blessing as the pristine beach was deserted.
The millions of seashells coughed up by the Gulf always amaze. So do the occasional
treasures like this fossilized bone fragment.
I had time to practice on our host's Cheez-it guitar. Unfortunately there were no crackers inside.
Next we headed north to our state's capitol. There we found
our son, Ian, studiously preparing for his future.
The next morning we headed to one of our favorite spots, Manatee Springs. There were nearly two dozen of the corpulent beauties lounging in the clear, cool water. Rapture of the deep gets me every time. I donned my trunks and joined them.
The 72 degree water spills over into the adjoining swamp and the Suwanee River a quarter mile away.
Next, we saw the blue trees outside the Harn Museum in Gainesville...and these fantastic Japanese eroded rocks inside.
Francesca and I had our first armadillo experience on Paines Prairie. This little guy was sliding his little snout through the leaves oblivious to us and our cameras.
Overhead Spanish Moss danced in the wind.
I've been marveling at the Wonders of Florida for six decades. Here's a picture of my big brother, Clay, wrangling a snake at Silver Springs in 1950. That's our mother looking on.
Back then it was our state's Disney World, the most popular of attractions.
Silver Springs will now be a permanent part of our park system!
We'll save that for next year's tour.