We stopped in
Clyde Butcher's Gallery in the Great Cypress Swamp. It's a collection of fantastic photographs
depicting South Florida's vanishing wilderness. The largest ones cost as much as a Lexis but heck, they're really good and they're signed by Clyde himself.
The ski'toes were too thick for the swamp walk out back.
We loved the gallery's tri t-shirt...
We toured Everglades City, a charming fishing far from everything. It had funk but not enough to allow us to bring our dog into their restaurants. We picnicked instead staying one step ahead of the ski'toes.
Everglades City Crab traps
We visited friends on the coast, south of Sarasota. One morning Ellen the turtle lady answered my question, "How wide are the turtle tracks you find?". She finds them every morning this time of year and she marks the nests.
Every evening we settled on the beach to watch the western sky.
One morning Ward and I set off to explore what seemed like a relatively uncharted four miles of beach wilderness.
It was fun and quite adventurous except for the numerous times my partner checked our exact satellite position on his phone.
We occasionally found enough shade to stop and rest. The waves were a luxurious gold, yellow-brown with seaweed.
Trudging north we felt great, like barefoot mailmen. When we finally reached civilization Francesca was there to drive us home.
The next day we headed east stopping to see Myakka State Park.
Afterwards we noticed a graceful shell-shape on the horizon. It was center of a new national cemetery. Thousands of soldiers are buried there already with room for many, many more.
In Lake Wales we visited with family and my mother. Five years ago we put her ashes under this oak just south of The Singing Tower.
We lowered my older brother's casket into a grave west of town back in '07. After the ceremony we noticed a guy on bulldozer waiting. After we left he was going to shove dirt into the hole. Seeing three shovels on his rig I asked him to let us bury my brother. Kindly, he complied.
Later he added that the local Mexicans citrus workers fill their graves the same way.
We're back in kooky Coconut Grove now where mangoes are falling like rain. We're packing them away and packing a few more as we prepare for next adventure.
Fresh picked today