Friday, March 23, 2012

Florida 2012, Week 3

Wekiwa Springs
We spend three nights at Wekiwa Springs State Park just southeast of the Ocala National Forest.  It's on the Wekiva River - not a spelling mistake.  In the native language of this area, wekiwa means bubbling water (the spring) and wekiva means flowing water (the river).  The spring itself isn't as impressive as Alexander, Juniper or Silver Glen Springs in Ocala.  The pool bottom here is covered with tiny, broken shells and very large seaweed-covered rocks, unlike the other springs which had a beautiful white sandy bottom with some clumps of algae spread around.  The spring itself is a small hole about 5 feet in diameter and 15 feet straight down, unlike in Ocala which were huge open areas with several springs bubbling forth from rocks on the bottom about 25 feet down.  We don't even swim in Wekiwa Springs because ... because ... I don't know - we don't really feel like it.  There are also lots of kids here because it's Spring Break, so that doesn't entice us either.

The "view from my chair" - our campsite
Our campsite is beautiful though.  It's surrounded on two sides by a forest of very tall pines.  Our neighbours are not too close, which is why we prefer state or national parks to private RV parks.  This campground, like the others we've stayed in before it, is very quiet - day and night!

One evening after dinner, Brad and I are sitting outside the trailer and Grady starts meowing at us through the screen door.  So I decide to bring him out on his leash.  He hates the leash because he has to wear a harnass - it's a small dog harness that I bought because he "Houdinis" out of everything else I've bought him.  Anyway, he slowly walks around a bit but, being a scaredy cat, he wants back in the trailer.  Now, have you ever seen how a cat behaves when wearing a silly kitty t-shirt or "clothing"?  They don't like it.  They think they can't walk, jump or move in any way.  It's freaking hilarious.  Because the harnass fits him so snugly and is bulky, this is how Grady climbs the three steps to the trailer door.  At the top while standing on the left edge hoping the door will magically open, he proceeds to fall over sideways landing on his side with his nose in the dirt.  He never even attempts to right himself during the fall, as cats usually do.  It almost looks like slow motion.  He slowly picks himself up and licks the dirt off his nose.  Brad and I are killing ourselves laughing - you know otflmao.  "Mowww!" he says.  I pick him up and sit with him in my lap.  This he likes and we sit for about 20 minutes before I put him back inside.  Our entertainment for the day.

probably an Eastern Racer, 10 feet behind our trailer
Grady also alerts Brad to a black snake that is right outside the back window of the trailer one afternoon.  Here's a pic.  It's a small snake, about as big around as my index finger and maybe almost 2 feet long.  He's a beauty, very shiny and all black.  He's afraid of us though and slithers off into the woods with me and the camera chasing him.

We do a bit of cycling in this park, but there aren't many trails and it's very hot during the day.  At least we have electrical hookup and we can run the AC in the trailer.  Somehow, we putter away the days, and on Thursday, take off for Jupiter - Jupiter, Florida.  We will be staying at Jonathan Dickinson State Park between Jupiter and Hobe Sound for the next week.  This is on the coast, although the campground is just west of the intra-coastal waterway.  But there's a constant, beautiful breeze blowing off the ocean, and FULL hookups (water, sewer and 50-amp electrical) for $26/night!  It'll be the first time we visit a beach and we've been in Florida for three weeks!

Until next time...


  1. Hi, Marilyn! Say HI to my sister- and brother-in-law, Pam and Fred Kainer. They are volunteers at Jonathan Dickinson! You'll see them painting signs, cutting down weeds. Just stop any volunteer you and say HI!

    Thanks for posting your Florida experiences. We, as always, remain at Padre Island.

  2. Poor Grady! Dozer sometimes freaks if the leash rests on his back. Poor guy. I am enjoying your posts- we are planning on FL next winter, instead of AZ, but after reading about the snakes and bugs, I am having second thoughts!!

  3. I think the bugs are just starting their season now, but not present in the winter. Snakes are probably a different matter, but you just have to watch where you're going. The cottonmouths (water mocassins) are the ones you have to watch out for as they will be agressive, but we're told they won't go in the water in the winter. So I would recommend coming earlier than April.