Friends, Fun, Heat


“Great time, wish you were here!” Back when people mailed post cards, that’s what they often wrote. I used to wonder if it was meant to trigger envy.

There are many things to envy about this adventure…and, some things, not. It is beautiful and (mostly) peaceful here in central Florida, and much to see. But it is hot and humid too, even in late February, and I sweat and swat at gnats and grumble silently a bit … until I remember that my genes are rooted in the Arctic, so of course I need time to adjust. And I remember, too, that it’s below zero in Many Moon‘s home port on Lake Superior. Many people there are bundling up just to walk to the mailbox and would love to be sweating-and-swatting instead. Perspective returns quickly when you consider others’ challenges.

It was truly wonderful to share a full day with my friend June, who drove down with me, and with Jeff’s brother Buck and his wife Denise, who drove down from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula to explore Florida for a month. And to be under way again on Many Moons and take the helm for awhile – from the fly bridge! On a narrow river that felt like a mini-Amazon! Then a visit via boat to the famous Blue Spring. Photos and captions below.

We joined Jeff’s brother Buck and his wife Denise for breakfast at Hontoon Landing, across the river from Hontoon Island State Park. They took the ferry. I took the dinghy. (Exercise counts, even if it’s 10 minutes. 😉 )
After breakfast, June and I explored Hontoon Island by bike and stopped at the scenic waterfront to cool off, hydrate, and drink in the views reminiscent of Jurassic Park. And it was hot. That’s sun protection she’s wearing, not warm clothing.
After Jeff finished work, we took Many Moons on the 12-mile circumference of Hontoon Island.
As we entered a narrow canal of the Hontoon Dead River, we saw a pontoon boat ahead and backed out to let them by. There’s not room for two in there!
The pontoon passed by us and we headed back in.
Did I mention this canal is narrow?? We went under that branch. (Jeff drove. If we hit something in his boat, I don’t want to be driving!)
And then we were out the other side, into the relatively wider Hontoon Dead River. Fun!
At the end of our cruise, we anchored at Blue Spring to meet Buck and Denise and stroll the park. The manatees for which the park is famous had left, but we did see lots of black fish making shadows in the afternoon sunlight.
Blue Spring is often more green than blue, reflecting the surrounding vegetation rather than the sky.
Blue Springs

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