Sorry once again for the delay in sharing my stories with you. I’ve had the opportunity to enjoy some great experiences with many new friends here in Florida, especially on the waterways. Lots of outdoor experiences means much time spent on my computer, loading and culling through the images I gather along the way, not to mention the tagging and writing.
The first stop I made during this venture into Florida was the Orlando area. It was there that I met a delightful new friend and fellow travel blogger, Erika Wiggins. I’ve been back to visit her twice while camped here in Homosassa. Through Erika I met yet another friend and fellow blogger, Rachelle Lucas. The three of us met up for some peaceful kayaking at Wekiva Springs. With so much in common conversation came easily as we enjoyed the serenity of the river.
I met three more “women of the water” right here in my campground. Donna Egbert, Sally Love and Kathy Edwards took me for a journey up Halls River to remote rookery filled with nesting birds.
I’ve mentioned in my last two blog posts that I’ve met a lot of new friends right here at Nature’s Resort. The “Cast of Characters” as I refer to them. From time to time I hop on a pontoon boat with one gang or another for a relaxing cruise down the river. Here’s some of my favorite characters… John, Gail, John (lots of John’s here!), JB (who’s also a John) and KC.
When an article about my journey was featured on the front page of the Citrus County Chronicle I was almost overwhelmed by the outreach of many locals with suggestions of places I should see, and offers of kayaking adventures. It was that article that brought Glen and Gwen Cook into my life. It took a few weeks before we were able to coordinate our schedules for an outing on Crystal River, first on our kayaks to Three Sisters Springs, and then in their motorboat down the river to the gulf.
Days after our first outing I was invited to join up with a group of their friends for a 9-10 mile journey to Ozello Point and back. This was one of my more intense kayak workouts, in howling winds and waves.
I had a marvelous experience right after we launched our kayaks and headed down the channel toward to river. A hawk had gotten himself completely entangled in some fishing line and was struggling to fly, landing in the water amongst some of our group. He managed to flap himself to the shoreline nearby, but I doubted he’d survive as tangled up as he was. (I saw a dead Anhinga, caught up in fishing line and hanging from a tree limb, while out with the pontoon group above.)
Luckily one of the kids on the dock had a pocket knife, which was passed to me as I approached the hawk. I have to admit the sharp talons and beak of this panic stricken hawk were a little intimidating, but I took a slow and gentle approach. He must have sensed I was there to help because he held quite still as cut the line and untangled the rest from his body and wings. And then I got to hold him for a moment which was very cool indeed! (I believe it’s a Coopers Hawk. Any hawk experts out there??)
Interestingly I had a similar experience with a pelican who got snagged by a young boy fishing off the dock at Nature’s Resort a few weeks ago. I’m now being called “The Bird Whisperer” 🙂
A day or two later I joined up with Glen, Gwen, Kim and Chuck for an outing at Rainbow Springs! This was one of my favorite spots yet!!
I’ve mentioned numerous times how fortunate I have been to meet so many wonderful new friends as I’ve traveled across this country. And none more friendly and engaging than those I’ve met and shared time with in the Crystal River/Homosassa area. Thank you one and all for adding to the blessings and memories on my journey.