Sunday, June 19, 2011

St Marks National Wildlife Refuge

I grew up in Jacksonville, FL and we also lived there the first ten years of our marriage. I had never been, however, over in the "Big Bend" area of Florida. This is the part of the panhandle where the turn is made to go into the "panhandle" on the Gulf of Mexico side. After we finished the convention in Amelia Island and spent Sunday with family, we drove across I 10 and then before Tallahassee, dropped down to see St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge. The first draw was the fact that there was a lighthouse, but I could have spent all day there! I talked to one guy that was fishing that told me that earlier in the year, he had seen 64 alligators there in one day! This looked like a place Charles Kuralt would have liked and may have even visited. Lots of bird watching to be had here!

I will have to share more shots of the lighthouse, which had a lovely, natural setting.

When Jim and I were talking about it being our 35th wedding anniversary, I said, just think, in fifteen more years, we will have our 50th....whoaaaaaa!!!!!! That made me feel really old! Then I got to thinking about my "bucket list" and things I would like to do while still able. One of them is to go snorkeling. I have always loved water, swimming, nature, the beach, etc. Jim, however, informed me after we were married that he really doesn't like the beach and didn't particularly want to go, even though we often did go before we were married. So, vacation trips specifically to the beach were out. Luckily, his conventions are often at the beach, so I get to go play alone.

This year I did go with a lady with whom he works and we had a great time. Last year, Allison and Craig came and we spent part of a day at the beach. It was a little out of my comfort zone to ask his fellow worker if I could join her, but after we had such a good time, I was glad I did. How often do we not get out of our comfort zone or not pursue something we really want to do just because it is too much trouble?

St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge was a huge place and I really enjoyed seeing the area that we saw. I should say I saw...Jim sat in the car. Sure, it would have been easier to just go the usual way and not see all this beauty, but I am so glad we did go out of our way. While he does not enjoy the same things I enjoy, at least he tolerates me doing what I like, or most of it!

So, are you always taking the expected, easier way, or do you get off the beaten path? Just something to think I have to figure out how to accomplish this snorkeling thing!
We did go once about twenty five years ago, in Cozumel, Mexico. Jim does not swim and could not float, so it did not go well for him, but I LOVED it! Yes, I must go snorkeling again!

1 comment:

Jan Castle said...

Great wildlife pictures Holly! I hear it will be in the high 90's next week, so your timing was perfect for your trip! We are in the high 60's here in Salem today with mostly white puffy clouds.
See you soon!!!