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November 20 and 21, 2015 Wednesday Key West, Thursday Snorkeling, Everybody Happy……
Bahia Honda State Park
Big Pine Key, Florida
Another day when the snorkel trips to the reef are all cancelled due to winds so we go over around the cabin area to see if we can find a path to an area Nancy told us she frequently saw folks snorkeling when she and Bill were fishing.
Bahia Honda means deep bay, in Spanish, is locally pronounced: BAY-ah HON-da. In Spanish it is pronounced Bah-EE-ah OWN-dah which sounds a lot lovelier to my ear. Anyway, the park has three duplex cabins on stilts, 5 units in all. The cabins and a tents only campground face each other across a small lagoon looking body of water.
We walk over to the tent lane and down to the last site # 80. There are only two sites occupied and this one is vacant so we set up our picnic lunch.
After lunch, we ignore the old saying that you should wait an hour before swimming and I’m first in the lagoon where I see quite a few fish all along the edges.
I’m happily snorkeling away and David is about to come in when I hear “HEY, HEY”. I come up and there is a ranger telling me we cannot swim here, “It’s a quarry and very dangerous”. Well rules are rules but it sure doesn’t look dangerous to me around the edges which is where the fish are. It’s much clearer than the beach so I’m not pleased to have to get out. Behind me to the right in this picture are the tent sites and specifically the one where we had our lunch.
Ok so now where? We head back to our campground and get into the water by the waterfront campsites where Bill and Nancy were camped The sun on the water makes it appear silver. We see a few fish here but many more when we move around to the area nearer the Route 1 bridge.
It’s a bit choppy today but not too bad. I come up right near a campsite, get out and walk over closer to the bridge
Here we see numerous fish. Mostly of one kind and I don’t know my fish so perhaps Nancy or some other fisher person can identify them for me. Love those big blue eyes on the golden ones and the great blue stripes on the others.
The beautiful yellow and black striped fish is the Sargent Major. This is a bigger one than I’ve seen before.
There are other interesting things beneath the water in addition to fish.
I’m pretty pleased with how my Nikon S33 is preforming under water.
I know, enough fish pictures. But it sure was fun swimming among them even just off the shore.
We return home for dinner and then come back to our final snorkeling site to catch the sunset. This first picture was taken at 5:31. That seems so early for sunset to me.
Once the sun sets we walk back to our campsite but on the way I notice the color coming from the waterfront sites and walk over there to where I find an empty one.
This is the after color as seen from a great waterfront site currently empty. A lucky person is going to move in here.
Day Number 6 at Bahia Honda comes to an end for us.
In the morning we go over to the store to see if the boat to Looe Key might be going today, even knowing that it wouldn’t.
On the way we come across two crazy people going out on the water with an interesting kayak. The skies are black and rain is predicted for all day. They reply that it’s just water. I think they are right about that but the potential for thunder and lightning won’t allow me to join them. Still their kayak is interesting. It has wheels that fit into the bottom to pull it with the cart on the bicycle. It also has peddles and any number of other conveniences for kayakers and fishermen.
The kayak is a Hobie Mirage Outback and if we didn’t already have two closed kayaks that we like very much we might well be purchasing an open cockpit Hobie Mirage.
I wonder how long the Hobie owners stay out as it rains all day today. In the morning, in between showers, we managed to get to the Flea Market to check out their produce.
It is a bleak day and the Flea Market has only 3 produce venders among the numerous stalls of clothing and other wares.
There is great people watching including the owner of these shocking shoes. I love not only the colors which so well match his outfit but the upturned toes as though they were the shoes of an elf which he definitely resembles don’t you think.
David sees the wicker motorcycle before I do. It’s a real work of art and I’m surprised he doesn’t go in to ask its price. Thankfully there is no room in Winnona or who knows whether he might have brought it home. Tough to ride though.
These pictures are for my friend Pam who has a home in the Outer Banks of North Carolina where she frequently beach combs for sea glass. I have a hard time imagining all this came from the sea and think it more likely that the vendor has a machine to turn it out from colored glass. But still it’s certainly pretty. The table was here but the vendor was not in sight.
And if this isn’t enough to entice you to visit the Flea Market on Big Pine Key, you can have breakfast here as well.
We purchase some tomatoes, two limes, fresh green beans and two mangos. The clouds have darkened and the rain begins again as we leave and head over to Winn Dixie for things they didn’t have. Winn Dixie is not my favorite supermarket but in the Keys, it’s all there is. Then we stop by the bicycle shop for David to pick up a new seat. He doesn’t’ have much padding anymore.
In the afternoon I use the forced indoor rain time to contact Verizon and activate my new Samsung Galaxy 5S cell phone. Unfortunately the “technician” who answers my call is an idiot. She asks me for a the numbers of the phone and sim card and then activates the phone before moving my contacts or pictures over. When I ask about this she apologizes for forgetting and says she assumed they were in the cloud. I don’t do cloud I tell her. Enough of my information is in the stratosphere as it is. Then she tells me I’ll have go to a Verizon store and they can do it but she cannot. Right! If I’d wanted to go to the store I would have done that in the first place.
But the phone is activated and I can put in a few numbers I might use before I get around to taking it to the store in Marathon. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that our Verizon signal in the section of the campground we are in is weak at best even with our booster and the weather lately has made it much worse.
That said, I notice that the Samsung apparently does not have as good an antenna as my former HTC phone did since it is barely able to provide 1X while the HTC was doing at least 3G with a bar or two if I was lucky most of the time. I thought newer and more expensive electronics were supposed to work better than older ones. Guess it’s like those upgrades they do to software which take away the things I like about the program and give me things I don’t give a fig for.
I think the rain and dark skies are beginning to get to me. Here’s to a brighter cheerier tomorrow.