Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

A Referral Post to those who have followed us

January 29, 2020

In 5 days it will be a year since David's death.  It seems impossible.

For those who followed this blog for any or all of the 9 years that David and I full timed, you will know that my previous post was my final one here.

For reasons I’m sure you understand, I’ve started another blog to chronicle what it is like to go from full time RVing as part of a couple, to living life as a single after all these years. 

I've had a very difficult time this past year and with trying to get a new blog started.  I’ve given up many times but that story is in my new blog.

If you’d like to see what has happened in these nearly 12 months, you can find me at On My Own    I'll try to fill in the gap for those who wonder what I've been doing in these months and where to now that I'm on my own.  Not that I have it figured out by any means but time has passed.

I have published my first post and hope to see you in the comments there.  I can use all the support I can get.  Many thanks to those of you who repeatedly encouraged me to do this.


Final Post

Wednesday February 6, 2019

Many have noticed I've not been blogging for the past 3 weeks.  At first it was because I cannot make the Live Writer "fixes' work for me and I find blogger impossible for all but nearly pictureless posts like this one.

But then also because David's condition began to seriously deteriorate. 

We found out in mid January that there were no more myeloma treatments that he hadn't already tried and eventually failed.   Carrie came to visit and brought baby Colin for 4 days at the end of January.  David went into the hospital the day before she flew home.  Her last visit with him was there.  He died on Sunday February 3.    He had turned 72 years old less than a month before and had battled this horrible disease bravely and without complaint for 7 years.

This blog was started to chronicle The Direction of OUR Dreams.  Without him there is no OUR and no Dreams so the blog will end with this post.

Even though we both knew this illness was fatal neither of us ever gave up hope.   I'm in a fog, attempting to believe this has actually happened and he will never hike or kayak beside me again. I'm just trying to cope with this devastating change in my life.   I have no idea what is next.

Thank you all for your friendship and a BIG thanks to those of you who cared enough to be faithful commentors, some of you for many many years.  You have become my friends and I value you.  I'm so glad we were able to meet some of you in person so you could experience for yourself the kindness, the gentleness, the strength and the love that was David.

Blue Spring- Changes on Snake Creek

Thursday January 3, 2019                                                       Most Recent Posts:
Blue Spring State Park                                                           January Heat Wave in Manatee Country
Orange City, Florida                                                               From Ocean to Spring with a Big Interruption

It’s foggy when I walk down to the boat dock on Thursday morning just after dawn.  The only folks around are a group of black vultures which seem to live in the area just next to the boat launch.


Before I get in my kayak, I notice a committee meeting of sorts going on just to the left of the boat launch.



I notice the buzzards are not the only ones hanging around near the boat dock..   A Limpkin and a Wood Stork were also here in or near the shallows of the water..



I get my kayak positioned, take this picture, walk it into the water, get in and off I go.  One lone bird remains at the launch.  The black vulture on the pole seems unfazed by my presence.

Once in the boat I check out the top of the trees where I spot a Great Blue Heron.  They always look so strange, such big birds in the seemingly small branches at the top of trees.



I also spot a lone hawk on the snag sticking up.


Based on the color of his chest, I think he’s a red shouldered hawk.  Gorgeous bird.


The map is what the kayak/canoe rental place gives out.  The park itself has no map of the waterways unfortunately.  The blue star is where the boat launch is located, at the end of the boardwalk from the spring to the St. John’s River.  I have turned left and see the hawk above me in a tree on the far side of what is known as the lagoon.  It’s that odd shaped thing.  The next picture is what I see when I consider paddling into the lagoon this morning.   It’s beautiful in the fog but goes no where and I really want to head up Snake Creek to the back of Hontoon Island so I keep on going and turn into the Smith Canal.


The sun still hasn’t made an entry.


On the way to the Creek I spot this kingfisher.


There is something ancient feeling and swampy about the birds and cypress knees along the river.



At this point, I have to be very careful in looking for the opening to the creek.  It’s nearly hidden if you don’t know where to look.


While I’m looking along the edge, I get a fly by and an alligator sighting.



Does it look like an entry to a creek?


The entrance is quite narrow but then it widens out a bit.


The still water shows off the reflection of the Little Blue Heron.



The creek widens and narrows repeatedly..   It’s like being in another calmer, gentler world.


In the tree on the far left is a lone Ibis.  They usually hang out in groups.




I see another limpkin on a snag also off to the left.



Nothing but the sounds of the birds, the dark water and the trees.


An egret flies over my head.

The dark gray in the tree next to the tallest one turns out to be another Little Blue Heron
who apparently likes me less than the last one which was actually closer to my boat.  This one flies off.  Or maybe it’s not me at all just time to move on.



I’m quite surpised when I come to an impass of water lettuce and hydrilla.  This was not here last year.  These are among the most aggressive water plants in Florida.  Water lettuce can double in a few weeks.  Hydrilla stems can elongate as much as 6 or 8” per day.  

I can see the open water from here and decide to try to power through the mass.  It is hard and very slow going.  


Water Lettuce


I make it through but am not looking forward to the paddle back.


More great reflections.


The water plant invasion is encroaching from both sides.  Will the creek soon disappear from kayaking possibilities?


I reach another and larger mass.  I can’t see any open water even as far as my zoom can go.
Sadly I turn back, defeated by the invasives.  What used to be nearly a day long paddle up to the Hontoon Dead River and the back of Hontoon Island is no more.   I wonder if a motored boat would try cutting through this?


On the way back an anhinga and an alligator make great reflections in the water.





The alligator on the bank lets me know that everything along the edge is not water plants.  There is actually some dry ground.   A bit beyond the spot he staked out I pull up for a rest stop.


Back in the kayak, I notice an anhinga and an Ibis high above me.





Just after I zoom in, he turns and makes ready for flight. 


As the morning sun warms things up, the turtles come out to sun bathe.


The Great Blue Heron hides well in the gray branches, but he doesn’t stay long.


After battling through the water plant mass I come upon which may be a guided paddle.  Wonder what they will do when they reach the rough going?


Another kingfisher with a great hair day.


Perhaps the same heron, perhaps not.  I like his reflection and am able to get a close up.


It seems to be a day of reflections.   Paddling Snake Creek is a great place to see reflections and to do some personal reflecting as well.   Things are becoming increasingly difficult in our life so I’m grateful for these little get aways. 



Back in the St. John’s River I can look ahead and see the tour boat.  It’s wide open paddling here.


As I approach the put in, the tour boat is on my left and some private boats are anchored on the right. 


Even the take out is awash in reflections.