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

Henry David Thoreau

Carrying on

Saturday January 11, 2013
Myakka River State Park
Sarasota, Florida



It was one of those Saturdays


The big run (1)

I started the day off by over doing.   I set out to run 30 minutes down the park road and 30 minutes back .  This usually gets me to the powerline cut through to the lake.  Today I thought I would run on beyond and possibly catch some of the sunrise on the canopy walkover and then walk/run back since it was a little longer.   I got to the canopy in record time.  No one was there – but of course there are no pictures since I didn’t take my camera running.  I’ll try to get back before we leave and get some shots of being up on the swinging bridge in the tree tops or up on the viewing stand above the tree tops.   ANYWAY, after that I thought well I think I’ll just run on down to the Birdwalk.   This is really a boardwalk out into the flood plain of Upper Myakka Lake but Birdwalk is a cuter name. 

I thought I could probably do it in an hour.  And then I’d just walk back.   Turned out to be a 9.5 mile trip down and back which I wasn’t exactly planning for but it was good exercise and I saw gators and birds and wished I could have brought my camera.  




I’d run over 21000 steps at that point so I figured that’s it for the day.  But David wanted to go see the Celery Fields since we’d been told a lot of the birds who used to be at the lake here, were now over there.  This made us think this conversion of the Celery Fields into wetlands was a new project just this past year. 

Turns out the city bought this land from the growers in 1994 so it’s been in the development stage for 20 years and it looks like they are still working on it and just landscaped it.  It’s a great idea for doing natural treatment of storm drain water.  But it wasn’t where the birds were.  There were joggers and walkers.  It will be a nice urban park when the plantings fill out.  I’m wondering where the big hill came from.  It reminded me of Mount Trashmore in Virginia Beach.  It seems that the fields were all over flat land so could they have dredged it all and pilled the fill up to make such a Florida mountain?  It was actually a bit of a climb for my tired legs.  Really amazing that this entire area used to be Celery Fields.


Celery Fields (2)

Celery Fields (6)



Celery Fields (9)


Celery Fields (7)






Since we over there, we stopped by Detwiler’s farm market and boy was it hoping.  The place was packed with produce, products galore and people.   I’m not a good shopper as many of you know and am even less likely to want to do it in a crowd so I did a quick run through, threw some broccoli, oranges, peppers, and other veggies in the basket.  They had Plant City Strawberries but they didn’t look quite ripe to me.  I gave David the basket and left him inside ooggling and ahhgooling everything for sale.   I nearly always bring a book with me whenever we drive anywhere for just this purpose.  Out to the car I went and sat reading for however long it took him to enjoy himself, add  a HUGE bag of pecans to the purchase.   And no doubt to talk himself out of myriads of other things. Smile


Detweilers (1)


Detweilers (5)





Ruby's oil chage

Home we went where David changed Ruby’s oil!   Thanks David!!   I didn’t get a picture of him actually under the car, only after the deed was done and he was cleaning up.  Shhhh don’t tell the park, I don’t think they like that sort of thing but it needed doing.


Another job that needed doing was the laundry. I got that one.  With one washer and one dryer at each bath house, this is not my most favored way of doing laundry.  Usually I like a laundromat largely because I can throw 2 weeks worth of laundry in 3 washers and be done in just over an hour.  Not so today.  It took all afternoon, back and forth, back and forth.   But it’s done and I’m glad.   By the end of the day I’d gone 11.71 miles.

We finished off the day by stopping to say so long to Bill and Nancy who are moving on tomorrow.  We have really enjoyed our few days over lapping here with them and hope to see them soon on down the road.





After heavy rain last night, today dawned warm and sunny.  We thought about going to the beach but Sunday, Sarasota and the “Nation’s #1 Beach” with only so much parking made us reconsider.   I think we’ll try on Monday instead.




So we went out on the bicycles to check out the things I’d seen yesterday and get some pictures.   But first David found this cute little tree frog who was able to change color to blend in totally with the beige electric box whose cover he was hiding under.  Sorry Karen but he was SO cute.





strutting stork

First stop was at the bridge where the Wood Storks seemed to be strutting around in the water with their wings open.  Not sure what that’s about since I don’t think it’s mating season.  Just beyond the bridge is the River Side trail which turned out to be a delight.  We saw gators of course and the resident egrets and herons but also limpkins, night herons and a flying bald eagle and osprey.   It’s a beautiful hike and we took our time.




































Next stop down the road was going to be the Canopy Walk but the pull out was piled with cars and so were both sides of the road.  Walking across a canopy when you have to hurry so you don’t hold anyone else up is not so much fun and the tower only has room for 6 or 8 at the most at the top.  So we decided to skip it.  Maybe tomorrow morning for sunrise??




Instead, we biked on down the road and stopped at the power line walk to the river. 









That fish looks a bit too big for the heron don’t you think??




Next stop was at the Birdwalk near the end of the park drive.  Of course it looks like a boardwalk and enables you to go safely out over the wetlands to get much closer to the lake and see the many different species of birds who visit.




The usual suspects were here although there were no roseate spoonbills today or white pelicans.  But egrets, herons, numerous ducks which I’m terrible at identifying, red winged blackbirds, a flotilla of coots and some Yellow rumped warblers.





butter butt





And finally we biked over to the concession area to see who was at the Weir.  By this time the sun was low in the sky and it was impossible to get pictures to the west which is where all the roseate spoonbills and other birds were hanging out.  All but the guy with the golden slippers.  I just love the Snowy Egret.   Another place we’ll have to return to at a different time and on a different day.





By the time we returned it was dinner time and we had biked 9.5 miles and walked 4.0.  I’ve definitely had my exercise these past 3 days that’s for sure.  

We’re trying our best to keep the recent bad news from taking over everything.  It’s hard.  I feel like we paid our dues for at least a few years, not for just one.


  1. That 1st closeup of the white bird looks like it has a beautiful necklace on!!! And LOVE that 2nd picture of the full length egret? so beautiful!!!! Lots of exercise there....

  2. The bird photos are just beautiful. My, you've doe a lot of walking and racking up the miles. I'll be so glad when I can get back in the game.

  3. Hahaaaa … reading book while David's ooggling and ahhgooling everything for sale…. aw cute little frog

    Another beautiful day ... good to see you both doing what you love ...

  4. You got some great pics of birds today. I don't think I would have been able to hold the camera after such a big workout!! I'm sure the news has been difficult to take in. I know it would be for me. All of us, only have this moment and you are indeed a testament to today's' theme... Carrying On. Hugs to you both!!

  5. Wow....busy,busy,busy. Makes me feel like I need to get out and do more.

  6. That's a lot of steps. I'll bet you were tired at the end of the day.

    You really need to warn me when you post a frog picture.... We think that may have been a Cuban Tree Frog. They are very invasive and eat the native frogs and lizards.

    That produce stand looked so nice.

  7. Robinkwalton@gmail.comJanuary 15, 2014 at 8:57 AM

    My favorite,The "man with the golden slippers"

  8. The canopy walk has been jammed frequently this past month. Good idea to go early in the morning!

  9. 11.71 miles walking back and forth to do the laundry! Where do you carry all those clothes in Winnona? You have to let me in on your storage secrets. ;c)

  10. Love your description of the snowy egret. Mui would have bought out the store at that market.

  11. love the pictures!

  12. The young heron, ahinga, the snowy egret and the ibis are fantastic. The pose that you caught the ahinga in is great. I also like the fat brown and yellow bird sitting on the end of the branch. What fun seeing all of them! Never heard of a limpkin- sounds like a character from Dr. Seuss. xxxooo

  13. I think David and I would have quite a contest to see how long it took to finally leave a farmer's market. :)

  14. The big hill at Celery Fields is actually a trash dump. It certainly has been "recycled" into a nice recreation spot. Loved your photos today especially the Snowy Egret.

  15. Awww -- what a sweet little frog. Keep on carrying on and doing what you love.

  16. Awesome photos! The extra exercise helps with the new stress, It is still there, but it helps our bodies deal with the stress.

    1. Oh yes, all that fruit and veggies look delish. I'm afraid that I'd buy more than we could eat in a reasonable amount of time. A bad habit of mine.

  17. We've been hearing so much about Plant City strawberries, we'll have to make sure to get down there and get some!

  18. Wonderful pictures. What a beautiful place.

  19. I think the wood storks were using their wings to shade the water so they could see the fish easier.. Your pictures are awesome!

  20. Great pictures and an amazing number of steps. Wow! Makes me feel lazy! I love that place where all the birds gather. So many that I could stand there for hours :)

  21. The variety of birds & amphibious life you have there in Florida is something we lack here in Arizona. I guess it has to do with the abundance of water you have over there. But hey, we don't got no bugs!!

  22. You really did get some great bird pictures! Nice group of coots. I wonder where we ever got the idea of calling people 'old coots'. Having seen a lot of coots in Florida, I could not tell an old one from a young one.


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