The Sportsman’s World: A Week Off in Florida

By Leon Archer

It’s been an interesting week.

Sweet Thing and I went with Alicia, Nathaniel and Annaliese to Florida. I had some things that needed to be taken care of at our house in Barefoot Bay. 

As hot as it has been in Fulton sometimes this summer, it has been decent compared to Florida. The humidity was higher than a woodpecker’s nest, and outdoor activities were only pleasant if they were of short duration.

We took the boat out on the river one day and spent two afternoons at the beach. We watched the super full moon come up while we sat on Wabasso Beach.

Even the breeze off the Atlantic that evening was pretty warm, but it was mild compared to a mile inland.

We sweltered as we cut back the shrubs outside our winter home. Alicia wielded the clippers and soon our plants were back under control, and the excess was piled by the roadside waiting to be collected.

The bougainvillea still had a crown of magnificent purple blossoms, but a heap of its thorn studded branches were piled with the other plant clippings. When we return in December, it will be hard to tell that it was ever cut back.

I tried fishing while we were out in the boat, but it was too hot for me, and must have been for the fish as well, because they ignored my lures. I soon called it a bad deal, and we cruised around on the Indian River Lagoo, creating our own breeze and ignored the fish.

This is the rainy season in Florida, and our grass looked lush and green. It never looks that good in the winter when we are there.

Our section of Florida has gotten twice the usual amount of rainfall this past month, and everything is growing and blossoming. It is very pretty.

I saw a fair sized indigo snake in our back yard, and I told the kids to leave it alone if they saw it. Indigos are harmless and not aggressive. They are docile enough to be handled; although, they would rather be left alone.

They eat all sorts of small vermin, and they are protected in Florida. They will eat other snakes, even rattlers if they run across one.

This particular one was only about 4 foot long, but they get bigger. He wanted out of my sight when he saw me, and I didn’t try to interfere with his retreat. He will take care of a lot of critters outside that I don’t want inside.

As I write this, we are one day away from leaving and we will be home before you read this. I have two appointments Friday, and then it’s back to the old routine.

I know I won’t be complaining about New York weather for a few days at least. I don’t know if I’ll get my fishing rod out right away when I get home. I have some decoys that need to be completed, so I may try to stay cool and get them done.

Sorry I missed you last week.

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