In the last blog Sharon pointed out a lot of her reason's for loving the beach... so I thought I should chime in from my perspective as well. As she mentioned we were both worried about transitioning to the heat once again but have found the weather here on the Florida peninsula be near perfect for us. With daytime highs in the mid to low 80's and overnight lows in the mid to low 60's there just isn't anything to complain about here!!!
As she also mentioned I spend whole lot more time outside when we are near the water. I mean, the smell of the sea just can't be beat... well maybe except for the detrital aromas at low tide. The sea breezes with sea gulls, brown pelicans and various terns flying overhead let you know just how close to the ocean you are. I am the early riser in the house so one treat for me whenever we are near the beach are the fabulous sunrises and St Andrews has been no exception.Our front porch faces due east and we can see slices of the waterfront from our windows and patio on that side of Abbey.
I love getting up and putting on a pot of freshly ground coffee... While enjoying the aroma of the coffee brewing I open up all of Abbey's windows and start watching for the pink hues emerging from the early sun before it rises. Once the first cup of coffee is in hand I venture outside with my camera hoping for some nice photo opportunities during the early morning sunrise... Unfortunately my old beat up point and shoot camera doesn't do much justice to the sunrises. But it really doesn't matter as I enjoy each one of them immensely as I watch the birds flying as silhouettes across the backdrop of reds, yellows and oranges in the sky. The mullet are usually leaping high out of the water and splashing down into the still bay waters forming concentric circles emanating from their landing sites... Yep I just love experiencing a good morning sunrise at the ocean side...
As Sharon also mentioned there is still a lot of water standing as after having talked with many of the locals it appears as if most of this water came from 20 inch rains during the July 4th holiday period combined with an extremely wet August. The camp hosts here said that in August it rained nearly every day... Yikes it wouldn't have been much fun hosting that month here in the state park. It is kind of sad though as there are numerous trees still submerged underwater and I fear that many of them, especially the pines, will not survive their "feet" underwater this length of time not allowing for the critical respiration the roots need.
But you know as much as I love the beach there are still a few things I don't like about them... The bugs can be bad although luckily they aren't here as we have no mosquitoes, even with all this standing water, and only a few biting flies that are pretty annoying when they get you... The traffic around beach areas has a tendency to be more congested but this area isn't too bad. However, it is also during the off season and we heard many locals say that they like to get away in July when it is especially crowded here. But thing I like the least are the "stupid tourists" (those who are thoughtless in their behavior during vacation mode). I guess we may have been one of those in our past but I hope not..
Who are these people? One for example has her dog down at the beach where it is clearly marked with signs that say no pets on the beach. Not so bad if you don't know better but a young park attendant came by and appeared to politely remind the lady she was violating the rules .She argued with the poor young fellow and after he left she simply stayed put and didn't bother to leave! To her the rules were obviously made for other people... A late friend of mine once said that people such as these "stupid tourists" should be called "Tourons" which he further explained were people that were half tourists and half morons... gotta love it when a new word makes so much sense.
As we were taking a stroll down the beach yesterday we came up to the jetties and noticed a crowd of people near the base of the jetties. Hoping to see a fisherman's huge catch we walked closer. Then we noticed they weren't watching a fisherman pull in a lunker..... instead they were feeding some raccoons!!! Yes, there are also signs everywhere saying do not feed the wildlife. But do these Tourons think those rules apply to them? No, and in fact they are feeding them in such a way that the raccoons would walk on the hind legs to take the food out of their hands!!! Geeshh people, think about this! Raccoons are nocturnal animals so what are they doing out during the day? It may be because they have been enticed by the food of many previous tourons but it could just as likely be that they are sick with something such as rabies! Do you think any of the tourons considered that and the fact that they might be spending their next week undergoing those shots in their stomach to prevent rabies???
Sigh... yes I still loathe the tourons but will not let them spoil my fun at the beach... sorry for the rant but some things just get under my skin!!!