Friday, July 30, 2010

Ramrod Salt Flats

The salt ponds that stretch west of Ramrod Key are as pretty as a picture.

There is a plaque along Indies Road thanking the Spottswood family for donating these watery lands for conservation.

I find it hard to imagine that even they could have figured a way to develop the salt ponds but I'm sure the donation worked as a tax write off. And now these birds have a place to call home.Including this diver, submerged and hunting:

In summer, during the rainy season the salt ponds become a broad lake of water.
In winter, the dry season, they slowly dry up and become smelly mud flats. As the mud dries it smells like a barnyard, as though a thousand cows have been pissing in the mangroves. It is such an odd smell in such a non agricultural place it is quite mind bending each Spring before the rains come.
Indies Road is a one lane street that dead ends a mile south of Highway One.
The causeway is kept in place by cement bags wetted and placed along the edge of the roadway.
Unthinking drivers like to drive on the edge helping to break down the road.In 2005 the road collapsed here but it was soon fixed. The Spottswoods own an island at the end of the street and they don't tolerate any interruptions to their services.
Houses along here have been for sale for a while. A few years ago a home like this cost more than half a million. Not anymore.
Priceless views, even when the water has dried up temporarily.
The problem for people selling nowadays is adjusting to the new reality. My home was recently appraised at $330,000 and for someone selling a home taking a bath to the tune of a few hundred thousand dollars is hard to take. I am not yet keen to move so I try to ignore the matter of values and enjoy the life. It must be tough though if you want to move, or worse, have to move.