Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Middle Torch Afternoon

I am sniffing out Autumn in the Florida Keys. Mind you, I'm not actually finding it yet. Temperatures are hovering around 90 degrees mid afternoon, though all the hurricane activity in the Atlantic and off Mexico is producing nice breezes, which blow away the humidity. However the sun, as Chuck pointed out, is lower in the sky and has changed the quality of the light.Thus it is Cheyenne and I are starting to look at longer walks in the woods, places we haven't seen since last Spring. MTK on the light pole stands for Middle Torch Key. Torch wood is some kind of hardwood that apparently burns nicely but I would know what a torch wood looked like if you hit me over the head with it. This street at the north end of Middle Torch Key and is a backwater of a backwater. It has just a few houses and they aren't all packed with people. Check out these serious and proper hurricane shutters. Let the wind blow and the coconuts fly! By the way storm season doesn't officially end until November so there's plenty of time for me for a hurricane to come by and force me to pull ours out. Just to make this little street perfect the opposite side to the homes is no longer open to development. This sign is Uncle Sam muscling in and outlawing free market destruction of the mangroves. Sell them off and pay off the national debt I say! Bloody government. That would be the same government that maintains a pretty nice road around here for everyone to use. Private enterprise did put up this rather nice wall.The paved street ended and we found ourselves in a sylvan paradise. I ambled, Cheyenne ran back and forth sniffing madly. God was in his heaven, and all's right with the world. The thing about these trails is that they are shaded but they are also protected from the cooling breezes. In winter that's great as a poor shrivelled up resident needs cover from the cold north winds. This time of year a breeze is nice.
Paved road above.
Dirt road below.
Jungle, Keys style.
The funny thing is, I used to dread winters in California, the damp, the rain, the mud. Here winter is just a different season, enjoyable in it's way.

Even if it's too cold to swim in winter it's just right for getting lost in the mangroves. Cheyenne doesn't know it yet, but in a few weeks the suffocating heat of summer will be gone and she will be ready to walk a lot further...I am getting ready myself for less swimming and more walking.