Sunday, December 2, 2012

Big Pine Key

The cool winter season has brought gorgeous crisp days with it. Every morning when I am at work I find myself heading east on Highway One straight into another spectacular sunrise. A few clouds, a inky dark sky and thick red bands of sunlight breaking through... every day it seems like.

I pick up Cheyenne and figure out where I might take her as we set off into the gray daylight which becomes full blown day by the time we get where we are going. Cheyenne likes a different walk each day, a chance to explore where other dogs have gone before so we stake out Big Pine, West Summerland, the beaches on Ohio Key or the back streets of north Ramrod Key.

The avenues of Big Pine Key are a current favorite for Cheyenne. Especially on days following trash collection because people on Big Pine have a really hard time understanding the connection between garbage and raccoons.

Cheyenne doesn't knock the trash cans over, we find them like this, trashed by the masked bandits overnight and their contents splayed across street and yards for all to see and enjoy. She does her best to help the clean up, and she usually manages to find something edible amongst the bags and plastic rubbish.

How people can live like that and not be moved to buy proper garbage cans with lids, I just don't know.

I got a kick out of some mailboxes I saw, the one above celebrating the famously ephemeral notion of freedom" in a economy built on debt, while below the stop sign reminded me of the proposals to end Saturday mail delivery. That would be an expression of progress, I guess.

I got a bit artistic with my phone camera as I waited for Cheyenne to stop sniffing. Below I set the camera to compensate for interior artificial lighting and a picture of the dead brown bracken ferns came out like his:

At the beginning of the walk before seven am the temperature was around sixty degrees and Cheyenne was full of energy so much so I had to trot to keep up. Two hours later she had slowed down a bit but she was stil game to keep on walking. During that time I met hardly anyone at all. I was quite surprised to see Joe Stalin is alive and well complete with bushy mustache and living in a Big Pine trailer park. He said good morning with a heavy Hispanic accent and appeared to have lost a lot of weight since his death was reported in 1953, in the Kremlin.

There were a few other dog walkers in the distance on the long straight streets but they veered off dragging their heavily leashed prisoners to avoid any possible contact with my rabid wild companion wandering back and forth sniffing this and that at her leisure.

I was ready to go and do a little light food shopping at the Big Pine Winn Dixie but herself needed a pause to refresh so we stopped in the shade. I guess even though it wasn't very warm yesterday she wanted shade from force of habit, because in the summer shade is very necessary at this latitude, especially if you walk in a heavy fur coat.

I like stoping off at Winn Dixie because the supermarket opens at seven ad there is hardly anyone in the aisles or checkouts at this ungodly early hour. The local bums who take up residence in the bushes around here must stil be asleep even though they leave ample evidence of their presence, in the form of trash and graffiti. This one has been around a while on the barrier to the Key Deer Refuge. "Casper the friendly fag," which insult is directed at I know not who or why. For some reason I find the words more funny than inappropriate.

For night workers like me the sun this high in the sky spells only one thing: time to get back in my coffin and sleep in the darkness of my bedroom/cave.

Cheyenne could hang around for hours but as reluctant as I am to spoil her fun, I need to get her back in the car. And get the pair of us back home, she to breakfast and me to the bed aforementioned.

Night night, until tomorrow, different place, same time.