Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Woods For Pleasure

To find myself at home with no obligations left me puzzled: what to do? I figured I might as well go for a ride.

There aren't many roads to ride for fun but what there is, in the Lower Keys, I know. I could have ridden ten miles to Sugarloaf and ridden the south shore. I thought about taking the eight miles out and eight miles back across Big Torch Key. Or I could have ridden twenty minutes north and stopped for the sunset at the southern end of the Seven Mile Bridge. Instead I rode to Big Pine, turned north at the traffic light and explored Port Pine Heights.

In the last light of day I headed back to the supermarket for last minute supplies. I stopped along the way for a short walk in the pines of the Jack Watson Trail.

I started out okay but the walk devolved into a camera exercise that soon lost its flavor. Cheyenne was in Alabama and walking without my dog seemed pointless. I was lonely.

A controlled fire got away from it's minders and burned a hundred acres of the Key Deer Refuge and the marks of the blaze are still clearly visible along the trail.

The greenery is coming back. Indeed pines killed by an infestation years ago are slowly being replaced by survivors who are coming bak strong across Big Pine Key. But it is winter and leafless branches are everywhere.

Sunset brings darkness around six in the evening on winter time. I am looking forward to longer days but it's not until we go back on summer time in the spring that we will see sunsets at seven pm and later. The closer you are to the equator the less seasonal variation there is.

I mooched around for a while until it was dark.

Winn Dixie the Sunday night before Christmas was hell. The store was crowded with frantic shoppers, the aisles were packed with freshly delivered supplies and the obstacle course made me crazy. Better to be in the woods and on the trails, with or without my dog.