01 August 2007


It's so hot in Florida right now that I regret to say that I retreat to the comforts of the AC on most of my days off. Occasionally, I venture to some park for a quick hour long walk to look around but that's rare. So today, we are going to explore my first trip to the Everglades National Park.

I was told that April would be hot in South Florida, the mosquitoes would carry me away, but they were all wrong this past April 16th. There was a slight cold front that moved through and I enjoyed the sunshine on my face. I stopped in Florida City and booked my stay at a wonderful hostel. Then off I went to the ENP. My first stop was to the Anhinga Trail where I found these 16 alligators catching some sun rays.

I've seen plenty of alligators in my life. Unlike some of my peers, I NEVER get tired of just watching them. Maybe it's the sheer size of these creatures, or the docile look they have when they are just laying there, looking like they don't have a care in the world. I can't remember my first alligator sighting in life; I was probably just a small kid by the river back home in South Carolina. I may not remember the first but I always remember the last time I've seen them. They are majestic creatures and I am happy to be back in the Southeast where they are plentiful.

Everglades National Park held many animal sightings for me but one of my favorite parts of the day was seeing the dwarf cypress domes. I love cypress tress. I grew up visiting my family's river house by a huge cypress swamp. Many days were spent running through cypress knees pretending I was in some magical fairy world. In the Everglades poor soil causes the pond cypress trees to be dwarfed in appearance. I still think they are a sight to behold, even in miniature.

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