I visited Rye Preserve in Parrish, Florida recently and walked along the creek. It was a pretty nice place even if a bit small. There were cicadas, dragonflies, and grasshoppers everywhere but only a very few mosquitoes – and oddly passive ones at that. In one place the trail rose high above the creek and I found a nearly-hidden beach.
The sand was covered with shoeprints and bare human footprints, but no one was there at the time. It seemed like a nice place for sunbathing. I have encountered many creeks that twist out of sight making me wonder what lies around the corner. They are like trails themselves. Many have high banks covered with impenetrable vegetation and I have imagined wading barefoot down the middle of them for miles, but most of them are too deep, too dirty, or are filled with obstacles such as logs. In contrast, this creek was nearly perfect. However, I still wanted to see the rest of the preserve and I had no good way to carry my shoes. I moved on.
I followed the trail across the road to where it met the creek further upstream. It was shadier there. I crawled to the other side of the creek on a log and followed another trail away from the brook. This is where I found a picnic table, a cemetery, a dumping ground for all kinds of garbage, and then the trail kind of dissolved into the forest. I also found some red fungi. I eventually did get my feet wet just for a minute when I returned. The mud sucked – literally. Then I took off my shirt and just sat for a while watching the perpetual ripples before heading back to the car.
My name is Dan. I am an author, artist, explorer, and contemplator of subjects large and small.