Friday, January 20, 2017

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The Tale of Two Kayaks

These two women arrived at the river with two kayaks. It was a package deal: each kayak came in its own package. They proceeded to unwrap the "packages" and laid out the formless kayaks on the ground. Somewhere in the package was a air compressor. After plugging the air compressor into a hole in the prone kayak it began to gradually assume the familiar kayak shape.

There were many other things to do in preparation for their trip down the river and the whole process was all new to me.  While I didn't stick around to see the completion of their tasks, I spied them out in the middle of the river later that day, paddling away! The kayaks looked quite elegant and stable and surprisingly unlike the rubbery masses that were spread out on the ground just a short time before.

Sunday, January 15, 2017


This couple was walking in the Silver Springs State Park when they stopped to check out the kayak rentals. They watched for some time, then turned around and walked over to the main part of the park. I don't think they took the boat ride or made any purchases. I had observed them on several occasion and they appeared to have had good time anyway; however, their son was a tad bored at times.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Kayaks Out Of Water

You've seen them on top of cars, in the back of pickup trucks, on trailers of various types. You've seen them in the Gulf of Mexico, on our local lakes, floating down the Rainbow River and in the shark-infested gator-infested waters of the Silver River and its tributaries.

The ones you see above are but a few of the numerous kayaks for sale at Dick's Sporting Goods store. They're cheap. Buy one and head for the waterways. And remember, turtles won't hurt you, water moccasins will chase you and bite you (sometimes fatally), gators may come after you but they eat only once every 30 days (or so I've been told) and the occasional monkey will just laugh at you. Yes, there are some monkeys in the area around Silver Springs.

One other word of caution: If, when you're hauling your kayak to the boat ramp, you see a gator lurking in the bushes, don't stop and feed it popcorn.  Retreat quietly and quickly. Those suckers can run up to 35 mph!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

A Foggy Morn on the Stone Creek Golf Course

The day began cool and foggy. Arriving at the third hole, I noticed that the sun shining through the fog on these brush-top plants made it look like they were covered in snow or ice.

The second shot was taken a couple of hours later, on the tenth hole. Still a grey day, but the fog had lifted, leaving these pine sentinels to watch over the golfers who dared challenge the back nine.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Kayaking & Canoeing the Silver River Canals

This car and trailer came from Alaska.  I asked the driver "Canoe kayak in Alaska?"  He said, "Not in January, you idiot!"

Here is where paddlers enter and disappear

These brave folks were never heard from again.  

Gator infested waters.  Plus a few turtles.

There's strength in numbers.

I warned this guy not to enter that dark area.  But did he listen?  Nooooooo!

They just left the ramp and she's already needing Dramamine !

Monday, January 9, 2017

No Entrance/No Exit

These gentlemen are busy constructing a lanai (porch) on the back of the house. You can see the new wall and they're almost done installing a new window.

Looks pretty good...until you realize there is no way people can get to this lanai from inside the house unless you go out the front and walk around to the back. We checked closely, and there is no door from the house to the lanai..

Perhaps they intend to install a door in the future.  But until then, food and drinks will have to be hauled outside from front to back.  Weird.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

The Mobile Barber

Living in the 21st century, we share an affinity for convenience. Thus we have convenience stores/gas stations where we are able to complete several shopping tasks at one time. We have drive-through restaurants and banks and pharmacies and even churches. We don't like waiting in line and when we want something, we want it "now!"

One of the latest attempts to make satisfying our needs more convenient is this mobile barber. And I can see where a mobile barber would be of great value to a busy executive or harried housewife. Short on time but your hair looks like an unkempt Maltese puppy? Give the mobile barber a call. He or she will soon be at your doorstep or in your office with scissors and hair dryer in hand ready to make you look presentable enough to attend the Oscars!

Friday, January 6, 2017

Honk! Honk!

This silly goose seemed upset about something because he kept on honking and we could find no reason for him to do so.  Very noisy goose!

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

The Crazy Cucumber

The Crazy Cucumber is a restaurant/bar combo located in the Heathbrook outdoor shopping mall. Its owner is a well-known restauranteur in town and has high hopes for the place. The night we were there, it was mostly empty inside (as you can see from the photo) but the tables outside were full of people drinking and eating and having a good time.

The service provided by our waitress was excellent. The food, however, was mediocre at best. One of our party ordered angel hair pasta from the menu but when the food was served, she got a plate of totally different pasta which lacked flavor and taste. A manager told us they were out of angel hair pasta.

It was quite incredible that they didn't offer other options when they realized they were out of a menu item, and instead plopped down a plate of unwanted pasta on the table as if that would be just fine.

We will not be returning anytime soon.

Monday, January 2, 2017

A Birdhouse Community

We have numerous 55+ communities in the Ocala area. Well, maybe five or six. This is another kind of community, a birdhouse community. I do not know if it is a 55+ community. But, in Ocala, it's possible.

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Santa At Silver Springs State Park

As you may recall, the old Silver Springs tourist attraction has been taken over by the State of Florida and combined with the adjacent Silver River State Park to become the Silver Springs State Park.  Much of the old park is gone, but the glass bottom boats remain, and last week, the place was humming with visitors.

The state has done a remarkable job in cleaning up the park, building a new walkway over the small island and constructing an amphitheater in the woods, which I'm guessing will be used to put on wildlife shows or something similar.

I was standing in a clearing near the amphitheater when I spotted Santa aboard one of the glass bottom boats traversing the Silver River. The boat came near and Santa saw me and waved.  I wanted to ask why I got a lump of coal for Christmas but the boat moved on too quickly!

The little kiddos on the boat got to see, not only the various fish swimming down deep, but also Santa himself, close up and personal.  How awesome is that?

Happy New Year to all my blogging friends!

[I'm still on a break but will be back before long.] 

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Hanukkah & Happy Christmas

Sorry I couldn't resist this one!  Don't know the source, however.  Have fun today no matter what holiday you celebrate or don't celebrate!

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas & Happy Hanukkah!

Merry Christmas!

Happy Hanukkah

(The above photo is from Photobucket)

I will be taking some time off to focus on the holidays but I wish for all my friends, a wonderful holiday season!

Friday, December 23, 2016

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Ashlyn (Previous misidentified as Ashley)

This is Ashlyn. She drives the food cart at the Stone Creek Golf Course. Golfers are always glad to see her, for her cart contains a variety of beverages, along with a number of snacks. And she has a really nice smile.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Santa at the Eye Doctor

This just in.  The Associated Press and Huffington Post are reporting that late last night Santa came close to wrecking his sleigh.  Evidently Rudolph's nose gave out and the sleigh hit a cell tower as it began a trial run out of Orlando.

There's no word on casualties yet, but Santa's entourage was able to limp along for some 75 miles before setting down on the Happy Trails horse farm just south of Ocala.

As this post went to press, one of our avid readers sent us the above photo. She spotted Santa at Ocala Eye getting his eyes checked.  A source close to Santa said it was Santa's fault the sleigh hit the cell tower; his eyesight is getting worse. It's been at least 50 years since he's had his eyes checked.

We are happy to report, however, that all is well.  Just a short time ago, a group of disaffected teen goths were swimming with the sharks at Silver Springs and they heard a cry from the sky, "Hi Yo, Silver!  Away!"

Wait, that's not right!  Oh oh.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Blue Heron - Royal Oaks Golf Course

Note: Double-click and this photo will embiggen for a better view.
"Photographers deal in things which are continually vanishing and when they have vanished there is no contrivance on earth which can make them come back again." — Henri Cartier-Bresson