I was going to go shoot my bow this morning. My plans were thwarted by a "Park Closed" sign when I arrived. Turns out that the park is closed until further notice because of sink hole activity.
I hope it's not bad enough to close it all the way down for good. It's a really nice place and resource...
I decided not to be disheartened. I went home for a moderate costume change and slight change in supplies, and I headed to one of my favorite nature-y places: Weedon Island Preserve.
Almost from the get-go I was greeted by wild life. Near one of the trail intersections, a gopher tortoise was peeking from his hole.
He let me get quite a few pictures, then I bid him adieu.
I continued on to one of my favorite places to watch birds. This little lagoon was pretty empty today, but I enjoyed watching this guy feed for awhile.
There were also some weird, gelatinous, bag looking things in the water, that I assumed were fish eggs. They were scattered throughout the lagoon.
I then moved on to the tower. I love taking pictures up there. Today there was a lot of activity down below, which isn't always the case. Boaters, kayakers, birds, fishers...
I also talked to some other visitors at the top of the tower. We figured out where St. Pete was versus Tampa. I mentioned I'll be moving to St. Pete in June, and they commented how wonderful the creative scene is there. They also commented on the prices, which is a concern, but as a renter and someone who doesn't mind living small I'm finding things that are reasonably priced. I wished them well and moved on.
As I moved along the boardwalks I saw so many birds. I found myself wishing the spiders were out, because they make for good photographic subjects. Soon...
I saw a raccoon in the mangrove prop roots, but he was too far away and it was too dark to get a picture. I did get a picture of some tracks along one of the creeks though!
I came upon another lagoon that is a good place to see birds feeding. This time there were a ton of them! However, some less-than-skilled and oblivious kayakers scared them into flight. I was grumpy they were scared from their roosts, but I got some good pictures of them flying. (The ones posted here aren't edited or cropped as of yet...)
As I progressed through the park, I felt the stress melting away. When I paused at a calm lagoon, I breathed the cool, spring air. I listened to the relaxing sounds of the water lapping the shore.
With my plan to shoot my bow, what I really wanted was to be in nature and to do something meditational. I did a different sort of shooting at Weedon Island, but the results were the same. I feel better.
I know that being out in nature is something I need. It's funny how I can neglect it so much sometimes. I know it is something I need to pay attention to, and yet it slips by me...
I will be more mindful about such things.