Sunday, August 7, 2011

The stuff I promised you. Not a travelogue!


Bailey White wrote about Micanopy, and that's why I looked for it on the internet.  It's a sleepy drive from Lake City;  even while we were driving through Gainesville it was not especially stressful.  It was one of those 110° heat-index days that you're tired of reading about, and we cracked the car windows and got out. You can walk the length of the business district in five minutes, if you stop and browse a little.

We spent some time at the Shady Oak Gallery where local artists display and sell their work. The place is air conditioned and the pieces were great. They offer week-long stained glass classes, if you're interested. They also rent suites long- and short-term, in case the place charms the pants off you. And, if you're not charmed out of your pants, well, you must not be wearing any.

I had some serious business on my mind as we walked into the gallery: the only public restrooms in Micanopy.

After that, I could enjoy the wares. Beverly (an artist there) told us the town's name is pronounced "Mik uh NOPE ee" and that it used to be a company town. Everyone worked at a crate factory, and all the stores were company stores. She came for a visit years ago, stayed to work on her art, then took a part-time job in the gallery.  She's living the dream.  Seriously.

The clouds waited too long for the public restroom. We took refuge here:

I was going to take a picture here

and then I saw that he was selling postcards of the same picture, and I imagined me asking if it was okay for me to shoot, and him pointing at the postcard rack, so I took this picture instead:

To add poo to the potato salad, I can't remember the shop's name. "Robe__t_____"?  He sold some interesting memorabilia, including some ancient stuff.  It's a museum where you can touch and buy the exhibits.

Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida, where you cannot touch and buy the exhibits

The picture is fine. I was fuzzy that day.
RAWR!  Mosey away - I am a Giant Sloth.

"Does this mammoth make me look fat?"  Alternate caption: "The Mammoth, and some elephant-thing."  Vote now.  [You KNOW I did not suggest the elephant remark.]

Ichetucknee Springs

This shot is no better than the ones I posted before, but I really took this one.
The spring is the deeper-blue area in the southwest quadrant of the picture

It was 100° that day, and it still took 20 minutes of self-talk to get me in.

At the Blue Hole (a different spring in the same system). Mary offered me her mask, and swam out with me to calm my jitters.

Again with Annie.  Annie would have swim swam swum out with a mask, but says she wouldn't have gone right over the spring's mouth like she did with Mary.


Thanks, Mary! You made our visit 10X better.
Mary and Jack L., originally from Long Island, NY.  It was fun meeting you!


This river was NOT closed. Once I got beyond the sign, I could see it was running just like before. They mean that it was too late to start down the river in a tube - they close that down at 3:30 PM.

The CUTE was not closed!

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Soaring Sun said...

This all looks like great fun. I love the Shady Oak concept and it is what I hope to do here in Truth or Consequences eventually--have a combination gallery/teaching studio where people can come to both appreciate and do artwork. We have lots of nice motels, spas and restaurants, so the infrastructure is already here to support it. Glad you had such a great time!

Chinatours said...

Cool experience!

Anonymous said...

That pool looks heavenly!!
And I just like to point out that the second picture of the red house is much better than the first. Or was that the first better than the second? Either way I definitely prefer one of them :)

Gaelyn said...

Oh that Blue Hole looks delightfully inviting. Glad you had Mary to show you the ropes.

Bob said...

So, for fifty cents, (or maybe you went all out and dropped a buck?) were the facilities at least clean?
When we first came to Europe, we'd get a little miffed at having to pony up some dough to go. HOWEVER, the facilities are just about always spotlessly clean, so we quickly got over ourselves.
I'll happily pay if that's the case, rather than having to "hover" over some disgusting swamp thing at Joe's Texaco.
(Don't mean to pick on Texaco, it just popped into my head)
You know, when you say to yourself, "Oh darn, I have to go to the restroom, and I forgot my "Haz-Mat" suit."?

The Good Luck Duck said...

Sue, yeah, exactly! That sounds awesome. It could be the same deal, minus the live oaks.

CT, it was!

Nina, you are very discerning. Not many people perceived that one of those shots was definitely superior.

Gaelyn, I was glad, too. I just couldn't get over my nervousness by myself.

Bob, I hear you loud and clear. It was $1 well spent, although I tried to get Annie to use the facilities and ride on my donation, too. Joe's Texaco is a horrible experience always.

Anonymous, you crafty so-and-so, you eluded my spam filter. Well-played, Anonymous, well-played.

Phyllis said...

Anonymous must have gotten zapped!

While visiting Ireland, I was surprised to find public toilets with attendants to take the money. Hey, sometimes it is REALLY worth whatever the cost.

Delightful post.

¡Vizcacha! said...

Phyllis, I agree. $1 just can't buy you an alternative.

Yeah, I zapped Anonymous. Gloogger's spam trap is very good, and almost never lets any through. I forgive it this once.

Sherry said...

You guys are having a seriously good time 110 degrees or not.

The spring looks fabulous.....sure glad the river wasn't closed.


Anonymous said...

Don't have fear. I have over 100 dives in that aquifer, and I lived to tell about it!!

Suzanne (from the GA campfire)

Anonymous said...

"the cute was not closed"... sweet!
glad you ladies had a great day.

¡Vizcacha! said...

Sherry, I guess you're right! We are having fun.

Suzanne, why am I surprised? You're a still water who dives deep. I'm very impressed. Still, I'm a water-chicken.

Thanks, Anon!