Yesterday I woke up at the Georgia/Florida state line, having slept in a Walmart parking lot in Kingsland GA. I was happy that the day’s drive began and ended in Florida, and that I would get to see the state in the full light of day, hoping to arrive at my campground in the Everglades by the late afternoon.
The drive was pleasant apart from the handful of insane drivers on 95. I like Florida. I’ve been coming down here for years. The sunshine always lifts my spirits. I love the sea air, the tropical foliage, the spanish architecture, and the general good cheer of the retirees and snowbirds. People come down to Florida to relax and have a good time, and they do it well.
I arrived at my campsite around 5pm, pretty worn out and hazy from the drive and a few road sodas and edibles. I didn’t feel I had to charisma and mojo at the moment to somehow finagle my way into the same camp spot I had last year, but I lucked out and scored just the spot I wanted. The host was super easy going and casual about things, which is typical of this backwaters campground. That’s exactly why I like it… that, and all the gator ponds full of fish and tropical birds, and all the beautiful greenery. And it’s cheap.
I achieved little last night but the dissappearance of a few drinks, followed by the dissappearance of consciousness, falling asleep in my clothes, not under the blankets. Nevertheless I woke up in good health and spirits, except for a low-level malaise that wore off during my vitalizing morning rituals. I had ample coffee, grabbed a shower that I finished with several minutes of cold water only, did twelve sun-salutations by the pond, did my Wim Hoff breathing followed by two other yogic breathing exercises, and then proceeded to enjoy a rather serene and empty-headed meditation. I followed all that with a light breakfast of peanut butter toast, a banana, and a hash and flower mixed joint.
Tomorrow is my birthday and I hope to be in optimum health and spirits to really enjoy an adventure. So today I plan to mostly lay low by the pond, do another round of yoga, breathing, and meditation, and eat some wholesome food. I just want to flush out the past few days of mild excess and start off this adventure on the right foot, not wasting any more days to haze and malaise!
As for my birthday tomorrow, so far I’m leaning towards a thirteen mile loop walk through the swamps in the heart of panther country. I’ll mostly go slow and barefoot, just enjoying the quiet and beauty of the wilderness, stopping from time to time to play my hindu flute to the forest. I’ve always been a fan of really long day hikes. You only get tired at the very end, but throughout most of the walk you fall into a rhythmic trance where the mind becomes very clear. Plus, you’re bound to encounter all sorts of creatures and sublime forest nooks. I usually spend my birthdays alone. It’s always been a sacred day to me, a day to walk and talk with God and to bathe in the bliss of Nature.