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Alex on the river cruise at Wakulla Springs. (2007)
We went to Wakulla Springs yesterday. Alex and I had a really good time.
Highlight Number One: He lost his snorkel off the end of the dock into the deep water with the weeds where you're not supposed to swim. Shades of the Atlanta story I never got around to telling you (File Under: Georgia Aquarium; stuffed animal; up in the air but never came down; potential fire hazard; public humiliation; Peter's first test as a pseudo-parent). Anyway, I was hoping the lifeguard would volunteer to get it for us (de-polluting the environment and everything), but instead he said I could go get it. Great. So I swam around the dock and under the “Don't Swim Past This Rope Or The Alligators Will Get You” rope. Spotted the snorkel down between the six or eight feet long weeds lying almost horizontally across the riverbed (due to the constant current of 200 million gallons of fresh water per day flowing from the spring some 75 yards away), took a deep breath and dove down to grab it. Loved the part where just before I got into the water Alex said, “Please don't die, Uncle Peter.”
Highlight Number Two: I had already gotten out of the water and Alex was enjoying the water a little more before we left. All of a sudden the lifeguard was yelling for everyone to get out of the water. Alligator. All day I had been telling Alex there was a net to keep the alligators out, but it was just a rope (see previous highlight). So the swimmers and the lifeguards have to be vigilant. So the buff, tattooed lifeguard with the shaved head grabs a canoe paddle and goes out into the water chest deep and starts yelling at the alligator. Then he slaps the water a couple times with the paddle. The middle-aged reptile finally gets the hint and turns around, heading back for the swamp. Believe it or not, Alex was more than happy to go back in the water after that.
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