Monday, October 8, 2012

Quests for Bows and Yellow Flowers

In the area of southeast GA where my mom lives, there's a yearly event called the Fifteen Mile Yard Sale. Pretty much everyone who lives along its route has a yard sale during this event. People who don't live there drive in and set up shop along the side of the road. Food trucks sell sausage dogs and funnel cakes and hot tamales. The fifteen mile stretch of the normally sleepy two-lane is packed with cars. Yes, I drove three and a half hours to GA to attend the Fifteen Mile Yard Sale. 

Mom and I spent SIX hours yard sale-ing. It was a little insane. I even ate a sausage dog. I came away with a bunch of paperback mysteries, a lot of clothing, a picture frame shaped like a cat, a super-awesome orange purse (originally priced at $80; purchased by me for $5), and a $500 value compound hunting bow (purchased for $250). Before we started out in the morning, I had actually said that the one thing I really wanted to find was a compound bow. I'd been looking at them online and knew how much they went for, and I certainly didn't expect to find one, but whaddyaknow. I'm one step closer to being ready for the apocalypse.

That would be me, trying to look tough.

Some other pictures from my 24hr stint in GA:

This is Donnie, one of the "kittens" dumped at our land back in April. Boy has he grown - and his tail is ALWAYS up like that. I can't believe no one has adopted him :(

Mom has started getting the interior of the house sheetrocked. It is slowly coming along.

Jack O' Lanterns on mom's front porch

Oh, Georgia. Every time I go there, this sign has gotten even more ridiculous.
(Also, there's been all sorts of crazy racist shit over this sign:
see here, here, here, and here.)
I've already voted... and I voted for OBAMA. Take that, sign.

Meanwhile, down in the Orlando area, there's a lake called Lake Jesup. It's located just to the south of Sanford. One of my classes meets every other week at the Sanford/Lake Mary campus, and to get there I drive along the 417 (large toll-road), which crosses Lake Jesup. This past week when driving across the bridge over the lake, I noticed that the area to my right (east of the bridge) along the shore was just blanketed in gorgeous yellow flowers, which looked incredibly picturesque, especially as the fields of flowers flowed into the lake, and were dotted by palms. Apparently, this area is known for its beautiful swamp sunflowers that bloom during the last week of September and first week of October. I really wanted to make it down there to check them out while I still had the chance. I actually planned to stop off at the Lake Jesup Conservation Area on my way home from Georgia - but as I didn't roll into Orlando until after 8pm (I hadn't expected to spend six hours at a yard sale!), that didn't happen. I really needed to spend today studying (midterms start this coming week), but I figured it was now or never.

Apparently it's going to be never. I found my way to the Marl Flats entrance to the Lake Jesup Conservation Area, and began hiking in. Unfortunately, it was very, very wet. My hiking shoes were no match for being up to mid-calf in water and muck. I plowed on until I reached a spot where the actual location of the trail became impossible to discern. I didn't mind the wetness and the muck too much when I knew I was on the right track, but I wasn't going to just wade out blindly into the wetland all by my lonesome. I did find some of the swamp sunflowers, but I never made it to anywhere particularly picturesque.

The trail was flowing.

This was definitely wetland. Emphasis on wet.
You can see a few yellow flowers, but nothing like the view from the highway.

I then decided to drive to the western side of the 417, where there's a park called the Lake Jesup Park. I thought I might be able to get a decent view of the yellow flowers from over there. Instead I got a couple of decent shots of a duck and of the lake, and then found myself up to my knees in muck amongst some not-too-photogenic swamp sunflowers.

Lake Jesup


This path started out all dry and promising, but just led to a muckhole with no view. Alas.

Apparently the best way to photograph the flowers is to pull off to the side of the 417 and shoot from there - and apparently people do. I'm kind of amazed, as I opted not to do that, thinking it was to dangerous even for me. Anyway, if you'd like to see what I was unable to shoot, here are some links to the blog of a fellow who photographs these flowers every year: here, here, here, here, and here.

I'm not anticipating much posting - either here or over at The Inhumane Society - during the next two weeks or so, as I have three midterm exams to prepare for and take, a conference proposal to write, a presentation to plan and give, and a web posting to write. I'll see you on the flip side!


Ed Rosack said...

Nice blog.

Sorry you had trouble getting out to the flowers. The area is very flat and close to the water so it's best to go when it hasn't rained for a while.

Send Flowers to Chandigarh said...

Wow It is looking so special and yellow colour so nice.