I stayed in Silver Springs State Park through the ACC Basketball Tournament so I could watch my team, the Virginia Cavaliers, win the NCAA. Finally they have a terrific coach, Tony Bennett, and a great team. David and I have followed ACC basketball all of our lives together and loved to watch the games splitting our loyalty between UNC our first ACC Team and UVA our longest ACC team. The last picture I have of him he was watching the Cavs play. It breaks my heart that he didn’t get to see them win the National Championship after following both the men’s and their women’s teams for over 30 years.
On Monday April 8th, I pack up and move to Rainbow Springs hopefully for some more wonderful paddling. Being on the water is really the only thing that takes my mind away even for an hour or so from the difficulty that is my life right now.
Although that didn’t really happen here on this river this time. After the calming Silver River, the Rainbow was quite a jar. Across the river from the park and all up and down are houses on the water. Even early in the morning there were saws, power drills, hammers at the houses lining the bank of the river opposite the park nearly all the way to the spring.
Would you like to buy some property on the river? Make your own building noise and disturb the quiet beauty? Perhaps this red shouldered hawk is a resident.
Still, it’s a beautiful day on the river. Just not a quiet one.
In addition to the noise from the houses, there are motor boats and commercial scuba boats.
This female anhinga doesn’t seem to mind the racquet and is just trying to dry her wings on the pilings of a private dock.
The water near the spring is crystal clear. The sand is white. I wonder how many of the people who live elbow to elbow on this river come out in kayaks or canoes to appreciate the beauty.
Enjoy the blue eyes of this Cormorant while I whine about still having pain in my leg from injuring my back last week. I’m spending most of my days on the river in the morning and on the phone after that with Social Security, the Virginia Retirement System, our medical Supplement from Blue Cross and our bank. I call each multiple times to be sure my health care is being paid among other things. It’s a big problem being on the road as several of these companies don’t have a clue and want to send me everything I need in the mail rather than allow me to access it on line. I wonder what century they are living in. The Virginia Retirement System is the worst.
I have so much business to do in the aftermath of David’s death that it seems impossible. In order to keep myself somewhat sane and out of the absolute pit of depression, I go out on the water early every morning for a couple of hours. From previous visits here I know there is a beautiful hidden channel with a cabin at the end with the spring head there. I think it will be the perfect place to get away from all the building noise on the river.
What a gorgeous little spring run. It is shallow and crystal clear. As it narrows, I can feel the pressure sliding off of me in this completely separate and magical universe.
But I don’t make it to the spring head and sight of the little cabin. There is now a very nice fence blocking the way. I’m so disappointed.
I don’t blame the owner though. It’s possible that there was vandalism or just that they are using the cabin more than in years past when I never saw any evidence of anyone there. I could probably get under it but if I owned this beautiful spot I wouldn’t take kindly to invasion of my privacy.
I wonder how they can kayak their own waters? I’d love to see how they open the gate while in the kayak or canoe.
I take a lot of pictures as I float back down on the current of the little spring. It’s unlikely that I’ll come back here again out of understanding and respect for the owner.
I may not even come back to Rainbow Springs as it is now so developed that it isn’t as blissful as past visits were. But that seems to have happened to a lot of things in my time as a Full Time RVer. There are so many people doing it now and reservations so hard to get nearly everywhere that it’s becoming more work than pleasure. Or perhaps that’s just my sad mood being reflected on everything I see and do.
Back to the mouth, the real world, houses everywhere.
The internet signal here is not strong and I”m having to go out of the park daily early in the morning to attempt to make reservations on line for next year’s winter. I’m having no luck. The advertising of RVing as the thing everyone should do is making it difficult, at least for me, to make reservations. SO many more people.
Each day on the water I see wood ducks which amazingly are not as skittish as I have always found them. Perhaps so many houses, boats and people has made them less wary.
After a week at Rainbow Springs, I leave and move across the state to Flagler Beach.
We always began our winter Florida stays at Gamble Rogers and it is my final stop before heading back to Virginia to see what needs to be done there in order to have a memorial gathering for David at the farm.
I love Gamble Rogers and having a site that overlooks the ocean but the salt air is very hard on the RV and I realize I really must get something done about the rust. I have so much on my plate right now it is hard to add anything more and I don’t really know how to get this taken care of.
This view though is what keeps me coming back.
While I am here closing out my Florida winter before heading back up the east coast, I find that I do not take many pictures at all. Sunrises, sunsets, the gorgeous view out the window. But I don’t go anywhere or do anything but business and a bit of reading on the beach. I’m in a fog and just have enough energy to deal with the “business” of death.
Here is what a tornado watch looks like over the ocean out my front window. No touch down near here thankfully.
But the winds were quite angry. It was loud. There is a great deal of spray which can be seen a bit in the picture below. I brought in my slides. Too much wind.
During our last stay here, in January, the month before his death, David rear ended Ruby with Winnona going about 2mph inside Gamble Roger’s Campground. I’m not sure what happened but clearly he was feeling worse than he was letting on. When I put in the Geico claim for this and told them he had died they said my rates will go up now that I no longer have a multi-driver discount and don’t have two good driver discounts. How to hit somebody when they are down and have just lost their life partner and half their income.
Sunsets have always seemed beautiful to me. Now they seem sad and lonely.
This is all hard. Very very hard.
At the end of April, I head North, back to Virginia and a lot more work.