Unless someone drives by towing a trailer with a bubba truck, it's pretty quiet around here. People who spend a length of time here often acquire an electric golf card and buzz around so silently, it's easy to inadvertently walk in front of one. But the other night we were watching "The Crown," the scene where Diana meets Camilla and learns about the man she is about to marry and our concentration was broken by loud screams. We rushed outside and it took a while to determine where they were coming from. The screeches were so loud they reverberated between the RV's and we finally zeroed in on a tall palm tree in our neighbor's lot. With a flashlight we located a huge gray screech owl who carried on for about fifteen minutes. Conditions were not good, but I wish I had had the presence of mind to try to photograph him. We're hoping he will return for another broadcast session. Back to Lady Di.
Much, much later that night we were awaken by gun shots and the incessant throb of air boat engines. The airboats give tours nearby; we've enjoyed one ourselves, but the gun shots were something new. Later in the day we heard that this is the of opening of duck season and that's what all the noise was about. We are located right next to a huge swamp that is owned by the state, which allows some commercial activity including the swamp tours and cattle grazing.
A sunset hike into that swamp was scheduled for that night and we set out hoping that the duck hunters had already met their quota for the day. Large and fragrant cow pies let us know that the grazing cattle had recently taken the same route. Cows are not very aggressive, but we're not sure how much they like to share their space, especially when they are not expecting intruders. When we came out into the opening where the water flows more freely, we could see horns peeking up from behind the reeds. Some cows had white birds perched on their heads. As the moon rose over the water we enjoyed the peace and tranquility once again.