This morning we said goodbye to Spring Warrior Fish Camp, our home and respite from the storm for the past four nights. What a friendly and quiet and chill place to be.
We packed our 5 Ikea bags’ worth of gear and stuffed dry bags, along with our assorted food and water bags into our kayaks, much to the amazement of onlookers, and said goodbye to Kevin and a fellow guest/fisherman from Michigan.
It was a cold morning and the breeze was biting as we headed out the river channel into the gulf.
We wound our way around the exposed oyster bars, each of us running aground over the sharp, fluted shells once, forcing me to climb out of my boat so I could float Miss Pink beneath me while we found deeper water.
The wind was gloriously at our back as we paddled south. And the water’s surface was full of bubbles, John’s guessing formed by yesterday’s high winds.
We stayed as close as we could to the shoreline so we wouldn’t be blown offshore or caught off guard should the wind pick up. But not so close that we’d run aground or expend too much energy paddling against the friction of the shallows. It was a fine line we skirted between the golden hued green grasses just below our paddle blades in the slower-going waters and the dark, murky depths.
At first I flew like a racehorse let out of the starting box, excited to be moving my body in the motion I’ve come to know so well. And then the familiar aches began. And an unfamiliar one, after the oyster bar grounding and jumping out of the boat. Did I pull something? Did I hurt myself? And no sooner do I feel it and think it, than something distracts me – a bird, a thought – and I forget the new pain and just settle into the old ones.
The water was red colored as we pulled up to our camp, eleven nautical miles from our launch. And the camp was in a protected grove of twisted beautiful live oak trees. With prickly pear cactus. And fresh, new, spring growth.
While the beach was littered with the diggings of subterranean beings.
Tomorrow we head to Steinhatchee for our big resupply since Carrabelle fifteen days ago. The owner of The Good Times Motel, Dawn, offered and has apparently already been to the Post Office for us and will have our resupply box waiting in our cabin. So, a grocery store run for perishables is all we’ll need. We’d planned this stop and layover long ago and had been looking forward to it. Steinhatchee this. And Steinhatchee that. It feels a bit anticlimactic now, after our long storm break at Spring Warrior. But I’m sure we’ll still enjoy it.
We are alive.
We are healthy.
We are adventurers.