My first full day on Long Key began with a glorious sunrise right outside my window.
I took my book, coffee, banana & hard-boiled egg outside to plan my day. Sometimes I get so excited I feel like a squirrel in the middle of the road – I don’t know which way to run or what to do first. There were a lot of kayaks at campsites when I took a walk along the shore last night. I get a vicarious thrill seeing how experienced campers set up their sites and all the nifty gadgets they use. Kurt told me that staring at other campsites is not good camping etiquette but I can’t resist. They don’t seem to mind when I stop to ask them what they’re doing or the purpose of something interesting looking. One guy explained the mechanics of his pooper-scooper – I thought it was a metal detector. I stopped to talk to one elderly gent who was trying to open a coconut with a screwdriver and asked when he’d be serving pina coladas. He invited me back for a drink in 2-3 days when he got the coconut open!
I always think that people who own (vs renting) kayaks know what they’re doing – although we own a kayak proving that theory wrong. When I noticed loads of kayakers out on the water, I figured I better get out there too because they most likely understand low and high tides and other boating stuff that is probably important. So I drove up to the ranger station & rented a cute little kayak & paddled & paddled & paddled following the other kayakers until I noticed that I was about 500 yards … a football field… away from shore. I started to panic (remembering the great white shark that recently took a bite out of a kayak with two girls in it) until I saw a guy step out of his kayak into knee deep water. I figured a great white would have to be crawling on its hands & knees to get to my kayak so I relaxed and enjoyed. I paddled to the end of the park and then back to my campsite where I stopped for a salad with cold chicken and a Blue Moon beer with orange slice, then jumped back in the kayak and returned it with five minutes to spare. What fun! I challenge anyone to feel stressed and upset after paddling for two hours in the ocean. Unless they meet the great white.