Saturday, April 30, 2011

Mythical Creatures and Legends of Moon Lake

Every place has it’s stories, it’s history. Some more than others. Moon Lake is no exception. Originally Developed in the 1930s as a rustic resort and hunting lodge that catered to the rich, it carries the stories of 7 generations of Moon Lakeans. And all though there are dozens that I know of and probably countless more that I’ve yet to hear,
These are the three most widely known Legends of the Lake.
Al Capone, the Founder of Moon Lake Estates.
This one is a little tricky. Almost everyone who has reason to know believes that Al Capone was the money behind the developing of the “Moon Lake Dude Ranch” The rustic hunting lodge and resort from which moon lake estates sprang from. Historically, there is no positive proof that Capone was part owner of the Lodge, but could one really expect to find a paper trail from a known gangster? The Ranch was at one time a hot spot for wealthy influential families such as the Vanderbilt’s and even the Florida legislature convened there in 1939. So if there is truth to this legend, then one can draw a connection between the gangster Al Capone to the rich and famous and to the government of the state of Florida.
Witch Island
Apparently the Lake has been host to a coven of witches throughout the decades. I have heard eye witness accounts (from anonymous sources) of witches dancing naked under the full moon. A favorite gathering place of this coven was an island located…well, um, I’m not exactly sure where. But I have been told it is an island that long time Lakers call “Witch Island.”
Moon Lake Big Foot (or Swamp Squatch)
I know, surely not, Big Foot? But of all the legends, the Swamp Squatch is the one most collaborated by first person accounts. They range from the typical finding of huge foot prints to frightening tales of trailers being rocked, foul smelling breath outside windows and actual sightings of the mammoth hairy creature.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Night Owl

Now smile, Errr..Nevermind.
I can spend a lot of time in the Swamp, staking it out with my camera and not catch anything good. Then walking through the yard at night, minding my own business I’ll stumble upon something pretty damn amazing. Like a two foot tall Owl. He was even patient enough to poise for a night portrait which takes about 45 seconds between one flash and the secondary exposure. I’m not sure what species he is or if he’ll be hanging around but I hope to see him again.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Bad Blogger, No Cookie

I‘ve been neglecting my Blog. So here I am with an update. Things have been pretty tame in the Swamp lately. Everything’s blooming and growing now with spring. It’s beautiful and nice to look at but soon it will be an everyday thing to keep the swamp from invading. If I leave the yard unattended (all four acres) the swamp will swallow it up again. It rains and the grass gains an inch, the blackberry briars shoot up like thorny sentinels, the armadillos start digging. This year we’re being proactive by starting a Garden. Hey everything else grows here, why shouldn’t veggies? It’s been a test of endurance to clear the ground, break up the soil. Especially with only the basic tools: a shovel and machete. To get a row in, we have to remove the top layer which is basically six inches of turf and roots. But we’ve finally got tomato plants in the ground, which we started from seed. So far so good, here’s hoping the little guys thrive.

My Lil Sprouts

Sunday, February 20, 2011

To stay or not to stay, That is the question

Bon Voyage
We (myself and a few fellow Moon Lakeans) had a bon voyage party for one of our own who is flying the coop, leaving the nest, jumping ship. She and her guy with their lil chubby cheeked baby girl are moving to Orange county, as in California. The polar opposite of Pasco. Where we have trees and dirt roads, they have concrete and racial diversity. As it always happens, talk starts of who’s lived in Moon Lake the longest, who left and came back. Conversations that begin with words like “I have been here since; before Capone’s house burned down, when Little Rd was still dirt, when the cops were afraid to come to Moon Lake…” It becomes a contest of who is the most decorated veteran of The Lake. There are an amazing number of us who leave and come back. Even after swearing we never will. The phenomenon know as “once you drink the swamp water, you’ll never leave”. Proven over and over. So though we wished our friends good luck and hoped for the best in the back of all our minds was “they’ll be back”. It’s just a matter of when.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Culture Shock

I was reminded of an episode today that I just had to share. Not to long ago, maybe last month. Walter (my swamp hubby), a friend and I were cleaning out the garage. We were at it for a while and getting a little discouraged. Then we heard this strange noise which I couldn’t identify.
Walter says “That sounds like a frog getting eaten by a snake.”
Our friend and I look at each other like yeah ok. When we turn back Walter’s missing. He calls from outside the garage and we go to look. He points at something that he’s bending over and says:
“Look it’s a snake eating a frog!”
I had one of those moments of culture shock. When the people and things you’re around are just completely foreign to you. I can’t remember a time when I’ve had an occasion to watch a snake eat a frog. But Walter has heard it enough to recognize the sound of it.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

O Holy Cold Night!

The first day of winter is a week from now. But you wouldn’t know it here. It’s cold and bright and sunny. I’m determined to stay warm and I’m doing it with layers. Onions have layers, Ogre’s have layers and so do I! I was born in Michigan but moved here when I was six. I can still remember stepping off the back porch into snow so high it went over my head. I remember getting snowed in and watching my father dig us a tunnel to get out the front door. I moved down to Florida in December and when I stepped off the plane, the sun was shining and the sky was the truest blue I’d ever seen. I don’t think I got cold once that winter. But alas, my blood has thinned and 45 is way too cold for me and 25 (which is the low for tonight) is unimaginable. Now I know I’ll get a lot of flack from the poor peoples that live up north, u know who you are *smile*, because they’re dealing with blizzard weather. And I’ll probably deserve it. But it certainty won’t keep me warm tonight. Brrrrrrr!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Moon Lake Mascot

I just wanted to introduce everyone to our little friend. We affectionately call Stumpee. He’s an armadillo, see his tail? Missing the end of it. Notice it’s daylight, armadillos are nocturnal with a few exceptions to cloudy days. Our Stumpee is always foraging during the day & night and just about anytime. When I trip over him in the yard, sometimes he scares me and sometimes I scare him. One time he ran head first into the shed, hard enough to knock himself senseless. There’s some damage to his armor too, looks like a gator got a hold of him. I don’t think he’s been the same since. He’s our “special” friend (read brain damaged). I like to think of him as the Moon Lake Mascot. Not that bright but somehow cute.