Monkey Mayhem.

In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer.~Albert Camus

Enter for beautiful flowers and stuffed up noses.

Enter for beautiful flowers and stuffed up noses.

This weekend we went to Ravine Gardens, In Palatka, Florida. The warm weather has come early to North Florida, and we enjoyed it Saturday.

All the plants are starting to bloom early… This is both good and bad. It’s good because we get to enjoy the azaleas and other flowers that surround us.

It’s bad because my allergies are already acting up… I love and hate (almost) Springtime at the same time…

According to the Florida State Park website, the Gardens were created when

A ravine was created over thousands of years by water flowing from the sandy ridges on the shore of the St. Johns River. In 1933, this ravine was transformed into a dramatic garden by the federal Works Progress Administration. Much of the original landscaping still exists as formal gardens and an extensive trail system.

steps (Small)

Pathway to trouble (for Doug).

We go three or four times a year to hike the trails, explore through what seems like the wilderness (it’s not), take photos and enjoy the flowers.

I usually don’t bring Doug… He almost always ends up in trouble wherever we go, and having him running loose in the woods is never a good idea.

I brought him this time though. He behaved for the most part, if you don’t count sneaking in without paying the entrance fee.

I tried to explain to him that it is five dollars a carload, no matter how many people and monkeys are inside.

He said it didn’t matter… Monkeys should not pay to go into the woods.

We dropped him off at the rear of the park, drove around, paid our fee and met him at the welcome center… There’s no arguing with Doug if you want to stay sane.

tree (Small)

Weak trees or a crazy monkey? I have my suspicions…

We all enjoyed ourselves until Doug decided to “go native” as he calls it. I heard a loud snap and crash… Never good sounds when Doug is loose.

We found him a bit farther down the trail. He wouldn’t explain what happened, except to say trees aren’t as strong as they used to be. I don’t know how we arrived at this conclusion since the only experience he has with trees are the ones that grow in our yard…

The state of Florida is threatening to charge us triple price if we want to take Doug to parks with us in the future. I’m not sure if even the inflated price would cover the cost of the usual monkey mayhem…


    1. That’s Doug’s life…

  1. LOL 🙂 I understand Doug, I’m always getting into trouble too, just for being ME ! 🙂

  2. John, I enjoy how you consistently bring levity to your writing that keeps it relatable and engaging.

    Also, I didn’t want to muck up the comment threads on some previous posts by bringing this to the table; my spirit self… can you picture Super Saiyan from DBZ? Part of me hopes that you can’t but often, but not always, this is how I feel or what I see when taking the time to meditate. Kinda weird but true. Too many comic books and cartoons for this kid.

    Great work out of you and Doug, my friend. It’s been a while since I have been around but am glad to be here now. Be well.

    1. Hey Glenn- I googled Super Saiyan… Whatever works for you is what I say. I don’t talk about spirituality very much (I don’t want to scare anyone off) but I’m a shamanic practitioner. My main spirit animal is Crow, but some others are work with are a short old woman with a moon face, a tiny pitch black version of myself as a child… with a hatchet and… Well, I don’t need to go on! Super Saiyan isn’t too strange…

      I’m still a huge fan of cartoons. Lately we’ve been enjoying all of the great animation being done in France. There’s still room for Bugs Bunny and Family Guy too… I’m not a cartoon snob!

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