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When I think about it, maybe I should just stay home and stick fish-hooks in my fingers instead of going north to do it.

There may be a healthy amount of iron in fish hooks?

There may be a healthy amount of iron in fish hooks?

Up north or down south, hooks hurt like any other. And why go through the trouble of driving 22 hours north to spill gas or oil on myself as the boat rocks? I do that servicing my lawn mower here at home.

 A body tune-up

A body tune-up

I can sun burn out back in our yard or slip on these steps here-who needs a dock. Sure, I don’t have 49 steps in Florida, but falling’s falling, peeling’s peeling.

Florida burns like any other.

Florida burns are like any other.

I have a choice: reel in weeds from the lake or pull them from my yard at home.  One hawk’s cry echoes any other, and my neighbors here shoot off guns from time to time with almost the same regularity as Fort Drum’s boomers shake the windows up north. Of course, the Lake has those magnificent jets flying around now and then, but Gainesville has an old twin prop plane that fly’s overhead occasionally.

I keep expecting this plane to drop from the sky...it's s-l-o-w..

I keep expecting this plane to drop from the sky…it’s s-l-o-w..

Traffic cops here; traffic cops there. The bugs are about the same. Used to be the beer brands were different up north, now, not so much. The traffic jams home give me time to think while New York State RT 3 is one long country road populated by drivers who wave as they go by. Oy Vey, the arm strain up north is almost as bad as the back pain you get from visiting Japan.

What is a stop sign?

What is a stop sign? NYS RT Three.

If that friendly clerk at the grocery store asks me one more time how I am….down here there’s no time for a polite hello; we’re all busy, in a hurry and completely bummed out by searing heat, too many lunatics and raging jobs. Crowds and one million fast food joints-that’s more like it!

Harrisville's version of a New York City deli.

Harrisville’s version of a New York City deli.

We have no internet connection and choose not to hook up our TV up north. Basically, there’s only morning, noon, afternoon, evening and night, one day after they other. Pesky, friendly neighbors say hello and every one smiles, plays cards, fails at puzzle making, swims, fishes, boats, floats, and laughs the time away. It’s a crap load of fun, day in and day out, always the same, tireless, never-ending, on and on, repeated mirrored days that reflect in the lake*.It's so easy to reflect upon the beauty of the world up at the Lake.l

My mom enjoys the quiet during one of her last years up at the lake. In her day-people still prayed to make it home before leaving Beer Island at night...oh the fun!!!

My mom enjoys the quiet during one of her last years up at the lake. In her day people still prayed to make it home before leaving Beer Island at night…oh the fun!!!

The air itself, purified by the Adirondack trees and the lack of major industrial pollution, is much purer than the air found almost anywhere else on the planet-it’s work, breathing the fresh air in and out-improving health takes some adjustment. The energy you feel up at the lake is one big pain in the ass…who needs energy when they could’ve stayed home and melted into a couch while flipping TV channels.

Nothing comes free, and nap time up north cuts into daily pleasures. That’s pressure right there. You can catch people power napping all over the lake trying to hurry up the process so the day doesn’t slip by too fast. Even blinking seems a waste.

The trip was one worm after another, and sometimes fish.

The trip was one worm after another, and sometimes fish.

Ho-hum, the day is done...

Ho-hum, the day is done…

So why go north when I can sweat at home? Hmmm,,,ya know, thinking about it all, maybe 22 hours driving with a wife, two grand kids and a dog isn’t really that long of a trip.

There might be a way to have a good time...

There might be a way to have a good time…

Maybe, I would survive the fun, live through the air-breathing task and haul in some fish with those weeds?!?!

Come to think of it, my bags are already packed, and why not? We leave for the lake in 108 hours and 14 minutes. The boat’s callin’…

Let's get a move on!!!

Let’s get a move on!!! The ears have it!

Times change, but I still think boats floated better with beer in them.....but that was long ago.

Times change, but I still think boats floated better with beer in them…..but that was long ago.

Cheers.

Franque23

*Dale, my wife took these amazing shots of Bonaparte…

From the 1/2 way it's 30 more steps to the lake bottom---but what if I rolled down from here?

It’s 30 more steps from the 1/2 way dock down to the lake—but what if I rolled down the steps from here? Giant slides and elevators come to mind.

 

 

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This is  my birthday weekend, so I spent today spreading red mulch that’s guaranteed to keep its color for 12 months or 12 days, whichever comes first.  It seems I’m always doing some sort of yard work on the days leading up to Memorial Day. Thing is, I love the work-gardening, squashing bugs, planting flowers that will need more water, mowing, trimming fence lines, hauling piles of debris to the front for collection, spookin’ snakes and still not losing weight. Well there’s nothing new these days.

I worked on.

It’s time to open up our pool, 60 days after we started using it, and it’s all very HUGE. The jungle in Florida has a way of either being cut back or eating people-so I cut. And while I toil, I always think of my Dad. He was a Full Colonel. I think of all those who have fallen during time of war and wish none of it was true. “War! Good G-D y’all. What’s it good for?” That’s what my generation sang. The tune went very well with wine and a pocket full of joints.

Of course, there are way too many flowers being left on graveyards this weekend.

For or against, war seems a necessary evil of our time,,,no wait, for all of Man’s history. So, as I work in the yard, enjoying the chickadee, the Cardinal and Red Tail Hawk above, I’m thankful for their music that helps me forget the horror of life, and remember the beauty. I bow my head and pray for all those who gave their lives in battle as I shovel, plant, pick, spread or cultivate my yard knowing , right or wrong, it’s safe to believe the soldiers who died in battle believed they were fighting and, sometimes, dying for us. The saying is- they died to keep us free.

Flowers have a way of reminding us  how short and sweet life can be.

So it seems Memorial Day always finding me messing with flowers, or trying to enhance the small area of the earth I own. Today, the wind blew, thoughts of Dad and other soldiers I know crossed my mind. President Obama praying at Hiroshima rattle my head, and I worked.  The day, the month, the memories will pass, but it all remains tied together no matter what we do. In the end, the more a person does to encourage growth and the beauty of life the better they sleep at night-it’s called inner peace.

My day:

This popped out yesterday, just underneath the bird bath out front

This popped out yesterday, just underneath the bird bath out front

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Our gardenia by the bird feeder is in full bloom. I wonder, do birds like the fragrance?

I cut about ten per day to bring in to the house.....

I cut about ten per day to bring in to the house…..

This rascal orchid lasts about one day -and I was so happy to catch it today...

This rascal orchid lasts about one day -and I was so happy to catch it today…

the pathway in front is a riot of flowers now.

the pathway in front is a riot of flowers now.

The three Amigo's growing under the birdbath are wonderful to see.

The three Amigo’s growing under the birdbath are wonderful to see.

The yellow tea rose

The yellow tea rose

Mr. Tulip

Mr. Tulip…and

and a yellow Daisy face-three amigo's..now you know.

a yellow Daisy face-three Amigo’s..now you know.

It's great fun

It’s great fun

Today's evening silky wind blew this single Hibiscus a bit off shot.

Today’s evening silky wind blew this single Hibiscus a bit off shot.

Here's new one to us! (We don't know what it is of how it came to be)It will be about 6 inches across with many more petals at it's peak...but maybe it 's not so bad being young?

Here’s new one to us! (We don’t know what it is or how it came to be)It will be about 6 inches across with many more petals at it’s peak…but maybe it’s not so bad being young?

Not sure you can make it out, but this lavender and rose colored four o'clock is beautiful...This year , we are invaded with four o'clocks.

Not sure you can make it out, but this lavender and rose colored four o’clock is beautiful…This year, we are invaded with four o’clocks.

The garden grows

The garden grows

 as the Meyer lemons produce and flower at the same time

as the Meyer lemons produce and flower at the same time….

I’m so glad I got to help this life happen; I’m so thankful for that chance… Happy Memorial Day. Take time to smell the flowers if you can. It’s time to give thanks.

Thanks for stopping by.

Franque23

 


When I was young, the sun came as a surprise.

The new day was a friend that came knocking at my door. The birds sang in harmony while dandelions bent in the wind or beneath my toes. There were smells I didn’t know. People smiled and it seemed my presence gave them a laugh-I was small and knew so little.

The start of it all for me-maybe day seven?

The start of it all for me-maybe day seven?

 

I trusted my brother and sister to not leave me in the snow.

I trusted my brother and sister to not leave me in the snow.

Houses in our community were huge and the lawns, though fenced, really had no boundaries. There were hidden places to go between the yards and secret paths to run.

Remaining still was not an option.

Life was a new bloom that would never wither. Leaping one day meant I’d jump further the next. The phone was never for me when it rang it but, still, I heard the call from everything else, the sky, the moonbeams, the stars that really did twinkle, the train that always blew its whistle and the beach waves that circled my ankles. Being young was never a cumbersome potential I had to carry with hope. No, I lived suspended in a stream of unspoken understanding. Yearning had no place in dreams.

The silence knew just what I was thinking.

Parents in our community knew me and my friends by name, and they were always watching or made it seem so. The entire community was our home. We ran without fear. We hadn’t an inkling that we could age and move on to the next day, or month, and then through so many years.

Still, changes did come and some were harder to deal with than others. My sister went to college while my brother got on a bus and went to camp over the summer.

Why would my brother leave for camp?

Why would my brother leave for camp?

I kept the home-fires burning while my sibling’s were away.

A tree’s nooks and crannies offered the surest foot holds; my fingers grasped each branch as if I’d never let go.  Friends, and music, became part of my family.

Pete and I climbed a tree to see the world.

Pete and I climbed a tree to see the world.

we laid 'tracks' down hoping to make it Big.

We laid ‘tracks’ down hoping to make it Big.( My hat is on my knee; 1962ish)

The light in my friend’s eyes could shame the sun.

Friend’s laughter dazzled my imagination, a spark that ignited my new adventurous frontier—the one someone had called, Life. Kindness was never a decision, it just flowed through me and my friend’s lives as a waterfall we loved to see.

It felt all wrong when I realized I was no longer young.

One day, my friends had grown up. The dizzy bee games and tangled bodies on the lawn had vanished from sight and only shadowed my mind as a memory. Friend’s went places I might never see; some of us would lose touch, completely. Other’s called occasionally until there was little left to say. Where we would go or why—really, none of us knew. Still, in a sketchy note, in a brief visit or between bursts of laughter during a short phone call, all that could not be said was heard. Too much had changed for us to ever make it back, so with an unsigned agreement each of us had moved on.

Separate paths become so distant, and time so rushed. Life is full of new, surprising turns and all hands must grip tightly to the wheel; all eyes must look ahead.  For most of us, the love for our younger days remains but it’s crammed for space in our minds, challenged by infinite choices, by signs of every kind that point us in every direction. It takes a lifetime to read them all.

When I was young, I loved the sun, the birds, the trees, the endless wind and clouds that drew pictures in the sky. Now, I hope they love me, too.

When old friends do call, or write, or send those almost obsolete seasonal cards, I hope they’ll know I refuse to say goodbye. I hope they’ll look into the mirror and see their young, shining eyes as I once saw them blaze. Next to that wondrous view will be my eyes equally aglow as we once were, running unbridled by time, without worry or care.

The morning sun should always be a surprise, no matter if you’re young or old. Of course, the past can never be changed—I get that. Thing is, the youngest years never die, not really. Those days are all here, so distant but easily touched if we take the time to reach out, or remember, and smile.

It’s so easy to forget tomorrow is only a wish.

Not so long ago.

Not so long ago.

Too long ago.

Too long ago.(My dad and his sister, my cousin Dave and my Uncle Mo-now all gone.)

Now, at sixty-six years of age—how could that be?—I realize there comes a time in life when every meeting feels like it might be, goodbye. But as the Beatles sang long ago, I say hello.*

The youngest years come once in a lifetime and last forever.

Franque23.

*Early Beatles…

Not even long hair?

Not even long hair?


April showers have already brought April flowers-(Click on the pics for a much better view)

The red single Hibiscus is a simple reliable bloomer---I find the different varieties of this plant amazing.

The single red Hibiscus is a simple reliable bloomer—I find the different varieties of this plant amazing. The petal is extremely soft to the touch.

With American’s declaring war on about everything, drugs, immigrants, poverty, crime, being fat, too thin, a commie, cop, black man, social security recipient, slacker, rapper or street walker, etc….I thought a reconnaissance of my yard this spring was in order.

Our Hibiscus flanks a walkway now surrounded by twenty foot high Oranges trees, a Valencia, a red seedless navel plus one grapefruit.  I bought these on the same day about 8 years ago….at the time, they all fit nicely in my back seat.

We've nine oranges trees of differing variities but only six are yeilding-three more have to age a bit more.

We’ve nine oranges trees of differing varieties but only six are yielding-three more have to age a bit more.(Shadow stands in for a size comparison.)

I open the front door and love this sight.

The path less taken steps by the bird bath, roses and our Old Man's Beard Tree...currently in full bloom.

The path less taken steps by the bird bath, roses and our Old Man’s Beard Tree…currently in full bloom.

I remember this rose as being a Tea Rose, but the size of this year’s blooms have me scratching my head…..

The not Tea Rose plant?!?!

The not Tea Rose plant?!?!

See?

A handful for a Tea Rose.

A handful for a Tea Rose.

Nearby, underneath the Old Man’s Beard Tree, we have a number of pineapples growing. This year’s warm winter seems to have started the pineapples bearing about 6 months early…

I've nine pineapples coming, but I suspect they may be on the small size-we'll see!

I’ve nine pineapples coming, but I suspect they may be on the small size-we’ll see!

See last years pineapple came in large, and of course, I planted the tops.

See? Last year’s pineapple came in large, and of course, I planted the tops.

Over all yard view….

a bit of trimming and upkeep, but I like the feel. It's a reason to get out and listen to the birds and Hawks above.

It takes a bit of trimming and upkeep. Thing is, I like the feel. Landscaping, planting gardens for food or flowers and random trees to flower or fruit, it’s a reason to get out and listen to the birds and Hawks above.

Our “Victory Garden”* is located to the left of shot above. Beans, tomatoes, egg plants, herbs, yellow squash, zucchini, lettuce. peppers-yellow, green, red-and banana peppers, everything is coming along fine.340

My buddy stays close at hand and helps me routinely patrol the yard for squirrels…

Shadow is my backup,,or am I his,,not certain.

Shadow is my backup,,or am I his,,not certain.

Shadow reminds me each morning to check the pool for snakes or unwanted stray cats.

Shadow reminds me each morning to check the pool for snakes or unwanted stray cats.

Speaking of monring....our yard has several spots where lovely Mexican Juniper blooms appear anew each day,,dropping most pedals by night only to burst forth more blooms by morning.

Speaking of morning….our yard has several spots where lovely Mexican Petunia blooms appear anew each day,,dropping most pedals by night only to burst forth more blooms by morning.(drought resistant)

 I love these, though they last only a few days…the Amaryllis Belladonna, or Naked Lady plant…Great thru droughts, a delicate bloom in clusters. And, at the risk of turning this into a drought resistant plant blog, I have to add the wonderful Plumbago-

Just breaking out in bloom

Just breaking out in bloom

 

It's another no brainer.....a hoax head's up!

It’s another no brainer…..we should ask politicians running for any office not how a subway card works or how well the know how to eat pizza, but what they  know about growing stuff-just saying…

Just the idea of politicians planting more than BS got Shadow running in circles!

Actually, Shadow does this-if we don't run him, he runs himself like a madman/dog

Actually, Shadow does this-if we don’t run him, he runs himself like a madman/dog

 

We've three Myer's lemons planted, and they seem to bloom nearly year round, and yeild often. Plus, we have one Ponderosa Lemon,,,the kind that gives fruit as large as a person's face!

We’ve three Meyers’s lemons planted, and they seem to bloom nearly year round, and yield often. Plus, we have one Ponderosa Lemon,,,the kind that gives fruit as large as a person’s face!

The place would be perfect is I could just keep those roadsters from buzzin' the joint.

The place would be perfect if I could just keep those roadsters from buzzin’ the joint.

three children, all grown up1

My three roadsters long ago.

Now, more about the Ponderosa….

My grandson standing next to a few Ponderosa Lemons

My grandson standing next to a few Ponderosa Lemons

A meyrs next to Ponderosa

Our Meyers’ next to our Ponderosa Lemon

caught my eye this morning.

This caught my eye this morning.

It’s true, I’ve left out a lot, like the Indigenous Jasmine that towers by our front door each year( fifteen feet or higher) to scent the entire yard for months only to die back to the ground every winter,

This unusual clumping bamboo-type Jasmine blasts fragrance over at least a 1/2 acre each night.

This unusual clumping bamboo-type Jasmine blasts fragrance over at least a 1/2 acre each night.

The Mulberry and fig trees,,,you’re welcome, squirrels are very important to us.

We've two figs-the one I water regularly is twice the size of the other....

We’ve two figs-the one I water regularly is twice the size of the other….a huge Mineola Tangelo is in background(honey bell)

The side 1/2 acre features three types of orange trees, a blueberry and several invasive lantana’s the butterflies love.

a look at Shadow's 1/2 acre run, petunia's and a Chinese mandarin and Satsuma in the background.

a look at Shadow’s 1/2 acre run, petunia’s and a Chinese mandarin and Satsuma in the background.

Invasively neat.

Invasively neat. (Can’t leave the mailman out of the fun)

The beauty of Florida is not just the weather, the ocean, springs, lakes and rivers, but what a person can grow  in the smallest of yards if they would like. It’s a jungle out there, and we can nurture it so it nurtures us.

Cheers during Spring in Northern Florida.

Franque23

 

 


Arriving at the lake makes ya lucky.

Arriving at the lake means you got lucky.(click on the pics for bigger views)

The 22 plus hour drive from our Florida home up to the lake always means we count our blessing if we get in before sundown on the second day of the trip. Towing two grand children, 5 and 6, plus a year and one half old catahoula made the trip a bit longer… But no worries-out of the car, the bags stowed inside our camp and then a quick splash in the water made it all good.  Last summer’s first sundown was rated an average of 6 out of ten points…I gave it a five, since I’m spoiled rotten, but others pulled up the rating.

The next day was time to get the games out

The next day was time to get the games out

We were waiting for our boat to be delivered, so the whole day was a bust.

we had to spend time swimming -no one had fun

we had to spend time swimming -no one had fun

Oy Veyish, we had to wait a whole 5 hours for the boat to arrive….so I got the tackle ready while Dale worked hard to over turn the kid’s kayaks. What? I mean, this is the Lake. Who hasn’t been thrown in with all their clothes on? See a shrink if not; you have no true friends.

Dale's on the bottom right, making her move...

Dale’s on the bottom right, making her move…

Finally, after boring games, swimming, kayaking, swimming more, throwing a ball one hundred times for our puppy Shadow to retrieve in the Lake,,,,we got to go out, we got to answer the call of the fish, we got to prove the engine would start and put hooks in my fingers.

The trip was one worm after another, and sometimes fish.

The trip was one worm after another, and sometimes fish.( about 80 in one hour-really) We had three stringers full.

I’m not sure what Isaiah had done to his brother so that he alone could be in this picture… Thing is, I’m certain I don’t want to know. On another note-I was thrilled to see some nice perch keepers come up…It’s been awhile since those tasty fish were on my plate. And, I see from FB shots that the Walleye have been caught lately, too…..very good indeed.

I discovered how to bait one hundred worms on moving, swerving, lookout duck! slap in my face hooks in less than one minute.

Bapa’s Epitaph should read: Survived teaching Grandchildren how to fish-for a pretty good length of time.

More stupid games came out plus a good book while I hunted for antibiotic to put on hook holes.

More stupid games came out plus a good book while I hunted for antibiotic to put on my finger’s hook holes.

The early morning fishing trip was my revenge plan. The three of us went out early, way early, but in June, as Lake Bonapertian’s know, the sun only pretends to set at about 10 PM-it’s actually rising then but you don’t get to see it until just after 3:30 AM. Plus the AM trips lets us guys rev the motor to let everyone know we’re out and about. Good morning!

We allllmmmost beat the light.

We allllmmmost beat the light.

What my grandchildren didn’t know is this: what Bonaparte fish do best in the morning is sleep. Heck, they’ve been tearing one another up all night long. So it was a good laugh while we filled the boat full of nothing time and time again, and then headed back home in a glorious morning light. I couldn’t help but think of mom and dad who’d given us, their children, the camp.

.mom and dad with hummingbird…..(Claudia and Max Franquemont)

The cabin was a bit cool when we arrived back home; I lit a fire while the kids tried to forget about wanting to throw me over board the next time we went out-I hoped.

I kept my fingers crossed and hoped the kids would find some inner peace.

I kept my fingers crossed and hoped the kids would find some inner peace.

When it came time for breakfast, everyone had a face for the 4 AM fishing trip idea….

What?

What?

Okay, with 4 AM fishing trips put out on-a-line, it meant we had time to finish a very difficult puzzle. We gathered for a shot to celebrate two weeks of hard work, and the completion of a master piece-Bonaparte style…

Completely done, and with an added brown overlay tinge for effect.

Completely done, and with an added brown overlay tinge for effect.

Trouble was, the sun kept rising and then the day vanishing before yet again another sunset had to be rated…We turned around, took one swim, a short nap and the dang vacation was over! Someone really needs to look into the time problem up at the Lake. I’ve got my buddy, Paul Doherty, hot on the case-He’ll fix this crap , I just know it.

There's just no way that was 14 days...Pllllease.

There’s just no way that was 17 days…Pllllease.

And since when does time speed up in Mud Lake worse than a Formula One X 2016 at the Daytona speedway?

Ya know-it's like impossible to take a photo of Paul without having a loon photo bomb the shot...really--try it.

Ya know-it’s like impossible to take a photo of Paul without having a loon photo bomb the shot…really–try it.

Anyway, we watched our last sundown-

A most beautiful and untouched up photo--I had to think about the rating.....

A most beautiful and untouched up photo–I had to think about the rating…..(thanks Daley for the pic!)

I spent the next hour thinking of how I might fake falling down the cliff, break a few bones here and there, and get to stay a couple of extra weeks….None of it seemed likely.

I bet our visit put a smile on mom's face...so we to leave, and in just

I bet our visit put a smile on mom’s face…

So we had to leave, and in just 11 and 1/2 weeks we’ll be back. That’s a mere one thousand nine hundred and thirty-two hours….a piece of cake. Actually, I think just under three months sounds better. Anyway, the whole crew is coming back, and I can’t wait for that next early morning fishin’ trip.(Gonna wear my life jacket this time.)

 

Franque23 loves the Lake.

 

 

 

 


Phosphate mines cause cancer……

An aerial view of an open-pit phosphate mine. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is walking away from an area in central Florida where it had raised fears that residents living on top of former mines were being exposed to dangerous radiation levels.An aerial view of an open-pit phosphate mine. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is walking away from an area in central Florida where it had raised fears that residents living on top of former mines were being exposed to dangerous radiation levels. (Shutterstock/B. Brown)http://www.nti.org/gsn/article/epa-abandons-major-radiation-cleanup-florida-despite-cancer-concerns/

 

A thousand year old stand is cut in the USA to build a dam....

A thousand year old stand is cut in the USA to build a dam….

Many think  Nature is not a part of us. I recall reading books and essay’s or hearing opinions that placed Man and the Nature of our planet in juxtaposition. For so long the world of Nature has been thought to be somehow  unrelated to each of us on a personal level. Of course, Nature, and our environment is outside and inside of us on a constant basis throughout every hour, every minute and every second of every day of our lives. The Nature of our planet lives through us as part of our biochemical body, our senses and our understanding.

This is why it’s important for citizens of Alachua county to ask the commissioners to turn down the plum Creek plan. It will allow mining on our county’s East side and that’s not good.

Here, In Alachua county, Florida, the people still have one last chance to turn down a phosphate mining proposal for the East side of Gainesville-It is important for our outer and inner bodies in this county that this proposal to mine, called Envision Alachua,  is stopped. County commissioners will meet this Thursday, Feb. 25th at 5 PM , at East side High School, to hear people’s opinions on the matter and to vote yes or no. This is our chance to make a difference; to protect our environment and help Alachua county’s air quality remain as pure as it is now. If you live on the West side far away, you still will eventually breathe the same air I will or have-it’s just the nature of life and air to circulate.

For more on the huge downside of Phosphate mining in Florida, please read this- http://www.sierraclub.org/florida/phosphate-mining

It turns out the Native American saying, Be one with Nature, was not a suggestion or request, but a fact.

We all get the idea of Body Bubbles. It’s that uneasy feeling we have when someone encroaches our invisible body bubble that tells us this surrounding zone of space really does exist. Thing is, our individual lives extend far beyond our perceived body bubble. Every person, large or small,  sitting, walking or even running consumes on average about  19 cubic feet of air per day. Think of a crowded room, a meeting, someplace you have to be or go that’s full of people, and ask yourself a simple question: whose air am I breathing now?

A full size pine can produce up to 28 cubic feet of air per day....plus they absorb CO2... STill--we cut them down without much thought of how connected we as a people are to their growth and health.

A full size pine can produce up to 28 cubic feet of air per day….plus they absorb CO2… Still–we cut tress down without much thought of how connected we are as people to their growth and health.(Canada-timber company at work)

People are connected in a physical way to the nature of everything that’s around us.

People invisibly move in and out of other people’s lives through the routine task of exhaling and inhaling–we share the  air we breathe with almost everyone we encounter. More, we share our breath with every living thing on the planet. Worse, we share our breath with every non-living thing as well. Rust oxidizes, rubber will eventually break down and then there’s the way that we as a society produce power.coal-power-plant-emitting-carbon-dioxide-smokestacks-three-fired-emit-pollution-60081810 Coal power plants emit 40% of the carbon dioxide  found in our atmosphere…..

powerplant

The importance of curtailing industrial waste and smoke-any type of pollution-should not be over looked. Certainly, we can’t help but to take in pollution as we breathe but we can limited the amount of poisons our lungs are infusing into our blood streams during the process.

The landscape we live in is mapped in our heads every day of our lives.

Central Park is inside every New Yorker's lungs and mind of every day. The planner of this park got that.

Central Park is inside every New Yorker’s lungs and mind  every day. The planner of this park got that.

The planners of this mine in Canada , didn’t get it, or forgot, or maybe they were never told how connected everyone is to everything we do.

Don't look now, but these mines are wrecking our lives.....

Don’t look now,  but these mines are wrecking our lives…..

A phosphate mine is a fairly horrendous thing to our environment and to our sense of well-being. It’s time for citizens of Alachua county to stand up, to Stand by Our Plan as expressed  by the will of 75% of our voters when we passed Alachua Forever last November.  I hope you can make the meeting, or write our commissioners…. Please ask the commissioners to step away, take a deep breath and rethink passing this proposal. Vote it down.

Franque23

 

 


(Two public meetings have been scheduled by county staff to present their response to the revised Plum Creek plan:

  • February 16, 2016
  • February 18, 2016
Both meetings start at 5:00 pm and will be at Eastside High School. There will be presentations by county staff and representatives of Plum Creek. There will be time for public comment.)
The stand by your plan.org group is fighting to retain our rights…..

Ha! Alachua County Forever , my ass. Right now, elected officials may be about to approve a building development  that flies in  the face of the Alachua County Forever agenda! This plan is one made in hell and disregards the will of the people of Alachua County and the entire state of Florida! It comes to us under the guise of, Envision Alachua, a new improved plan brought up just three months after voters fully backed Alachua Forever Amendment 1 at the voting booths. Thing is, developers couldn’t find a way to work around the Alachua Forever amendment so they’ve invented this Envision Alachua and they’re calling it  a “Community backed” program. Whahhah…maybe it is backed by a community of thieves hell-bent on circumventing the people’s will, but that’s about it.  Just last Nov. the people voted on Amendment 1 and that amendment won by over a 75% majority-an amendment that, in part, supported the green passageway in Florida and our state’s wet lands.  It is a blue print of how We the People want growth and development in Florida to be structured  right now and in the future—forever.

The plum creek development proposed site lands right on top of Florida’s green passageway

Developers hopw to counter Amendment  1 with something called-Envision Florida....WTH?

Developers hope to counter Amendment 1 with something called-Envision Alachua….WTH?

 

Contact these Alachua County Commissioners now and ask them to stop Plum Creek-You’ll get the big picture if you read Commissioner, Mike Byerly’s comments on the link below-he’s got it right,,,Commissioner, Hutchinson is oh so wrong…

Profiles

 

And it even gets worse. The developer’s  requested to have waved  the required(by law prior to building) plans for road development and septic usage until AFTER the development is built! Why-oh-why does this all make me think of the Bio Mass plant scenario disaster our citizens of this county have had to endure ….oh, wait, I know why: it’s because this Plum Creek crap is the same sort of a load our elected officials pulled when the Bio plant was put into action.

Okay, why should we the citizens of Alachua County, Florida, and the entire US hate the Plum Creek building plans? Ha—amendment 1 just passed Nov 2015 by over 75%,,,an amendment put in place to stop just this sort of urban sprawl into our wet lands and intrusion of the green passageway for migrating animals from north to south Florida. In part, the protection of this passageway is what Alachua Forever is about. Now, within one year of the passages of amendment 1 back room deals and elected officials threaten to side step the will of the people by allowing this development…..Here’s a short list of those groups who supported amendment 1–and IF you or anyone you know is a member of any of these groups–please contact them and have them write Alachua county officials,,, and Cynthia Chestnut the current chair of he Democratic party for North Florida. The, no, THE list—-“Florida’s Water and Land Legacy Campaign attributes much of its success to the invaluable service of its volunteers and generous contributions of donors. If you are interested in supporting the Water and Land Conservation amendment, please visit FloridaWaterLandLegacy.orgto learn more.

Endorsing organizations (in alphabetical order) include:

1000 Friends of Florida
Alachua Conservation Trust
Allen Broussard Conservancy
Alliance of Florida Land Trusts
American Planning Association – Florida Chapter
American Rivers Southeast Region
Amphibian and Reptile Conservancy
Animal Rights Foundation of Florida
Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitor
Apalachee Land Conservancy
Apalachicola Riverkeeper
Archbold Biological Station
Around the Bend Nature Tours
Audubon Florida
Alachua Audubon Society
Apalachee Audubon Society
Bay County Audubon Society
Choctawhatchee Audubon Society
Citrus County Audubon Society
Clearwater Audubon Society
Collier County Audubon Society
Duval Audubon Society
Eagle Audubon Society
Audubon Society of the Everglades
Flagler Audubon Society
Four Rivers Audubon Society
Francis M. Weston Audubon Society
Halifax River Audubon Society
Hendry-Glades Audubon Society
Hernando Audubon Society
Highlands County Audubon Society
Kissimmee Valley Audubon Society
Lake Region Audubon Society
Manatee County Audubon Society
Marion County Audubon Society
Martin County Audubon Society
Oklawaha Valley Audubon Society
Orange Audubon Society
Peace River Audubon Society
Pelican Island Audubon Society
Ridge Audubon Society
Santa Fe Audubon Society
Sarasota Audubon Society
Seminole Audubon Society
South Florida Audubon Society
Southeast Volusia Audubon Society
Southwest Florida Audubon Society
Space Coast Audubon Society
St. Johns Audubon Society
St. Lucie Audubon Society
St. Petersburg Audubon Society
Tampa Audubon Society
Tropical Audubon Society
Venice Area Audubon Society
West Pasco Audubon Society
West Volusia Audubon Society
Barrier Island Parks Society
Bay County Conservancy
Blackwater Heritage State Trail Citizen Support Organization
Breckenridge Golf and Tennis Club
Caloosahatchee River Citizens Association (Riverwatch)
Cape Coral Friends of Wildlife
Carrabelle Cares and Waterfront Partnership
Citizens for an Engaged Electorate
Citrus County Council
City of Cedar Key
Clean Water Action
Coastal Plains Institute and Land Conservancy
Collany Properties
Committee of the Islands on Sanibel
Conservancy of Southwest Florida
Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast
Conservation Trust for Florida
Defenders of Wildlife
Democratic Club of Coral Gables Area
Democratic Club of Lake County
Democratic Club of North Broward
Democratic Environmental Caucus of Florida
Democratic Environmental Caucus of Florida – Southwest Florida Chapter
Democratic Women’s Club of Hardee County
Democratic Women’s Club of Highlands County
Democratic Women’s Club of Indian River County
Democratic Women’s Club of Florida
Earth Ethics
EarthJustice Florida
East Coast Greenway Alliance
Emerald Coastkeeper
Endangered Species Coalition
Environmental Confederation of Southwest Florida (ECOSWF)
Environmental Conservation Organization
Environmental Education Council of Broward County, Florida
Estero Council of Community Leaders
Everglades Coalition
Everglades Foundation
First Florida Frontiers
Florida Clean Water Network
Florida Conservation Alliance
Florida Conservation Coalition
Florida Consumer Action Network
Florida Defenders of the Environment
Florida Disabled Outdoors Association
Florida Federation of Garden Clubs
Florida Keys Citizens Coalition
Florida Native Plant Society
Florida Native Plant Society – Citrus Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Coccoloba Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Cocoplum Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Conradina Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Coontie Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Cuplet Fern Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Dade Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Hernando Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Ixia Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Lake Beautyberry Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Lakelas Mint Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Longleaf Pine Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Lyonia Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Magnolia Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Mangrove Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Marion Big Scrub Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Nature Coast Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Palm Beach Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – PawPaw Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Paynes Prairie Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Pinellas Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Sarracenia Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Sea Oats Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Serenoa Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Sparkleberry Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Sumter Spiderwort Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Suncoast Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Sweetbay Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society – Tarflower Chapter
Florida Ornithological Society
Florida Outdoor Recreation Coalition
Florida Paddling Trails Association
Florida Panther Society
Florida Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility
Florida Society of Ethical Ecotourism
Florida State University Environmental Services Program
Florida Trail Association
Florida Trail Association – Alligator Amblers Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Apalachee Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Big Cypress Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Central Florida Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Choctawhatchee Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Fisheating Creek Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Florida Cracker Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Halifax-St. Johns Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Happy Hoofers Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Heartland Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Indian River Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Loxahatchee Chapter
Florida Trail Association – North Florida Trail Blazers Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Panhandle Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Suncoast Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Tropical Trekkers Chapter
Florida Trail Association – Western Gate Chapter
Florida Wildlife Federation
Florida’s Nature Coast Conservancy
Friends of Arthur R Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge
Friends of Perdido Bay
Friends of Pinellas Master Naturalists
Friends of St. Joseph Bay Preserves
Friends of St. Joseph Peninsula State Park
Friends of St. Sebastian River
Friends of the Florida Panther Refuge
Friends of the Miccosukee Greenway
Friends of the Wacissa
Friends of the Wekiva River
Friends of Wakulla Springs State Park
Golden Gate Civic Association
Green Horizon Land Trust
Green Party of Florida
Gulf Coast Conservancy
Halifax Heritage Byway
Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute
IDEAS for US (Intellectual Decisions on Environmental Awareness Solutions)
Indian River Land Trust
Indian Riverkeeper
League of Conservation Voters
Lemon Bay Conservancy
Leon Soil and Water Conservation District
Lighthouse Bay at the Brooks
Millstone Institute for Preservation
National Wildlife Federation
Nehrling Gardens
North American Butterfly Association – Citrus County
North American Native Fishes Association
North Florida Land Trust
Ormond Scenic Loop and Trail
Paddle Florida
Pine Ridge Sanctuary/Pine Ridge Orchids
Progress Florida
Protect our Watersheds
Public Trust Environmental Legal Institute of Florida
Putnam County Environmental Council
Putnam Land Conservancy
Rails to Trails Conservancy
Rainbow River Conservation
Redlands Citizens Association
Reef Relief
River of Grass Greenway
Rookery Pointe Homeowners Association
Sanibel – Captiva Conservation Foundation
Save Our Suwannee
Save the Manatee Club
Science Eye
Shadow Wood Community Association
Shady Historic and Scenic Trails Association
Sierra Club Florida Chapter
Sierra Club – Ancient Islands Group
Sierra Club – Broward Group
Sierra Club – Calusa Group
Sierra Club – Greater Charlotte Harbor Group
Sierra Club – Loxahatchee Group
Sierra Club – Nassau County Group
Sierra Club – Northeast Group
Sierra Club – Suwannee-St. Johns
Sierra Club – Tampa Bay Group
Sierra Club – Turtle Coast Group
Silver River Keeper Foundation
Silver Springs Alliance
Snook Foundation
South Florida Wildlands Association
Southern Trailriders Association
Southwest Florida Watershed Council
Space Coast Progressive Alliance
Spring Run Golf Club
St. Andrew Bay Resource Management Association
St. Johns River Alliance
St. Johns Riverkeeper
Students Advocating Sustainability at Stetson
Sunshine State Interfaith Power and Light
Surfrider Foundation
Suwannee Bicycle Association
Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy
Tallahassee Citizens Climate Lobby
Tampa Bay Conservancy
The Conservation Fund
The Nature Conservancy
The Villagers
Timucuan Trail Parks Foundation
Treasured Lands Foundation
Trust for Public Land
UCF College Democrats Environmental Caucus
Urban Environment League of Greater Miami
Urban Paradise Guild
UWF Student Environmental Action Society
Wakulla Springs Alliance
Wellington Preservation Coalition
Wildlands Conservation
Wildlife Society – Florida Chapter
Wildwood Preservation Society
Women for Wise Growth
Women’s History Coalition”

So, if you live in one of the other 64 countries where this glob of a blog is read, please contact these commissioners and tell them you can smell how rotten of a idea this Plum Creek development is from where you live. If you are a citizen of the US , or live in Alachua county, Florida…call or write this board ASAP.

I thank you,,,and our grandchildren will, too.

Franque23


I am a first cousin once removed to Edward Curtis.

Edward Curtis spent most of his lifetime photographing Native Americans.

Edward Curtis spent most of his lifetime photographing Native Americans.

The famous Native American photographer was my Grandmother’s first cousin. Because my grandmother gifted some of his work to her children, I have two first plate photo copies of his work hung in my house.

This hangs on our walls,,and we still talk form time to time.

This hangs on our walls,,and this guy and I still talk from time to time.

Works by Edward Curtis hung on the walls of my parents home in Florida, too. I’d stand before them and stare at the faces in the photographs, and sometimes it almost seemed those caught by Curtis’ camera could speak. I’d study the lines on their faces and feel as though I knew how they felt-it was as if I knew their life.

Oddly, but maybe though a strong genetic urge to understand the Native Americans, the same one that drove Edward Curtis on to photograph America’s indigenous people, I spent my childhood days wishing I was an Indian. My brother and I romped around outside dressed as Indian’s with only a simple towel wrapped around our privates held in place by our belts. We terrorized our neighbor’s backyards playing, sensing, wishing we were part of those crafty, savvy  tribes we saw depicted on TV or in the Curtis pictures. Oh, to shoot a bow and to understand the eagle’s cry, this was my fondest hope. At the time, I never thought that any other child felt differently about our indigenous people. I thought everyone wore only towels when they could. Looking back, yeah, no, that wasn’t really happening.

That’s exactly what that cop said, too. “You kids gotta get dressed.”

My dreams were often about being an Indian scout. I’d climb high up in a tree,,, and look for signs of other people, or wild animals. I was always a super scout in those dreams….then I would sleep.

My fascination for the Native American, or indigenous people, was not singular to me- those tendencies ran rampant throughout my family.

My sister, Sharon Franquemont, is an adopted full fledged Lakota. She spent ten years studying and working with the tribe. Sharon went on to help organize a once a year gathering and beating of the drum in Washington D.C.-right on the lawn by the Washington Monument

An aerial view of one of the first gatherings.

An aerial view of one of the first  Native American vigils/gatherings in D.C.

Sharon went on with the vigil, A Prayer Vigil for the Earth*, for ten years and it was still on-going as of 2012. http://www.oneprayer.org/. The gathering was a collective effort to alert our leaders about the World’s need for Peace. At first, it was a small gathering of five to seven tribes that came and set up Tepees in a circle by the Washington monument.

On the lawn, right by the Washington Monument.

On the lawn, right by the Washington Monument.

As I recall, Sharon used her own money and collected more to fly chiefs from various tribes to the site for the first few vigils. The drum would beat for three days and nights, and all the while speakers would take center stage on a 8X8 foot wooden platform and give the lecture they felt had to be shared.

By the end of Sharon’s ten years, tepees were set up by groups that came from Japan, Africa, Europe, heck all around the globe who were seeking world peace …My sister carried on Edward Curtis mission and then some. (I’m gonna leave out how Sharon also worked with the Shumei Institute in Japan and traveled the world over talking about world Peace.-that’s another whole story.)http://www.shumei.org/ )

My brother,  Edward Franquemont, spent ten years living with indigenous people of the Andes.

He is shown here holding me back for my own good, I think.

Ed is shown here holding me back for my own good, I think. Sharon keeps above the fray—but check out the super spring coiled glider snow sled!

Ed was featured in a Nova special-Secret of the lost Empires-the Incas(Secrets Of Lost Empires:The Inca Empire Part 1/6 [Video]) –you can learn about the Incas and see my brother host the show, the first man talking once the narrator stops….it’s so interesting.

My brother , Ed, and his wife, Christine Franquemont, lived in the Andes and raised their two girls in those mountains. They learned to speak the various dialects of the Native People. They both were devoted to helping the cause for the Peruvian Native people and in  particular Ed studied their weaving, the meanings of the threads and design they used, while also translating to the outside world what the process of weaving meant to that society.

My brother, Ed, working a handspindle.

My brother, Ed, working a hand-spindle.

Christine became an authority on the subject of potatoes, the  Peruvian’s main dietary food. Both traveled across the Pond lecturing on their individual expertise-to England, South American and Japan. That was just the way they rolled.

Christine Franquemont in Peru. I can't figure why she's holding my brother's hat? Hats seldom leave bald heads.

Christine Franquemont in Peru. I can’t figure why she’s holding my brother’s hat? Hats seldom leave bald heads.

So there you have it: My sister went all in with the Lakota, and helped organize what became a world-wide gathering at the Washington D.C. Monument that showcased the Native American people and called for world peace; my brother studied the Peruvian Inca culture and brought it to the mainstream via a Nova special. His wife, Christine, studied the Peruvians and loved their culture and land.

Point—Edward Curtis lives on through my family, through my sibling’s efforts, and their interests. They each fought for indigenous people, for their right to exist and continue their beliefs and cultural interests, and for the less fortunate, and so much more. I have to add, my daughter, Kelly Franqueont, now working in impoverished school districts throughout South Africa is also carrying on this tradition of working to help indigenous people.

Kelly's determined to help people learn how to teach, and help children learn.

Kelly’s determined to help people learn how to teach, and help children learn.

Ed and Chris had just returned from Peru for a visit, while I stayed put dreaming of lake time.

Ed and Chris had just returned from Peru for a visit, while I stayed put dreaming of lake time. (Back yard in Micanopy Floirda-1981ish,)

One last thing-wouldn’t you know that Abby Franquemont-my brother’s oldest child-has dedicated years to expounding upon and learning the Peruvian methods of weaving.

She learned form her dad, Ed Franquemont, and from the Peruvians. She is on google.

She learned from her dad, Ed Franquemont, and from the Peruvians, and then from 40 years of practice. She is on google.

https://www.youtube.com/user/afranquemont See Abby here, and learn more about her efforts.

Edward Curtis is dancing somewhere because of Abby’s, Christine’s, Ed’s, Sharon’s and Kelly Franquemont’s accomplishments.

Me, I celebrate them all, too, but I’m a bit different from my siblings- that’s also another story…

http://www.oneprayer.org/History.html

http://www.disclose.tv/…/Secrets_of_Lost_Empires_The…/

Gerald Franquemont
Talk with you later, ...

Talk with you later, … Franque23

*This comment is found by clicking the comment button at the top of the post, but I thought Sharon’s adds so important that I’d * them and include her words here. Sharon’s comment: “Gerry, so heart warming that you were working on this just before the Edward S. Curtis video came across Facebook.  Of course, the Prayer Vigil for the Earth, which was held every year for 20 not 10 years, was far from a 1 person event.  Betsy Stang recommended most of the Native people (extraordinary Wisdom Keepers…I still marvel at who graced our time) and David Berry arranged for our guests to visit State Department, White House, Congress, etc. They were far more politically savvy and active than I was or am. About the 3rd year into our 20 of a 100% voluntary event on the Mall, wonderful volunteers stepped up in DC..Sue, Ben, Bill R.,Ellie R.,  Bill S., Rabiah, Chris Linas and many more helped us organize and erect the Peace Village every year. We remained together for 17 years. The list goes on and on because wonderful beings brought themselves and often their community to join us. After the 4th year, we were ready to retire, but Harry F. Byrd advised us to go on and invite other faiths to join us.  That is how we became an interfaith event.  Although I did contribute financially every year, so did others whose names at their request will be anonymous. Before 9/11, things were very wonderful with the National park Service helping us with permits and understanding. After 9/11, the event became far more difficult. I definitely felt and feel tapped by Edward S. Curtis and always will. Of course, Grandma Franque and all the Franquemonts are in there, too.”


Recently, a FB post caught my eye. It featured a Silver Back Gorilla signing as he expressed his feelings and thoughts about the Paris Climate Talks. It’s clear this animal has a certain degree of intelligence not thought possible by sooo many.  But what about Koko?  Just watch-http://www.koko.org/node/2195

Koko signs, Earth

Koko signs, Earth

Koko signs a whole bunch of stuff….

"I am Gorilla"

“I am Gorilla”

And then, also this-

"But Man stupid."

“But Man stupid.”

See? It’s freaky to realize this Gorilla knows what he’s talking about and has strong opinions on the subject matter. This video illustrates why I think hunters of Gorilla’s and all exotic animals must be stopped, and maybe what’s freakier than a signing gorilla is that many humans would hunt this animal down and kill him if they could.

In the end, for many of us there’s nothing like having a trophy-trophy wives,

According ot reports, Donald Trumps current wife wanted to show how sexy of a first lady she'd make....Some trophies need polishing, others, not so much.

(According to reports, Donald Trump’s current wife wanted to show how sexy of a first lady she’d make….Some trophies need polishing, others, not so much.)

or having a trophy husband,

 What?

(What?)

or a slew of trophy animal heads plastered on walls. All over the world there are groups of people who like killing someone’s spirit, or purpose, or gutting an animal that didn’t see the bullet coming.

Cecil the lion- how in god's name is killing this animal called sport?

Cecil the lion- how in god’s name is killing this animal called sport?

Much of the world was horrified by the slaughter of the great African lion, Cecil, but somehow that killer slipped through the knot of justice and danced his way to a future. He has much too much company in that regard.

This is dick-wade dentist Palmer who killed Cecil...this pic, however, is of another murder his proud to have committed.

This is the dick-wad dentist, Palmer, who killed Cecil…this picture, however, is of another murder he’s proud to have committed.

Bluntly, these animals who mankind allows to be slaughtered every day have intelligence,(that’s why they hide and run from humans-duh!)  Here’s a chance to watch Koko learning sign–fun. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SNuZ4OE6vCk

All kinds of animals deserve so much better than to be hunted down by people in planes, boats, trucks, cars or on foot. Have you ever noticed how almost any animal you see crossing a road is running for their life? They have a concept of death, and a desire to live. This is why America should have a HUGE( i.e. in Donald Trump’s voice) building project to provide either overhead or underground animal passage ways across major roads and roads that traverse wildlife areas. Mostly, even our National Parks don’t provide this added protection for the life those authorities purport to value so much-

animals are intelligent, and they use these to live.

Animals are intelligent, and they use these to live.

Animals either know about the passes and use them , or they are taught to us them.

Animals either know about the passes and use them , or they are taught to use them.

Safe form traffic-now if we could only stop killing them.

Safe from traffic-now if we could only stop killing them.

But heck, we can’t even stop people from killing people, why would I expect we would care about the vanishing wildlife, the ones who can think well enough to survive if it wasn’t for us.

Thing is, we might lose our underwear next.....then what?

I’ve been thinking about people, and it’s occurred to me there’s a test we forget to take in school.

Intelligence is a bit of a nebulous term. Here we are, people with so-called intelligence who have built enough nuclear bombs to blow up our only world a zillion times over, and people routinely think nuclear power plants are a good idea even after the horrors those plant melt downs have already caused to our planet.

Fukushima still smokes today-do not inhale.

Fukushima still smokes today-do not inhale.

My mind keeps asking: so what's the lesson here?

My mind keeps asking: so what’s the lesson here?

I say there’s some sort of intelligence test people are missing; the human race needs to re-think things. Perhaps the biggest test for humanity is how we show mercy to the things we could otherwise kill. Do we just kill, or do we try to help.

As a kid, I loved seeing Theodore Roosevelt’s Sagamore Hill Estate-went maybe 50 times- with all the dead animal heads staring at me from their perch on the walls.

Dead heads, and not music lovers.

Dead heads, and not music lovers.

Now, the thought of Roosevelt killing all those animals for sport and me enjoying seeing the heads makes me want to throw-up, barf a bag full and then puke. Of course, times have changed, I’ve grown up, read, cared, so my thoughts on the matter of dead animal heads have changed. Why can’t Mankind grow up and learn as well?

When will we learn that the life around us has intelligence and should not be hunted, destroyed, but managed for the prosperity of the World. That answer is the correct one to seek for what should be Humanity’s next, new improved test.

Koko hopes we will pass…..

EXC PRINT BEFORE WEB / Help Koko be the "Voice of Nature." - Koko responds to a request to represent the "Voice of Nature" in a scripted PSA at the Paris Climate Summit (COP21). Koko is currently one of the only non-human great apes in the world who can "talk" to humans, and serve as an ambassador for endangered species source: The Gorilla Foundation / /Koko.org 1733 Woodside Rd., Suite 330, Redwood City, CA 94061 1 800-ME-GO-APE (1 800-634-6273)

EXC PRINT BEFORE WEB / Help Koko be the “Voice of Nature.” – Koko responds to a request to represent the “Voice of Nature” in a scripted PSA at the Paris Climate Summit (COP21). Koko is currently one of the only non-human great apes in the world who can “talk” to humans, and serve as an ambassador for endangered species source: The Gorilla Foundation / /Koko.org 1733 Woodside Rd., Suite 330, Redwood City, CA 94061 1 800-ME-GO-APE (1 800-634-6273)

Franque23


 

449800061

Life is bigger than any of us.

My foot falls beat a rhythm upon wet leaves strewn along the path, or through dusty sands dried by a rain-less week. Wind rattles leaves as though chimes hang from every branch; the Florida panther, Jaguarundi, bison, wild horse, fearsome gator and grunting bore live nearby. The massive Pileated Woodpecker laughs from high above as the mid-size tanager hangs perpendicular from a massive oak trunk, its expansive call echoing through the woodland. Nature’s music owns the air.

The long-eared owl silently watches, its large eyes blinking, it’s head swiveling left and right. This is no time to feel alone, but a great moment for recalling the past and looking ahead to the future while so intensely immersed in the present. Time ticks on another clock, not here with the scurrying ants, buzzing insects, the birds, trees, land and running rabbits.

 

This moment owns forever.

 

There’s a bluff that Chief Micanopy had walked so long ago, before he was overcome, conquered. The prairie below this bluff, now an expansive grassland traversed by creeks and dotted by ponds, had once been a sizable lake crossed only by boat, and then prairie once again, or rain flooded marsh; change the only constant. In this order, the majestic clouds, or severe blue skies, the morning mists full of rainbows and ever vast starlit sky follow along with the prairie as calendar pages turn, as the years pass. The changes come year in, year out, life moving forward or gone.

It seems the true measure of a person may be the shadow they leave behind, one they’ll never see.

The shadow we make lingers, stretches, expands through others that follow our lifetime. The winds will always blow-the sailor knows this as sure as the winged will balance by claw and the black bear smell a man’s breath from twenty miles off. Nature has its way of surviving. The true nature of us will survive, too. A life lived full of good intention will be a peaceful memory as all of us take a last breath, a last look around, and then say goodbye to all of it, the hurry, bustle, stress, the appointments we’ve kept and those we’ve missed. In the end, I’m certain what we have most is who we have really been. As true as the wind blows, that truth will rush through our senses with an undeniable rigidity in our last moments.

This is why I walk. I want to think about who I am, and what I’ve really done. Life is long, but never long enough-ends will be left hanging, but that doesn’t mean there could ever be a turn-down day, a reason to lose focus, to give up. Somehow, I feel the life around me, us, is always calling for us as a society to do better, to make the ends meet, and to find peace with our place on the planet.

I think of Isis, and how in my mind’s eye I’d like to hug each member and tell them I feel their pain, but it’d be foolish not to realize those same people would cut my head off. The world faces a difficult, blood soaked time ahead, but has it ever been any different? So many more civilians were killed in WWII than were soldiers, and when we speak of the deaths, we seldom think of the wounded, the transformed forever by the blasts of war, the loss of limb, or parents or siblings. My feet hit the earth as if each one is recording a massacre of life that has happened in our history on the planet.

That’s when the owl in all its wisdom hoots. How? Why? What is all this for? Walking-

Even the sperm race to battle and penetrate the egg. Is life then just a battle from its beginning, one we are meant to endure? Of course, I don’t know. I only know I love the woods, the life it holds, the life I see around me, and I want the killing to stop.

Franque23

I’ve a trilogy, The Avatar Magic series , out on Kindle now….here’s the three links to each book..I do hope you’ll spread the word and enjoy these writings.

Bk one   http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00B0NYO80

Bk two      http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KXMIIOK

Bk three       http://www.amazon.com/dp/B018RX67BW

 

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