From the time St. Augustine (capital of Florida at the time) was established in 1565, Spanish military and religious authorities began extending their reach beyond the town limits. They developed various modes of transportation between widely dispersed settlements which eventually included forts, missions and ranches.
During this period, many roads were established in Spain’s New World colonies, often following earlier Indian footpaths and trade routes. In La Florida, the Camino Real helped move people and supplies between St. Augustine and the more than 100 missions located to its west among native populations living on the frontier.
In the 1680s, Florida Governor Diego de Quirogay Losado contracted the services of military engineer Enrique Primo de Rivera to build a formal road across north Florida that was suitable for oxcarts.
Although there are no standing Spanish missions in Florida today, important clues found in historical documents, archaeological evidence, and the land itself have allowed researchers to reconstruct this royal road’s path. So, come learn about, explore, and enjoy the places and stories of La Florida and its El Camino Real! https://dos.myflorida.com/historical/explore/el-camino-real/
Who knew that March is Women’s Bike History
Month? I discovered this while comparing
Florida’s Bike Month to the May Bike Month by The League of American Bicyclists,
established in 1880.
So, I’ll combine some of the history of the contribution of women along with come bicycle safety tips.
1896, Susan B. Anthony — one of the most
important leaders in the women’s suffrage movement — shared her perspective on
bicycling with intrepid reporter, Nellie Bly. “Let me tell you what I
think of bicycling,” she said. “I think it has done more to
emancipate women than anything else in the world. It gives women a feeling of
freedom and self-reliance. I stand and rejoice every time I see a woman ride by
on a wheel… the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood.” https://bikeleague.org/content/march-womens-bike-history-month
realized this. According to the Bike
League article, Anthony wasn’t alone. The article mentioned her friend, and
fellow suffragette, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, wrote an entire article for
the American Wheelman praising the bicycle for encouraging the
building of “good roads,” and increasing people’s mobility. It states, most importantly, though: “The
bicycle will inspire women with more courage, self-respect and self-reliance,
and make the next generation more vigorous of mind and body; for feeble mothers
do not produce great statesmen, scientists and scholars.”
not certain about the latter part of the statement but maybe that was a
challenge enough to encourage women to begin expanding their horizons with
confidence. Could it have been simply a bicycle
that helped trigger this progress?
So, as you warm up and exercise on your bike that has been sitting around for the winter, let’s highlight a few safety pointers. First, give your bike a safety inspection and make sure it is operating properly, including lights.
I realize each state and country has its own special rules and laws so I’ll just stick to a few things to consider. Consult your own local laws where you ride – and when we travel to other locations. Let’s not assume our knowledge is sufficient for where we ride. Check before your ride!
Florida is a great place to ride your bike. If you are driving in Florida, please be aware of cyclists. Cyclists need to be aware of vehicle drivers as well. Let’s have mutual respect and protection.
Florida Department of Transportation’s Alert Today Florida program has key information, and posted the proclamation from Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis, for March Bicycle Month. https://www.alerttodayflorida.com/ Florida knows the importance of doing everything possible to make roadways safer for all users.
I enjoyed making presentations to teens and adults alike to encourage vehicle, bike and pedestrian safety. I had fun re-enacting Larry, the crash test mannequin (which I changed to Larry the Smarty since he now buckles up, rides safely and walks safely.
Here are some simple tips to remember:
– A bicycle in Florida is a legal vehicle on roadways. Don’t assume though that people see you or know the law. Better to be safe.
– Cyclists on roadways fare best when they act, and are treated as vehicles.
– Bicyclists may ride on sidewalks as well but must yield to pedestrians and provide an audible signal while approaching them.
– Some local laws may not permit a bicyclist to ride on the sidewalk, so check before you ride.
– Ride in the same direction as the traffic since the bike is an authorized road vehicle.
– If a designated bike lane is in the roadway, some local laws require bicyclists to use it instead of the sidewalk. That may not be safe for children though.
– If you see an image of a bicycle on the roadway, called a sharrow, it means a bicyclist should be expected to be in the roadway. These are often alternatives to designated bike lanes when there is insufficient space to build the separate lanes.
Why are these tiny doors in the
U.S. Capitol? I’m glad you asked.
These small doors and the water sources they housed, found in several places in the capitol building, were multipurpose. Years ago they provided water to prevent a future fire from spreading.
The doors also helped ensure the mud tracked in from Washington’s dirt streets and foot paths could be easily cleaned from the capitol’s floors. That is why the doors stand only about 30 inches tall. They conceal low, shallow closets where workers filled pails of water to mop the floors. (Architect of the Capitol – https://www.flickr.com/photos/uscapitol/29122889536)
This is a post for Thursday Doors. You can be added to the list too. Follow this link to Norm’s doors. Check them out and then look for the link to the list. Fill out the form, and your doors are in the gallery of doors for this week. #Thursdaydoors
I couldn’t find my photos of the doors during my last trip to D.C. so I’ll have to rely on the photos from Architect of the Capitol. Thanks.
Ichetucknee Springs near High Springs and Fort White, Florida provides an abundance of life to the natural habitation in Florida’s northeast region, and is an oasis of sorts year round.
The Ichetucknee 1 post provides information and images of
the head water springs and the north entrance to the Ichetucknee River. The images in this post reveal the south end
of the river where water travelers usually exit from the peaceful ride.
The flow of the springs creates a beautiful river that was once a secret (somewhat) before 1970. You wouldn’t know it today as thousands converge on the area. The river doesn’t mind though. It just meanders along awaiting new people to jump right in and ride along.
Ichetucknee River flows about six miles through the shaded hammocks and wetlands before joining the Santa Fe River. In 1972 the head spring of the river was declared a national natural landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior.
White-tailed deer, raccoons, wild turkeys, wood ducks and great blue herons can be seen from the river. Picnic areas, equipped with tables and grills, are available throughout the park.
It’s quiet now, missing the laughter and squealing with the cool spring water. Serene, peaceful, where are the people?
It was a warm pre-spring day with a slight haze from clouds. We ponder, and imagine, that soon the echoes erupt through the oaks; ripples with the splash of the crystal clear flow. It will soon be Ichetucknee’s prime time.
Ichetucknee – Indian word meaning “beaver pond” and is one of Florida’s 33 first-magnitude springs. (Wikipedia) The springs are located close to High Springs, Florida.
To me, prime time is whenever I can be there, taking in the beauty around. I enjoyed the quietness and stillness without all the laughter and splashing – because it was a good picture day – even though vegetation was still dormant.
The soft flow of the springs allows a slight splash now and then but their flow is without effort, abiding within natural barriers. A leaf falls from the tree and you could almost hear it land in the woods, or softly touch the smooth, clear water.
This is a beautiful place. Observe with me the beauty even in the after-affects of winter.
Soon, the people will arrive, the green abounds and the sun bakes. The springs refresh. Below is a nice video from Trips to Discover.
Here is a combination of street art and emphasis on Thursday Doors. Did it catch your attention? Do you notice the door?
High Springs is a town in North Florida with around 4,000 in population. It is not far from the University of Florida in Gainesville.
Since we are getting close to spring, here is another take on it – High Springs. Visit Florida provides a little additional insight, stating it’s the casual tempo of High Springs that entices travelers.
High Springs tempts visitors with diverse and unique offerings of art, antiques and outdoor adventures that make it a refreshing getaway.
Surrounded by natural attractions, the town attracts canoeists, cave divers and campers heading to the nearby Santa Fe River. High Springs is a place for snorkeling, diving, tubing or swimming in natural springs that flow at a steady 72 degrees all year long. https://www.visitflorida.com/en-us/cities/high-springs.html
If you are in the North Florida area it’s worth a little trip to High Springs and enjoy the small town flavor along with the beautiful springs and oaks. https://highsprings.us/ More about the springs later.
This is my first post for #ThursdayDoors so I copied the following information from an excellent blogger, Dan, at https://nofacilities.com/2019/02/28/closing-februarys-door-thursdaydoors/. He also links to Norm’s blog and #ThursdayDoors information.
“If you don’t know about the list, it’s worth checking out. It’s even worth the minute or two to sign-in, if you haven’t already. Having your door on the list means that more people will see them. I’ve been on the list and off the list, and I can tell you that being on the list puts more eyeballs on your page. How do you get on the list? I’m glad you asked. Follow this link to Norm’s doors. Check them out and then look for the link to the list. Fill out the form, and your doors are in the gallery of doors for this week. ” Dan Antion
Cold creeps along, snatching the warmth from life within;
It fights to keep life – to look for light of day.
It was there not long ago, as the birds sang and nature
In the cold, the orange comes forth to yield its fruit,
The juice within; the taste that sweetens the mind.
Leaves relax, awaiting time to renew;
Absorb the sun, the rain, the warmth that departed.
Awake sweet tree; stand tall; bloom forth and invite that which shares in your beauty; multiply as Creator ordained.
Your blooms bright, you spread forth, ready to start new life again.
Too, Japanese plum, once living in another place,
Planted anew, will you live?
You wait, and you pause, waiting for that time.
Awww, I see you develop – the green enveloping.
In time you grow, move beyond just being still, wondering your life call.
Now absorb the light, warmth from the sun, soaking moisture
through your roots.
Will you soon show your colors, spreading your blooms too?
I’m glad you lived, and growing too.
You can’t wait to show others, you too can produce.
It won’t be long and blossoms spring forth – yielding plum – fruit through strife.
These were my thoughts this weekend as I saw the orange tree budding. The Japanese plum (originating in China) was replanted from another place in my yard to a place where it could have more sunlight. It lay dormant with no leaves until the tiny shoots began to form. Now it is really growing.
What about our lives? Do we lay dormant awaiting the warmth and glow of the sun? God is certainly there to bring us forth to new life as his love envelopes us, shining upon us, encouraging us to spring forth – trusting Him and bringing forth the fruit of life.