Learning to walk barefoot in Florida


It’s hard to believe that we’ve been in Florida for a month now…even more so that we’ve been on the road for two and a half! I guess it shouldn’t be so weird, since this is pretty much what I planned since before we started traveling. But sometimes it’s kinda strange to actually do the cool thing that you were talking to your friends about doing for so long. At least, it is for me. I’ve noticed that unfulfilled plans, basically elaborate hypothetical situations, are commonplace in this culture.

“Hey, wanna cross the country this summer and just wing it?” “Yeah man, we can live off of peanut butter and jerky, I don’t care. Let’s visit every state! It’ll be sweeeet!!” The conversation continues, sometimes in great detail, but with no real expectation of bringing the plan to life. Even if it seems real in the moment, everyone knows that it’s probably not really gonna happen. I’ve done this myself, many times over….but at some point not too long ago I realized that I didn’t want to live like that anymore. I actually want to DO the things that I say I’m gonna do! The way I see it, doing things is way more fun then pretending I’m gonna do them then just sitting on my patootie instead. I guess that’s why I’m where I am right now :P

Anyway, back from tangent. Florida! It’s quite a strange place, as I’ve found out. Almost everyone we’ve talked to has spoken of gators galore, though I have yet to see one (believe me….I’m not complaining!). From what we’ve heard, it’s not uncommon to see them wandering the streets after a heavy rainstorm. Apparently there are also a lot of panthers, though we’ve thankfully been able to avoid encountering one of those, as well. In fact, most of the wildlife here (besides the cute little lizards) seems to be on the aggressive and scary side. The farm we were on for three weeks was overrun with fire ants – I look like I have friggen leprosy on my feet and ankles thanks to those bastards. I still haven’t figured out why they’re so damn angry! I mean, it’s just unreasonable. I know I stepped on their house, but did they ALL have to try to eat me alive? It took me quite some time to learn how to navigate the turf barefoot without being torn apart by fire ants and prickly burrs. It’s kind of like walking through a minefield, except without the possibly being blown up part. The vegetation here is equally as unfriendly – lots of prickly trees, plants, and even grass. Not gonna lie, I kind of miss the lush fields up north, which is kind of silly because at this point they’ve disappeared under a layer of that yucky white cold stuff.

On another note, transitions. We’re about to be on the road again, which is exciting for a few reasons. For one, I just like the freedom and unexpectedness of the whole thing. For another, our damn puppy will hopefully be less pent up and crazy. I know he spent three weeks on a farm, but I didn’t think that being in a house for two days would turn him into super crack-dog extraordinaire. I love him to death, but hot damn I don’t know how much more crack dog I can take! It’s hard to train a puppy when I start seeing red….paaaatience, Sug. sigh. I know it’s a learning experience and blahdeeblah – I’ll get there eventually. Hopefully before I have a strangled puppy. Don’t worry, I jest!

Okay, time to re-pack my freshly cleaned clothes and prepare for….well, anything :) ‘cuz that’s what could happen!



About claireaudient

North Carolina girl, born and raised, though now I consider Vermont to be home as well. I guess you could say I'm a migrant gypsy farmer, if you were prone to saying such things. I've played the whole society game; I've been to three different colleges, have an Associate's Degree (in Liberal Studies, or something like that), and have worked more restaurant jobs than I care to admit. Through a curious series of events, however, I've formed a different perspective on what life means to me. Instead of slaving away at a job I hate to eke out a mediocre life staring at a shiny screen, I'm living out my dream to travel while learning organic farming and sustainability practices. It's not always easy, but leaving the comforts of routine to experience the wonders of the universe was a choice I will never regret. <3

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