Reliving Florida

My Pisces Birthday Twin, Jessica, and I went to Crystal Springs, Florida right when things were starting to get hairy (mid-March, Friday the 13th!). Nothing had closed yet and no one was staying home but you could feel the shift. I know America should’ve been sheltering in place much earlier, but I’m so thankful we have these memories. The manatees and are still pulling me thruuuuu.

We picked the perfect time and it was just us on the tour boat. I had never seen a manatee in real life before and I cried a little because it is so awesome to see a giant creature like that swimming right under you. At first I thought it was a mama and baby, but it was actually a large female and little male mating. Hahaaa! She ate through the whole thing!! We also saw in the distance three dolphins. I guess this behavior is specific to the gulf, but the dolphins got real freaky and kicked up a dirt circle to trap fish. I hope to go back one day during manatee season to see them all in the springs!

Rainbow Springs! The springs are so beautiful and clear. Lots of lush tropical plants that Jess knew way more about than I did. Also, a trio of manmade waterfalls. They were very beautiful tho sized for the birds.

Remnants of the old zoo before Rainbow Springs became a state park.
On the way back, we stopped at the Gainesville Butterfly Rainforest. I think we may have visited on their last day open. There were so many butterflies and we stayed until close.

Babies outside the University of Florida on our drive home.
Our manatee tour guide recommended the Icebox. I tried boiled shrimp for the first time and we listened to ‘Free Bird’ while drinking bud lites. We probably heard that song 6x on this trip.

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