Warning – if you are a member of the Florida Panhandle Tourist Bureau, don’t read this blog.
We woke up at Manatee Springs State Park to the croak of a crow. “That’s a Fish Crow,” yelled Malkolm from his tent. “Listen to how low pitched and croaky it is.”
“That’s a Fish Crow all right,” answered Wendy groggily. Wendy is not at her brightest early in the morning, and this was her day to sleep in. “Definitely a Fish Crow.” She rolled over and tried to get back to sleep. This blog is not about birds however, even though the crow was Malkolm’s 439th bird of the trip. I just put it in to appease Malkolm, who thinks that every blog should feature birds.
This blog is about Wendy’s toes. Two summers ago we went on a six-week canoe trip on Banks Island. Banks Island is north of Inuvik in the Arctic Archipelago. It was a cold, wet, windy journey and most of us suffered from “chilblains.” Chilblains are red, puffy sores that break out on exposed skin during prolonged chilly weather. Sometimes they turn black and look like the first stages of leprosy. Not that I’ve ever seen any stages of leprosy, I’m just trying to be dramatic.
We were not surprised to get chilblains in the Arctic. We were surprised to get them in the Florida Panhandle. Wendy’s toes became red and inflamed after a couple of weeks of cycling in the cold, damp weather. To be fair however, we can’t just blame Florida – it had been cool and damp since we crossed into Louisiana early in January.
Just two more comments:
Our friends back in Whitehorse would not be sympathetic - we just heard that it is -45 degrees there.
My credibility is at an all-time low. I've been saying things like "this is the last cold spell of the year,"since we hit Texas in November.
We are now heading out of the panhadle - and into the frying pan. It is supposed to get up to 80 degrees today here in Clearwater, Florida. We've had our last cold spell of the year for sure.