A Summer at the Springs

Hi, thanks for reading! Today I want to share one of my favorite memories of all time. It all started on one typical summer day in Florida.



The weather is dry and hot, and the sun burns my family and I to a crisp as we walk through the grounds of Wekiwa Springs. As we usually do, each member in my family will get to choose one special activity to do over summer break. Today is my turn, and I decided to spend a day canoeing in the springs. My brothers, Daniel and Jack, of course hate the idea and have been complaining the entire time. Doing what brothers normally do, Daniel decides to aggravate me the whole day. He gets on my nerves so much that we have to pull over while on the water to be separated by canoes.

This is where the problems start.

With dad and Daniel in one canoe, it’s mom, Jack, and I  in the other. We row steadily down the river, enjoying the peace and quiet of the dark water and deep forests surrounding us. But, because our family is divided by canoes (thanks to Daniel), we keep drifting apart. My dad gets sick of waiting for us to catch up to him, so he has the  idea of tying our boats together with some rope. Full of such “brilliant” ideas, dad thinks it would be funny to get the boat stuck on a log that had fallen to the side of the shore. He steers the canoe sharply to the right and whams right into the rotting wood. Satisfied with my mom’s annoyance, he pushes the canoe off the log. What he doesn’t expect to happen is for our canoe to now get stuck on the log as well.

By now, my dad is really tired from rowing and pushing both the canoes around. My mom is nagging on him, when all of a sudden a dry, airy hissing pierces above all of the commotion. Everyone freezes. There’s dead silence on the water. As if rehearsed, my whole family and I turn to the river bank, slowly and synchronized. Our eyes meet those of a 12-foot long alligator with half a dozen babies swarming her. My mom and I start screaming and flailing about in the boat, while Jack turns white and looks back and forth between my parents and the gator. The alligator hisses again and slips into the water. We can see her dark figure approaching as my dad rips our canoe off of the log. We paddle out of the river as fast as possible, hearts racing from the adrenaline rush.

~fin. Flashback~

You may wonder why a near death experience is one of my best memories. To me, it was an adventure that I had with my family and that I’ll never forget!


2 thoughts on “A Summer at the Springs

  1. Wow! I loved how the hissing gator silenced everyone. Nature’s power to cow and humble us always amazes me. Once when we were canoeing on the Peace River my husband’s paddle accidentally disturbed a gator. The gator thrashed and roiled and rolled next to our tiny canoe. Your piece brought that memory to mind.

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