Not so horrible anymore

I don’t when I lost my fear of thistle …

But let’s just say somewhere along the way it worked itself off the list.

Can you see the thistle? (hint: it’s right alongside the gator trail.)

For example, the path I am following on this photo is a gator trail. Not that I was worried about one of them either. Although I must confess to a brief bought of terror upon standing at the edge of canal and watching a good couple dozen surface out of thin air, or rather I mean – pea green soup water. I felt relatively safe on the lip of Tamiami caprock where I was standing, thanking my lucky stars that it didn’t break free and slide in.

Then there are the snakes and the tropical sun, the threat of getting lost, or whacking myself by mistake with my machete, or running out of water, a run in with a rogue wild hog, or an unexpected encounter with a black bear.

There’s the chiggers and the ticks, deer flies and bees, biting ants and stinging scorpions – to which I can attest to getting stung on my index finger, it hiding in a crevasse of bark on a slash pine.

I regularly brush up against poison wood and poison ivy and now that it’s summer, despite there not yet being rain, mosquitoes have popped up by the million and tropical storm tracks are on their way, not to mention lightning strikes and flash floods which can send cars and trucks and tractor trailers skimming out of control on Tamiami Trail … not that it wasn’t already dangerous enough on a perfectly sunny day.

Cirsium horridulum can grow a good 2 feet tall

Thistle to me is now just another pretty flower …

Except when it’s so dry:

i.e., wildfire threat.

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