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-Marjory Stoneman Douglas
Wednesday morning I had been looking forward to a lecture on the history of Everglades National Park and Marjory Stoneman Douglas. It was likely well-received by most of the participants but I was disappointed. I have studied Douglas and read both her signature book, The Everglades: A River of Grass, as well as her autobiography, Voice of the River. I had hoped our lady speaker would appear in costume and perform as Marjory. That didn't happen and as it turned out the Marjory segment of the lecture was quite brief.
Windy weather was predicted for the afternoon so our scheduled boat tour had to be postponed and we had a free afternoon. We set out to explore with our Orlando friends. First we drove down to Chocoloskee and visited the Smallwood Store and Museum. It was a small but fascinating place, had been a trading post for many years. We had lunch at the nearby Havana Cafe---delicious Cuban sandwich and black bean soup. There was a post office next door and I finally got my postcard stamps!
After lunch we stopped at a Visitor's Center and heard a park ranger talk about Florida panthers---one of our favorite animals. In the gift shop I found the perfect souvenir Tshirt! And post cards!
Next we headed back to the Fakahatchee Strand to finish the walk that was cut short on Monday. The scenery was lovely but we saw no new wildlife to speak of. We enjoyed the walk though and figured we burned off some lunch calories.
Our after-dinner program was an author, Charles Sobczak, who brought books to sell, of course. John and I had heard him speak at a Sanibel RS program and I had even purchased one of his novels then, which he autographed for me. His talk was entertaining with plenty of humor so we enjoyed it more than we anticipated.