Saturday, June 23, 2012

Under The Banner Photo

The video below shows what lies beneath the pilings that appear in the current Pure Florida banner picture above. Once, a simple camp, like the one we were staying in, had stood above these pilings.

The camp belonged to my wife's Uncle Bill and was the southernmost of the Pasco County camps. Sadly, it did not survive a tropical system ... I don't have the storm or year, but she thinks it might have been Dennis.

On the day I shot this video with my GoPro HD Hero camera, the boys and I had zipped in to the marina for gas and more freshwater. It was the last morning of our 4 day stay at camp and we were determined to squeeze out every last second of wetness.

After taking on 15 gallons of fresh water to replenish the camp water tank, we headed back out into the Gulf. Our first stop was a pretty white sand flat just south of the channel. We anchored up and rolled over the side, but it didn't take long for us to realize that white sand was about all there was to see underwater there.

We reboarded the boat and headed south towards the pilings where we had gotten a pretty nifty photo about 4 years before. Unlike that stormy day, this day was brilliant, hot, and a clear green high tide offered excellent underwater visibility.

As soon as we anchored, I spotted a huge (3 feet across) southern stingray resting on the bottom. We slipped in as quietly as possible, but the big ray left for parts unknown.

Beneath the surface, submerged broken pilings lay across the bottom, with bits and pieces of the camp that once stood there ... including the kitchen sink. As we snorkeled along, Junior pointed at something in the sand.

It was the American flag that the boys in the picture are saluting. Somewhere over the 4  years that slipped in between then and now, the flag had itself, slipped into the sea. My first impulse was to set it upright again, even if all I could do was lean it against a post.

I did that and snorkeled on, enjoying the crowds of young mangrove (grey) snappers and pinfish that now called this camp home. We spent about an hour, fish watching and cruising among the pilings.

On my swim back to the boat, I noticed that the flag had returned to the seafloor, it's torn banner gently swaying in the current.

... and that is how I left it.


17 comments:

threecollie said...

Beautifully done. I felt like I was there.

lisa said...

Awesome! So real, I felt like I was right there along beside you!

Bill said...

The perspective is cool. It was really like looking through a mask, and when you dove I almost felt it. Very nice.

Island Rider said...

Now I want one of those cameras!

Anonymous said...

Enjoyed the video. Must say very eerie about the flag. Perhaps that is its appropriate resting place after all.
Momadness

Jeanne said...

fascinating! I got to be underwater in the comfort of my own home. I would love to see more!

Floridacracker said...

I'm glad this video felt like you were along! I always feel like PF readers ARE along with me when I'm out doing something worth filming.

I like the Point Of View (POV) aspect that the GoPro delivers.

... and yes, there's more!

cuz tina said...

hoping debby is treating you well and leaves you and yours without much damage.

Caroline said...

FC, You guys ok there dealing with Debby?

Floridacracker said...

Cuz Tina and Caroline,
Lots of rain and a leaky roof at PFHQ.
Arrrgghhh.

Caroline said...

Yikes! Ma Nature is an evil woman sometimes. Take care.

car graphics florida said...

Its amazing that you have these prawn culture. When they grow enough for market value they are harvested and cooked for their tasty meat.

Anonymous said...

Keep safe.

Aunty Belle said...

Ah...sweet flag story.

Assume y'all is still batten'd down? Very soggy heah, so my goodness, what y'all musta seen. Hope all is well, FC.

Anonymous said...

Thinking about you and yours, FC. That's a lot of f#$%ing water I'm seeing on the news.

Miz S said...

Whoops. That was me, Miz S. Didn't mean to be all anonymous on you.

Floridacracker said...

We are okay. Cant update properly right now, but I will as soon as I can. Thank you for checking on us. :)