Day 153 was the highlight of the week as far as walking goes and really as far as everything goes. It was a Sunday. My husband joined me and we went on a field trip to Palm Beach. We’ve been there before, to the airport. We’ve been through some sketchy areas along Dixie Highway, lost on our way home from Jupiter or to some paint store my husband was looking for. I went to get my license near a high-end mall but I didn’t have all the necessary paperwork and got rejected. I’d just moved here, I hadn’t received any bills in my name. I had no proof of residency. Another one of those long, bureaucratic nightmares like Comcast that you don’t really want to hear about.
But today we set out to find the Palm Beach we’d seen in travel brochures. This Palm Beach:
We took two walks, logging well over five miles by the end of the day.
Walk One ~ Palm Beach Lake Trail
I found a great website that had info on local hiking trails. As they say on their home page “the challenge in car-obsessed Florida is to find places to exercise away from traffic congestion.” I think I’ve mentioned this before, I’m not just making this stuff up. You could get killed walking on the sidewalk in Florida. Check the personal safety note on that website. South Florida experiences an unusually high number of biking and running related fatal crashes. I’m sure walkers have been killed, too. But we found this beautiful trail and we were walking along the Intracoastal. It was lovely.
The info said there were beautiful views of the intracoastal:
And the downtown West Palm Beach skyline:
And they were right. But they also mentioned the homes of Palm Beach. All I saw was a lot of this:
Apparently the residents of Palm Beach have taken the advice of Robert Frost, good fences make good neighbors. The hedges between their homes are even higher than the ones along the trail. Possibly the one percent is afraid of something like an upraising on the scale of the French Revolution and let them eat cake. I did catch a glimpse of this house:
We could view the Bethesda Chapel:
This is the oldest house of worship in Florida. People traveled one hundred miles to worship here in the late 1800’s.
We walked three miles along the trail then cut down a tree lined alley and walked backed to our car along a sidewalk, where we saw numerous old banyan trees.
Walk 2 ~ Singer Island Trail & John D. MacArthur Park
It was hot, we were sweating. We headed to our second destination of the day, the real Florida as the state brochure describes it. It was a spectacular state park and fortunately, during the federal government shut down, the state of Florida didn’t shut down the park.
We stopped at the park center to listen to some bluegrass:
Then walked the 1600 foot boardwalk over Lake Worth Cove:
to a beach:
Crossing the Lake Worth Cove, we followed a couple carrying a picnic basket, an umbrella, and an insulated bag which we imagined was filled with chilled wine and cold beers. We thought about them picnicking on the beach, eating brie, grapes, crackers, and prosciutto. Our cooler was full of cold water. We had one towel for the two of us. We decided we really needed to up our game. My mission this week is to find a picnic basket we can carry over our shoulder, like the man we were suddenly in awe of, green with envy.
Rich made one of his ray pits, covering the mound of sand he created with the lone towel. We sat in the pit, rested our heads on the sand hill and thought about eating cheese and crackers and drinking cold Chardonnay.
Returning to our car we ran into a flock of butterflies:
Overall, it was a great day of walking and I got to do it all with my husband. Usually I walk alone and I don’t mind that. Walking is relaxing and I sure have needed to relax after these past two weeks. But it’s also nice to walk with my spouse, to spend some quality time together. We can talk without distractions and explore new places.
I feel like I’m slacking on this particular blog piece. There’s a reason for that. We originally intended to set off for this adventure in my car. We loaded the car with the cooler full of water and the beach bag with the bathing suits and sunscreen and the lone towel. Settling into our seats, my husband turned the key and… nothing. Dead as a door nail once again. I just replaced the starter engine two months ago, in August. My husband’s shift on his Toyota Tundra went on him last month, in September. Well, you know, it’s October now. Time for another car repair expense. That’s how it works for us middle class folks. There will be no opportunity to save money.
After my two weeks battling Comcast, Direct TV, UPS and AT&T, I was ready for a nice day in Palm Beach walking with my husband. So you know what I did, I said Fuck It. We took the beach bag and the cooler and got in my husband’s truck with the new stick shift and went for a walk. Because sometimes that’s all you can do when life gets you down, take a walk.