Introverts and Extroverts, Camping and Travel

As an extreme introvert, I am in awe of people who take whirlwind trips and manage to cram such a tremendous amount of sightseeing and activities into them.

I just read an article that sums up  the differences between extroverts and introverts pretty well.  While they claim it’s a “new” study, I find nothing I didn’t already know in it.  Nevertheless, I thought it would be fun to share this article…. which helps explain why I adore slow walks in the woods and the details of nature — and why rallies and crowds and rushing from place to place overwhelm me.

Scientists claim to have discovered why some people like to spend their nights at wild parties while others prefer to stay in with a cup of tea.

The brains of introverts and extroverts differ in the way they respond to experiences, according to a new study.

The research revealed that extroverts like instant gratification while introverts tend to be distressed by excessive stimulation.

People who are extroverts tend to focus their attention on people’s faces while those who are more introverted tend to pay more attention to smaller details – which could explain why they do not like overly stimulating situations.

Low Carbing Hostess

Low carb devil’s food cake with strawberries and whipped cream

Gee, it sure is nice visiting a sister who is on a low carb diet, too.  I never make desserts like she does.  So the devil’s food cake with strawberries and whipped cream that she fixed for us today was an absolute delight!

Ann and I went shopping today.  She bought new towels and looked for a dehydrator.  I bought fishing tackle.

I had planned to fish in Cecil’s pond.  But the fish are so tame that when we walk by the pond, they line up in the water and watch us curiously, totally without fear.  I just didn’t feel that it was sporting to fish for them, so will use my new tackle somewhere else.

Sheba was a bad dog!

Sheba dug a hole in Ann and Cecil’s yard.  So she spent much of the day in her pen with the dig-proof hardware cloth floor, only getting out for leash walks.  Traveling with her looks like it’s going to be a real challenge for a while.

We have decided that her crate takes up way too much room in the Casita.  We took it out today, and she will sleep on the floor by the door tonight.  If she makes it through the night without a potty accident, then we won’t use it in the trailer again.

The crate is way too big for the camper, so we took it out today.

If she does have an accident, then I’ll put the crate back in the trailer for the remainder of this trip, but build her a crate underneath my bed when I get back home.

I am starting to think that I was nuts to want a puppy!  🙂

Spring Garden and Woods

Ron digging chickweed out of our square foot gardens

I really can’t say I am ready to get back into gardening again.  Camping and travel remain my dearest loves.  But the season beckons.

We will probably not go anywhere this month, but do plan to meet up with my sister from Texas at Mom’s place in May.  Taxes hit us hard enough this month to wipe out this month’s travel budget.

Spring in the woods is irresistible, though.  I am posting way too many photos today, but wanted to share the glory of spring in the northwest Georgia hills.

On edit…. I did get an identification on the strange red growths on the leaves pictured below.  Click here for the explanation.

Blooming dogwood branch

Dogwood flowers

The back side of dogwood blooms

Wild Indian Strawberry flower opening

This is really odd. It looks like some kind of plant that is a leaf parasite. I have not noticed this before.

A closeup of the leaf parasite (?)

Some leaves have a lot of them.

These litter the forest floor. I think they are maple seeds, but am not sure.

Tiny flowers on a shrub in our yard.

Onion flowers are blooming in an Earth Box

A violet bloom emerging in the woods

Soft moss makes me wish that I was barefoot. 🙂

Unknown flowering tree. I just noticed that if you expand this photo and look at the leaves near the bottom left corner, you can see some of those strange red growths (fungi?) that are pictured above. (On edit -- it's a black cherry tree.)

Unusual green and white wildflower. On edit, a blog reader identified this flower as a Star of Bethlehem. Thanks, Evan!

Wild crabapple blossom

Baby plums on our Japanese plum trees

Gail’s House

The bad weather was back as we pulled out of Georgia Veterans Memorial State Park.  This is the view that welcomed us to Florida.

Florida clouds

Welcome to Florida!

It continued until we pulled into my sister Gail’s driveway, and then the clouds parted and blue sky appeared.  Again, it looked like a promise of good times ahead to me!

The visit with Gail and Mike was bittersweet.  We had a wonderful time together — as we always do — laughing, great conversation and discussions, watching movies and favorite old TV shows on DVD, Hardees biscuits for breakfast, pizza, and frequent trips to Starbucks.

The great thing about visiting them is that the guys have a ball together — just like two schoolkids — and Gail and I have time for our precious sisterly talks.  It is one of life’s greatest gifts having a sister who is also a dearest friend.

The bittersweet part is that Mike’s job is moving them to Texas, so they already had a contract to sell the house.  They were just waiting for the closing date.  So we were all trying to emotionally detach from the associations and memories that their property held for us.

Gail's home in Glen St. Mary, Florida

Gail's house

St Mary's River

St. Mary's River

St Mary's River

St. Mary's River

Gail drew the plans for the home and designed it from scratch.  Also, she chose the property on the bend of the river when everyone else thought she was nuts.  But her choice was a stroke of genius.  It’s above the 500 year flood plain on a hill.  So when the rest of the area flooded, she and Mike sat out on their back porch, overlooking the rapidly rising river, played their guitar and sang gospel and hymns.  It was a precious time for them, and a cherished second-hand memory for me.

Gail's house in Glen St. Mary, Florida

View from the bank of the river

I also remembered times past when we would bring our guitars, sit on the back porch, and sing the old folk rock songs from the 60’s, like Where have All the Flowers Gone? Funny how deeply they still moved me after all those years.

They planted fruit trees, grape vines, had a huge garden area, a potting shed, a shop where Mike repaired lawn mowers and chain saws for a hobby.  In spring the azaleas made it look like a cover photo for Southern Homes & Gardens, and in the summer it simply looked like Eden.  They grew the sweetest naval oranges I have ever tasted.  And always there were red geraniums on the porches.

In fact, when the appraiser came, he asked her, “Why are you leaving Paradise?”

My photos do a serious injustice to Gail’s house.  The unusually late spring meant that the yard looked bare and stark  in contrast to the normal profusion of blooming shrubs, flowers and trees.

We had such a good time that we ended up staying 6 days.  Then we headed for Juniper Springs, knowing that we would be back one more time to help them pack the U-Haul.

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