Sunday, July 12, 2009

Sun Day

Today finally felt like a summer weekend. It started slow and worried me a little, but it ended up pleasantly busy. In the morning I had time to get the paperwork done, pick up a little garbage, take a quick walk around, and get the new project set up in the cabin before the first people came in. The first few groups of people in the park were divers. There were two diving instruction groups and father/daughter group. I have gotten to know many of the dive instructors that regularly use Troy and it is nice to see familiar faces again. Eventually, families started to roll in and the park began to fill up.
he divers require a little more attention. I have to check diver certification cards and make sure that everyone is diving safely, with a partner, and not carrying any forbidden devices. They are not permitted to take lights into the spring to keep people out of the cave system under water. There is a very narrow cave where the water flows out of the aquifer. It would require special equipment and training to properly dive the cave and we do not allow it. They are also not permitted to have scooters (devices that pull you through the water), or spearguns... it seems like some things would not even need to be mentioned, but you would be surprised. I also have to make sure that they have paid the $15 dive fee. Because of the higher fee, as compared to the $5 per vehicle fee for other park activities, I often have to sell annual passes or charge the fee to their bank card, which both require at least 2 walks to the office and back. Divers usually want to know about the water conditions, and any wildlife that they might see when diving. Divers who have never come to Troy Spring before usually have questions about the facilities and the layout of the spring below the water. I am not a diver myself, though I enjoy snorkeling. Working at a park popular for diving has taught me a lot about the sport and talking to divers has taught me a lot about my park below the water. We ended up having about 15 divers in all throughout the day. They were perfectly staggered though so that they weren't crowding each other out.
Sundays work out well because just as the bigger dive groups are heading out in the afternoon, the families of swimmers and the small dive groups start coming in. The afternoons are definately busier with people, but they require less individual attention from me. After the divers are taken care of, I just walk around the park and spend time in busy areas so that I am available for questions and I can keep an eye on everyone.
It was so nice to have a sunny day again at the park, there was a lot of wildlife around in addition to the people. I took so many good pictures today, that I am going to have to stockpile some of them for my days off. Here are some of the pretty views and critters that I enjoyed today.
The spider is a Garden Orb Weaver, also sometimes called a zipper spider for the pattern in its web. It is similar to and sometimes mistaken for the common Golden Orb Weaver or Banana Spider, but the color of the web will tell you the difference for sure as well as the web pattern. The fellow in blue tails below is a Five Lined Skink. They are one of my favorite Florida Lizards because of their beautiful colors.
The bottom photo is your daily update on the water level. It is still dropping and the clear water is pushing farther and farther than the photo I posted on Tuesday. I imagine my fishermen will start coming back in the next week or so.

No comments: