Okefenokee Adventure Francineís Words:

May 6, 2003:

I am writing this now because it just happened and I do not want to forget the details. Jack and I decided to take another trip to Okefenokee Swamp, at the Stephen Foster State Park in Fargo, GA. There we had spent some many wonderful vacations over the years. We called and rented a cabin for May 4th & 5. We were going to take a trip down memory lane as we had gone there so many times when we were young. We taken Mike and Vickie to see the park when they were quite young and continued to take them there as they were growing up .

This was quite an experience. It was beautiful weather. Jack had been talking about us buying a canoe and I did not want to, so we decided to rent one instead and see how it went. We took our cooler, our fishing poles and bait and my very expensive digital camera so I could get some good wildlife pictures to send to our friends on the internet.

We headed out of the canal and into Billyís Lake which was named for the famous Seminole Indian Billy Bowlegs. Billy fled to the swamp then the U.S. Government was trying to get him on a reservation. There is also Billyís Island and Minnieís Lake named for his wife. Billyís Lake is about in the center of the swamp and the headwaters of the Suwannee River flows through it.

Every thing was going so well and we saw a bird perched so nice on a stump which I got a couple of good pictures of him. I was fishing as we drifted along and I caught a very nice warmouth perch, which I had been informed would not bite shrimp (which was the only bait we could find in Fargo) but that didnít matter because no one had caught any warmouth out of there in a long time. I was very proud of him and we were going to try to catch another one, which would have been a nice dinner for us, and I got a couple more bites, but about that time I saw what I was really wanting to take a picture of.

Swimming along beside our canoe was a six foot alligator who was hoping that we had a string of fish hanging over the side that he could steal. I had my camera around my neck so I took a picture of him, then turned to take another. I donít know what happened at that instance, unless we went over a hidden stump, but both Jack and I jerked at the same time and over went our canoe.