Dreams of a winter’s day in F-L-A

Dreams of a winter’s day in F-L-A

Sometimes when I come back from an outing, it takes me a while to adjust to my thoroughly-mundane existence again. Just living somewhere. Somewhere with a few walls, indoor plumbing and a roof.

It takes me a while before I can stifle the feeling that I was better off in a 102 sq ft tent with my trusty two burner camp stove, sleeping bag and car load of grits, gear and tools.

And a camera. Got to have a camera.

And when I review some of the photos, I’m sure I was better off nestled among the pines, oaks and saw palmetto, cradled in the arms of Mother Nature.

The banner photo for this post is one from a recent outing. One that takes me out of my boring and all-too-familiar domicile and transports me right where I’d like to be. Out in the real Florida.

The photo just below is one that reminds me of the view from my camp site looking towards one of the main trails. I like it. I’m heading back when I can get my work schedule dialed back just a bit.

Toso-camp-Feb27-2018 (4)

I didn’t mean to get myself into the frame, but there I am! It’s kind of funny. My shadow just loves to photo bomb me now and then; I just have to put up with it!

It’s the weekend, for heaven’s sake! Get outdoors! Just get off the couch, power down the PC and the tablet and go do something!



“Bulldog Ben” Basile


Photo credit Ben Lawrence Basile



Full Moon over Tosohatchee WMA

Full Moon over Tosohatchee WMA

Last night there was a lovely full moon illuminating my camp site.

I don’t think I can truly describe what it was like. The magnificent moon shadows took my breath away; I was spellbound.

Last night was extraordinary for another reason. My youngest turned 31. Happy birthday, Ben! Good thoughts of you on a peaceful night. What a blessing.

One can never have enough nights like that. A complete feeling of contentment. A feeling that–at that moment–all is right with the world.

And as a look at the two piles of laundry demanding my attention at this moment, I’m still wearing a smile a got from staring at Luna for an hour or two last night. Sigh…



Moondog Ben Basile



Photo credit Ben Lawrence Basile




This photo is awfully good!

This photo is awfully good!

This was just moments after the one I put with the previous post. It comes from a good-sized creek in Tosohatchee that I had not seen until this trip.

I should find that map and tell you guys the name of the creek, but I’m exhausted from that that fun! I’ll do that later.

I have one more photo to post before I call it a night.


“Bulldog Ben” Basile



Photo credit Ben Lawrence Basile



Could you ever camp and not…

Could you ever camp and not…

Could you ever, ever go camping and not bring your camera along?

Well, you could.

But for me, it just wouldn’t be the same. The banner photo this time is the pic that just might be my fave from the trip.

I took close to 200 all told. I will not be posting 200 times, but there’s no doubt that several deserve a chance to live off my hard drive!

I will be posting with more later.

Get outdoors!



“Bulldog Ben” Basile


Photo credit Ben Lawrence Basile







This time at Tosohatchee, Bulldog…

This time at Tosohatchee, Bulldog…

This time, I got to stay a while! Three days and two nights, so a bit longer than the quickies I’ve had at the Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area so far.

I had a blast. Leaving most of the clothes I had planned to bring was a downer but it still was a very fine outing. One I really needed, too, truth be told!

I had nothing to wear at all for chillier temps and the low both nights hit 61. That’s not real cold, but you feel it in shorts and a tee.

But I’m heading back just as fast as I can.

The header photo is one I really like. This is what you see simply by looking up from my camp site.

I’ve got lots of pix from this outing. So I’ll be posting with some of those after a while.

I hope you’ve spent a few nights lately at Camp Serenity. I don’t spend nearly as much time there as I’d like!


“Bulldog Ben” Basile


Photo credit Ben Lawrence Basile



USA takes Olympic Hockey Gold

USA takes Olympic Hockey Gold
USA  players are about to make a big “we won the Gold!” dogpile in the above photo

Our womens’ hockey team prevailed in the Gold Medal game at 3 AM today and Bulldog saw the last hour of it! Including an overtime period and that INSANE shootout that won it for us!

If you’re not a hockey fan, know that I do cover some of the bigger sports stories here, especially ones like this that fit into larger stories. This game was nuts! Truly it was.

Beating the Canadians is tough in any Olympics or World Championship; this time the stakes were higher because of how they barely edged by us in the 2014 games for the gold. In fact, many are saying that today’s game felt eerily like that one four years ago.

These Winter Olympics have been fun to watch. I’ve seen less than I’d like but have greatly enjoyed what I’ve been able to see.

And for me, this game was the cherry on the top of a yummy Olympic Sundae!


“Bulldog Ben” Basile



Screenshot is from Ben but that’s not kosher with copyright laws




The GOP and their NRA masters are in full panic mode

It was exactly one week ago that gunman Nikolas Cruz opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland, Florida. Unless you’ve been living under a rock lately, you no doubt know that seventeen students and teachers were killed and 14 more were taken to hospitals.

There are thousands of stories on the subject, of course. I don’t really have anything to add. I do, however, want to make an observation or two about some of the political fallout.

Students from M.S.D. High have been on a highly-visible crusade since the shooting stopped to get our elected officials to do something about our non-existent gun laws. And in the last three or four days, students from many other places have begun to join in.

That’s been very inconvenient for our Rethuglican legislators and Governors. And for their NRA masters who fund all those reelection campaigns.

High school students know that  politicians literally don’t care whether they live or die. They can see–it’s been crystal-clear for a very long time–that every last GOP elected official, whether in State houses or in Washington, will toe the NRA line to the last detail even if their own kids were cut down in the hallways at Hometown High.

The students see this and they don’t like it.

It should surprise no one that a tipping point has come, and the kids who have dodged bullets and watched friends bleed out are ready to do something about the whole sick situation. Even if the corrupt, uncaring people who are elected to represent them are not.

Poor Rethuglicans. They don’t know what to do. 

They’re just trying to mouth the right sentiments, vomit up the talking points handed to them by their PR consultants and hope it’s going to stop.

No, not the shootings. The protests.

They don’t get it. They don’t get it now. They’re not going to see the light after the next massacre, either.

They won’t get after they’re turned out of office by voters of all ages, backgrounds and party affiliations. But that’s how this chapter in the never-ending saga of gun violence in America will end.

This chapter. There will be many others, of course.

Kids know that their lives matter less to our decision makers than NRA dollars. Less than gun industry profits. Less than holding fast to this recent interpretation of the Second Amendment that any citizen can own and parade around with any weapon of their choosing. Even military-grade weapons that are designed for the express purpose of killing a lot of people in a short period of time.

I don’t expect them to do anything about it as a result of students’ protests.

I expect that we’re going to get a lot of new legislators. Soon.

Right after the mid-term elections coming up on the 6th of November.

“Bulldog Ben” Basile


© 2018 Ben Lawrence Basile