Thursday, September 23, 2010

When The Rooster Crows At The Break of Dawn, Look Out Your Window and I'll Be Gone

We leave White Springs in an early morning fog. The sun is rising behind us like a "Red Rubber Ball" (go on, sing it) We cycle past tall stands of pine trees that filter the sunlight, creating bright spots on the forest floor. We ride through the streets of Madison Fl that are lined with historic homes and buildings. We spoke with a man who was rehabing a neat old boarding house. He stated that when "cotton was king" the Florida Legislature was controlled by representatives who were rural plantation owners. They made certain small rural towns, such as Madison, received ample funding to construct beautiful buildings such as the Madison Co. Courthouse. West of Madison we cycle through the Hixtown Swamp. Although we don't spy any gators, we hear the calls of pileated woodpeckers. Ann manages to spot 3 of these magnificent birds. We also pass an area covered with water lilies and trees full of snowy egrets. Hwy 90 takes us to Greenville, pop. 839. We arrive at Grace Manor B & B. It was constructed in 1898 as a grand hotel and later used as a boarding house until 1954. During Greenville's boom era, the town claimed to be the Plywood Capital of the World. Greenville is also the childhood home of R.C. Robinson, better known as Ray Charles. Brenda Graham, owner, prepared a home cooked dinner for us, yummmm. Brenda is a great hostess and we enjoyed singing oldies and visiting on the incredible wraparound porch.

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