There is a spot in Kissimmee that sits hidden just feet from Highway 192, the main road through town. It is a place that has somehow beat the odds against the so-called progress resulting from having Walt Disney World in your back yard. It is fortunate to have kept most of its pristine natural beauty. It was a favorite spot to bring my camera as a teenager back in the 70’s; in fact, I won a 1st-place ribbon in my first photography contest in high school with an infrared photo taken here. At some point, I started referring to this as my “laughing place”. Of course, I took that name from Joel Chandler Harris’ “Uncle Remus” story with the same title. In the story, Br’er Rabbit explains that his laughing place is where he goes when he wants to forget his troubles. I’ve killed many hours forgetting my troubles in the shadows of this cypress swamp, watching leaves drift silently by on the mirrored surface of its black waters. Back then, as now, I would often find myself wishing I could somehow just hop aboard one of those leaves and let the slowly moving current quietly pull me away to wherever it wants me to go.
“The Laughing Place” [Click the image to enlarge/reduce its size.] Nikon D800, ISO 640, f/11 at 1/100 sec., 16mm
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