November 8, 2007

Chiles and His Florida: Lake Hall

For the eight years he governed Florida, Lawton Chiles made Tallahassee his home. He had planned to retired to a house not far from Alfred Maclay Gardens State Park and what is now Lawton Chiles High School, close to his Cook Shack and his favorite forests and lakes.

In the fall, the park's camellias bloom. I didn't get to that part of the garden, but my camera found some other treasures. I read there was sailing on Lake Hall. No boats the day I visited except a lone fisherman in a light blue skiff, but the fresh breeze blowin' could have sent a Sunfish across the river in a skinny minute.

I looked around for poison ivy, then got way down in the brush lining the lake for some close-ups of autumn in Tallahassee. This season, every shaver packing more than a water gun is under the pines hunting for that Thanksgiving turkey. But there is plenty of sport on Lake Hall if you've got rod and reel. If catfish stew is on your menu, all you need is a couple greasy chicken nuggets from a fast food joint on Apalachee. Mudcats have been known to strike a balled up piece of white bread, too.

No comments: