Fountain of Youth

Published: February 2nd, 2017

Category: Publications

Image courtesy Dr. Robert Walker.

WALKER – Fountain of Youth

Robert Walker

Article first published online: 02 FEB 2017 Kudzu House

INTRODUCTION: Upon my unanticipated return to Florida six months ago, I hurried to Silver Springs where I’d spent many a summer day as a child.  To escape the heat of the Tampa Bay area, my parents would load my kid brother and me into a Chevy station wagon and head north.  After a couple of hours, we’d pull into Ocala and make the short jog to the spring, with its necklace of amusement parks, and clean, cool waters.  My brother and I would jump from the car and run-off, too excited to wait for mom and dad.  I remember the water slides and spools of cotton candy that cost a dime.  I remember the shiny boots of the snake man and the nonchalance with which he’d squeeze venom from a six foot rattler.  I remember the whoops of the Seminoles attacking soldiers behind the palisades of a movie-set Fort King.  I remember the petting zoo with the deer and giraffes, the alligators in the sunken cages, sluggish beneath the sun.

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