North Florida Sky, Alachua

Ricardo Gonzalez-Rothi
 issue of Northwest Review.

I live in Alachua, Florida. Not quite the Florida people think of when they envision South Beach, The Orlando Magic, or Tampa International Airport. I am in live oak country, north of Disney, west of the Fountain of Youth, and just enough south of the Georgia state line to be in what I would call the Spanish Moss Belt. The summers here are marked by an almost daily thunderstorm in early evenings. Rushing back to my farm with a load of hay one evening, I looked up at the looming clouds. I pulled over on a country road, hopped on the bed of my truck, and captured this image, antecedent of the storm. The beauty of the place where I live is that little of the flora has changed since the time William Bartram first explored this area in 1770. As I lined up the photo, the crispness of the cabbage palms and the loblolly pines, with the background of the clouds conspiring, took my breath away. I hope you will enjoy the scene as I captured it as much as I did living it.