The carbon monoxide alarm went off twice last night, but I was half asleep, so I didn’t care. I was just hoping that Mike would take care of everything. He actually ended up unplugging the alarm and going back to sleep. Mike said at one point during the night he opened Mark’s door and was looking to see if Mark was still alive. He stood, waited and watched to see if Mark’s chest was moving up and down. Too funny.
I slept good despite the carbon monoxide scare. I pulled the glass table out a bit and threw my sleeping pad and bag right over an air conditioning vent on the floor (perhaps had something to do with the carbon monoxide?). It was barely enough room to fit in there, but it was nice. Nice and nestled away, so when everyone else wakes up early they don’t have to wake me up because I wouldn’t be in the middle of the freaking walkway like the other night, with that stupid uncomfortable cot. A word of advice: don’t sleep on cots.
We headed a bit south of Blair’s Jungle Den and shot some fishing scenes with Jen and Leslie on the other boat. On the way out we saw a manatee cruising down the river. This was the first time Heather and Mark have seen one in the wild. I couldn’t believe Mark had never seen one, especially since he has been on so many other shoots with Bob. Then we headed back up north to the Astor bridge. We stopped at a restaurant to shoot some dialogue with the restaurant owner and talk about the William Batram tree.
Afterwards we went back to Blair’s Jungle Den and dropped off Bill Randolph and Heather Henson. Then we motored back up to where Mike had the houseboat docked and had some lunch. Jenn was cooking grilled
cheese, and she hooked me up with one. Bob was worried because we had to cross Lake George next, the largest lake in the St. Johns River. We were looking at satellite last night and noticed a front was moving in
today, so we were a bit worried that the lake might be rough. The lake has an average depth of 10 feet, which can make for rough situations if the wind is up.
I had to stay on the houseboat while we crossed Lake George, to help Mike look after the boat just in case if it was rough out there. But Mike wasn’t worried at all. I drove the boat a bit for him while he cleaned up and took care of some other small tasks. The lake was pretty smooth all the way over. Mike taught me more lingo today, including the term “fetch”, which deals with wind and waves over a distance of a body of water. He also showed me several features of the GPS software, and how to read it.
We were headed for Bill Jeter’s house on Drayton Island, directly at the north end of the lake. Bill Jeter is a great friend of Equinox, and was having a big dinner at his house. We were planning on shooting the feast and celebration tonight and then the dialogue between Leslie and Bill Jeter tomorrow. And as usual, I would be documenting all of this, with my still and video cameras.
Once at Bill Jeter’s house on Drayton Island, we all began unloading gear and walking the long distance down the dock through the yard to Bill’s house. While walking through the thick grass, we noticed that we could all hear a soft buzzing sound. If you bent down and put your head near the grass, you could clearly hear a loud buzz. It turned out to be millions of blind mosquitoes (midges). Bob wanted to get some audio of this, so Mark let me operate the boom and capture some midge buzz.
Mark has a wireless boom microphone setup, so he showed me how to hook up the transmitter and boom. Tom would roll tape as I would swoop the microphone near the edge of the grass line to spook the midges and get the audio as they all buzzed and flew around with agitation. It was exciting operating the super sensitive microphone. And when I say sensitive, I mean SENSITIVE. At one point I aimed the microphone at the houseboat at the end of the long dock (which was a very good distance away) and I could clearly hear a conversation between Mike McGinty and Jenn. At one point Tom (who was standing right next to me) started yelling out to Mike and I thought my ears were going to start bleeding. Luckily I yanked the headphones off quickly.
After capturing the midge audio, everyone finally headed inside to prepare for dinner. Heather McPherson cooked up the feast with help from Bill Jeter and his wife. Heather is the Orlando Sentinel food editor and also is a big time Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings fan. The food was delicious. We had alligator fritters, crab cakes, mango ice cream and countless other dishes; it was a real feast.
Audio man Mark Howerton spends most of his time on this documentary trip giving me a hard time, which he seems to take much pleasure in doing. He insisted that Intern was my name. People would ask what my real first name was, and Mark would say, “he has no first name, he is just Intern.” Also, tonight he was regulating how many beers I could drink, while Mike McGinty and him slammed beer after beer directly in front of me. That doesn’t matter. In the future when Mark Howerton works for me, I will be slamming beers in front of him while he is working and unable to drink. Nevertheless, I still had a good time.
Mark taught me several life lessons tonight. He said he was agitated because he wasn’t even charging me for these life lessons, like he does with his daughter. Haha. Went back to the houseboat to get to sleep early. I got a bed tonight since Bill Belleville was sleeping up at Bill Jeter’s house. Hooray!