I love the strange, slightly bizarre & energetically enhanced. So, when my friend Genevieve suggested we visit the Warm Mineral Springs of North Port, Florida, I was all in.
Known for it’s healing powers, and referred to as the Fountain of Youth; Warm Mineral Springs, is a destination for those seeking healing waters and mineral goodness, specially for Eastern Europeans . Some how the fact that most of the visitors were foreign, had a special allure to me, as I like to experience things outside the box, and my curious-cat nature, was intrigued by why so many Russian, Polish & Croatian people would travel to it as a destination-location. Located in central Florida; in the town of North Port, the Warm Mineral Springs, is a water filled sink hole 1.4 acres in diameter and 250′ deep in the center. People believe that it was the magical water hole, sought out by Ponce de Leon. Containing 51 minerals and staying a constant 87 degrees, it truly was a treat & left you feeling like it was indeed magical.
We arrived as the clouds in the sky turned black, but did not let ourselves be deterred. For we had traveled to experience the ancient healing waters, and the energy of a space that had been used by ancient humans for spiritual endeavors (Archaeological remains found at the sight are the oldest found in the state of Florida and date back 10,000 years).
It truly was a sight for the curious, as the place was filled with almost 100 people speaking Croatian, Russian and Polish. The mostly elderly guest, were traveling clockwise around the outer edge of the circle…quietly and deep in thought. When the storm came in, they were reluctant to leave the water, displaying the stubborn attitudes of people who had been around long enough to do as they like.
We had only been at the sinkhole for about 5 minutes, and had not even gotten into the water when the storm hit. As the entrance fee was non refundable and this was our only chance to go, we decided to wait it out, with a few stubborn Polish folks. We sat at the entrance to the hallway, after the burly, female, lifeguard insisted in a deep, Eastern European accent…that we head to the hallway for our own safety. The storm was quite something, with loud thunder, lightning striking and torrential rain, and drove off all but the few die hards. We were entertained as we waited by a spirited, round bellied, Polish man; named Freddy, who had a truly spectacular personality. As Freddy carried on with stories of his lady prowness, love of food, and exceedingly charming antics…his old mother slept on the bench in the hall, bundled up with a towel & a Babuska headscarf.
I personally, felt blessed to experience the energy of a storm in such a energetically charged place. Sitting and waiting; I could feel the center of the sinkhole calling to me, calming me, as it truly was a magnificent place. When the storm finally receded, we gathered our belongings and headed quickly to the water, we had waited so long to submerge ourselves in. It was not a disappointment. Spending almost 2 hours in the water, I thought on how Freddy (the Polish man) had told us that people seeking healing, often spend 8 hours a day, for 10 days in a row, to be healed by the waters.
I began my personal relationship, with the waters of Warm Water Springs, by walking a clockwise circle around the outside of the sinkhole (which was about 4.5′ deep). After circling the sink-hole once, I could resist it no longer, and headed to the center…where I spent the majority of my time. Floating & treading water (which was seriously easy/as the mineral rich, water lends an enhanced boyancey) with a 250′ deep cavern below me; I experienced a deep timelessness there, particularly when floating on your back & closing my eyes. I could feel a deep peace, that was enhanced by the fact that there were only 6 people soaking in the spring at the time; as most people left when the thunder storm started. I can’t help but thank, the universe for not only a fantastic thunder storm experience, but the opportunity to experience the springs in a small isolated group.
I am still unsure why so many Eastern Europeans are drawn to the spring, but after experiencing the springs for myself, I can say they are truly spectacular. I walked away from my almost 2 hour soak, feeling pretty damn good. The interesting thing, is that in the middle of the night, I woke up and could smell the sulpherous odor of the springs in my sweat and could taste the water in my mouth. It was slight, and not really all that unpleasant, but it made me think how many minerals I must have absorbed through my skin in just a short time.
Well, I hope you enjoyed the read folks. I am off for a treasure hunting adventure at the Ft. Myers Flea Market. I do love a good treasure hunt…