Our fifth wheel and the truck

Friday, February 25, 2011

Three weeks! Oops! :-)

Wow! It has been over three weeks since my last entry and at this rate I am going to have to write about thirty pages!!! Just joking! I will update you with just a few highlights rather than all the details otherwise you could be reading for the next three weeks.

Just to bring you up to date we are now in Florida (Fl) and have been for just over a week. The two weeks before that were spent in Alabama so okay, you have caught up now!!!!

I have to tell you firstly that we finally found some warm weather - but not till after we arrived in Fl. While in Alabama (Al) we again ran into freezing weather - literally! One night was so cold that we had to once again disconnect the water hose to the rig. The next morning Norm went out to reconnect it and when he came back inside he turned on the tap to discover no water flowing. A quick check outside found a plug of ice in the end of the hose. Now that is cold!

Did you know that Alabama lays claim to the first Mardi Gras? I always thought it was a N’awlins event however Mobile, Al. claims to have held the first one. So, in upholding the tradition in Al., Judy, Pete Norm and I set off early one morning for Dauphin Island. Something else I was not aware of - Mardi Gras lasts about a month and the build up to it starts in early February. Anyway the first Mardi Gras parade of the 2011 season was held on Dauphin Island and we were going to check it out. Another freezing day so we all wrapped up warm, took our chairs and went to see our first Mardi Gras parade. We arrived early and grabbed a good spot and sat down to await the excitement! If I say the whole parade was a bit of a non event I would be being kind. After the parade we took a drive up Dauphin Island to check out the damage done by Katrina which cut the island in two. Interesting were the number of oil platforms that were visible from the beach.

I have talked about the variety of food and eating establishments here in the US but two we visited in Alabama have to be right up there when it comes to being different.

Firstly let me tell you about the ‘Road Kill Restaurant’. It is a buffet style restaurant but is only open from 10.30am-12.30pm OR until the food runs out!!!! And no I don’t think they serve any actual road kill!

Secondly there was Lamberts. Now the draw cards at Lamberts include servers who throw bread rolls at patrons, servers who wander around sharing baked potatoes and onions, fried okra, etc, servers who play practical jokes - like upending a jug of iced tea in my lap (not really but he had me going for a moment!) and don’t forget the servings! They were humungous - we all took home doggy bags!

One of the residents of the Summerdale RV Park where we stayed had a boat and took people cruising up the Fish River so one day the four of us braved the freezing conditions (again) and took the two hour trip. The bird life was amazing and some of the residences were beautiful however so were in a dreadful state of disrepair and were just falling down! Did I say it was cold??

The four of us took a trip over into Fl. to visit the National Museum of Naval Aviation in Pensacola. This is the most amazing experience. There is just too much in the museum to do it justice in an afternoon and I can understand why the guy on the gate said that some people come back three or four times in a week to see it all. Apart from the fact that it is huge there is just so much in there from the very beginning of flight to the modern day planes currently being used by the US Navy.

After two weeks at Summerdale Norm and I farewelled Pete and Judy again! They will be heading up to Georgia and then moving slowly back to their home in Minnesota. We have had such a wonderful time with them it was sad to say goodbye. Our destination is Sumter Oaks RV Park in Bushnell, Fl.

Woo Hoo I have had to break out the shorts at last! I can’t believe how much warmer it is here in Florida than it was 300 miles away in Summerdale, Al.

Our first excursion here in Florida took us to Pine Island. It is difficult to describe Pine Island. I guess, technically it is an island however it wasn’t as if we drove across a bridge to reach it. More like a causeway through a wetlands. The island is probably about 50 acres (guessing) with homes lining the one road through. The road reaches the end of the island and there is the most beautiful beach. White sand (reminder of home), a cute restaurant and people sunbathing although none swimming as the water is apparently too cold and playing volleyball. It was a gorgeous spot and both Norm and I thought it would be a good place to come to spend a day just lying on the beach - if we get the time - haha.

Our next outing was to the Homosassa Springs State Park which is home to many endangered species native to Fl. and also to the amazing manatees. It would have to be one of the prettiest spots and so well laid out and cared for. I was amazed at the information about some of the animals in the park. For example - the Red Wolf - it is believed that there are only about 130 left in the wild and that it is only breeding programs in parks that are keeping the animal from extinction.

We were planning on leaving Sumter on Monday however we were told about a flea market over in Webster which is only held on Mondays so we decided to stay over and have a sticky beak at the biggest flea market in the US.

We had been told to get an early start so 8.30am saw us heading down the road. As we turned onto the road to Webster we were caught in a line of traffic. It took us about 40minutes to cover the 4 mile to the fairground where the flea market was being held. You wouldn’t believe it! It was huge!! I reckon it would have to cover an area bigger than the Claremont Showgrounds back home in Perth. It was so big that after about two hours we hadn’t seen a quarter of it and we had really had enough. One of the things that struck us were the number of stalls selling guns. I have never seen guns being sold in a flea market before.

Anyway, this is just a quick synopsis of the three weeks missing from my blog so I hope it fills in the gaps and you are now up to date with the travels of the two gray nomads.

Take care all our dear friends and family. We wish you well and hope things in your world are going smoothly. Be kind to you and yours.

Hugs from both of us.


  1. Hi! I found your blog from your signature in the Escapees forum. Looks like you are having a grand time in your travels. :) I can understand the excitement of being able to put on shorts - we still have 3 feet of snow in upstate NY where I live. Have a great time in Florida! :)

  2. Thanks Jessica and welcome to my blog. And the shorts have been wonderful as has the visits to the beaches and all things Florida. While we are moving to Georgia now, I just love Florida which has sort of surprised me as I didn't know it had so much to offer. Enjoy the snow - all I can say is I am glad it is you and not me. :-)