Hello to friends and family!
Well since it has been raining here for the first time since we’ve been on Pine Island, we thought it was a good time to get caught up.
As mentioned in our last post, Ken & I took a boat ride to Dry Tortugas National Park which is about 70 miles from Key West. The boat ride was 2.5 hours each way and the seas were calm and flat, the day was sunny and warm/hot all of which made for a comfortable ride (AC inside and great sea breeze outside). Upon arrival you can take a tour of the fort, snorkel, or relax on the beach. Although we brought our snorkeling gear, we ended up exploring the fort for the majority of our time there. We joined the 11:00 tour which was fascinating. As a child, I didn’t pay too much attention to history but now Kenny and I are soaking it in.
Our tour guide was a history nut! During the 1.5 hour tour, he gave us history from when Ponce de Leon discovered it in 1513 to when construction began in 1846, to current day – all without missing a beat! After all of the effort in building the fort, it was never completed and never had any battles. Too much information to get into the blog, you’d fall asleep, but we strongly suggest that if you ever get to Key West, take advantage of the trip there. Your tour guide will keep you enthralled.
Our boat was Yankee Freedom and the trip fee included, park entry fee, breakfast, lunch, total of 5 hours of boat time, tour and snorkeling gear to use. Drinks were available on the way home, the crew was friendly and fun. If someone named Jeff conducts a tour of the fort (he works on the boat) be sure to sign up with him. He was so passionate about the history that all were totally engaged and he had exceptionally funny tales about what happened there.
On Sunday, we hung out at Bahia Honda State Park Beach. Boasted as the best beach in FL, we strongly disagree. It is very nice but I guess we are spoiled by ME, HI, MA and other more beautiful beaches in FL. It was a pristine sunny day. The beach wasn’t overcrowded and the water refreshing. But in order to get entirely wet you had to dunk in or sit down and splash your shoulders which would not be under water.
For our RV friends, we had tried to get a site there for our stay but they were booked solid. After seeing the roads into the Park, we were happy we were at the Jolly Rogers. We would have had to unhitch our car and it would have been terribly difficult to get our RV through all of the winding roads.
On Monday, we left for Ft. Myers and stayed overnight at a Good Sam’s park called Lazy J. The park was okay, the people nice but the only amenities being offered were laundry and sketchy wi-fi, it was a big disappointment considering we paid the same price as a KOA with all amenities. We were there for only one night so it was fine. We did see some adorable calves with their momma’s playing in the field nearby – they were fun to watch since they were prancing around like deer and ran over to the fence to say hi to Uma. She didn’t know what they were and never barked at them and they had no clue what she was.
On Tuesday, ARE YOU BORED YET?, we went to Hudson, FL, to get our cloudy side windows replaced. That was an interesting four days! We camped in a parking lot with 10-12 other campers doing the same thing. We did get out for some local walks but mostly stayed there. We met interesting folks from all over the US and Canada. There were crazy tales shared over sipping wine/beer in little gab groups early evening. Although mostly a dull few days, the results were two huge side windows crystal clear for the FIRST TIME! It is so nice to be able to see out the side windows and watch the world go by from both the front and the side windows. We highly recommend Sun Coast for their professional workers and accommodating staff.
Of great importance, during that week we bought a satellite dish! Hip, hip hooray! We were missing our Game of Thrones, our guilty pleasure, and now we don’t have to. For fans of the show, Jon Snow is alive AND Winter is Coming!
We’ve been at a KOA on Pine Island since last Sunday relaxing in the pool and culling down more “stuff” in the RV. More donation boxes to drop off. Yes, it is crazy that after 40+ days we are not yet completely organized. We highly recommend this location. There are no beaches on the island but the KOA is perfect.
This is our base for another week. Right now, Kenny and I are sitting outside in the rain – protected by our awning of course – patiently awaiting the arrival of Bill and Jackie (Ken’s brother and our sister-in-law). We are so excited that they are coming to visit with us for the next week or so. Jackie and I met when we were 14 working on tobacco in Windsor. She and Bill met when he was living with Ken and I for a short time. And, how cool is that, we are now related! We are looking forward to some fun adventures with them!
Happy Mothers Day to all moms. Our usual Mom’s day was kayaking together on the Farmington River and we will most certainly be missing all on that day. It was always one I certainly cherished as a special family day. We miss our kids/grandkids desperately but are in contact with all weekly. For those with kids local, hug them tight as we wish we could.
So, here are Bill and Jackie!! Need to sign off. We hope all is well in your worlds. Until next time, we raise our wine glasses and toast to you:
Don’t wait out the storm, learn to dance in the rain.
K, D & U
P.S. I have pictures but my IPhone isn’t communicating with my IPad again! Need to spend two hours on the phone with an IPhone representative. I will add some pictures to this post when I can find time to do this. This has been an ongoing problem since my email changed. GRRRR.