Florida Ramblings

We’ve been back in America now just a little over a month, although it feels much longer, for two reasons:

  • We have literally been rambling all over Florida (more on this in a moment).
  • We’ve been adjusting again to the general noise and pace of life here. I inarticulately referred to our general malaise one day as “low grade, chronic . . . [sputter] . . . America.” Ray’s personal pet peeve this time has been “all the freakin’ traffic lights!” (he ‘missed’ one or two red lights the first couple of days).

At least we’ve come back to Florida instead of, say, Nebraska (no offense to that fine state – in fact, we have fond memories of an overnight stay in Ogallala, of all places). But Florida means that we still have BEACH!

The best part of coming back, of course, has been seeing family and friends – which, along with checking out all kinds of potential new living arrangements and jobs, sums up why we’ve been rambling so much.

Two of our more memorable experiences, below.

LONG WEEKEND: ST. JOHN’S RIVER
We reserved a beautiful vacation rental property with all the amenities near Welaka, FL. Family + friends + fishing + fire = a pretty great time.

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It was mostly just the small fish biting, but we didn’t let that – or a little rain – stop us from manning the deck.

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Sadly, these two came out for the day and pretty much nailed “most fish caught” – yes, on a Barbie reel. Sheez.

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There was plenty of time for lounging.

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Of course, we ate good – always the case when Ray is cooking (that sausage on the grill was just a snack).

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Last but not least, it’s fire time…

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And the sunsets on the river were incredible.

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It was so peaceful and relaxing on the river that we hated to leave; but we had other places to go (seriously, I figured it out – we’ve stayed in 12 different locales in the last 30 days – not the way we planned things, but the way it worked out this time).

‘OLD FLORIDA’ BEACH MOTELS: INDIALANTIC, FL
Before we left for Roatan, I added a send-off message on this iconic totem pole on the beach; when we stayed at the same property on our return, I had to add another one. I am guessing it will stay posted about as long as the first one did, which I suspect wasn’t very long. I am betting this pole has seen hundreds, if not thousands, of I-was-here mementos left behind by vacationers and locals.

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It’s turtle season, with tracks and nests everywhere…

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Despite numerous attempts – and what I thought would be a helpful full moon – we weren’t having any luck in sighting any actual turtles (hatchlings or mamas). But finally, one night on an early high tide: Success!

We were on the beach around 10 pm when I spotted a turtle in the surf. We kept our distance, waiting until she navigated further onto the beach. Then we followed her from behind to a nesting spot in the dunes, where she built a body pit, dug out an egg cavity, laid the eggs, and covered them up.

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It was a good two hours of work, so she rested quite a while before she made her way back into the water. In that same stretch, we also saw 5-6 others coming ashore and also watched them in various stages of nest-building and egg-laying. A very cool experience (yup, that’s a check! on the bucket list).

We also got in some weather watching, shelling, and fishing.

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And after all that salt air, we left our flip flops outside each night and slept like babies. Ahhhh…

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The month to come should prove interesting, as we’ll finally settle in somewhere (likely here on the Space Coast) and plot out our next move(s?). Stay tuned!

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Due South

Eat. Read. Travel.

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