Trials,Tribulations and Happy Moments in my busy life

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

High view of St. Augustine and Last Blog for a day or Two

Hi folks,

Lovely day today, so we made the most of it and made our way to the Lighthouse and me to climb the 219 stairs to the top. We also went to the beach, well lets get started.

We had a job to find it with the car and with hindsight taken the Trolley to the site.

The staircase is 219 steps to the top, so I left Sue in the shop to look around whilst I started the climb.

Well, I made it to the top with a couple of breathers on the way. Looking over I could see the  extended light house keepers residence.

Shadow of the lighthouse from the top, the green is the top of the tree camopy

St Augustine from the top, you can see the town in the distance. It is such a beautiful town with loads on lovely buildings including the Flagler College and Museum .

Wider view showing the Bridge of Loins to the right.

Back on earth and a breather we went to the beach, these are sea oats growing in the sand.

The sand in the beech is so fine you really have to watch the camera but as the wind had dropped I chanced it. Look ant the sand it glistened in the sun.

Last shot of my warm foot showing how soft the sand was.

Thanks for looking, thousands of other images to look at once we get home, when we get home that is.

The blog has only just scratched the surface. Glad you have all tagged along.

The next blog will be when we get home.

Update on travel, just checked the Airport and all on time (fingers crossed) also many thanks to James for a wonderful day.

nite, nite, luv Mike and Sue XX

Monday, 29 October 2012

St Augustine Tour and Trick or Treat

Hi folrs,

We have arrived at our final destination and have only 50 miles to the airport to do in the old Taurus, its old now as I have put over a 1,000 miles a week on the clock. Trip up was uneventful and nice at a cruising speed of 70+ to keep up with the others on the road. Motorway speed is now the same as the UK, fast. When we first came to the states it was 55 mph and only 70 on Alligator alley which crosses Florida from east to west.
Booked in to hotel and went into town which we love. more on that later as the blog goes on you will see how nice it is.

First we book the 3 day trolley tour which elevates parking problems, just drive to the depot and leave the car all day. Pick up a trolley and go anywhere in the town, 22 stops, sorted.

Wow, the Hotel swimming pool looks inviting, and blue sky's again, whoopee.

Fist stop the Old Store Museum, full of every conceivable gadget you can imagine.

Inside the store, a magical place.

Penny farthing the wrong way round to help ladies with their long skirts.

Tiffany Coca Cola lampshade.

We walked along the streets on the edge of town people where gathering for a Halloween Tick or Treat event with prizes for the best costumes. This little girl was waiting for the event to start.

This chap worked at Flagler Hospital and was there with his two young children, I gave him a card so that he can look on the blog. Although he was in uniform his children in costume joined in the event, on one of the children's backs was a message saying "Trainee doctor".

This was 2nd place a great set up, he was on stilts.

The family winners, a fantastic set of costumes.

Lastly this dog got in on the act.

Thanks for looking.

Situation tonight 5pm, quite cold and windy but bright blue skies, Sandy 1,000 mikes away but affecting Philadelphia Airport which we are supposed to fly out of Wednesday evening.

nite, nite, Luv  Mike and Sue. XX

Hobe and Lunch at "On the Edge"

Hi folks,

well today was spent in a town called Hobe Sound as we traveled north towards St Augustine, which is our final stop before the Airport and home.  Well that's a long way off, let's tell you about today.

We set off northwards sometimes on the I-95 and other times on the 1, from the 1 the A1A road partly hugs right near the sea.  Our journey tomorrow will use these same three roads, the I-95 for speed and the other two for scenery and sea.

The road leading to Hobe Sound was lined with curious trees which seemed to have their roots growing up the outside of their trunks. 

The sand dunes, grass and sea oats are there to protect the land and as you can see the water was mighty choppy in the wind, do note left edge someone sitting on a beach chair!

The free car park was quite full, a Saturday yes, but a bit blowy. Everybody flocked in to watch Sandy churn up the beach.

Halloween means Pumpkins everywhere and this was one from the bar of "On the Edge" where we had lunch.  I went to get lightweight fleeces from the car whilst our food was being cooked, something which we hadn't expected to do in Florida.  The tail end of Hurricane Sandy has a lot to answer for.

Well let me give you a tour of  "On the Edge", starting from the bottom of picture, we have the ocean, then a wall of stones, the pieces of wood behind this are the legs of the tables which have been upturned for safety.  A nice blue canopy to keep the sun off and then above them all the plastic windows and doors are in place.  Topping it off together with the little seating area next to it is typical roofing made with thatched palm. Now imagine the sun shining, calm waters with birds all around windows open and this would be a tranquil setting, yes.

Final stop tomorrow so we hope the sun starts to shine again.

Thanks for looking,.

nite, nite, Luv Mike and Sue. XXX

ps, arrived safe in St Augustine and a lovely sunny day.

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Sandy Comes to Town

Hi folks,

well what a day with the hurricane just off shore we had a bit of a bumpy day weather wise so off we went for some retail therapy to a local flea market. Well blow me down and that was quite easy with the wind we have been having, what a size, the place was enormous  over 30,000 square feet the leaflet announced, a bit big for a "flea market".

Well after that and a lovely lunch we braved the wind and went to the beach.

Who's idea was it to go to the beach??  

Not mine.

And guess what, they were Surfing.


The place was Lauderdale-by-the-Sea (Atlantic Ocean), I spent $2 to visit the Fishing/Sightseeing Pier while Sue sat in the pierhead cafe having a coffee, she also took some pictures and was amazed at the number of people at times on the beach.  At the entrance to the pier was this cute Dolphin, fork in hand/flipper ready for lunch. 

Well by this time the rain had eased off so a look around the town was in order.

What did we find, miniature dogs in a shop window.

some were in the window and others inside the shop, each in a windowed box with breed and date of birth on a card.  Priced at a little over $1,000 which is probably about right from what I know from home, first obedience lesson was free.

You should have seen the little outfits you could buy to complete the purchase!  I can just see me walking down the High Street carrying my little charge, couldn't expect it to walk itself, could I?

Back to the Hotel to regroup for long trip up the east coast tomorrow, by the time you read this we should be up near Daytona.

Thanks for looking.

nite, nite, Luv Mike and Sue. xxx

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Naples before the Rain.

Hi folks,

Well Thursday morning started off well before the drive across Alligator Alley from the west to the east coast of Florida. We stayed at the Comfort Suites and set off to explore Naples which to be honest is an up market town by the sea with lots of well to do people living there and it shows.

We arrived up a small street to look at the beach but in true American style it was made difficult to access it but we did.

We parked up and went to have a look, the beach had lovely sand and was squeaky clean to walk on.

Looking back from the beach you can see the parking bays at 25 cents for 10 minutes that made the point that tourists were not wanted.

The houses were large and well presented with lovely well kept lawns and flowers in their driveways.

Well what a post box to keep up with the neighbours, love the dog at the bottom.

Well what a front yard and this was not a big property by any means.

Down the road was another "private" beach, we had access but not easy to park anywhere. note no ordinary sun shades.

Even the boats had sun shades. Everything is untouched and security is high, in the normal run of things in the UK this would all have disappeared over night.

Idyllic scene on the beach but it was not for us as we lefted the upper class to get on with it.

This is one of the things about the states, the poor are destitute and you are frequently asked for money and you must always refuse.  The middle class just get by and the rich just get richer.  Speaking to a lady at the kite festival who had just come back from New Orleans she said that out in the suburbs people were still living in shacks with holes in roofs 18 months after the levies broke.

All in all we don't have it too bad at home, we spoke to a nice young lady in a bar and she earned $2 an hour, about £1.50 to us and relies on tips to make up the difference.

America has wonderful assets but I am sure they don't realize what a wonderful country they have.

As they say, "all sorts make a world"

Thanks for looking, hopefully the rain will stop tomorrow and we can finish our wonderful trip.

PS. just for Trev another one of those trees in a different location.

nite, nite, Luv Mike and Sue. XXX

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Unexpected Classic Car Museum

Hi folks,

Well back on the road again we headed south towards Naples which is about as far as we wanted to go. We booked into the same hotel as we did last year with Tony and Gloria, all that had changed is that the gift shop which had closed.

On the way down we stopped at a Classic Car museum with hundreds of  beautiful cars.

A quick glimpse inside and you will see what I mean, just look at them.

The museum was mainly Corvettes Camaros, Chevelles, Impalas and antique cars and trucks.
This one amused us as he stood there with his teeth chattering.

They went on and on rows of them.

Due to the florescent lighting I only had time to process a few, and the internet here in Fort Lauderdale keeps dropping in and out so I will have to end it here. I will try to put up a batch once I am home.

Lastly our last sunset on the Gulf coast as we are now on the East Atlantic side so it will have to be sunrises from now on

As I type this the rain is pouring down and the wind is blowing, we have even turned off the air conditioning, so will have to end it now, thanks for looking.

Hope it will be a better day tomorrow.

nite, nite, Luv Mike and Sue. XX