Friday, November 11, 2011
Posted by Sara at 7:25 AM
So, we made it down south, in the hot car, with no AC and probably too many kids is what my mom and at were thinking by the time we got there. The house was small, not the best of accommodations, but we really didn't notice, what we did notice was the nature around us. The geckos that were everywhere, the odd fact that it rained EVERY day, just a little in the morning. The GIGANTIC waves, we had never seen such surf. Our idea of "the beach" is a very New England one. Cold wet sand, a chance of sun, IF you go in August, IF your lucky, and maybe even water almost warm enough to enjoy swimming in. Oh my friends the awe! A beach, with white sand, and gigantic blue waves, that were WARM! Sun, bright, hot sun all day long, every day .... oh, and SUNBURN! Yeah, another New England mis-fire. We are not used to getting enough sun to actually worry about burning much. Well, we learned THAT lesson quick, and had to miss a couple days swimming because of it. Oh well!
We went to the Everglades national park, where we walked to boardwalk all over the swamps, looking for alligators and lizards, pelicans and all manner of wild plant life. It was absolutely fascinating to us.
One day we took a tour of the Everglades on Airboats, pictured above. Giant flat bottom boats with huge fans on the back of them, one of the best and fastses way to glide across the endless miles of swamp. The guy who took us out was "cousin Butch" I don't know his real relation to us, or do I officially know why in the world the guy own a homestead of types on an island in the middle of swamp no-where, but I do know, that on that day, after it had started raining, and we were soaked, and cold, and ready for comfort, that hut in the middle of who knows where, with warmth, and KFC brought with us, we like heaven. The first time I had KFC, I shall never forget the feeling of being so very far away from normal, and feeling so very comfy. Of course there were snakes too, one of which decided to travel in the cargo hold of a boat. Too bad the small Matt, (who Uncle Butch was afraid of loosing from a fast turn, and him flying off the boat) he had to travel in the cargo hold too, good thing we didn't know about the snake till we got back. :P
I remember eating catfish and hush-puppies. I remember Aunt Pearl, she was a sweetheart, she would rock baby amy to sleep on hot muggy nights, out on the screened in porch, singing southern Lullabies in her ear. I remember my some distant cousin of mine, being loud, and remembering one line each from dozens of songs, cause he would watch the record ads on TV and that's all he knew. He would walk around singing .... "Please help me I'm Faaalliiing!"
I remember being tired, and thinking that Mom and Aunty must be about "tuckered out from this VERY long trip and were not looking forward to the three days of return trip.
I remember a restaurant we stopped at on the way home called "Lizard's Thicket". It was done in Southwestern decor, and there were lizards everywhere, not real ones, stone ones, carved on the pottery, the walls, everywhere. The food was distinctly southern, and yummy, and it was the first time I ate Apple jelly, from a little packet on the table, it felt like Rich livin'. :) When we left, My grandpa gave us a gift. Tickets to go to Epcot Center! That was most certainly a highlight of our trip. It don't remember alot of the visit, a few rides, like the boat that went through all different cities, some space ride, seeing all the different countries, and of course the gift shop, where we got all kinds of mementos, mostly with rainbows on them, it WAS the 90's after all. :)
One of the hotels we stayed in, think the last one before home, was a REAL hotel. We had been staying in motels, the little one story things with sketchy pools, and no free anything, cheap and easy. The last one however, was a big Holiday inn, with food, and an elevator, and an INDOOR pool! It was the high life, it really was. :)
Yeah so that's our super exciting long trip down to Florida. It was our biggest adventure so far. When I think about it now, I am in awe, of our Mom's taking on this trip. I don't know that I would do it, with just my two kids. They did a great job, making it fun, managing to let us do so much stuff, with a baby, and sunburn, and family stress, to us, it was just one big fun trip. Job well done Mom! :D