Pulled out of our campground in Ocala early this morning – 8:14 a.m. – and hit the road. Aren’t these trees gorgeous? This is the country road that I walked the dogs on each morning. Jessica scared the cattle, Lady wanted to play with the miniature horses, and I loved it all. It was a nice week in the country, but… the road calls.
Can you hear me screaming?! I was, loudly, every time we came around a corner to this view of the Gulf. We were back on the water and I enjoyed every moment of it. The rest of my family isn’t nuts about water like I am, so they’d look up from their devices, mumble, “oh yeah, Mom” and go back to whatever they were doing. I took about 50 pictures like this because every one seemed to be a better view. We drove through little towns and there were road signs for deer, bear and then a bear with a cub – but we didn’t see any of them – just the heron and ibis and seagulls over the water.
We arrived at the St. Joseph Peninsula State Park promptly at check in time, 1 p.m., and drove to our site. I planned on a 15 minute set up and then we would hit the beach. Ah, best laid plans. We got to our site, #33, only to find someone still in it and stuff spread all over – it didn’t look like they were a few minutes late pulling out, it looked like they weren’t going. I was in the tow vehicle, so hopped out and went up and knocked on the RV door. A dog barked. No answer. I knocked again and out came a couple who were not happy to see me. I had obviously woken them up from a nap. I asked if they were leaving and he said, no, they had the site for the week. Then he showed me that the markers for the site numbers were behind the site – so I had knocked on the wrong door! Oops! So sorry!
So off to the next site I trudge and the young guy opens the door and says, “hey, yeah, uh, we were thinking about leaving” and goes on to explain how it’s not time yet. The park ranger who checked us in specifically said to make sure we kept one clock on Eastern time, because we were right on the border of Central time, and phones/devices would go back and forth and you’d end up not knowing when supper was. This guy said he was on Central time, so he had another 45 minutes, and shut the door. You’ve got to be kidding. We’re blocking the road, and Dan doesn’t want to go back around because we had to go through some palm trees that scraped down both sides of the RV to get into this part of the campground. So he pulls into a nearby site and suggests I go talk to the ranger up front.
Which I do because I want to get to the beach NOW! I drove up to the office again and she said she’d send two rangers out to deal with this delightful young man. By the time we all got back, he pulled out and waved jauntily as he drove by. Nerd bucket!
Sunsets are a big deal in Florida. People stop for them, plan where to go to watch them, and revere them. I’m right there with all of it. You have to look this state park up on a map so you can see how it sticks out into the Gulf. The sand is clean and white, the wind blows gently, and the sun sets majestically. There were about 20 of us on the beach and we all stayed until it was completely down, then quietly walked back to our sites. Another perfect day on the road.