Monday, December 28, 2009

Central Florida

Central Florida

MERRY CHRISTMAS ONE AND ALL! We hope that your day was half as much fun as ours was! We’ve been here in Ross Prairie Campground for a week now and H says I need to blog.

The weather has been cool (50’s and 60’s during the day) and the heater has run all night on most nights. Wednesday, the 23rd, was projected to be the warmest and sunniest day of the week so we joined Jim and Nancy – you know - the folks from NC – and went canoeing up the Silver River which is one of our favorite rivers to venture up and back on. We strapped the two sturdy vessels together and had the little 2 horsepower motor in between. Picture a tiny but mighty tug boat pushing two passenger barges up the Ohio River! Since Nancy and I didn’t have to paddle, our cameras were busy – trying to capture for memory sake all the neat things and animals that we saw. Jim and H were busy navigating and spotting all the creatures for us - otters, pileated woodpeckers, kingfishers, herons (white, great blue, green, little blue and the one with the tuff on top!), egrets, coots, wood storks, lots of turtles, bunches of really big fish, MONKEYS and, of course, alligators!! Check out the baby one sitting proudly on top of Momma’s head!! There are otters actually under the roots of the tree in the one picture that H has posted! We tried to follow the glass bottom boat and listen to the tour driver tell about each spring that they went over but we were too far and it was harder to do with 2 canoes involved. But the springs are still deep blue and still amazing! On our way back down river, we each drifted and paddled on our own with a stop at the State Park canoe entrance. That’s when it happened. J & N’s canoe flipped over as they tried to re-enter it. Poor Nancy was drenched from top to bottom. Instead of finishing up the ride, she wisely chose to walk the half-mile back up the canoe path and return to their campsite in the Silver River State Park while Jim finished paddling back to the launch site with us. Yes, we have heard from them since and she is fine. We’ll canoe again someday!

Christmas Eve we went to worship with D&S at the church they attend and then joined a group of their friends to enjoy snacks and fun conversation afterwards. One of the couples is from Long Island NY so they were fun to chat with since we were just there in May! Wish I could have written with her accent when I wrote about eating hotdogs at Nathan’s last spring!

Christmas Day we were graciously invited to join Dick’s family at his daughter’s home again. And again we were treated as family! I didn’t get the coal this year - Dick did! Yee hah! H got his “Beer of the World” and the 4 guys all shared the Blueberry one and one of the Orange and Honeybee ones. That is - after we all had toasted each other with the Champaign and orange juice mixed drinks that Terry served in the large “Reindeer Juice” styrofoam cups! Before we all sat down to a wonderful dinner the poppers were passed out and all “popped”! Inside each was a paper crown and a small horn/whistle/kazoo kinda thing. H took the prestigious place of the conductor and between all the guffaws and giggles we each attempted to toot our whistle when our distinguished mystro pointed his baton our way. H plays a better dulcimer than we played our whistles but we had way more fun!

We’ll be staying here in Ross Prairie till the end of the year (?!) and then we will move over towards the Gulf. We have only visited with Jerry and Ruth twice and I hope to see them yet again before we leave. Monday is laundry day and hopefully Sharon and I will get some “Girl’s Only” shopping in.