Posts Tagged ‘Beaches’

Fla Trip 2014 034

No two beaches are alike even though they both be sandy.  ~Quote by Dor

Having coped with the traffic to the west coast of Florida, we decided to try the other side of the peninsula.  Cocoa Beach was only an hour away via a civilized toll road (hardly plagued by heavy traffic and easy to navigate with the help of Lola-the-GPS-lady).

This time we packed a picnic and our bathing suits and towels and planned to settle in on the sands of the Atlantic.  We even had destinations marked for changing rooms and other necessaries.

The closer we got, the more the memories of my childhood came flooding in. I remembered there used to be a deluge of shell shops for souvenirs, orange blossom cologne, salt water taffy, pecan rolls, coconut patties, shell covered boxes, and carved coconut heads.  How I yearned for the scents in those little bottles of  cologne.  “We have to stop at one of those shell shops,” I told Bill en route.

And there we were at the Cocoa Beach Pier!  It was $10 a day to park but we thought there were changing rooms.  Nope – Just slightly cramped, less than pristine lavatories.  We walked to the end of the pier and made a new friend, Pete, who invited me to take his picture.

Gulls Arguing

The Pelican Brief-ing

Pete the Gull Posing

Pete the Pelican Posing

Looking down at the beach we could see crowds – lots of crowds – and lots of surfers.  Uh Oh.  Forgot about Spring Break again.

The beach we visited at Cocoa was mobbed.  I could almost see the ocean between the clusters of college students standing in circles or browning lithe bodies in front of us. Bill did not seem in a hurry to leave.  Wonder why.

The sun was shining bright so we baked for about two hours and left with semi-sunburns.

Shell shops?  None to be seen.

At this point I became obsessed with finding a bottle of that orange blossom cologne.

I nagged Bill to stop at the first gift shop (never mind a “shell shop”).  We did, and the people there never heard of orange blossom cologne and could not even pronounce it.  “Do you suppose those Florida souvenir shops have all gone out of business? What a shame.”

Wait!  There’s one!  I see the Shell Shop Sign!  Pull in here!

Empty and closed.

I was so disappointed.

However, oh the last day of our journey we stopped at an orange domed gift shop where the lady immediately pulled out a tiny bottle of orange blossom cologne for $5.99!  And I bought that bottle and will keep it until I die.

We also got a big bag of oranges and two pecan rolls and a box of coconut patties there.  I revisit my childhood every time I look at the big bag of oranges and the candies.  And if I really want to go back down memory lane, I just need to take one whiff of the orange blossom cologne.  O.k. – so it doesn’t smell like orange blossoms anymore.  It’s the idea that counts and it’s in an orange colored bottle after all!

Had enough of all this excitement?

Stay tuned for one last episode………


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To TampaLessee, where was I in the Sun Seeker saga?  We had just checked into our luxurious villa, experienced a day of rain and were ready to set off on an adventure.

One of the staff who could be heard through the chaos recommended Clearwater Beach as the loveliest of beaches an hour and a half away.  We decided to go there on a fishing expedition – no not real fishing for real fish – just an exploratory run to see if we wanted to go back for more sunning or more of anything.  Clearwater is on the west coast of Florida.  I was born and raised on the east coast, so this was relatively uncharted territory.

Clearwater Beach Pier

And off we went for a delightful trip until encountering Tampa traffic, but eventually we came upon the loveliest of wide white sand beaches with a grand walkway and lots of things to look at and admire.  We walked and walked, stopped for lunch at a loud, crowded diner, and visited a tourist center.

Baby Bungee Jumping at Clearwater Beach

Baby Bungee Jumping at Clearwater Beach

“Yep, we said, we can come back here tomorrow and

change into our swim suits and bring a picnic, etc.  This is the life!”

“You have come at the absolute worst time of year to Clearwater,” said the volunteer at the tourist center, “Because it’s spring break!”  Uh oh!  We never thought of that.  No wonder everything is so crowded and the traffic is so bad.  “I would advise you to get out of town before 3:30,” he also said, or you will be in horrendous rush hour traffic going back through Tampa.”  Uh oh!  Never thought of that either.

“When is the best time to come to Clearwater Beach?” I asked. 

“April,” he said.

So my advice to you dear blog-us-fear friends is to consider Clearwater Beach, Florida as an ultimate destination, but only in April!

Stay tuned…..

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Hello favorite blogger friends!

My apologies for an unremarkable absence from the blog-us-fear.

If I have been suspiciously silent it is because Bill and I drove south to escape the cold and periodic snow and ice storms plaguing Camelot.

We went to Florida and stayed very near to Disney’s Magic Kingdom.

Since Bill and I are now over the hill adults, we tried to forget Disney.

Imagine being so close to a child’s fantasy realm and not going!   Well, “been there – done that” (with and without the young-uns), so this time we were there for sun burning and grown up fun stuff.

The escape to sunshine was successful.

The rest requires a lot of sleep.

Stay tuned…….

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Sea Glass Locket

There came a tiny birthday gift that grew in meaning.

A miniature bottle on a chain, with little bits of

turquoise sea glass in a teaspoon of sand.

At first I thought how strange a gift my son had given,

And still because of whence it came, it was so


In the middle of a busy day I stopped

To visit the tiny bottle once again,

and through its transparency, I saw

something else, indefinable

and the bottle was even more mysteriously


And then I realized

my son knows how I love the beach,

the sand, the surf, and

all its pleasures.

He had just moved  to a far off place

of wondrous seaside treasures.

And the tiny bottle became even more


Because he wished to share his life in this small way

 to entice me to those far off shores,

and tell me of his love in something more than words.

And so this tiny gift glows with meaning

And every time I look,

it grows infinitely precious and ever more


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