Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Test Drive

While it may be some folks idea of a good time, the thought of driving 3,500 miles across our vast country, with a dog in tow, is not mine. There, I've said it.

Generally, if we don't go out on Friday night, mostly when Bruce has been traveling all week, we watch Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives, one of his favorite shows. I am well aware that there are lots of folks that loathe that show, however, you can't deny that it is entertaining, can you? A few weeks ago we saw in the newspaper that Guy had come to town, eating at six different restaurants, none of which we'd ever tried. Wait, that's not true, we've been to Se7en bites before, most recently when Jon and Alissa were here for Christmas.  In any case, aside from that one, the only other one I'd seen was Saigon Noodle & Grill on Bumby. In fact, I've seen it more times than I can count. Before it became a restaurant, if memory serves me right, it was Medina's Grocery. Duh, I guess so. (see link)

I suggested to Bruce that we have lunch at SNG on Saturday. While I never went to Medina's, I imagine the inside now could not be any more different. Heavily decorated, putting it mildly, I was amused at this end of the restaurant, and can't wait to see it on television.
A disco ball!!! As you can imagine, they are playing this DDD card heavily.
I think I officially either don't like Vietnamese food, or I ordered improperly. The sweet server suggested I try Thai Tea. Being a tea lover and all, I figured, why not? The fact that she said it was orange in color did not hurt. Oh yes it did! One sip was all I needed to know it was not for me. Bruce actually tried it first, immediately asking if I wanted to order something else. Why, yes please! Ordering a noodle dish with pork was another mistake on my part. Nevertheless, the server, pictured here was very nice, and told us all about Guy's visit. He said he was super friendly to everyone. And BIG.  It took two days to film, though you can bet there will be only about 10 minutes shown. Sort of like when we did that Zombie House Flipper episode, which, by the way, apparently continues to be shown because both Bruce and I hear pretty regularly from folks who are wondering about our part in it. If you are new to this blog, and are curious, check out the provided link. Looking it up just now I was reminded how wet last winter was!
Should you be interested in watching the episode yourself, there are no shortage of signs like this one:
After lunch, I needed some quilt batting and Bruce needed some printing done, so we combined the two by going to Colonial Plaza. Actually, is it still called that? Anyway, I noticed a new store opened up called Bulk Nation which interested me more than it did Bruce. Should you be a baker who also likes some bling for your baked goods, this is the place for you!
All kinds of flours, oils, nuts, sugars, and CANDY! My goodness there is a lot of candy. My sole purchase was a tiny amount of BUTTER MINTS, a special treat served only on Thanksgiving in the Price household. I loved them, and either they don't sell them at the store anymore, or more likely, I haven't thought to look which is a mistake.  Bruce and I finished them before we even got home. Speaking of on the way home, we stopped at a very sad estate sale on Overlake. Nothing much at the sale, but, oh my, the door of this house just down the street!
Our next door neighbors recently painted their door orange, and  while it looks quite sharp, not nearly as sharp as this one. :)

Waking up from a dream on Sunday morning, it featured my Father and his trips to Sebring, Florida to see the races. Crazy, right? He died when our twins were two, so you know it was a long time ago. Although I was all dressed for church, I asked B about a road trip to Sebring. Even more crazy! But, he said yes;  I changed, got a water bowl for Baxter, his leash, and we were off. This time we remembered the water bowl. Baxter is not accustomed to car travel, and I know some dogs like it, however, it is hard to teach an old dog new tricks. This is our way of training him, hoping it works, although neither of us are enthused at the thought of our trip.

As all Central Floridians know, driving on I-4, during the construction is a nail biter.
Fortunately we got off on US27, taking that to Highway 17, the scenic route, with rolling hills and orange groves. Yep, you read that right, some rolling hills in Florida. At least that is what I am calling them. Plus they were winding!
Lakes everywhere you look, however, there is no doubt we are in a serious drought, that's for sure. Arriving in Sebring, it was just as I feared, closed for business on a Sunday. I'd read it was started by an Ohioan, thus the Buckeye building.
The downtown was laid out in a circle with a park in the middle representing the sun. Or, at least that is what I read.  Adele was playing loudly in the park I might add.
Built on the shores of Lake Jackson, there is quite a nice pier and beach.
Nothing but blue skies too. It is actually so weird having this amazing run of sunshine, nearly five months of it, which is very uncharacteristic even though we are called The Sunshine State. Then too, we have had such low humidity when it finally comes back it is going to be a rude awakening.  We never did see the racetrack, however, we took a side road to Highlands Hammock State Park.
One of the first state parks in Florida, it was built by the CCC, and there is quite a nice little museum documenting their work. I don't think I ever realized before that the average age of the "enrollees" was 18, did you?
Now here is where "the having a dog with you" part comes in. While Bruce waited outside I went in to ask if we might bring our dog inside. The woman, a volunteer, told me that if I said he was a service dog the rangers were not allowed to ask us for proof. Last year I read this hilarious article about that very same thing, and never in my wildest dreams did I think I'd be one of "those" people. The trouble with Baxter is when he is in unfamiliar territory he barks, not what you want when you are roaming around a small museum.

We did have time to read this poster, however, and it sure seems timely, what with the citrus canker that has now infested our state's most famous trees. Neither Bruce nor I could remember anything about this storm, and apparently other folks share that ignorance. This is a fascinating, albeit, harrowing article, about what was the worst storm ever to hit Florida.
I was so looking forward to the journey to Vancouver, seeing the sights along the way, however, now I can see my dreams going up in smoke. Then too, we tried eating in the car, and that was a huge pain as well. Oy vey!

Dogs were not allowed on the boardwalks either, so Bruce sat under some shady trees while I took a tiny little walk into the hammock.
The operative word there is "tiny."

It was heartening to see newly planted citrus trees on our way home; how about that sandy soil?
We even saw a Sand farm in Davenport on our drive. Who knew? Mostly the drive home was uneventful; Baxter slept most of they way, so maybe there is hope for us yet.

In the meantime, perhaps I should be looking on the sunny side of life.  😀
yours truly,


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Long Beach, CA