One thing I must say about Florida drivers in the southern part of the state…THEY SUCK! You need to have your head on a swivel, be able to overcome the constant “fight or flight” syndrome (that is the overwhelming desire to choke the living sh*t out of those around you), and be prepared to make ample use of your car horn. To date I have not seen this many texting drivers driving HUA in any other state. I am surprised I have not blown up my horn by overuse. The sheer traffic volume anywhere within shouting distance of I-95 is frustrating enough. OK, ‘nuff whining.
We found a couple of days at a Christian RV park, Sonrise Palms in Cocoa, to stay and check out the Kennedy Space Center and to play on the beach in Cocoa Beach. We took one of the tours at the Space Center (a bit pricey at $50 per person) and we did not even get the full tour. This is a working NASA facility and the tour normally includes the launch pads. However, they were in use the day we were there, obviously for something other than a launch, so we missed that part. The VAB was an interesting behemoth. That is the Vehicle Assembly Building where they put all the ships together. It is a single story building but you would not guess that from the following photos. We also got to see the only Saturn V rocket left, the space shuttle Atlantis, and numerous other displays of NASA “stuff” and equipment. Most of the site is a self guided tour and we took about 3 hours to complete it.
The next day we lollygagged on Cocoa Beach. Not being too far south into the state, Cocoa Beach was not quite as crowded as we thought. Weather was beautiful, sand was soft, water was “swimmable” (AKA: too cold for her, just right for me).
From there it was on to a 5 days stay at one of Broward County’s county parks, the Topeekeegee Yugnee (TY) park in Hollywood, FL. This was a very large, very nice park with a lake and campground. And it had a central location so we were able to venture out to the Miami area as well as to Ft. Lauderdale. The park itself had a good sized walk/bike path around the lake and Woody went crazy with all the squirrels. We even managed to espy a pair of wild iguanas hanging out at one of the shelter areas.
Our first day we drove on down to the Miami area and checked out the beach areas, Little Havana, and the Wynwood art district, including a touristy spot called Wynwood Walls. I have to say, coming from the north San Franciscso Bay area, having worked most of my career in a gay resort area, they got NOTHING on the sheer weirdness that is found in the Miami beach areas! If you want to hob-nob with the rich, famous, and “beautiful people”, then Miami is definitely the place for you. It was a Sunday evening we were there, amongst the hordes and masses. Parking is also a problem in south Florida, bring lots of cash and good walking shoes. The Wynwood art district and Wynwood Walls was unique. Folks painted all manner of scenery and designs on building walls, interspersed with graffiti here and there, reminiscent of the psychedelic age of San Francisco.
The next day we had mail duty. Living as full-time RVers, we have domiciled in Texas as members of the Escapees RV Club. The SKP park in Livingston, TX, is the HQ for SKPs which has the central mail service center, as well as a senior care center for infirmed RVers. The mail center is our official mailing address so when we decide we want our mail, we contact them and have them send whatever is there to an address of our choice, usually general delivery to the city we are currently in. In 4+ years I have come to the realization that our esteemed U.S. Postal Service is just as screwed up as the rest of our government. My go-to website is USPS.com as far as getting the locations for my general delivery. Unfortunately, the website is extremely inaccurate and on at least 5-6 occasions I have had my mail sent to a post office, listed on their website as offering general delivery services, only to find out they do not handle general delivery. Then, as it is now, I had/have to hunt down which exact post office my mail is hiding at. Not fun, time consuming, thank you Uncle Sam.
After a successful hunting trip (mail in hand), we took a drive down to the Hollywood Beach area. We walked a very nice boardwalk along the beach and decided to return tomorrow for some more beach lollygagging.
After doing the beach bum thing, we drove into Ft. Lauderdale to check that area out. We walked along the beach and storefront areas, then took a stroll along Las Olas Blvd. which had a sort of Little Italy ambience going on. We had a nice conversation with a woman working a cigar shop and found out Cuban cigars are still illegal to sell in the states. But you can visit Cuba and bring back Cuban cigars for personal use. However, get caught selling them and the penalty is your lungs will be removed from your body. (Not really. But it is illegal to sell in the states.)
That pretty much catches us up to now. Tomorrow we forge ahead further south, heading toward a stay in Marathon down in the Keys. Catch us later…