Day 27: Friday, June 24, 2011 through Day 29: Sunday June 26, 2011
In the Books
On our way out of Pensacola we followed the advice or our best buddy, UrbanSpoon, to The Cactus Flower Café. It was highly rated, except for one post that claimed the restaurant was mis-representing itself as "Mexican" instead of "California Mexican".
This seemed a bit petty of a criticism to us, we also wondered how any body could miss the very detailed description on the sign out front.
We enjoyed mucha comida smothered in queso, and April enjoyed the abundance of men in uniform from the nearby Air Force base dining all around us.
A few hundred miles East, we set up camp at Falling Waters State Park in Chipley, Fl. Talk about mis-representation, this place is home to the “tallest waterfall in Florida". Of course, that's only when it rains -- it was currently dry due to the major drought. Still seemed to be plenty of water for the mosquitos, though – so Mark went for a walk while April and Andrew got their play on in the RV. Andrew has become quite the photographer.
Not to be outdone, Mark snapped some shots of his own while on his blood offering, I mean walk…
Morning brought more east-bound driving. We contacted one of our favorite people and former Tallahassee resident, Jana, and she pointed us straight to Momo’s Pizza for lunch. You’ve got to love a college town. Drinkers at the bar at 11am, GIANT pizza slices, young waitresses telling stories of their drunken adventures last night. Best of all, you can eat a huge meal for less than the cost of a few gallons of gas. If you’re lucky, this will rustle up some nostalgia within Mark and he’ll start talking about his college days. …
Mark: “I remember when I headed up from Miami to Tallahassee for the FSU/Miami football game. I had inadvertently swapped out my overnight bag with a matching bag full of fishing tackle and maps. When I discovered what I’d done it was too late, so my buddy Hill took me to Wal Mart at 1am for some clothes. That was before Wal Mart had even the tiny ounce of fashion it has now. I ended up with a Dale Earnhardt shirt and a pair of poorly fitting Faded Glory jeans. I looked horrible. We went to the bar that night and I didn’t even try to hit on any girls. Instead I went out back and found a guy cooking up some BBQ in the alley. I remember it was $4 a plate every trip through his little buffet line. It was so good. I went back two or three times. I spent like $12 on BBQ in that alley.”
Miles down the road and one pizza coma later, we stopped off at Ichetucknee Springs State Park for a cool dip in their chilly spring. According to the heavily bearded ranger without a smidgen of personality, one can also do 2 or 4 hour float trips down the river from this location – but, he warned, “you can’t bring nothin’ with you.”
April: “Hmmm, nothing? Not even water? 4 hours seems like a long time with nothing to drink.”
Zero Personality Ranger: “Nothing.”
April: “How about a tube to float on?”
Ranger: “You can bring a tube.”
April: “Well that’s something.”
Ranger: “Ain’t much.”
Encounters such as this persuaded us to move on down the road a few miles to O’Leno State Park to set up camp. Thanks to our Tallahassee stop, we had plenty of groceries and Mark got to grilling and wine drinking immediately. As is campground courtesy, he tried to strike up conversation with what we would later determine were our mute neighbors. For hours he just thought them rude.
Back on Eastern Time, morning seemed to get started at a more reasonable hour and we got on the road headed South to Naples. At our breakfast stop, Andrew showed off his driving skills.
The tough decision was made to push through and get home. Back at the house, the massive task of unloading began - and Mark marveled at how much stuff our little RV was able to lug around for us for the past month. Another great trip in the books.