Wanderung 28

A Warm Winter Break

December 2013 - January 2014


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Tuesday January 7, 2014: A visit with Natalie!

After breakfast we reluctantly said "Good Bye" to the beach. The waves were still crashing against the shore, but the skies were clearing and we probably would have enjoyed another day on Casey Key, but we decided to drive across Florida to Ft. Lauderdale for two reasons. First, we preferred driving across a day before our ship left port so that if anything happened along the way (e.g., a flat tire) we would have a day to cope with it and still get to the ship on time. The second reason was that by arriving in Ft. Lauderdale a day early we would get a chance to see Monika's niece Natalie, who had just moved to Ft. Lauderdale from Alabama due to a job promotion.

We took an arrow-straight but quite narrow secondary highway eastward to Lake Okeechobee, then followed the shore of the lake southeast, and then finally took I-75 over to Ft. Lauderdale. The side roads had very little traffic, so I felt free to keep the speeds down and keep my gas mileage up, in this case to 60+ mpg! Hurray for the Prius! We had a bit of a problem finding a motel in Ft. Lauderdale that would honor the motel coupons that evening, the first place quoting us a $160 price for the night and the second place $220 ! But the third one honored its coupon for a $49 room, so we ended up all right.

Then we called Natalie and met her at her new apartment a couple miles away to help unload boxes from her U-Haul storage container. In fact, we drove both cars back over to the storage unit, filled them with boxes, and drove back to the apartment and unloaded them, and then did it again as dusk deepened into night. But we paused after the second load to go out for dinner at the Tipsy Pig, a very nice local bar/restaurant were I had some pepper-blackened mahi-mahi, Natalie had a steak, and Monika had a personal sized pizza. Natalie is a very animated and expressive person, as well as being quite perceptive, so we enjoyed hearing about her life, her new job, her family, and all that jazz. We don't always keep up as well as we would like to, and getting Natalie's unique view on things was a big plus.

After dinner we packed up the leftovers for Natalie, finished unloading the final few boxes, and then said farewell and returned to our motel room for the night.

Copyright 2014 by R. W. Holt and E. M. Holt


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January 2014
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