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Published: September 27th 2015
A very transit day getting to Florida. Lots of cotton was growing in the fields and also a lot of confederate flags flying. It was more than obvious we were in the Bible Belt as there were several churches in every small town; fairly sizeable and some rather opulent. I think the denominations are mostly Anglican, Presbyterian and Baptist.
There seems to be a lot of waste in the US, lots of completely unnecessary packaging especially in plastic. Quite frustrating that such a huge country with its vast resources can't get itself together to help eliminate this.
Mt Dora to Orlando
Rode out to Orlando to BMW to arrange a service and collect a GPS chip. The day was hot and very humid, we were both tired even though we'd only done a short distance. We stayed in Dundee for the night where we sat outside and took in an amazing electrical thunderstorm.
Next morning we hit the Florida Mall to pick up a wee something for an upcoming birthday girl (Chanel) and enjoyed the aircon and coffee. Back in the heat we decided to head down the Keys. On the route down we saw acres and
acres of orange trees and sugar cane growing. Our ride started off fine but thunder clouds were gathering ahead and were quite dark and ominous. We stopped off for lunch near Venus and met Ken who was riding also. We decided to ride together as he was headed to Miami to visit his son. About 20 minutes after we got back on the road the skies opened and rain belted down in huge drops. The temperature dropped from 34 degrees to 24 degrees in under a minute. We pulled off under a bridge and wrestled our wet weather gear on and waited until the worst of the electrical storm passed and then carried on. Our 20 minute stop possibly placed us in 5pm Miami madness traffic (or it may have been always that busy) which wasn't much fun in 30 degree heat with wet weather gear on as well! We waved goodbye to Ken and slowly surged toward Florida City.
We arrived at Florida City a little bedraggled and worse for wear but in good spirits.
We set out on a balmy, watercoloured Florida morning; 30 degrees at 7.30, not bad for the beginning of autumn.
Upper Matecumbe Key
My yacht is on the dry at the mo 😉
The road to KW is long and straight and has a bit of a drag strip feel in that no matter how fast we rode (50 to 65 mph speed limit on this stretch) people wanted to overtake.
Riding along the narrow archipelago I couldn't help but wonder how this exposed strip of populated land hasn't been decimated by storms; there must be a natural barrier for it of sorts. A lot of the houses are on poles or elevated though so I guess they get a fair amount of weather and judging by the 'Evacuation Route' signs they have a contingency plan of sorts in place.
We stopped several times on the route down, to rehydrate and recover from the oppressive heat before arriving at the Southern most point of the continental US which is marked by a concrete buoy. There was a queue to take pictures next to the buoy so we planned for Trev to ride in front of it while I snapped him; not the greatest pic but hey. Apparently there used to be a sign but it kept getting nicked so they made this concrete buoy in 1983; problem solved!
meandered back north taking in historic buildings, small fishing villages, flashy moorings and yacht clubs and the warm salty air and lodged at Florida City again for the night. Went to Cracker Barrel for dinner and the gift store was full of Christmas decorations!! 😜😤😓🙀
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