Our Feet Are in Florida, Again! Happy Birthday, Lory!

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December 29th 2018
Published: December 29th 2018
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We could hear all your big sighs and relieved gasps as we pulled into our site at Tropical Palms. That was on Christmas Day at 7:30 PM. I felt like the Pope and kissed the ground. Lulu joined me....plus she was a lot closer to the ground. Easier for her to get up. Took me two hours of twisting, turning, and thrashing to get myself upright again.

That was quite a journey down. We hope you weren’t in it just for the sightseeing aspect. With Mr. Speedster at the wheel, we were flying over the asphalt. Everything and anything was one big blur. Normally, with the RV, we take the bypass around Jacksonville, FL. and go onto Route 10 that takes us across part of the State. There we get on route 75 and head south making our way to Tropical Palms. Takes a little longer but a much easier path to take without so much traffic and construction. This time, Mr.Speedster was on such a roll he decided to go right through Jacksonville on I-95 and continue on that until we reached I-4 which took us through the city of Orlando. All through Orlando and around it, there is a huge major construction project going on. They are making 6 lanes of traffic (each way) which will take many, many, many years to complete. It is a wicked ride without the construction....now it’s a death ride. Besides being white knuckled, every part of my body was clenched tight, my eyes were pinched shut and I put my mitten in my mouth. It didn’t help! My heart was beating faster than the speed Mr. S was traveling. Lulu was unconscious. She quit her job as navigator and hid out in her carry bag on the floor. Ontop of the speeding, swerving, thick traffic....we were wizzing around and through warning cones and barriers. All this while in the DARK! Just like we were blind! Not a pretty picture. Not a fun time. Not anything I want to do again. Cory just shrugs....he thought it was okay. OMG....has he become deranged? After we survived the deadly ordeal of driving through Orlando, I-4 continued with bumper to bumper traffic for miles and miles and miles until we reached our turnoff to get us to Tropical Palms. All this back up was due to people going or returning from Disneyworld. We live @ 5 minutes from the Disney property.

We drove past the beautiful Gaylord Palms Convention Center/Hotel. All the pretty lights glistening in the dark night. It took my mind and body away from the overwhelming, death defying driving experience we had just endured. But my body was still clenched. My photo of the Hotel does not give it justice at all. Remember....this is where we went for that mega ice sculpture show of “The Christmas Story”.

Once we come around the bend, we saw the tall pillars of beautiful, colorful lights. We always know we are home when we see the brilliant colored lights of Old Town’s wild and crazy rides: The Vomitron, The Skyrocket, The big Ferris Wheel. Ahhhhh....there they were! Relief at last.....BREATH!

BREATH, again. Cory drove our black buggy just like Santa driving his sleigh. It was a calm and smooth ride as we arrived at Tropical Palms and our site. Hallelujah! We made it from Shongo, NY to Kissimmee, Florida in 2 days! I’m sure the police have a full alert team out looking for Mr. Speedster. We’ll be running into a dragnet anytime now. I’m sure our car is at the top of the police blotter and Cory’s face is now hanging up in the Post Office. C’est la vie! Two days! I still can’t believe it. Two days and we were back at TP! It like we were in Richard Branson’s rocket ship. Blast off! Of course, our car is no longer black. It is a steel color. Why? ......you ask. ‘Cause Cory drove so fast the paint flew right off our car.....right down to the bare metal. It’s a miracle we are alive to write this blog. I’ve had to enroll Lulu in therapy sessions. My comforting words were not enough to bring her back to normal. She had become a Zombie! Noooooooo!

We have resumed our normal routine. We meander up to the lobby for morning coffee with our friends. Our first full day here, we trotted around the park with Sandy & Sam to see if there were any changes that had happened during our absence. Nope. Most everything is about how we left it. This was Wednesday. We all remember what that means....right? Lobster night at the Ale House. Yippee. Oh, rats! They don’t serve the lobster anymore more. That’s a big change and not a good one. The four of us still went there for dinner and celebration. Just ordered another meal from the menu......still tasty! Sam found a lovely, large Christmas present on their bench. He knew Santa had left it there for him. Good try, Sam......but it’s not yours. Just a scam. Maybe next year you’ll get the real thing.......maybe! And maybe not.

We heard in the distance a Walmart calling out to us. The guitar music was loud (Deliverance). Without hesitation, we zoomed straight to it. There are several Walmart’s easily available to us.....it’s like we have died and gone to heaven down here. Just having one Walmart close by is a Godsend but we have several. What a wonderful world! Hallelujah! Of course, we had to check out the Christmas clearance section. Love their 50% off sign! It was the perfect evening cause we were again with our dear friends, Sam & Sandy. “There are Good Ships & Wood Ships but the Best Ships are Friendships!”

Yesterday, our journey took the four of us to a Dick’s store. Not able to find what we wanted but that’s okay. We had decided we would go to the movies. We saw The Mule starring Clint Eastwood. He’s 88 years old now and looked every bit of that. Seemed strange to see him old and frail but his acting hasn’t dwindled at all. The movie was good but I would classify it as a “one timer”. Not like Forrest Gump, Shawshank Redemption, Bridges Over Madison County......those you can watch a million times over (my opinion). As we drove around, guess what we found? Yes.....another Walmart....yippee! Of course, we stopped and checked out more Christmas clearance racks. Good finds! Our choice for dinner was Cracker Barrel. Love it! I always get the same meal: grilled catfish, green beans and dumplings....and biscuits. And always it is scrumptious! I love all this dining out routine. Life is Good! And better ‘cause Sandy & Sam are with us for these ventures. Hey, and we haven’t forgot that you are with us, too. What a terrific team we make! Lulu is our Captain! Got home in time to watch “The Big Bang Theory” and “Young Sheldon”. It just doesn’t get any better than this.

Today is our daughter, Lory’s, birthday. Happy, Happy Birthday, Lor! She is our first born. She is such a wonderful and caring daughter. We love you very much, Lory. Dear followers.....you do remember my vivid description of her birth, don’t you? I certainly do! Whew!

Today started out like the rest....coffee time in the lobby. Cory ran a few errands while I did a wash and other chores around our little home. We made the big decision to buy a modem from Tropical Palms and rent the WiFi from a company called Fast Wave. We have struggled so trying to get a good signal either through the public Wi-Fi thru TP which is either impossible or terrible as well as through our own Verizon account and/or hot spot. Of course the necessity for all this WiFi strength, speed and consistency is to ensure I get these blogs written and out to all of you. See how important you are to us? Right at the top of our priority list! Lucky you! We are up and running now and it seems great. Pray that it lasts!

We have a lovely neighbor. Her name is Melba. She lives here full time in her new 5th Wheel. Her home is beautiful. She was telling me that the exhaust fan over her stove wasn’t working. She had an RV repair place come and fix it several months ago. It worked for two weeks and stopped again. She’s a terrific cook so her stove and accessories are important to her. I offered out Cory to look at the fan to see if he could do something to help her. He’s pretty good with all these various issues that come up when living in a motor home. Sometimes he calls on friends for help, though. As he was looking at her fan, he saw Art driving past in his golf cart. He called out to ART! Art, can you help? Gracious and kind as always, Art agreed and looked over the situation. Right off, he found the problem, got his trusty tools and fixed the fan for Melba. Hooray. Art is like the miracle worker. He knows everything about anything and then he knows how to fix it all. What a super smart guy! His wife, Donna, is one lucky lady! Her very own Mr.Fix-It! I wish you could meet Art. He has been here a long time at Tropical Palms. He has been the “to-go-to-guy” when you have any issues, especially with electronics and the like. For years, he worked along side of a Tropical Palms employee, Lee. They would do your TV, computers, cables....you name it. Art was a volunteer the whole time he did this. WOW! See what Im talking about! A real giver guy.Lee moved away. There doesn’t seem to be any one to call up at the office when you have any of these issues. So we wander around until we spy Art and ask him what he thinks. Being the knowledgeable and giving guy that he is, he says he’ll take a look at it. He a gift from God! Of course, he knows what to do and does it for you. What a gentleman! Thank you, thank you, thank you, Art. You are one in a million. We are all so grateful and blessed to have you a part of this park family. We hope you receive so much more than what you give. You deserve the best and the most!

Of course, he made Melba very happy. She is such a sweet soul. So grateful and appreciative. She is a very giving and caring person also. A truly grand lady. I wish you could meet her. We are so happy she is our neighbor and friend. Today, we got to meet her younger brother, Orlando. I told him I could remember that name.....I have it scratched into our car dashboard with my frightened fingernails as we drove through that city (Orlando) at the speed of light. Were we a bird?? A plane?? ....no we were just Mr.Speedster and his frozen-with-fear wife and catatonic companion. I need to block out that horrific ride....it is consuming me. Orlando is just as sweet and nice as his sister.

Mr. Busy Hands (Cory) also set up our satellite today. It seemed to come together quite well with good reception. That was until it just shut off and went blank. He reworked everything he had done and viola....we were back in business. That is until, it shut off again. Rats! He’s had enough for today. Tomorrow is another time when he can try again to figure out what’s wrong. Hmmmmm.....wonder if Art will be around. He’s probably taking a different route to get to his home on wheels.....just so he doesn’t have to pass by ours. Understandable, Art.

We hope all of you are enjoying yourselves back in sunny Florida. Weather has been great here. We were lucky we left New York when we did. Looks like a wicked storm is blasting the east coast as we speak. That would have been miserable to drive through....plus it would have slowed us up. I wouldn’t have minded that but Mr.Speedster would be blowing smoke out his ears and nose. He’s got himself envisioned now as a race car driver and doesn’t seem to be willing to convert to a slow bus driver. Rats! I’m sure Lulu and I and the rest of you can convince him what’s right and what’s wrong. We can do it! Otherwise, I’ll strap him up and put him in the backseat while I drive. That will certainly bring on the conversion.

See you soon. Remember to scroll way,way down until you have seen all 15 photos.

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