City Tours by Gizmo, Sponsored by Starbuck’s

Saturday, February 25, Through Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Saturday:

Almost nothing to say about today.  We got up, laid around a while, took a walk on the beach, went to the casino again for lunch and ate way too much at the buffet.  Did a little gambling, probably too much, walked the dog, watched a little TV and to bed.

Sunday:

Ditto of Saturday, except we had Sunday brunch at the buffet.  It was great.  Lots of great southern breakfast foods.  Grits, french toast, country potatoes, sweet plantains, white gravy, scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, and all the lunch stuff too, including crab legs.  Neither Lucy nor I are big lovers of crab legs, but the people around us were eating mounds of them.

After brunch we left the beach and drove to Gulf Shores, Alabama, just south and east of Mobile.  Lots of water, lots of bridges, lots of high rise beach front hotels.  We stayed at Walmart.

Monday:

The plan today was to drive along the coast into Florida, past Pensacola, back to the coast and find an RV park somewhere on the coast before dark.  The first RV park we found sounded nice on paper and we got there just before dark to find a place that resembled Li’l Abner’s Dogpatch, only not as clean.  We did not stay.  The second and third places we found were similar to Dogpatch, but surrounded by swamp.  Now we may be too picky, but we drove on to a Walmart about 25 miles from Tallahassee at a town called Crawfordsville.  It was very late and we hit the sack.

Tuesday:

We got up a bit late today and headed for Tallahassee.  We decided to find a Starbucks there for coffee and to update our photos with their free wifi.  We discovered a new way to tour a city.  All of a city.  Here’s how you do it.  Do a search for Starbucks on your trusty GPS.  We call ours Gizmo.  We asked Gizmo for the nearest Starbucks and she directed us to a giant shopping center.  There may have been a Starbucks in there somewhere, but we did not find it.  So we asked Gizmo to take us to the next one.  She took us to a Starbucks on a downtown street where no parking was available.  Not discouraged yet, we asked for the next in line.  This one turned out to be a vacant lot which may have been a Starbucks in the past, but I have my doubts.  So on to the next.  This one turned out to be on the campus of FSU Tallahassee and there was no place to park, in fact there was almost no place to drive.  The streets were more like alleys.  While trying to get out of there we twice ran into streets we could not navigate and had to back out and turn around.  We were about to give up, but decided to give Gizmo one last chance.  I think she realized she was about 5 minutes away from ending her career in a lonely Tallahassee dumpster, because this time she took us to a Starbucks in a small shopping center with plenty of parking and easy access.

Under part of Mobile Alabama

Before we got out of the van to get our coffee, we were approached by a man who was interested in talking to us about the van.  It seems he had bought a Sprinter van chassis and had it custom built into a motorhome.  We talked for quite a while and he gave us some good tips about maintenance and such.  He was very knowledgable about such things. The way he knew all the model numbers and specs on all kinds of equipment, I thought he might be an engineer of some kind.  He sort of sounded a lot like a friend of mine who is an engineer.  I asked him, but it turned out he was a retired periodontist (a dentist). Go figure.  In explanation, he told me he took a 10 week course in RV maintenance given by Camping World.  Now if he had said it was a 10 hour course, I might have been tempted to take it, but 10 weeks?  Our motorhome is only 24′ long.  That would be 2.4′ per week.  Seems excessive to me.

So we finally got our coffee after a complete tour of Tallahassee.  After coffee we headed southeast to a little town called Perry, which has a Walmart.  Before we pulled into the Walmart Motel for the night we looked for and found a local restaurant.  It was called Pouncey’s.  It was small and plain and the food was excellent.  Everyone spoke with charming deep south accents and the whole experience was delightful.  We noticed a sign that advertised Saturday as Swamp Night.  Lucy enquired about Swamp Night and the young waitress told us in her  sweet southern voice that Swamp Night featured, Alligator tail, Frog legs, Craw Daddies, Gumbo and various other delicacies and swamp creature body parts too numerous to recall.  We were actually glad it was Tuesday.

With my email today I got two more jobs and a third for which I will get plans on Thursday.  So tomorrow we will be looking for an RV park near a town that has an Office Depot or Office Max or some such so I can print plans.  We will need to be there a few days so we will need a place near a beach or some other interesting thing with which Lucy and LaKisha can occupy themselves.

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