Sunday, 19 May 2013

166 Leaving Orlando and finding Cedar Keys

Saturday 18th May 2013
Miles Today 136 Total 3648

Today we started to head North. Its a long way to the Arctic and North is the only way to get there.
We did not get too far. It was an incredibly hot day, around 34 deg C (93F) all day. It made riding in the winter jackets hard work.
I know  it was harder for Ray today but we put the, music on, and I flapped my arms about so the breeze went up my sleeves and sang my heart out to Simply Red.  Ray has put a switch on the intercom so we can't talk to each other and he can't here me murdering the songs. He told me originally it was to cut out wind noise.....  It is actually useful if you don't want to talk to each other, the only problem I have is that Ray controls it.  We have, okay I have, developed "poke you in the back hard" when I want to talk.... Works great!

It was actually a while before we got out of Orlando, but when we did the whole countryside changed again.
Lucky shot from the rear seat passenger, I was trying to catch the lake and when we looked later, I'd caught the fountain.

Old tree showing the dangly things again.
 I've posted the above picture again, because we have learned that the dangly stuff is called Spanish moss.  Sir Henry Ford, when he developed the first Ford motor car, used this to stuff his seats with. A man with great vision and using a natural resource.  However, what he didn't know, was that this contains a nasty little bug, which in turn, caused an very nasty rash on the nether regions, and this was the first recall of any vehicle ever produced.  There you go, trivia facts as well........    

It could almost be Great Britain.
Ray has caught some horrible bug, and was really struggling with cold and flu symptoms so after getting some medication from one of the thousands of chemists along the way, he soldiered on, and when he suggested a break, I was in total agreement.  Strangely it was at a little bar, in the middle of no where, with motor cycles parked outside it.
Emergency refreshment provided.
This was one of those places that I have seen in the movies and I said to Ray,"if it all goes quiet and they turn round and watch us walk in, we're leaving"   It was fine, in fact they were more interested in how we could wear so much clothing in this hot weather. The bikers in this neck of the woods wear T's and shorts and little else.  After explaining that we still had 8 and a half months to go of our journey, they all nodded and lost interest.  Mad dogs and English men are accepted here.
After a break, we headed onto our destination, which I have to say was Ray sticking a pin in the map on the West coast, not literally).
We had thought we would camp tonight, and there was a site about 6 miles from the coast. We arrived there and were told they were full, but if we wanted to find a wee space for our little tent, we could join 30 tents down the bottom full of kids from a correctional facility, on a behavioral weekend, (team leadership, anger management/problem kids), I'm all for giving them a chance, but I did 30 years in the London Police, I'm not doing it now.  We moved on.
We arrived in Cedar Key.  It is an absolutely beautiful place and off the beaten track.  As we passed by motels with No vacancy signs, I felt my bottom lip start to drop, but we did find a motel slightly further back off the beach, called "Park Place". They had vacancies, and having seen how beautiful the area is, I jumped off the bike and said to Ray, "I'll see how much it is, do you want to stay 2 nights?"  Sometimes you've just got to play the ace card, and when he said "we will have to do some hard mileage after this, I gave it my best "You are great and whatever you say" smile, ran in and booked us in.  I also convinced him that this day off would help him recover from the madness of Orlando and give him a day away from theme parks and help him get better from his cold.......

AAH, back to nature, and the real America.
Our motel is wonderful, it is more like a holiday home, with a balcony.

View from our balcony. Not bad for starters.  We also got a discount for Ray's Army services.

One of the streets in this lovely little town, although it is classed as a city.

The funniest thing about this place is it is called a city, yet the streets are named A, to H and No.1 to 8.
It really is a gem. It is very old fashioned and like it is being dragged screaming into the 21st century, but fantastic. We sat on our balcony and in the space of minutes, we had seen a Swallow tailed Kite, an Osprey, a woodpecker, Pelicans, and a host of swallows, doves and many other local birds that we are still trying to name.

We went off for  a walk along the beach, for dinner and the following pictures are just some of the sights.

Pursuit vehicle?

Where would you like to be right now?

Speaks for its self really.

These fly in like B52 bombers.

We found somewhere to have a lovely small bit of dinner.

Sitting on the dock of the bay.. Clam chowder soup for Ray, Chicken salad for me.

We came back to the room and sat and had a drink on the balcony.  As the sun went down, there was one cloud in the sky, it was a big one and it was full of electricity, there was lightening flashing all through it, it was quite spectacular.  I spent ages trying to get a photo, but we were being  eaten alive, so gave up.  It was as good as the Disney fireworks. In fact better because it was natural.
We are staying here for another day and heading off for a nature walk in the morning.

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