Almost a week’s gone by since our last post and we’ve since moved to a new park. On Sunday we arrived at the Bulow RV Campground in Flagler Beach, FL. It wasn’t too bad to drive … we were in the car for about 3-1/2 hours. We’re actually only a couple of miles away from Tomoka State Park,where we attended the Tearjerkers gathering over Groundhog’s Day weekend.
Frank and I are both enjoying being close to the beach. We’re going over tonight after the temps cool down just a bit. That’s right, you heard me right! The first morning we were here, we had to deal with it being cold outside. But for the most part, the daytime weather has been glorious. I don’t mind having to put a fleece throw over my legs in the early morning or evening when it cools down if the daytime temps are warm enough where we have to run our little electric fan. And that’s been the case the last couple of days.
Frank’s resorted to his tried-and-true approach to dealing with warmer weather – he’s been digging a few inches of topsoil away from under the Nutshell so he can feel cool dirt on his belly when he lies down.
The park itself is nice. It’s big, but nowhere near the size of the Orlando Campground we were at a couple of months ago. A couple of months ago! I can’t believe how fast the time has been going. While it seems like it was just yesterday that we first crossed the border into Florida, it was actually almost three months ago! For all the bitching I’m done about being cold, at least it didn’t seemed to drag on forever. But I digress…
Like a few of the other parks, we’re in an individual campsite that gives us a bit of a rustic feel. Sure there are other RVs around us. Lots of RVs. But when nestled in under a few old growth trees that are covered in Spanish moss, it creates a bit of a different feel. Besides, I recognized the compromise we were making when we bought the Thousand Trails membership to save money. I’ve added a few photos of our setup at the bottom of the post. Yes, it looks pretty much the same. But what’s coolol is that it seems setup and teardown are getting easier with repetition.
It ain’t camping in the forest. But for the most part, it’s not been living in RV City, either, where your neighbor is only 10 feet away and nothing grows taller than a utility pole! Speaking of utility poles, we’ve also lucked out a little bit – the one in the campsite right next to us is broken, so it will remain vacant during our stay and we’ve got a little bit more separation between us and our nearest neighbor on the canopy side. I don’t mind if someone is right next door when we have the Nutshell acting as a buffer, but it’s extra nice to not have someone right on top of where we sit under the canopy.
We had one really nice experience the afternoon we arrived here. I was taking a break from doing the setup and sat at our picnic table to rest a bit. Frank joined me. If you have been following the blog for a while now, you’ll remember that Frank loves to sit on top of picnic tables. It’s the easiest way for him the survey his domain. Anyhow, he and I were sitting there for a little while when one of our neighbors came over from an RV across the street and holding a camera. She introduced herself as Lynda from Quebec. She said she had been in the park for a few months doing the snow bird thing and that she had been taking photographs of people with their four-legged friends. She asked if I wound mind her taking our photo. I told her that would be fine … I also managed to convince Frank that posting a photo of the two of us wasn’t necessarily going to make his specific whereabouts known to the authorities in Hilton heas, SC. I don’t know the details. Frank only refers to it as the “cat incident”. Even with me!
Anyhow, the shot in shown above and I have to say it’s the best one yet of the two of us together. My buddy Michael in Dallas has taken some great shots of Frank while posing solo. But this is the best posed shot that anyone has taken of the two of us together. I love it! Lynda also gave me a hard copy of the photo on some heavy stock paper. I’ll pick up a frame before we leave the area. Thanks again, Lynda!
We’re only here for a week before heading north. Frank and I made a special point of stopping in this area so we could see a longtime friend from Pompton Lakes. Jeanie’s family lived right around the corner from our first home there. I used to deliver the local paper to their house; played football with one of her older brothers, Mike; and used to play stickball, kickball, and all sorts of other games with another brother, Ray. it’s funny that Jeanie and I would become good friends online. She was the proverbial little sister … accordingly, none of us would have really paid much attention to her except to say hello. But we’ve maintained an ongoing friendship that started back with the old Classmates site and has now extended to Facebook. So it will be nice to see her.
Other than that, we don’t have much planned for the rest of the week. Frank has a teeth cleaning appointment at the local Banfield. It’s been awhile since I’ve mentioned them, but that’s turned out to be a pretty good deal. They are located all across the country in different PetSmart stores. Frank’s probably been to a dozen of them – everywhere from Charleston to Mission, TX to Colorado Springs to Lancaster, PA. No matter where we are, they all have access to his records. And they offer some great discounts when you buy one of their and your plans, TOO.
While he’s going through that on Thursday, it’ll give me a chance to get some grocery shopping done. I’m also going to fulfil a sort of “mini-quest” I’ve been on for over 15 years now. I have been dying for good Vietnamese food. Something beyond pho and banh mi. There was a dish I particularly liked at Khanh’s, a Vietnamese restaurant I used to frequent in California. It’s a ginger infused rice, mixed with cilantro, mushrooms, spicy pork sausage, and onions … all baked in a clay pot and topped with a piece of barbecued boneless chicken breast.
I swear to God, I probably ordered that dish at least once a week for 10 years. And aside from a short visit I made to San Jose about 10 years ago, I haven’t found it since. It certainly isn’t for wont of looking. I have been to Vietnamese restaurants in New York City, Boston, Dallas, and pretty much everywhere else you can imagine. The closest I found to that dish was in Amarillo, believe it or not! It was all of the ingredients, but not cooked in a clay pot. So it’s still left me with a craving
About two months ago, when I was looking for the dish in Orlando, it dawned on me to go back find the name of the dish in Vietnamese. Sure enough, it was listed on Khanh’s website – com tay cam. And when I did an internet search, I found a restaurant in Ormond Beach with that dish listed on its menu. Judging from the description, it’s not quite the same as what I am used to. But I’m going to give it a shot. And the best time to do that is when Frank’s not with me, making me feel guilty for not sharing. Sorry, buddy. I share a lot with you, but not this time. : o)
Speaking of Frank, he is gleefully lording it over me that three of his final four picks in the NCAA tournament are still alive. He successfully picked Wisconsin’s upset of Villanova; joining the Badgers in the Sweet 16 are two Bulldogs, Gonzaga and Butler. I have to be satisfied that I still have both my picks for the championship game still alive – Arizona and North Carolina. But my other two teams, Villanova and Iowa State, were out before you could say, “Dogs (and other creatures that are ‘close enough’ in Frank’s eyes) Rule!”
All I know is that one (or both) of us is going to be minus another one or two picks before Saturday morning. Butler plays North Carolina, and Gonzaga plays Arizona. Fortunately, no money is exchanging hands in these wagers. : o)
That’s it for now. We’ll check in again before we leave town. Unless you’re associated with the Hilton Head authorities. If that’s the case, Frank says he might be leaving town tonight, to whereabouts unknown. He just felt that needed to be said. And I don’t know “no cats”!