Saturday, April 3, 2010

Last Days in Paradise

Hi all,
Dianne here:

Just a quick blog to update our last days here at Franklin Lock outside Ft. Myers, Florida. From here we will head to Longs, South Carolina to attend the RV Dreams Rally, then several state parks as we make our way back to Indiana to sell yet ANOTHER house and yet MORE "stuff." (Ugh...will it ever end??)

We got word that our RV lot at Retama Village is coming along nicely. The concrete pad is poured and they are now constructing our little "coach house" shell. Our closing is to be in a couple of weeks.

We have sure enjoyed seeing our daughter, Amanda, and granddaughter, Kaia, this past month. The time was too short!

We've had some camp fires, gone kayaking, and have been able to eat outside at the picnic table on balmy evenings. It's been great.

Several times we took our beach chairs down the hill behind our site to get a closer look at the river activity: Lots of jumping fish, pelicans, anhingas, swimming turtles, egrets, even a limpkin

on the grassy bank. The black duck with the bright red forehead is a common gallinule.

There are some lovely water lilies right behind our site.

You can be sure I'll be perched on my computer the moment sites here at Franklin Lock open up for next spring (six months in advance).

As Kaia mentioned in her guest blog, we spent yesterday at the Bonita Beach dog park (beach).

Kaia was on spring break, so while her mom was at work we loaded up the three dogs, Kaia, and a picnic lunch, and drove to the dog beach. Kaia had a great time running through the shallow surf with Jasper and playing with her beagle, Cinnamon.

Jasper ran at a slowed pace next to Kaia. It reminded me of when we first got Jasper (he was nine months old and Kaia was two years old.) Jasper would let Kaia, as a toddler, walk him on his leash inside our house. Even as a pup Jasper knew to walk r-e-a-l slow, and was always very gentle with her. He did the same thing as they ran through the surf yesterday; kept pace right with her, even though he could have gone into high 35-mile-per-hour gear. He also kept a close eye on her as she played in the water. Have I mentioned yet that he is the best dog in the world???

Chaplin was busy doing his own thing, walking down the beach and plopping down on towels and blankets, uninvited, even between people! I finally put him back on his leash, because even though most people thought it was cute, I didn't want to press our luck with that. (Nobody in their right mind would go to the dog beach if they weren't dog lovers; trust me on that).

After we left the beach, we drove over to Sanibel Island to give Kaia the "Pinocchio's" Italian gelato experience. She was skeptical when I told her Italian gelato was even better than ice cream until she took her first bite. Apologies to Cindy G. for these next two photos; one is of my

"purple cow" (raspberry with dark chocolate chunks) and Roger's "triple dark chocolate."

We definitely thought of you, Cindy, as we devoured them!

dogs were so tired from the dog beach that they didn't even bother us as we ate.

I'll close out this blog with a couple of beautiful Florida sunset photos, fitting as we leave Florida for our trek north.

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