Tuesday, January 23, 2018

The First Freezing Camping Trip of the Year

Here we are again, camping in Florida, that strange place where your fingers and toes are numb from the cold one day, and you're sweating in shorts and flip flops the next. In winter time, that is, there is nothing but sweating in the summer, and that is why we love the unpredictable weather of our winters. This weekend, we burned through a truckload of firewood and boxes of hot chocolate, while re-telling our heroic adventures. It no longer matters how many times we've told the same stories, they get a little better each time. Pretty soon it will reach the point where I'm telling about how I taught the Hawaiians how to surf, Steve was the one that really found Osama Bin Laden, and Donald Trump came to Paul for business advice.
I'd really like to add new relatives to our camping group, but no one seems eager to join...

We have added bicycling to our list of activities that must happen on the trip, and I have learned that no matter how cool Steve's trike looks, it takes me about twice the effort to get around on it. He has a bad back, so he is just glad to have a machine that he can ride in comfort. I think I will stick with my fat tire bike that only takes about 1 1/2 times the effort of a normal mountain bike. We rode the whole campground area and that takes more than an hour. In the ride this time, we discovered that although the park was totally booked that weekend, we were almost the only ones there. We did notice that the park ranger kept coming to check on us, perhaps because he knew we were the only ones smart enough to know how much fun it is to camp in a tent when the temp drops below freezing?

In our favor, the wind died down to nothing and at dawn the water was a mirror to the sun breaking through the clouds over the ocean. The only thing better than getting photos of this sunrise was the clear sky on Friday night. I have never, anywhere, seen so many stars in the sky. In fact, this was the first time I was able to see clouds of stars. My very first thought was to add a telescope to my list of things to pack. I'm still not really sure how a telescope could improve the site I beheld that night.

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