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Week 7: Ending 12/29/2002
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2003 8:45 pm    Post subject: Week 7: Ending 12/29/2002 Reply with quote

Week 7: Ending 12/28/02

We have noticed at times one, sometimes two large white blimps in the air, almost directly overhead our campsite. We joke that Uncle Sam is watching our every move. In fact, the blimps are Uncle Sam. (We cannot ascertain who they are watching; probably Cuba, but one never knows!) We notice that one of the blimps seems grounded and we decide to investigate. Lo and behold, it is parked at the end of Blimp Road! Just on the left, before the end of the road, we espy the landed blimp behind a guard shack at the end of a long driveway. Warning signs are posted at the beginning of the driveway to deter nosy tourists such as us. We decide to investigate the end of the road. A few cars are parked there. Two women are resting atop boulders and two dogs are romping about the seashell-strewn beach. We strike up a conversation and get lots of wags from and give quite a few rubs to the friendly pooches.

Last minute grocery shopping in Key West. Food prices in general seem higher in Florida than back home. We have also become accustomed to WalMart SuperCenter prices for some items. The nearesr Wal Mart is over 2 ½ hours away. The campground is hosting a potluck Christmas dinner, providing baked ham, rolls and punch. Residents sign up to provide side dishes, desserts, etc. We buy a smorgasbord of cheeses, pepperoni and crudités for an antipasto platter and hurry home to practice our caroling.
Christmas Eve is the most humid night we have experienced yet in South Florida. Santa Claus is in for a visit, dressed in full North Pole gear. (Santa is a brave man, enduring incredible heat to delight a few children and numerous adults!) We stroll around the campground, singing and humming a number of tunes for at least an hour. Santa is escorted in a golf cart by Ms. Pat. We return to the clubhouse for ice cream and photos with Santa. Later, holiday calls to family and friends brighten the motorhome. Merry Christmas to all!

A wonderful feast is presented for all. It is strange celebrating Christmas surrounded by palm trees decked out in holiday lights. Luncheon centerpieces proclaim: “Let it Snow (but not here!”) We get over our homesickness watching the Weather Channel’s reports of New England’s holiday snowstorms. Phonecalls to friends and families confirm the wicked whiteness up north. Everyone is safe and sound. Merry Christmas again.
Ron works on the computer again forever and gets it up and running again.

The computer is dead, again.

We decide to venture into Miami in search of a new laptop, hopefully at after-holiday discounts. We pack up food and drink for Jake, drinks for us and away we go. First stop: CompUSA. Their prices have gone up, not down, since before Christmas. We turn back onto US Route 1, in search of Best Buy. Joan is trying to call Gateway to learn where their nearest store is when Ron sees a Gateway on Route One! Long story short, we buy a new laptop from Gateway. We buy another GPS software system, gas up the Tahoe while in Miami, do a quick shop at WalMart Super Center in Florida City and embark on the three-hour journey back to Sugarloaf Key.

Ron toils umpteen hours on the laptop, the desktop and the navigation systems. We decide to treat ourselves to dinner out at Louie’s Backyard, which we discovered at the edge of Dog Beach. Louie’s is a beautiful mansion, the back deck of which is a bar at the water’s edge. We wait for our table watching the sunset. We are seated outside near a large propane heater. The gulf breeze is almost fierce, it is so cold. We are glad we are wearing our new “Happie Camper” wind jackets (Thank you, Bud & Sharon!) Dinner is a work of art from start to finish. (Ron decides to carbo-load for the evening and we both enjoy every morsel served.) We decide to walk along Duval Street to burn some calories and people watch. We end up consuming more calories (did you know there is such a thing as a half-pound cookie?!) Duval Street is much livelier than we have seen it before, due to Christmas vacationers. It is a relaxing evening out.
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