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Keep the Show on the Road!

041808 Along The Gulf Coast On The Hypotenuse

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Thanks for the comments! I got a late start as the “revenge” hasn’t completely given up. Today was between Lakeland in central Florida and Apalachicola on the panhandle of the Gulf Coast.

 

Apalachicola is the best place I have seen in a long time, so good I hope to bring Sheila back here. The town is an old gulf fishing port and some commercial fishing still goes on. Within a few years I’m certain that condos will line the waterfront, and the beautiful buildings downtown will all be “fixed up” to look “authentic.”

 

I am nuts about “authentic” but I’m not stupid. Survival of the authentic requires a purpose, and the purpose is tourism. So the authentic gets the full day spa treatment to please the tourist’s pocketbook. Today Apalachicola looks authentic, and on a warm Friday evening I counted maybe 20 tourists on the streets. But the elements were all there to draw crowds, with quaint restaurants, a real theater, beautiful vintage accommodations updated to modern standards, and even live music from one balcony.

 

But kids were riding their bikes downtown and commercial fishermen were tending their nets at the wharf. I drove along the residential streets where the homes were well kept, but not renovated showplaces. Screen porches graced several homes, reminding me of the days before air conditioning.

 

This is the kind of place that I travel to see. If I don’t see one more place of interest, the trip won’t be a bust. And remember, it’s on the Hypotenuse!

 

Now to go back and summarize the trip between Lakeland and Apalachicla today. The route followed US 98 virtually all the way, with a brief detour to Inverness via US 41. It is impossible to post a detailed description of the sights along the route, but suffice it to say that the roads are excellent and the landscape green and lush, and surprisingly rural for the most part.

 

I somehow expected a flat uninteresting central Florida. It is fairly flat, with a few rises, but frankly the varied vegetation and water scenes captured my attention, as did the small towns long the way. There was s great old drive-in in Dade City, complete with the hang-on- the-window speakers, a terrific courthouse in Inverness, and lots of opportunities to view wildlife…all of which got short shrift on a 300 mile per day trip.

 

I should say that driving off the interstate has not much increased travel time thus far. I would say it knocks maybe 10 mph off the average speed and rewards you with a close up and more varied view of the world around you.

 

A few photos follow:

 

The Joy-Lan Drive In at Dade City. Do they still operate the snack bar? Those speakers are classic, right along with window trays at drive in restaurants.

 

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The courthouse at Inverness, FL

 

 

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The Old Crooked River Lighthouse at Carabelle ,FL

 

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The houses along the coast are on stilts. Gee, I wonder why!? Maybe it is to improve the view!

 

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Photos around downtown Apalachicola, Florida. I have to do more study and research and make a return trip.

 

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So much to see, so little time!

 

Keep the Show on the Road

 

Dave

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Great photos Dave.........Keep'em coming!

 

 

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Absolutely beautiful. Love these road trip reports - lets me travel without spending gas money!!!! :D

As the previous post said, keep 'em coming.

 

Hudsonly,

Alex Burr

Memphis, TN

 

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Absolutely beautiful. Love these road trip reports - lets me travel without spending gas money!!!! :D

As the previous post said, keep 'em coming.

 

Hudsonly,

Alex Burr

Memphis, TN

 

 

And I though I was cheap............. :D

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Beautiful shots, and enjoying your captions/comments too!

 

BB

www.brianbutko.com

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And I though I was cheap............. :D

 

 

Hey Starfire - I'm Scottish. Therefore I'm not cheap, I'm frugal!!!! LOL

 

Hudsonly,

Alex Burr

Memphis, TN

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Hmmmm. If you took US 98 pretty much the whole way you must have been in the vicinity of Perry. When I was a senior at U Miami in the spring of 1970, a bunch of us drove to Perry, hoping to get a good view of the total eclipse of the sun. Sadly, the weather was overcast, so we couldn't see the sun, but we *did* see the shadow heading our way. And coming at a right smart clip! The edge was quite clearly visible and when it came over us it got downright chilly! All the cars had to turn their lights on:) I'll never forget it.

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Hmmmm. If you took US 98 pretty much the whole way you must have been in the vicinity of Perry. When I was a senior at U Miami in the spring of 1970, a bunch of us drove to Perry, hoping to get a good view of the total eclipse of the sun. Sadly, the weather was overcast, so we couldn't see the sun, but we *did* see the shadow heading our way. And coming at a right smart clip! The edge was quite clearly visible and when it came over us it got downright chilly! All the cars had to turn their lights on:) I'll never forget it.

 

That’s a great story! And it must have been pretty impressive….almost astronomical!! :huh:

 

I took a “document” photo through the windshield at 11:07 AM April 18 on the Hypotenuse about three miles south of downtown Perry on US 98. It doesn’t show much, but ……..whoops!!!!….look at what it caught!!!..…an old Perry Lodge sign I didn’t notice until just this second!

 

Wow….talk about a Trail that just keeps on giving! And I would never have even noticed that sign in the photo without your story! I bet it was in full operation in 1970!!

 

But no sign of an eclipse! <_<

 

ARPerry.jpg

 

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Keep the Show on the Road!

 

Dave

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