We have been in travel mode since Tuesday morning. After a wonderful visit we left Johnston, SC and our family a little after 8:00 enroute to Gainesville, FL. We had a pretty easy drive south. We drove SC 25 to I-16 to I-75 to Waldo, FL – just north of Gainesville. We stayed in a commercial campground, Dixieland RV Park. This was our first commercial campground in quite a while. Everyone was very nice but we remember why we like COE and state park campgrounds better. The sites are always so close together in commercial campgrounds. We began Wednesday with breakfast at Classic Cafe, a little restaurant at the park. They gave us a 15% off coupon when we checked in so of course we needed to give it a try. We enjoyed our breakfast. It was good but not really anything special. We also did a little shopping, and stopped and looked at some RVs. In the afternoon we visited Lake Alto Preserve and did some nice hiking out in the woods around the lake. The trails were nice and wide, probably so hikers can spot alligators sunning themselves. One of us was happy we saw none. It was a nice quiet day in the preserve. Very relaxing.
Thursday, we were again in travel mode and drove south to Midway Campground in the Big Cypress National Preserve on the Tamiami Trail. Except for a long delay due to a wreck causing traffic backup north of Naples it was an uneventful day. We did notice that the sun became brighter and the temperature much warmer the further we drove. It was 38 degrees in Gainesville Thursday morning and by the time we arrived at Midway about 5:00pm our camp hosts greeted us in shorts and short sleeve shirts. Nice! Today will be another play day before we head on down to the keys and prepare to go to work. It is a beautiful Florida morning – no jackets today. Don’t know when we will actually get this posted because we have a very sketchy signal here at Midway.
This week was a very busy, but wonderful week. We are so blessed.
Monday was FRED’s annual checkup at the Freightliner Service Center, so we were up early, and in line at 7:45 am to register FRED in for his appointment. Quick and easy. Then the waiting began. To pass the time we went to some of the local stores and outlets to begin our Christmas shopping. Actually didn’t make any purchases. Surprising. We had lunch at Daddy Joe’s a local seafood and barbeque restaurant. It’s a funky little place with an interesting décor. We had the prime rib sandwich which was very good. We would definitely go back. After our late lunch we returned to wait on FRED, expecting his work to be complete by 2-3 o’clock. When we were still waiting at almost 5:00 we were beginning to get concerned. Shortly after 5:00 our technician came to tell us FRED was back in his campsite and everything was complete. We were surprised that they found a kink in the coolant tubing that required them to actually unbolt the engine and pick it up a little, re-route the tubing and refasten the engine. Fortunately for us all of that cost was covered by Freightliner because it had to happen during the build and we are just fortunate that it never caused a real problem.
After a good night of rest, we left Gaffney Tuesday morning in route to Johnston, SC to spend the holiday week with Max’s brother and sister-in-law, Randy and Debra. Except for a long delay on the interstate due to construction we had an uneventful travel day and enjoyed the start of our visit. So good to see our family. Wednesday we all four went exploring and shopping in a close-by town -, this time actually making some purchases for the great nieces. Thursday was a quiet day at home, with most of the day spent in the kitchen cooking for Friday when we actually celebrated Thanksgiving with Randy, Debra, David and Jen, Phillip, Lauren, Dorothy and Tabitha. It was a great day with lots of food and fun. We decorated Christmas cookies with Dorothy, played some games and visited. Saturday it was back to the four of us and we just enjoyed the day together and worked on a Christmas puzzle and Max entertained one the cats by throwing leaves in the air just outside the window. Today, we really enjoyed worshiping with Randy and Debra at their church which was beautifully decorated for Christmas. It’s been a great visit. We have one more day here in Johnston before we head south. We will update you next when we are on the road. Hope everyone had a great holiday, remembering to be thankful everyday.