Exploring the Keys

Trip Start Apr 16, 2010
Trip End May 07, 2010

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Where I stayed
Holiday Inn Ft Lauderdale

Flag of United States  , Florida
Sunday, April 18, 2010

We (or rather I) woke up very early in the morning. Still very jet lagged our bodies had no idea what time it was. I woke up Barb because I wanted her to experience what a beautiful day it was - yep you guessed - it was pouring with rain. Perfect weather for a road trip! It was a this moment that Barb realised she had married a crazy person!

We set off as the sun was rising on the horizon - or would have been rising had it not been for the clouds. We drove from one Key to the next and when we came across an Italian diner, we had to stop for coffee and breakfast. We walked in and immediately asked for a cappuccino. The English waitress looked at us as if we were from Mars! Nope only filter coffee was available as their cappuccino machine was not working today (we don't think they actually had one). I was brave and ordered grits for breakfast. I thought it was delightful - Barb had a taste and pulled a 'What the..' face. Barb had blueberry pancakes which were more to her liking.
Fat and happy we continued on our Key exploration and drove as far as 7 mile bridge. By now the rain had cleared and the bridge was an awesome site - well worth the trip to see. We headed back to the hotel so we could check out by 11am and made it just in time. Near our hotel was the famous Wyland murals of whales. Wyland had been on the now famous 'A diamond for my princess' cruise last year so we were interested to see one of his large murals.

With our art need satisfied we headed off to the John Pennekamp Coral reef state national park which was the main purpose of our visit to the Keys. We wanted to snorkel but due to the rough seas, all the snorkel trips had been cancelled. Instead then we booked a glass bottom boat tour although the operator did her best to put us off warning us the waves were very high. Being world wide adventurers we were not put off and in fact decided to eat lunch before going on board. The weather had cleared to a sunny day when we set off and the water was calm. When the boat stopped at the reef however, it started rocking a lot and several people on board got sick (Barb included). I got a good photo of a reef shark.

On our return it was time to drive to Ft Lauderdale where we were spending the night before boarding the Equinox. By now the early start and jet lag had caught up with us and we were both very tired. On the way back Barb slept, and needing a break in the trip, I drove to a factory outlet. I nudged Barb awake and you should have seen the excitement on her face when she saw where we were. I left her at The Gap whilst I went to the Nike store. After buying a pair of sneakers for Barb and myself (only $20) I went to pick up Barb. When I saw her, she was like a deer caught in headlights with her arms loaded with clothes - totally busted. 

As we neared Ft Lauderdale a torrential storm hit which made driving very difficult. We heard on the radio that roads had flooded. It was with much relief when we arrived at the Holiday Inn. After checking in  it was time for dinner. We had spotted an Italian restaurant as we drove in across the road so decided that was the place to go as I was too tired to drive anymore. We walked outside to a flooded road. The restuarant was 20 metres away but we could not cross the road. So we got in the car and drove there! Nothing was going to come between us and pasta!

Dinner was lovely albeit a little crowded and right after we returned to the hotel we fell fast asleep. It had been a long but fun day.
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