On Friday, December 27, at approximately 8 p.m. our Big Sports Kiosk at the Coastland Center Mall in Naples, Florida, disappeared…and we lived to tell the tale! After 57 days – with Christmas being our only day off – our mall experience came to a close. You saw the pictures; you read the tales. As a crew of 3 women and 2 men descended upon us, our remaining sports products were packed away and all of the shelving dismantled. We said our goodbyes – after being asked if we would be returning next year – and walked out, never looking back!
So, what have we been up to since then? We stayed in Naples until January 1 and took time to explore the area, discover an awesome beach in Bonita Springs, and enjoy a lovely New Year’s Eve dinner at Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurant. The weather continued to be beautiful – quite warm for winter the locals shared – and on New Year’s Day we left Lake San Marino RV Resort and landed about two hours north in Bradenton at Arbor Terrace RV Resort, where we will stay until February 1.
As with every location we experience, one of the first things we do is join a gym. After taking care of that, we tried to relax a tad and revisit several of the places we got to know well when we worked closeby in Sarasota for 4 straight winters. More specifically, since we’ve been here we have…
- Investigated Anna Maria Island and had a delicious lunch at the Waterfront Restaurant.
- Played golf twice at Bobby Jones Golf Club in addition to “practicing” several times at Evie’s Driving Range.
- Had a wonderful dinner at Star Fish Companyin Cortez with Carol and Jim, a couple we worked with in Michigan for two summers.
- Spent an afternoon on the beach where we saw many interesting sights ranging from kite surfers to flyboards and from jet skiers to guided groups of people swimming on horses. We were so intrigued with this last sight that we asked for the details and are going to experience it on Friday – watch for the follow-up!
- Attended a performance of The Book of Mormon at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Center in Sarasota. If you haven’t seen it, put it on your list and prepare to laugh!
- Visited our favorite pizza place from years gone by – Rico’s– and it’s still as delicious as ever!
- Spent the afternoon with great friends, Janet and Joel, who we worked with this past summer in Cape Cod. We took them to Linger Lodge, a very unique restaurant on the Braden River, filled with more stuffed creatures than I have ever seen and the stories that go along with them are awesome! The most unusual include the Jackalope, the Walking Catfish and the Alaskan Fur Fish. And check out their RoadKill Menu… our server explained that you just have to call 2 1/2 hours ahead to give them time to retrieve what you order!
So we have recovered from our holiday job, and have done quite a lot in less than 2 weeks. Our plate is filling up quickly as we still have lots of people to see, places to go and things to do. Stay tuned…
Stay Calm and Travel On…