We are down to our last week in Florida for this season and we have not slowed down! Our week began with a rendezvous with dear friends from home – Bill and Barb Michalsky! They winter in Englewood Beach, and with us in Bradenton for the month, we met halfway in between at one of our favorite spots – Casey Key Fish House It was a beautiful day out on the deck overlooking the Gulf as we caught up on each other’s lives and plans for the rest of the winter.
Our next stop was a birthday stop to see my mother who lives in San Antonio, Florida, northeast of Tampa. We traveled up in the morning and played golf at Mom’s course in the afternoon. We feasted on lasagna for dinner and then my sister, Sara, and Mom surprised me with a delicious birthday cake! We spent the night and the following morning I accompanied my mother to a P.E.O. meeting. P.E.O. is a Philanthropic Educational Organization, a group of women, nationally and internationally, who love giving financial support to other women. Being a member myself, it was delightful to meet the women in my mother’s chapter, as she approaches her 50th year in the organization!
When Bill and I departed later Thursday afternoon, we stopped at a Wawa – yes, they have made their way to Florida, and we miss them, so we stop whenever we see one – soft pretzels, Tastycakes, etc. All of a sudden, several gigantic Budweiser trucks caught our eye and lo and behold it was the Budweiser Clydesdales in the Winn-Dixie parking lot! Of course we stopped and almost an hour later we were still watching. There are 4 teams of Clydesdales nationwide and this team, hailing from New Hampshire, were on their way to the Tampa Gasparilla Festival – stopping along the way for what they call “Hitchstops” – promotional stops at various businesses. We learned there were 10 Clydesdales per team, although only 8 pull the wagon at one time while 2 rest. It was amazing to watch the crew harness and groom the horses in preparation to parade around the Winn-Dixie parking lot – complete with a dalmation! Last week we swam with he the horses – this week we drank Budweiser with them!
Yesterday was another golf day and today after the gym and a well-deserved breakfast, we walked Bradenton Beach, including the historic Bridge Street Pier. We didn’t have to wander far to see the local wildlife and what a beautiful beach day it was!
We leave Florida on February 1, and who knows what this last week will bring. We remain thankful for every day and every experience!
Stay Calm and Travel On…