Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Farewell to the keys

Morning (not too early) on a site  by the sea. I sit with my juice on the picnic table and gaze out to sea. The water is calm and half a dozen shades of blue and green. There is a light offshore breeze. Four rubber dinghies are moored in a row a short distance offshore, while farther out, boats head out for fishing. It is a little above half-tide. There is a strip of wet sand, with a rock garden off to the left. A bunch of sanderlings is working the wet sand while a number of plovers are busy in the shallows just beyond. The rocks host a convention of gulls which periodically break into full chorus.

A little blue heron flies in and stalks the shallows. An osprey flies over and lands in a dead tree. A lone pelican passes overhead. There is no better way to start the day.

I could do this every morning, but this is our last morning in the keys. We were lucky to get two days here but now it is over. We head back to the mainland today. After checking at the ranger station to see if there were any cancellations (there weren't) we turn north and join the sea of vehicles leaving the keys.

We make a short stop before the long bridge off Key Largo. While there we look up a possible campground for the night and settle on one called Broadway. When we get to the campground we find there is a gate. A woman leaving stops and asks if we had forgotten the code. Then she punches some numbers into the keypad and the gate opens. We drive in to the office and inquire if there are any transient sites available. There are none, not even in the overflow lot. But they call another nearby campground and find it has some space available. They give us directions, and so by about 2:30 we were checked in to Southern Comfort RV Resort (they are not campgrounds in Florida).

Since it was early we drove across the street to a collection of outlets and Jean got her shopping fix. Next, to a huge Walmart for some groceries, and finally to a gas station to fuel up for tomorrow's trip into the Everglades.

When we get back to the campground ("resort"), there is a large food truck parked inside the gate. It is a pizzaria, complete with an oven. An appropriate contrast to how the day started (no, we didn't have pizza for supper).

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