Welcome to our travels and adventures

Welcome to our travels and adventures

50th Honeymoon Trip Day 1

Now that all the reservations have been made for the cruise, flights, hotels or BnB’s, and the excursions, we are more and more excited to be catching that plane for Jolly Ole…. We have our currency exchanged and bags packed, this is our first big trip abroad since 1975! Wow, do you think anything has changed?

Thursday May 11

17050022 May 11 Mark Dropping Us At AirportWe decided to leave a half hour early. We just passed Exit 27 (27Kms from home)17050024 May 11 Barb Standing In Line in Niagara when I asked Terry if he had the English Pounds. He said no as he thought I had them so I looked in my purse and not there. Just after Exit 27, the traffic is dead stopped. It took almost half hour to get to the next exit to turn around. Driving faster then we usually do, we headed back home, got the money and headed back out. Since we knew the traffic, we left the highway and took city surface streets and avoided all the stopped traffic. 17050028 May 11 USelfie At SeatsWhew, we still got to Mark & Terri’s on time. Mark was taking us to the airport but he calls, his bus just broke down and he is waiting for the next bus. What a start to our memorable trip!

We made it to the airport with lots of time to spare and check in was easy. Our plane was full. Hard to believe how many people travel and with kids. We are near 17050029 May 12 Sunrise From The Planethe back and Terry doesn’t have much leg room. We got a chicken dinner, watched The Passenger (not a good movie) and then at 11pm we tried to sleep. Yes, sleep was an impossible thing. Shortly I was watching the night turn into day and by midnight we saw the sunrise.

Friday May 12

17050030 May 12 Barb At HeathrowWe landed in Heathrow Airport and now on our own. We chose a hotel near the cruise terminal in Southampton but were not sure how to get there. After a few questions and directions, we start walking to the bus terminal. Little did we know how far that was, Barb & I dragging our bags and belongings through Heathrow to the central bus depot – talk about green. Bought tickets to Southampton for 43 pounds.17050032 May 12 Our Welcome Remember, it has been 42 years since we were here so we were surprised that the roads are so narrow and the vegetation grows right to the edge of the road. Coupled with driving on the left, it got scary watching the road.

When we arrived at the bus terminal in Southampton, our next challenge was how do we get to the hotel? From back home, it looked like we could walk but decided we were too weary so after a few questions, we decided to get a cab. We 17050043 May 12 Front Of New Place Houseget picked up by a nice guy named Sid. He asks why we picked a place so far away. We are going to be two towns away from the boat terminal and after a 35 minute drive down lots of narrow roads we reach the New Place Hotel. It is out in the middle of nowhere! Good pick Terry. Sid took us around to find a pub for supper and we found one within walking distance to the hotel. The taxi ride with tip was another 40 pounds.  We checked in and had a room at the end of the middle unit.

The room was smallish but the bed was very comfortable. We walked around the area to learn of the history of the estate. It was originally a house and was lived in for 55 years, then a boys school and now a hotel. It is beautiful. 17050048 may 12 Barb In Front Of PubWe then walked down to the pub for some much anticipated dinner – first pub dinner in the UK in too many years. It is a nice pub and while we ordered beer we stood and talked to one of the locals. They were all very friendly and we had a great fish n chip dinner.

17050045 May 12 Samuel Rest Pub

It feels so nice to be back in my birth country. I know this may be our last time here in England. The houses and trees make me feel like I have come home.

Stay tuned for more of our trip around the UK….

A Fantastic Surprise When We Arrived Home

1704181 Apr 23 Terry Fixing Our Flat TireOur trip back from the Plantation was uneventful except we picked up a nail, causing a slow tire leak. Nothing serious but you know it is a pain. We did not take on any side trips except to stop off at Ellicottville to have a short visit with Terri & Mark. Somewhere around Ellicottville, someone is missing a nail.

As we walked into our house we were1704184 Apr 23 Decorations In The Kitchen greeted with 50th 1704187 Apr 24 Terry Barb In 50 BalloonsAnniversary decorations – sometimes it doesn’t pay to leave a key with your daughter…. but it was fun and we appreciated her kindness.

1704189 Apr 24 Selfie In Funky Party Hats

1704203 Apr 28 Terry Barb Dressed UpThis was one of the few years that we 1704193 Apr 28 Barb Sitting At Window Tablehave been ‘home’ to celebrate our anniversary so we made plans. The most acceptable plan was a romantic dinner for two at the Watermark Restaurant at the Hilton in Niagara falls. After all, it was Niagara Falls where we started our adventure 50 years ago! We asked for a window seat, explaining our celebration and1704198 Apr 28 The Falls Lights Up the staff went out of 1704195  Apr 28 Our View Of American Fallstheir way to ensure we had a wonderful view and the service was excellent – not to mention the company was outstanding too. The evening was perfect, great food and the weather cooperated to provide the best view of the falls.

We have a second honeymoon planned and come back again soon to read about the wonderful time we had…. hope all is well where you are.

Happy Anniversary

1704040 Apr 04 Ospreys Looking At Us

Marti & I s1704034 Apr 04 All Aboardet up an ECO boat tour of Weeks Bay & the Magnolia River for 16+ folks. The day started out a bit misty and overcast but as we started down the river, the mist and clouds cleared and we were under beautiful blue skies. The ‘captain’ shared stories and highlights of the river as we sailed toward Magnolia Springs.

1704042 Apr 04 Vultures On A Roof

We saw some raptors and water fowl along the way. Except for the water mail delivery, the river was very quiet.

1704056 Apr 04 Dallas At The End Of The Table

After the cruise, some of us went up to Cousin Vinny’s for some excellent pizza. They had us set up in an area in the back – good choice for our rowdy crowd – and we all sat together which is an ingredient for more fun and good times.

We were excited it was April because Terri & Mark 1704069 Apr 08 Sitting In The Shade Of The Magnoliawere coming down again for a 4 day weekend. They got held up at the Toronto due to a bomb threat but did manage to get to Chicago but the gate was closed when they arrived to board the flight to Mobile and had to lay over for 24 hours. So their 4 day weekend was cut down to 3! We made some changes to their itinerary and made the best of their visit.

We planned a large happy hour while they were here to 1704078 Apr 08 Terri Mark Enjoy The Celebrationcelebrate our 50th wedding anniversary with our friends here at the Plantation. No one knew (except Terri & Mark after they landed) so it was a reverse surprise party with decorations etc. We had 50ish friends and neighbors all having a good time with us.

1704086 Apr 08 Fluffy Mike Nancy Phyllis Jim Barb Bob Jerry Bob1704087 Apr 08 Ruth Dawnice Betty Mark Gary Ron Chuck Kelli Stacy Bob Jerry Bob1704090 Apr 08 Everyone Enjoying The Get Together1704091 Apr 08 Such Great Friends

1704096 Apr 09 Terri Mark See Inside Placemat

Barb always tries to surprise Terri & Mark with a little something to take home. This time, she made them placemats for them when they have pot lucks at the ski hill. Later, we drove down to Fort Morgan to take the ferry across to Dauphin Island and the visit the Dauphin Island Estuarium.

But surprise, 1704100 Apr 09 Walking Down The Trailthe ferries are not on a regular schedule and the wait was too long so we came up with plan B – hike the nature trail at the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge. After that hike, we needed a cold beverage so back to Gulf Shores and to The Hangout right there on the beach. We managed to get a table on the porch overlooking the beach. Good food and cold beer, can’t get much 1704108 Apr 09 Up In The Observation Towerbetter! This place must rock during spring break and the summer. Marti & Larry had a dinner party to end off Terri & Mark’s visit. Another great visit in the memory banks.1704115 Apr 09 Terry Mark At The Hangout

1704129 Apr 11 Good Lunch For Betty Jerry At Sunset PointBetty & Jerry were heading north early this year and we didn’t have a chance to take them to another one of our favorite eateries – Sunset Point Grill – so we crammed it in before they left. Imagine, sitting out on their deck, overlooking the marina, watching the sun set over Mobile Bay. Too nice.

1704136 Apr 11 Sun Setting At Sunset Point

The rest of April was filled with more eating, celebrating the sun rising in the east or any other excuse we can think of. Happy hours and last minute chores like staining our deck. We even got the boat wet one last tim1704178 Apr 20 Happy Hour Back At Bill Anne and then packed it up and left it in the shed.

1704169 Apr 19 A Selfie On The Water

We left a little early this year so we wouldn’t be on the road celebrating our 50th anniversary! Hope all is well where you are…..

March Doin’s

What can I say…. again I’m more than a little late with my post. We were away for a few days and my ‘friend’ John mentioned that he has not seen any blog entries lately so I’d better get posting.

1702160 Feb 25 All Dressed Up And No Where To Go FloatMy last blog mentioned our Mardis Gras celebrations and this year was a blast. Barb & I took in one of our favorite parades – Mullet Mates along Mobile Bay, just south of Fairhope. It is the perfect size – about 25 floats and is family oriented so nothing too wild. We also donned costume1702169 Feb 26 Barb And Terry At Clubhouses that Barb put together for the ‘fashion show’ on the Sunday. Our theme was Fantasy Land and Fairy Tales – ok, I know that your mind is conjuring up something more strange – Barb & I were dressed as Olive Oyl & Popeye. The skits and the jokes were fun and everyone had a great time.

March brought us a heavy heart with the passing of Dottie Huyler, a friend we have known at the plantation since we have been staying here. It was sudden and very sad and she was loved by many of us. Barb read the following poem at Dottie’s memorial.

We thought of you with love today

But that is nothing new

We thought about your yesterday

And days before that too.

We think of you in silence,

We often speak your name

All we have are memories

And your picture in a frame.

Your memory is our keepsake

With which we’ll never part.

God has you in His keeping,

We have you in our hearts

When March comes around, too often we start thinking of pointing the truck north for the trip back home. So you seem to want to plan more events, things that you wanted to do and of course places to eat that you didn’t get to earlier in the winter season. And of course, there are things that have to get done around the rig.

Here is a pictorial representation of some of the stuff we managed to enjoy in March.

1703015 Mar 10 Setting Up On The Beach1703024 Mar 10 Our Table At Flounders Restaurant1703062 Feb 17 Potheads1703079 Mar 22 ERPU Enjoy Get Together1703081 Mar 23 Terry Way Up High1703094 Mar 26 Barb Betty Mary Barb Ann At McSharrys1703206 Mar 31 Us On The Water Selfie1703214 Mar 31 The Gang At Big Daddys

1702138 Feb 23 A Great Egret Up Close1703203 Mar 31 Pelican At Take Off

So long for now and again, I will get this blog up to date…. until next time, we hope all is well where ever you are….

Some Say–Better Late….

I need to say sorry to my readers as I have not been very diligent writing my posts. The last post, I mentioned some of our activities like eating out and the ladies fabric shopping.

1702073 Feb 14 At Shrimp Basket With A GroupWe had a couple of February1702073 Feb 14 My Valentines Gift Lucky Me celebration meals, Valentines of course and a bunch of us went to the Shrimp Basket where it was all you can eat shrimp night. Well, not all of us eat shrimp so Bill and I did our best to eat what the others did not! I’m pretty sure the restaurant were happy to see us leave!


1702072 Feb 13 Anns 70th Birthday At JessesThe other celebration was Ann’s birthday. She does not like to celebrate it but we managed to wiggle ourselves into her birthday lunch but only if we didn’t sing or otherwise embarrass her in the restaurant and we didn’t. We went to Jesse’s in Magnolia Springs, always a great spot and it did not disappoint and we had a great time.


There are other thing we do too, we play card/board 1704023 Apr 01 The Mixed Group Tablegames on Friday and Saturday nights. It’s Fast Track on Friday nights between 6 of us and then at the club house on Saturday nights with as many that show up for Pegs and Jokers. Sometime we have 18 players and we break up into 6 per table. Did I mention we also go out to eat!



Another thing I neglected to mention was that my PC died and that kept me busy for a few days but it is a good thing I backed up recently so no ‘real’ damage done but still aggravating none the less. I’m sure you have had a similar experience, what do I buy now, there is so much hardware out there that it is a mind boggling exercise to make that decision. Since I don’t do a lot of ‘real’ processing of data, we decided that a 2in1 PC/Tablet may be the right decision and so far it has been.

On the last Monday of each month, a bunch of us go to a Mexican eatery that has a Mariachi band playing for the guests. They always stop at our table of 16-20 people and play a few songs. It’s always fun with good food and margaritas!

1702111 Feb 22 Carrabelle SignWe took a few days off from all the fun and excitem1702117 Feb 22 Sitting At Lydia Pauls Deckent here at the plantation and went over to Carrabelle Fl to visit with Lydia & Paul. We checked out the campground opportunities and decided that it would be more costly to drag the rig down there than taking a BnB for our stay. So we stayed at the Old Carrabelle Hotel, just 5 minutes from Lydia’s campground.

1702120 Feb 23 Old Carabelle Hotel Our BnB

Walks on the beach, games, touring 1702126 Feb 23 Lydia On The Beachand of course, eating out….. We had fun and it was great to see Lydia and Paul again. Our BnB was perfect for us. On our first evening, we tried the TV but only got a few channels and me being me, well, I screwed up the tuner and could only get a channel that looked like a heart monitor! The BnB owner was there the next day with a new TV and this time, Barb made sure I didn’t touch anything that can break!

1702148 Feb 24 Looking At The Counter AreaWe’ve always wanted to try out the Derailed Dinner truck stop on I10 so on the way home, we did. The food is good, the beer cold and the décor unique. The décor is centred around old cars and railway paraphernalia, interesting. Tractor seats along the lunch counter, a railway car as a dining room and other neat stuff.

We arrived back at the Plantation in time for our1702169 Feb 26 Barb And Terry At Clubhouse annual Mardis Gras celebrations so now is a good time to publish this post and hope you come back for another blurb soon – I will write another soon, honest!

Hope all is well where ever you are…..