Sunday, January 20, 2013

Fort Myers Area in Florida

Fri, Jan. 4th - Fri, Jan. 11th

This memorial in downtown Fort Myers honors their most famous resident, Thomas Edison, and his buddies, Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone, also winter residents of Fort Myers.  They loved the outdoors and went on many camping trips together.  They started out as fairly simple trips, with just a couple servants to set up tents and cook meals for them.  But by the end of ten years or so, when they finally quit going, the trips had morphed into expeditions with their families, the press, seven vehicles hauling such things as refrigerators and a piano and quite a few servants.  President Harding was a guest on one of their last trips.  Not exactly what you call roughing it anymore.  It rained a lot on their very first trip and Edison's son wrote this poem "Consumption, pneumonia and grippe, Will be the result of this trip.  We'll all die together, From the inclement weather. On the doormat of heaven we'll drip."  Ohhh!   Don't you feel sorry for them now?
This memorial downtown was to honor all paratroopers and glidermen, but was put up especially to honor a 79 year old man who went to Russia in 1995, to make a parachute jump commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Normandy Landing.  He was one of the original guys and died making the anniversary jump.   What a way to go!

This is a view back at Fort Myers downtown and waterfront, as we were leaving.  Fort Harvie was built here in 1850 as the southernmost outpost of the government effort to remove all the Seminoles to the Indian Territory in Oklahoma.  It was deactivated in 1858 and reoccupied during the Civil War by the Union to raid cattle ranches.  It was attacked by the Confederates one afternoon. They retreated a few hours later, the only battle of the Civil War fought in the Florida peninsula.  General Twiggs renamed it for his daughter's fiance, Col. Myers, who had also been his quartermaster in Texas, a graduate of West Point and fought in the Mexican War.  It was torn down after the war.

We drove to Pine Island to do a little sightseeing.  This Pelican on the pier at Bokeelia Bay had just caught a fish.  You can see the bulge in it's bill near his neck, where the fish is caught.

There were quite a few of these brown pelicans here.  You know what they say about a pelican---his bill can hold as much as his belly can!  I think that's something I read in one of my grandkids' books.

We had lunch at Capt. Con's Fish House and this was our view of Bokeelia Bay on the north end of Pine Island.  Ponce de Leon was with Columbus on his second expedition in 1493 and led his own expedition back here in 1513.  He had three meetings with the Calusas and the first white man killed by Indians in America was on Pine Island.  He returned with settlers in 1521 and was mortally wounded by the Calusas, but it was the first colony and the beginning of colonization in America.

There are lots of ways to make a living, but this is one I'd never thought of.  A lady was sitting outside the restaurant, enjoying the beautiful view and painting Coconut Fish.  Talk about a stress-free job.  They were quite pretty and would probably have looked nice hanging from our RV awning, but we passed.

Aahh.... Home Sweet Home away from home.  At least, I assume this was for rent, as it had a great big banner with a phone number hanging on it. 

Just two miles down the bike path from our campground was beautiful San Carlos Beach and Bunche Beach Preserve.  Beautiful, clear, warm water and very shallow with lots of sandbars.  Great for wading and bird watching, or just parking your beach chair out on a sandbar for a little sun.  There were people way out, maybe a half mile or so, fishing in hip waders.

It was really beautiful here.  I would come back here anytime.  And there weren't very many peope here, maybe thirty on the whole beach, which was probably over a mile long.

Monday we went on a tour of the Koreshan State Historic Site.  The Koreshan Unity Settlement in Estero, Florida was a continuation of a movement started in Moravia, NY. in 1880 by Dr. Cyrus R. Teed.  He and his 200 followers moved to the Florida frontier in 1894 and took the name "Koresh", the Hebrew translation for Cyrus, meaning shepherd.   A major tenet of the Koreshan beliefs was the theory of "cellular cosmogony", that the entire universe existed within a giant, hollow sphere.  He claimed to have had an epiphany and discovered this in 1870.  He claimed that God would not have created an infinite universe, because the idea of infinity is beyond the reach of human understanding.  The earth's shell was supposedly 100 miles thick and made up of 17 layers.

They even conducted experiments with this rectilineator that seemed to confirm their beliefs.  Many sections like this were lined up along Naples Beach over a period of months.  They leapfrogged the sections down the beach leveling, measuring and calculating, supposedly proving the land rose up to meet the horizon and that we are living on the inside of a sphere, rather than the outside.  Everyone who joined had to donate their worldly goods to the commune and everyone was required to live a celibate life.  This was especially interesting, since he had grand visions of creating a Utopian community of ten million.  They generated electricity for themselves and the community of Estero from 1916 to 1946, when Florida Power and Light took over Estero.  Now DeSoto Next Generation Solar Energy Center in Arcadia owned by Florida Power and Light has over 90,000 solar panels and is the country's largest photovoltaic solar plant and FPL has one of the lowest emissions profiles of U.S. uitilities companies.

It sounded like a little Koreshanity to me.  In 1961 the remaining five survivors donated the 200 acres and buildings to the state for a park.  One of the last members was asked if she still believed in his theory.  She said she believed until the moon landing.  I thought that was interesting, because I just talked to an elderly gentleman in the hot tub the other night, who still doesn't believe the moon landing actually happened.

"Where's the alligators?  I don't see any darn alligators!"  There is also a state park campground here and we hiked the nature trail through the giant green bamboo along the Estero River, one of several small tidal rivers that drain into the Gulf. .

Down the road a ways, we made a quick stop at Naples Beach, to get a look at where they conducted the rectilineator experiment.  It seems like people are making better use of the beach these days. Did you know that it was not until the 1930s that a man could go topless on a public beach.  In 1900 they began wearing more revealing swimsuits to show off their muscular bodies, sleeveless, that is.

Further down the road, we cruised around Marco Island looking at the beautiful homes and landscaping.  We stopped at the pier and watched this guy launch his boat.  The boat's name was "Miss Goody Two Screws".  It had two 250 HP motors!  

On Tuesday we hopped on our bikes and took the bike path past Punta Rassa and over the Sanibel Causeway to Sanibel Island and Captiva Island, with San Carlos Bay to our right and the Gulf of Mexico to our left.  The American Sandsculpting Championship Festival is held somewhere in the Fort Myers/Sanibel area.  Sanibel Beach is supposed to be the best in Florida for shells.  Boaters can cross Florida from Fort Myers to Stuart via the Caloosahatchee River, Okeechobee waterway and St. Lucie Canal.  The path is 135 miles long and includes locks and dams.


There are several lovely little roadside parks along the causeway, so we stopped here for a bit to relax.  Our plan was to make it all the way to the far end of Captiva Island for lunch at the Mucky Duck, but it turned out to be a little further than we had anticipated.  We decided we better  turn around, if we wanted to make it home before dark.

We biked through the J.N. "Ding" Darling Wildlife Refuge. Darling was a renowned editorial cartoonist, headed FDR's Biological Survey and instituted the Federal Duck Stamp Program.  We stopped at the Island Cow on Sanibel Island for a late afternoon lunch and headed back down the bike path toward home.

One last stop at one of the roadside parks on the causeway.  It's like a postcard.  All I can say is, "Wish you were here.... but glad I'm not there!".   After over 40 miles on our bikes, we finally made it back to our campground before dark.  Aside from tired bums, a really great day!

On Wednesday we went back to downtown Fort Myers to tour the Edison Ford Winter Estates.  The 20 acres of tropical gardens is one of the most popular tourist attractions in this area.  John's having a rest under a Mysore Fig Tree, while he patiently waits for his wife's camera to run out of film.  Unfortunately for him, that just never happens anymore.  Wouldn't Edison be amazed at the advances in technology?  In the background is Henry Ford's 1910 winter home, that he bought (in 1916 for $20,000)  because it was right next door to his good friend and mentor, Thomas Edison, and he would be able to spend more time with him.  Ford went to Detroit when he was 16 to become a machinist's apprentice.  He was an engineer at the Edison Illuminating Company when he first met Edison.  He told him about the gasoline automobile he was working on and Edison encouraged him.  They later became good friends and Ford was invited to visit Edison's winter home in Fort Myers.  When he bought the home next door in 1916, he gave Edison a 4 cylinder 20 HP Model T ($482.75) that is now in the museum, kept in running condition.  It's nickname was the "family horse" and they took it on many of their camping and exploring trips.  In 1993 Time magazine cited the "mass-produced Model T as one of the centuries greatest technological breakthroughs."  In 1940 Ford designed a V-8 engine surpassing Chevy's 6 cylinder.  He camouflaged it in the body of a Model A for road testing in Fort Myers.

This allee' of Royal Palms leads from the house down to the beach.  You can see the same fig tree in the distance.   Edison had Royal Palms brought from Cuba in 1897 and planted a mile and a half of them along both sides of the the road that went by his home.  It wasn't much more than a sandy trail then with about 350 people in town, but now there are over seven miles of the Royal Palms lining the main road into Fort Myers (and lots of beautiful mansions) earning it the name City of Palms.  It was paved with crushed sea shells in 1900.  
This is a view of the dining room and living room.  A unique feature on the far wall in the living room is the double mantle over the fireplace.  A favorite pastime of Henry Ford's was square dancing in this living room, with the furniture pushed out of the way.  Ford came for the last time in 1934, a few years after Edison died, and sold his estate to the Biggars for $20,000 in 1945.   He said he wasn't interested in making money on the deal.  I assume they were probably friends.  They sold it to the city in 1988 for $1.2 million.  The Grandmother clock from the house is in the museum, stopped at the time of Ford's death, an Irish tradition.  
Heading across the yard to the Edison winter estate, "Seminole Lodge", there are two identical homes.  Edison designed them for himself and his best friend and business partner, Ezra Gilliland.  Unfortunately, after a time, Edison discovered that Ezra had been skimming a little off the top for himself.  He never confronted him, but shut off his electricity.  That was no problem.  Most folks at that time had no electricity.  Then he shut off his access to the water supply.  He found a way to deal with that, too.  But the last straw was when he closed his access to the pier which was on Edison's property.  There were no roads to speak of at the time and no railroads.  Transportation by river was pretty much the only option.  So Ezra was forced to sell his place and move.
In 1906 Edison bought the place back and made it into a guest house, where Ford was a frequent guest until he bought his place next door.  He eventually converted his dining room into a library and the kitchen into a bedroom suite for his wife and himself.  They just dined in the guest house.   The porches faced each other and he built a pergola (walkway) between them to connect them.  They are beautiful, huge, three-sided 
porches, with views of the Caloosahatchee River, the palm-lined street and the beautifully landscaped grounds.  There are two rows of mango trees next to the street the entire length of Edison's and Ford's properties with orchids from all around the world growing on them.  Orchids are an air plant and do not require soil.  It is called "orchid lane".   The Ford place was called "The Mangoes" because of this lane of trees.  There were also grapefruit, oranges, paw paws, lemons, limes, bananas, coconut, guava and hundreds of other exotic plants and flowers.  It was a challenging trip to get here in the early days and guests stayed for many weeks or even months, which is probably what prompted daughter, Madeleine, to write these "Rules for Guests at Seminole Lodge".  Don't cabbage unto yourself all the fishpoles.  This has been done by guests, thereby incurring the grave disapproval of the entire family.  Don't kill the black snakes under the porch. They are there for a purpose.  If you don't think Seminole Lodge is the loveliest spot you ever wore rubbers in --- don't let on to Father.  Don't fail to retire to your room during part of each day --- so that the family may squabble without embarrassment.  Don't stop Madeleine if you see her start off violently alone.  She's only trying to work out her disposition.  Don't capsize in the sailboat if you can help it.  Remember there isn't any man to rescue you in 750 miles.  And besides there are sharks. Don't ask us anything about Palm Beach.  We don't want to know.

Edison first came to Fort Myers in 1885 and was so excited by the source of giant green bamboo growing here, because it's fibers made great filaments for his new invention, the incandescent lamp. He bought 14 acres for $2,750 from Jacob Summerlin, one of the richest Cattle Kings.  Everyone thought he was crazy to pay such a price for that worthless scrub land.  Summerlin had taken over Fort Dulaney at Punta Rassa at the mouth of the Caloosahatchee after the Civil War and was shipping his cattle from there.  The government soon took it back as headquarters for an underwater telegraph cable to Cuba and it remained the southern most terminus of the U.S. telegraph line until 1906 when it burned down.  Summerlin built a new harbor and home nearby to ship his cattle and charged others for shipping their cattle and for room and board in his home.  Over 18,000 cattle were shipped from here in 1871.  Cattle were a common sight on the streets of Fort Myers until the fence law was passed in 1950.  Telegraph messages from Cuba to Washington, D.C. went through Punta Rassa.  The 1898 message of the sinking of the USS Maine that started the Spanish American War went through here.

Edison's wife, Mina, deeded the estate to the city in 1947.  All the original furnishings were left in the houses.  This is the dining room in the guest house.  Notice the dinner chimes at the lower left corner of the table.  In the parlor is a George Steck grand piano and just to the left of the doorway, you can see a little bit of a gramophone, Edison's personal favorite of all his inventions.   There are 15 electroliers throughout the two houses, lighting fixtures he designed and manufactured in the 1880s to accommodate his newest invention.

This was originally the dining room in their home that was remodeled to be a library.  You can see another gramophone here. Edison read many thousands of books on widely varied topics.  He had a job on a train as a kid and would go to the city library while the train was in the station and check out books and supposedly read every book in the library.  He started school at age 8 and had trouble paying attention.  He only went three months.  His mother took him out and schooled him at home in the three Rs and he took it from there.  He started a lab in their basement when he was 9 taking apart things and mixing chemicals and such, just to see how they worked and why.

This is just a little bougainvillea bush near the entrance to the estate and a walkway down to a big fountain plaza.

Looking from the estate entrance across the street to Edison's laboratory.  Another row of beautiful bougainvillea over there. Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone helped finance the Edison Botanic Research Corporation in 1927, so Edison could run experiments searching for an economical source of natural rubber. They had all become concerned about our country's dependence on foreign countries for something that was so important to the military and their own particular industries.  Most of the rubber plantations were in the Far East, places like Singapore, Sumatra, Java and Malaya.  Edison was 80 years old at the time and would spend the last four years of his life on this project.  His lab had a plant grinding room, chemical processing area, distillation apparatus, machine shop and dark room for photographing the plants.  He employed a research superintendent, linguist, machinist, chemist, secretary, glass blower, patent person and plant collectors.  He kept meticulous records and they are currently going through the over 5 million documents that he left.  He contributed to the Plant Patent Act of 1930, which allows scientists to patent hybrids they create.  When the project was dissolved in 1936, Ford moved 10,000 hybrid goldenrod plants from Fort Myers to Savannah, Georgia to begin new test beds at the Department of Agriculture there.  In 1913 Edison was quoted in Scientific American saying, "The question of the possible exhaustion of the world's oil supply deserves the gravest consideration. There is every indication that we are face to face with this possibility."  In 1931 not long before he died, he told his friends Ford and Firestone, "I'd put my money on the sun and solar energy.  What a source of power!  I hope we don't have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that."  An interesting factoid I saw somewhere in the museum, "The sun gives off more energy in one second than people have used since the beginning of time."  Makes one wonder why we use any other source for any of our power needs.

Swimming pool, bath house and teahouse, a shady room near the pool that was popular in California.  Some famous names in their guest book were Charles Lindbergh, Herbert Hoover, Forbes, Colgate and Kellogg.

A view of where the original 1,500 foot pier was.  It had a summer house, boathouse and benches at the end for family and guests to enjoy some of the finest tarpon fishing in the world.  Edison's son once caught a 130 pounder.  He had an electric launchboat named Reliance.

As usual, John is relaxing and enjoying the view, while I'm turning every which way, trying to decide which view to photograph next.

This is a Lofty Fig tree, one of thirteen different varieties of the ficus family on the estate.  They are all good sources of latex for rubber, but take too long to grow and are not that convenient to process.  Edison had lots of employees in his lab from many fields of expertise.  They had many acres of gardens growing all kinds of plants.  They tested over 17,000 different plants for latex content, a sticky white substance, that was used in making rubber.  Goldenrod was found to be the best, fast-growing, economical source of latex.  A hybrid grew 12 to 14 feet tall and 100 pounds of leaves produced 12 pounds of rubber.

This is a statue of Edison in front of an India Banyan Tree (one of over 800 species in the genus ficus) next to his lab.  The tree was a gift from Harvey Firestone in 1925 and was 4 feet tall and 2 inches in diameter.  It now is an acre in diameter with some 390 roots and only 84 feet tall.  It  is the largest of it's type in the continental U.S. and is also known as the "walking tree".

This is a view of the same tree from the other side.  The branches send out little hair-like roots.  When they reach the ground they take root and in just a couple years they are big trunks that support the ever-expanding branches.  Many huge limbs have been trimmed off this tree, to keep it from taking over the parking lot, lab, museum and gift shop.  Firestone established a rubber plantation in Liberia that by 1964 had a quarter million acres of rubber trees.  Ford established one in Brazil and sold it to the Brazilian government after it reached a successful yield.  Hevea, a native plant of South America (a Brazilian rubber tree) is now grown in Africa and the Far East and has replaced all other sources of cultivated rubber.  The latex is harvested very much like maple syrup is tapped from the maple tree.

There are little salamanders of all kinds running around down here. The Edison children had a menagerie of pets that included peacocks, parrots, alligators, monkeys, raccoons, chickens, black snakes, bee hives, a cow and calf, dog, pelican, pigeon and gopher. Their six year old son once brought five baby alligators back to New Jersey and lost control of them while showing them off to the ladies at one of his mother's tea parties.  Reminded me of a favorite movie we used to love to watch with our kids, "The Happiest Millionaire" starring Fred McMurray.

I thought this little hydroponic garden they made out of PVC pipe was kind of cool.  They were just growing a bunch of different variety lettuces.  It would be kind of cool to step out to your back patio and pick a fresh salad whenever you were in the mood.  They just recirculated the water through it with a worm tea, made from worm castings.

In the museum is a case full of all Edison's different light bulb inventions.  To the right is a 50,000 watt bulb and a 75,000 watt bulb (2.4 million lumens =  2,874 - 60 watt bulbs) made for the 50th and 75th anniversaries of his invention.  One of Edison's employees was the first to put electric lights on a Christmas tree.  In the 1890s G.E. bought out Edison's interest in light bulbs and began to promote tree lights.  In order to light a tree, a "wireman", or electrician, had to come to the home to hook up the tree lights to an existing light fixture. Everyone remembers him for the lightbulb in 1879, but he actually had 1,093 patents for things he invented. He once owned an iron ore business for which he invented a magnetic ore separator.  He bought 19,000 acres on Sparta Mountain in New Jersey and designed and built equipment from the 1880s to 1890s that would literally chew up mountainsides.  He contributed capital, ideas, motivation, was architect, engineer and draftsman for equipment such as well drills, giant cranes, steam shovels, special railway cars and giant rock crushers.  He built a village named Edison surrounding the plant with 50 houses for skilled mechanics and other personnel with running water and electricity, while neighboring villages were still burning kerosene and candles.  His first patent at age 22 was an electric vote counter, which was a big failure because the politicians didn't want their vote counting sped up.  It would prevent them from filibustering and delaying votes.  Well, duh!  Some things never change.  His second patent was the printing telegraph or stock ticker in 1871.  He was going to ask the Telegraph Company for $3,000 for his patent and they offered him $40,000.  He developed and improved the telegraph system, improved the Bell telephone, the Remington typewriter and many others, making them more commercially viable.  Bell, Gray and Edison had all been working on the telephone, but Bell got the first patent in 1876.  Western Union asked Edison to experiment with it to see if he could make it more commercially practical.  When they met to purchase his patents, he was going to ask for $5,000, but they offered him $100,000.  In 1916 he invented the telegraph vibroplex key to releive "telegrapher's paralysis" (carpal tunnel?).  His discovery of electrons as a fact of nature not explainable or classified according to existing scientific theory, while searching for a way to extend the life of the light bulb, is called the "Edison Effect".  By 1890 he organized his various businesses into Edison General Electric Company which eventually became G.E.

In 1898 he founded a cement company with leftover materials from his iron ore business.  By 1909 he had 43 patents related to cement production and uses.  He was sending 80,000 bags a day by conveyors to freight cars, 100 cars per day.  He owned the Portland Cement Company (named after an English bricklayer from the Isle of Portland from whose ideas he had developed his product) from 1901 to 1941.  He had a patent in 1917 for a method to mass-produce prefabricated, seamless concrete houses, with the goal of providing housing for the masses.  In 1917 he purchased a wood products company to produce cabinets for his new invention, the phonograph.  Later he decided to produce infant furniture and became one of the leading manufacturers of nursery and juvenile furniture in the U.S. "Edison Little Folks Furniture".  He called his most humane invention the electric cap lamp to replace the open flame oil lamps that often caused mine explosions killing many miners.  He worked on many war concerns, reporting to the Secretary of Navy.  Some of these projects included detecting submarines by sound, obstructing torpedoes with nets, underwater search lights, extinguishing fires in coal bunkers, telephone systems on ships, and preserving submarine and other guns from rust.  He invented an alkaline battery that would last four years and was used in railroad signal systems, miner's hats, Navy floating cranes and powering gun turrets.  It was the most successful product he ever marketed.  He used the ash waste, I think from his iron ore factory, to invent charcoal with his friend, Kingsford.  He once rigged a 3 million candlepower searchlight with batteries at Glenmont, his home in New Jersey.  People were terrified. Police switchboards were swamped.  They thought we were being attacked by rays from outer space. He believed in electric-based systems for their dependability and economy, however, his electric vehicles were eclipsed by gasoline engines thanks in part to his friend, Henry Ford.    

One of his early phonographs that they actually played for us.  The little blue cylinder in the center is the actual recording.  It is about the size of a toilet paper roll with a tinfoil-like coating that the recording is scratched into.  The first words ever recorded by a human voice were, "Mary had a little lamb" by Edison in 1878. There is no volume control.  If it was too loud, the front panel just lifts out, and they would roll up something like a sock and stuff it in front of the source of the sound to muffle it.  Thus the saying, "Put a sock in it."  The phonograph was his favorite invention.  He hoped to bring music and oratory to all homes to fight the solitude of long, isolated winter evenings. He felt if he accomplished that, his life's work would be well repaid.   Edison was almost totally deaf, so he would bite into the side of the phonograph when working on it to feel the vibrations of the sound.  In 1893 he invented the Kinetoscope, precursor of movies. In 1892 he built a special motion picture studio 48' x 12'.  The roof could be opened and closed and the entire structure turned on it's axis to receive direct sunlight for filming any time of the day.  By 1893 he had filmed his first commercial motion picture 20 seconds long.  200 to 300 films were made here.  In 1907 he built a studio in The Bronx. He created over 4,000 films and became the first honorary member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 1929.  His lab at Menlo Park in New Jersey, built in 1879, was the first commercial research and development lab in the world.  With a loyal and tireless group of co-workers, aided by machinists, chemists, glass blowers, mathematicians and men who had a knack for putting things together, it became an "invention factory", home to the most extraordinary inventive effort ever seen.  The Wizard of Menlo Park was Time magazine's "Man of the Millenium". His goal was to transform middle class life.  

On Thursday we went to the Southwest Florida Museum of History in downtown Fort Myers.  Before there were electric lights on boats, the ship's compass was housed within a "binnacle".  Two kerosene lamps lit the compass, so even those on night watch could check the compass readings. There was a fishing boat and net display with a little story about a local man who acted as fishing guide for Zane Grey when he visited.

They had a small art gallery of paintings by Latin American artists.  This one is called "Marsh Spirits".  Kind of interesting and eerie, just like the swamps and bayous make you feel sometimes.

This one was just titled "I'm Hungry".   So sad.  Just touches your heart and makes you want to reach out and help in some way.  

And believe it or not, this one made me laugh, because John said,  "That's you every morning when you wake up and realize you have to face another day of living with me."  I guess I will just take it as a compliment that he thinks this painting looks like me.  He must need glasses, but I'm sure not going to tell him.

This is one of the private Pullman train cars owned by one of the many rich entrepreneurs down here in the early 1900s.  It is 84 feet long, 15 feet longer than the one Pullman himself owned.  It had a kitchen, servants quarters, three staterooms with bathrooms, a dining room and a lounge/observation room at the rear.  The cost of owning one was about $80,000 per year.  There was a fire engine display in the museum and a little trivia about dalmatians.  They date back to the Egyptian days and in the 1700s the English used teams of them to run with the horses pulling coaches, to guide the horses and protect them from stray dogs.  Ben Franklin brought them to this country and they were used by stage coach drivers, also sleeping in the stable to guard against theft.  They were used on early horse-drawn fire wagons and slept in the firehouse to guard the wagons and horses.  Nowadays they are more symbolic and used for teaching safety.  They are still called English coach dogs in Great Britain.  When we left here, we drove out to the end of Captiva Island to once again try eating at the famous Mucky Duck we had heard so much about.  But it was not to be.  They close from 3pm to 5pm and it was just after 3:00 and we had missed lunch.  So we headed back to Sanibel Island for lunch at Doc Ford's Rum Bar and Grill, which I had read about in a gift shop where they had many of his books for sale.  I'd never heard of him, but was told his mystery novels which take place in the local area here are pretty good.  I don't know about that, but his famous fish sandwich and the Sanibel Sunset cocktail were both excellent.  I highly recommend this place.

Back at our campground, we went for one last bike ride down to San Carlos Beach to watch the sunset, before we move on tomorrow to the Palm Beach area on the other side of the state, where we will stay at John Prince Park in Lake Worth for a month and my Mom will join us for the month of February.

Over and Out,

No comments:

Post a Comment