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Summer Edging In

July 1, 2013

Sprinter note: tail light replacement was a breeze. I spent an hour or so on the web looking for instructions on how to replace the light… instructions were in the manual. I guess because this is a delivery van in normal use the damage happens often. Whole operation took about 10 minutes.

Florida by way of Cumberland Island and Okefenokee …

We drove to St. Mary’s the first day out. That’s the jumping off place for Cumberland. We actually stayed in an RV park very near the submarine base. Really nice place. Not too big, the usual semi-permanent guests and a few sites for guys like us. We are learning not to run into each other in the van and I have finally managed to cut the concussions to 2 per trip. I was as clear-headed as I ever am for most of the trip. Everything worked as advertised in the van.

We spent the first day out on Cumberland Island. It was really hot so we took our time walking, went in at the Dungeness dock, walked over to the beach via the boardwalks. Sun is relentless but we walked around the Dungeness grounds, sat in the shade, walked to a few places we never had before. Nice day. Few birds. Bad time of year I guess although we went to Cumberland the first time in June and there were birds everywhere. No bugs, that was good.

Next day to Okefenokee swamp. We took a guided tour. Total crew and passengers on board, 5. Three smoked, guess which 2 didn’t? God, I hate cigarettes. Nice boat trip though. The guide was a bit over the top but it made the trip more of an adventure, I guess. Actually we went up a river, turned into a “swamp prairie” and came back. To really see the swamp the Folkston entrance  is not the one to take. Seems like I went with the group before to a more southern entrance, closer to Billy’s Island.

On to Florida. I was looking forward to seeing my daughter and her family and I wasn’t disappointed. We had a great visit. They live in a really nice place, surrounded by green. My daughter had a nice meal for us after we arrived and we caught up over the next few hours with her and her family.

We went to Merritt Island next day. That’s a place that deserves attention. It’s laid out well and is very large. But, there again, not too many birds. We saw almost a complete heron/egret set including a Reddish egret dancing across the mud flats. Saw a Loggerhead shrike, Swallow-tailed kite, Ospreys… We saw about 5-6 Manatees at the north end of the area. Usual for the park.

I didn’t make many photographs. I’m getting tired of carrying the weight around for questionable results. I was seldom moved to get out the equipment by what I was seeing. No regret there, I’m just worried that the birds are in trouble. But then, I know they are. We did use the scope and I was glad we brought it.

Wound our way back home. Stopped for the night at another great RV park near Valdosta. I have to admit that the reservations about the quality of the parks I had at the beginning of “RVing” haven’t proved to be founded. We’ve stayed in about 10 now and there really wasn’t a dog in the bunch. The Valdosta park was clean, the facilities were nice and the whole operation was easy.

Got back into Atlanta, no mishaps and home was unmolested. Plants were healthy and the back yard was filled with the fragrance of Gardenias. All in all a good trip, relaxing, nothing spectacular. The goal was to have a good time with family and we did that.

Next out… hell, I don’t know.

Franca may add a bit later and a few photos. Ever onward.

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