Hey y’all! I decided I wanted to write a reflection of another year we’ve lived as we look to the future for a new year to come. Looking back, I’ve come to realize that every new year comes with its own ups and downs, struggles and triumphs, highs and lows. This year, 2021, has been no exception.
The biggest struggle of this year was social distancing. While it really didn’t faze my husband, daughter, or myself, other members of my family did somewhat struggle with it. Many of the decisions I had to make this year weren’t met with open minds, but nonetheless, I made my decisions and accepted that others would not agree. Life moves on.
My husband and I lost friends this year. A dear friend of ours crossed over into another world very unexpectedly and not a single day goes by when he doesn’t cross our minds lovingly. We miss him, but we must also remember that he is no longer suffering from the sickness that took over his body. I want to include that his health had nothing to do with Covid, but instead other underlying issues which persisted to worsen. His husband, of course, suffered the most from the loss. Unfortunately, as the year drew on, we also lost him as our friend. I can’t say what happened exactly to cause the change in our friendship because I don’t know. We were there for him as much as we could be. The only thing I can estimate is a misunderstanding that I couldn’t change because of other things I was dealing with.
The good things that occurred this year include becoming a published author in February with my book “Y’all Didn’t Hear it From Me: A Journal of Life Stories” which is available in both paperback and eBook through Amazon.com, buying a motorhome and exploring Florida as it was the only state on the East coast I had yet to venture, planning and accomplishing a birth week scavenger hunt for my husband’s 51st birthday (which he absolutely enjoyed), receiving Bindi Irwin’s book signed by Bindi herself for my own birthday as well as a signed postcard personalized with a birthday greeting from Robert Irwin, and completing two different photoshoots with my new Nikon camera. Now, these are just to name a few because honestly, I can’t recall every little thing.
Since we’ve been on the road exploring Florida, I wanted to also share some of the unique sites we’ve seen.
I would say we’re finishing off the year on a positive note as we make our way back into Georgia to set in what we’re calling ‘dry dock’ so we can work on a few things, improve, and set up for our next adventure. We have many plans for 2022 including our own YouTube channel, but more details to come later, after the new year starts. Until then, we wish y’all a safe and Happy New Year 2022!
Good afternoon y’all! As we have continued further into our traveling endeavors, we’ve certainly experienced many things. For instance, the town of Punta Gorda, Florida. The weather was nice and hot throughout the days and cooling at night. For the most part, Punta Gorda is a quiet town, but there really isn’t much to do. We watched airplanes of various sizes fly in and out, but that’s about it.
Through one Saturday there was apparently an ATV or motorbike race of some sort going on not far from where we were parked that made the area sound like Talladega in April. As the day drew on and the sun set, the noise grew louder to the point that when we went to bed, you would have thought they were racing the roads outside our camper. The noise wasn’t bad, but our cats were acting crazier than they normally do. They were acting out so badly, they were being absolutely annoying. The youngest one exclusively. I don’t know what her issue was. Between using the kitty box, running rampant throughout the camper, and bathing herself rather loudly, it was like she was thinking, ‘How can I annoy the humans to the absolute max?’ Being the youngest, she still wears a bell on her collar because it’s easier to keep tabs on her at any given time. Unfortunately, she loves sleeping on my pillow at night, so when she gets an itch she must scratch, and it’s like an alarm going off sporadically throughout the remainder of the night.
Parking in the back lot, dirt lot of a Pilot truck stop, we met a homeless musician living out of his SUV, waiting for his next gig. He seemed like a decent guy; he simply experienced a rough turn of events when a previous gig fell through which caused him to lose his place when he couldn’t pay his rent.
While parked, we got to watch a few truck drivers practice their parking. The main driver seemed to have an African or possibly Jamaican dialect. He was the one giving instruction, so for several hours, in the basking heat of the afternoon, we watched each of them take their turns pulling up and backing into a course of traffic cones set up by the main guy giving all the instructions.
Later into that day, we watched another guy, driving a white SUV, turn off the main road into the dirt lot, only to do a single doughnut burnout which of course stirred up a massive cloud of dirt, and then drive off. What his purpose was for doing that, we don’t know, but I will say we were not impressed. Sure, a doughnut well done, buy why? As soon as he did this, we jumped to close our camper windows, or the dirt cloud would have completely permeated the entire camper.
After the sun went down for the night, we were relaxing, watching some television when we heard what sounded like a vehicle dragging something heavy down the main road. Then we literally heard that heavy something detach itself from said vehicle. Afterwards, within 30 minutes of hearing the obvious scrapping thunk, we heard at least three other vehicles hit that heavy something. Not good. We didn’t like the sound of it as it sounded dangerous, so hubby and I went to check it out. Turns out the driver lost their bumper. Walking in the dark with my phone in hand for the flashlight, we found a twisted, mangled heap of a bumper that could have very easily caused serious damage to any vehicle unable to avoid it. I moved this mangled bumper into a ditch off the road so others wouldn’t accidently hit it. I don’t even want to imagine the damage it would have caused otherwise. While we don’t know what kind of vehicle dropped the bumper, we’re estimating it wasn’t in good condition to begin with.
During our last couple days in Punta Gorda, we met a couple of people performing a search and rescue for a lost cellphone. What happened was the lady who lost her cellphone had accidently left it on the roof of her car while she was driving. She was making a turn off one road onto another, unfortunately causing the cellphone to slide off into the middle of the opposing lane. More unfortunate is she had the type of cellphone which has a compartment on the back where she kept her credit cards, bank card, and her driver’s license. These items were later recovered by a passerby walking her dog and discovered the cards laying in the grass. With the help of Facebook, she was able to return them to their owner. The cellphone on the other hand wasn’t recovered; not until much later. We were all estimating that another passerby found the cellphone, tossed the cards aside and went about their own way. Thankfully, this was not the case. It was the next day, as we were leaving out, stopping in at the Walmart located just across the street from the Pilot truck stop, the guy we had met and tried to help in finding the lost cellphone, recognized our camper and stopped to give us the update. Thankfully, the cellphone was also recovered after unfortunately being run over and therefore cracked and broken by another vehicle, which is why the cards were found strewn about as they were in the grass and turned in at the local Wawa. Though the phone was now broken, we were glad to hear it was recovered and returned as the owner was more upset, not about the loss of her phone, but about the photos she had in her phone. Luckily, she should be able to take her broken cellphone to her service provider and the representative should be able to recover all her photos. A happier ending than what could have been.
So, that’s Punta Gorda, Florida. I’m sure there is way more to the town than we witnessed and experienced, but when funds are limited, you make your own of it. We’re still thankful for all that we were able to experience. Helping others is what we enjoy doing and we did that as much as we could.
Until next time, thank you y’all for reading and thank you even more for following my blog. In the meantime, we’re moving on, on down the road, and into the next town of our choice… Fort Myers, Florida!