Cruisin’ X

We’re “cruisin'” Florida again.  So, we decided to pick up a local tour guide – Roooggggg!  Old family friend from D.C. daze, Rog Tweed, recently retired from a distinguished career as a federal government bureaucrat, purchased a condo in Ft. Myers last year for use as an occasional respite from brutal D.C. winters.  Rog hosted brother Cam down there a month ago and graciously returned to join the fun and frivolity with The Biddies.  Our first morning, we picked up Rog for a day trip to Sanibel Island and Captiva – Rog recommended a first stop at the “Ding” Darling nature preserve.  [Regarding the photo on the left:  Our Minnesota Twins have left local fandom wondering – just when is it that the Lynx season begins again?]

[Darling was a cartoonist/columnist/environmentalist who became head of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  We live on his lake!  😉  ]

[Gopher turtle – appropriate since they’re gold!]

[Amazing story.]

[Going through the Darling preserve – looking for gators and wading birds.]

[Tide markers – wading birds are most likely to be seen on low tide.]

[Sand bars are visible at low tide – likely to see birds.]

[Bird watchers and photographers were all along the route.]

[Rog and Rita emerge – cameras in hand.]

[Canal to the Gulf.]

[Fish!]

[Young mangrove trees – their seed pods (like a large green bean) float around until their GPS system says this is a good spot, then they tip and take root.]

[Egrets]

[. . . lots of ’em.]

[The supervisor climbs the observation tower.]

[Supervisor to kid, “Shhhhhh!”]

[The observation tower.]

[Rog knew these black birds – I don’t recall.]

[Our last stop at “Ding” Darling.]

[Let’s go, Reets!]

[A random shot of an estate on Captiva, the last of the connected island chains after Sanibel.]

[Tour guide Rog suggested we dine at the Bubble Room.  Captiva has limited parking and pull off spots, so most of our photos there were in this restaurant.  Ha!  We went to see the beach at the end of the island, but the line of cars just waiting for a spot to open in the beach’s parking lot was daunting.]

[On the restaurant wall . . .]

[So, Rita and I went on a photographic expedition within the restaurant.]

[Boop-Boop-A-Doop!]

[Men’s room wall.  The ladies reported beefcake on the Betty Boop room walls but were too shy to obtain photographic evidence.]

[More photos inside a restaurant than outside?  Weird.]

[Uffda.  Can’t remember if a Captiva beach, or if we’re back on Sanibel Island?]

[Rog pays for beach parking lot time on Sanibel Island.]

[Bird]

[Sanibel Island beach – all reportedly the best shell-searching beaches in the country.]

[Here shell, here shell!]

[Another bird]

[That same “another bird.”]

[By concentrating on shelling, the supervisor almost ran into “another bird,” much to the surprise of both of them!  🙂  ]

[Adios, “another bird.”]

[Heading back to our entry point.]

[Rita photo.]

[Rita photo.]

[On the way back to the mainland.]

[A personal sunblock installer – what a concept!  🙂  ]

[Just like home!]

[When you’re “of age,” two things are crucial when you’re on the road – availability of restrooms and . . . availability of orange ice cream dispensers.  Rog was delighted we found this place for him in his neighborhood!  😉  ]

Tomorrow, Naples and Marco Island.

About tomobert63

The Journey Begins Thanks for joining me! This is the follow-up to the original, “alexandriacardinals.wordpress.com,” which overwhelmed the system’s ability to handle it any more. Thus, this is “Part 2.” As the original was initially described: 10-26-07-4 “It all began in a 5,000 watt radio station in Fresno, California” . . . wait a minute, that was Ted Baxter on the Mary Tyler Moore Show! Let’s see . . . oh yeah, it all began in 2003 when retirees, i.e., old people, in Alexandria, Minnesota, who had no desire to become snow birds, went looking for mid-winter entertainment here in the frozen tundra of West Central Minnesota. We discovered girls’ high school hockey, fell in love immediately, and it remains our favorite spectator sport to this day. Initially, and for several years, reports on these games were e-mailed to those who were actually snowbirds but wanted to keep abreast of things “back home.” It was ultimately decided a blog would be more efficient, and it evolved into a personal diary of many things that attracts tens of readers on occasion. It remains a source of personal mental therapy and has yet to elicit any lawsuits. ~ The Editor, May 9, 2014 p.s. The photo border around the blog is the Cardinal girls’ hockey team after just beating Breck for the state championship in 2008. It’s of the all-tournament team. The visible Breck player on the left is Milica McMillen, then an 8th-grader – she is now an All-American for the Gophers. The Roseau player in the stocking cap I believe is Mary Loken, who went on to play for UND; and the Cardinal player on the right, No. 3, is Abby Williams, the player we blame most for making us girls’ hockey fans who went on to play for Bemidji State. *********************************************************************************** Photos contained herein are available for personal use. All you have to do is double click on any of the photos and they will become full screen size. You can then save them into your personal “My Pictures” file. They make lovely parting or hostess gifts, or holiday gifts for such as Uncle Ernie who wants to see how his grand niece is doing on the hockey team. If any are sold for personal profit, however, to, for example, the Audubon Society, National Geographic, Sven’s Home Workshop Monthly, Curling By The Numbers, or the World Wrestling Federation, I only request that you make a donation to the charitable organization of your choice. You have two hours and fifteen minutes. Pencils ready? Begin! **********************************************************************************
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