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March 2008
March 1 - 2, 2008
Saturday, March 1. We had both hoped to get a lot of stuff done today (like get organized for the trip, do some cleaning & laundry, finish the income taxes, etc.), but it didn't seem to work out that way. I headed out to go to garage sales and get groceries at about 8:15 and got home around noon. Jerry and Edna stopped by just when I got home, so we sat and visited for a while and decided we would cook dinner on the grill at our house this evening.

I sat at the pool for a while in the afternoon while Mike finished a couple of fix ups that he had to take care of. I thought he would join me but he ended up relaxing on the bed with Frisco and a good book. When I got home from the pool, I cleaned the coffee pot and putzed around a bit. Then our guests arrived.

Oh well, it was an enjoyable day with beautiful weather. Now we have to catch up over the next week.

March 3 - 9, 2008
Monday, March 3. It's back at the grind and we have to work 5 days this week, then will have Saturday off before leaving for Mexico on Sunday morning. Can't wait and neither can the kids - all are getting excited and talking on the phone about last minute preparations.

The workday was very busy today. The weather started out very nice, it was 74 degrees by about 10:30 and then a front came in from the south and the temps dropped 20 degrees in a very short time. The wind howled throughout the rest of the day and rocked the motor home until about 12:30 am. I just happened to wake up and couldn't go back to sleep, so I heard it when it died back down. I was right back awake at 5:00, an hour before the alarm goes off. Excitement, maybe?

Thursday, March 6. It's 6:30 am and I'm relaxing for a while before getting ready to go off to work again. The days have been busy, so the time is flying by quickly. The weather has been beautiful, but it doesn't look so good for today as storms and possible hail are predicted.

Last night, we went to potluck and had another delicious meal and great company at our table. After dinner, we stopped and talked with Jeri and Bob to give them an update on Sammy, as we were dog sitting for a couple of days (always fun, as he and Frisco really like each other). We then went to talk to Jim and Lee, a couple from northwestern Indiana that have a really cool 1992 Country Coach motor home. Even though it is 15+ years old, it is beautiful; tile floors, nice wood cabinets, roomy even though it has no slide, and lots of storage. Mike likes their rig so wanted me to see it. Guess how we have been spending time on the computer lately?

It seems like we are becoming more and more influenced by our surroundings. We travel to an area of the country, and if we like it we look at possibilities for living there. We look at RVs and consider a change. We bounce ideas back and forth, but then decide to settle for what we've got and where we are. In many ways, it's nice to change direction whenever we want. Since we have only a general plan for when we leave here, it will be interesting to see how it all pans out.

The weather did turn bad as it got later in the day. The high winds came up from the south and we were threatened with heavy thunderstorms, hail, and even a tornado watch (one touched the ground near the Corpus Christi airport, about 35 miles from here). Around 4:00, people were wondering where to take shelter and some were taking pictures of the fast moving clouds. The wind howled and the temps dropped to the low 40s during the night. Kind of a roller coaster affect.

Saturday, March 8. Finally, a day off. I wasn't able to sleep in too long, but it is always nice to wake up naturally, even through it might be early. I have always enjoyed the early morning anyway, so it was a perfect start to the day.

By noon, we had all of our clothes packed for the trip and were organized. Frisco doesn't know what to think of it all. We tried to get him into the vet for a last minute nail clipping but their schedule was full. Mike and I made several attempts and failed, he is such a fighter. It will just have to wait until we get back.

Fulton's Oysterfest, sponsored by the Volunteer Fire Dept. is going on this weekend, so we walked over there this afternoon, only about 2 blocks away. Two very large tents are set up next to the harbor. One had all of the food and beer vendors and the entertainment while the other had arts and crafts booths. In addition, there was a good sized carnival.

Fulton is known for it's oysters and ships them all over the world but a few days ago, they discovered a problem with the local oysters and had to have them brought in from the Louisiana coast. It is real strange not to hear the oyster boats heading out from the harbor in the early morning or not to see them out in the bay. Mike and I haven't acquired the taste for them so we opted for a delicious pulled pork sandwich instead. It only took an hour to see everything, drink a beer, and have a bite to eat.

We talked to both Pat and Ben today and everyone is real excited for the big day tomorrow. We are ready!!

Sunday, March 9. Mexico day, yeah!!! I don't believe I will be doing any updates until after the 17th. Neither of us are taking a computer. We're looking forward to a low tech vacation.

Ok, I'm back and will be updating after the fact. We arrived at the Cozumel airport with no problems. The ferry ride across to the mainland and Playa del Carmen was quite shaky for me (Rose) and I spent the half-hour trip with my head between my knees. While standing in line, we spoke with a couple from Jersey that said "when they offer the bag, take it". The bag wasn't necessary but I sure questioned why I didn't take medication, as I brought it with me just in case.

A short taxi ride took us from the ferry landing to the Shangri-la Caribe Beach Village Resort Click Text Here, one of the last remaining resorts that is not a high rise condo. We shared a 2-story palapa with Pat & Tracey. Each room has a nice patio with 2 hammocks for relaxing. The windows have wooden shutters that can remain open to let the seaside fresh air flow through. Shortly after checking into our room and getting lots of hugs from Pat, Tracey, and Savana, we ran into Jill's parents, Lois and Dennis. We had a drink at the bar and headed to the restaurant for a Mexican buffet dinner.

Jill and Ben arrived around 9:00 pm and we talked for a while, then headed for bed. They presented us and each of the other guest couples with a cute little welcome gift bag containing personalized beverage cozy's, farkel games, a schedule of events, snacks, and a thank you card that will probably bring tears of joy to my eyes whenever I read it.
Monday, March 10.
Shortly after a nice breakfast in the morning, we headed for the beach and claimed some lounge chairs. The water was so beautiful and refreshing. Tracey ended up with a pretty bad sunburn in spite of the sunscreen used.

We met up with the Quinns at happy hour, then had a nice dinner at the resort (breakfast and dinner meals were included). Jill's brother Casey arrived and some more of her family.

We scheduled a tour of the Chichen Itza ruins for tomorrow.
Tuesday, March 11
At 7:30 this morning, Pat and Savana, Mike and I all boarded a van for our tour of the ruins. Tracey was unable to join us because her sunburn was so bad. After picking up another couple, we headed south to Tulum and then west for about 100 miles to Chichen Itza Click Text Here, now considered to be one of the 7 wonders of the world.

After leaving the ruins, we stopped at a Colonial Spanish Village that was established around 1500 AD and then to a Mayan restaurant for lunch. A group of 2 women, 2 girls and 2 boys greeted us at the entrance and then performed some traditional Mayan dances for us.

Before heading back to the resort, we stopped to see a cenote, a sinkhole. They are very common in the Yucatan, as there are at least 3000 that have been identified. The cenotes are underground rivers and there are places where people can swim and dive through them.

Bob & Penny arrived at their resort today, but their cell phones got wet in the beach bag so they had to go shopping for something that would work. Since we had such a long day and late dinners today, we were unable to get together with them this evening.

Wednesday, March 12
Most of today was spent at the beach again. I walked to Bob & Penny's resort this morning, about 1/2 mile south of the Shangri-la. They weren't up yet, but came to hang out with us a bit later in the morning.

The bachelor and bacheloret parties were this evening, so the parents and aunts and uncles met at the Living Garden Bar on 5th Avenue after dinner. We walked along the street and met up with the group of girl's when they were on their way to meet up with the guys. They sure were having fun!

I think that night was one of the latest for us on the vacation. We were back and ready for bed by midnight.
Thursday, March 13
Mike, Dennis, Pat, Ben, Chet, and Dave all went deep sea fishing this afternoon. They each caught something; trigger fish, needle fish and a good size barracuda. The catch was donated to needy Mexican families. From what I've heard, it was a good time for all.

Tracey, Savana and I did a bit of shopping and then just relaxed until the guys got back from fishing. At that point, we were all 3 feeling that we had enough sun and it was a good time to stay out of it.

This evening, Ben and Jill took their immediate families to dinner. When we arrived at the restaurant they did not have Jill's reservation and also told her that they didn't have a liquor license. That would have been okay but who knows when we would have gotten in. That restaurant helped us to get a reservation at the Broken Glass Italian Restaurant just down the street. Just as we arrived at the Broken Glass, one of the waiters from the previous restaurant caught up to us and told us that they now had a liquor license. Not sure what that was all about.

Dinner was very good for all except that Jill and I ordered the homemade pasta with shrimp and the pasta was inconsistently cooked, some very tender and others crunchy. Everyone else loved their food and the wine, salads, and desserts were excellent. It was a really nice time.

We strolled along 5th Avenue to get back to the Shangri-la.
Friday, March 14
A van picked up the Bridge's and Quinn's at 1:30 and took us to Al Cielo, Click Text Here a beautiful 4-room private hotel on the beach just south of Playa del Carmen. We met with Donahey (the wedding planner) for the rehearsal and to check on the last minute details. The place is beautiful and we were assured that the Bridge/Quinn wedding party would have exclusive use of the place tomorrow.

The next stop was the harbor at Puerto Aventuras where we met Captain Jorge, his 1st mate, and the bartender on the "Rayatea", a catamaran that could accommodate 100 people. Our group was about 40, so we had lots of room to move around and mingle. We set sail at 3:00 and were on the water until after the sunset, about 2 1/2 hours. The water was a deep sapphire blue and we were far enough out that we didn't see land. Sandwiches and beverages were served.

Everyone was in high spirits and all had a great time with the exception of 2 gals that got ill. I took some meclazine for motion sickness to ensure that I didn't get sick, it worked well and I had a wonderful time.

When we returned to the Shangri-la, we took showers, had dinner, and went to bed. I had a real hard time staying awake through dinner (the pill).
Saturday, March 15
Wedding Day. We were transported to and from Al Cielo by vans.

Oh My God! What a picturesque place and gorgeous wedding ceremony. The bride was so beautiful and the moment I saw her come around the corner, I got all choked up. Pat escorted me to my seat and Casey escorted Lois and then they took their place under the Palapa to be next to Ben and Jill. The vows were heartfelt and touching and there wasn't a dry eye in the place. Everyone had tears of joy and happiness in their eyes. Some of the friends planned ahead and passed a roll of toilet paper around the seating area.

After the ceremony, professional photos were taken. The hotel was decorated so nicely with large shallow bowls of water with rose petals floating on top. Rose petals were also scattered around the floor. We shared a table with the bride and groom, Casey and Pat, and Dennis and Lois. Dennis proposed the 1st toast and they just continued on after that. Dinner was a beautiful presentation of stuffed red pepper salad, steak or fish, mashed potato, and an herb stuffed tomato. The wedding cake was a Tres Leches (a Mexican 3-milk cake).

Ben and Jill danced the 1st dance, followed by Jill and Dennis to "You Are So Beautiful" and Ben and I to "Blue Skies". Then came the Salsa Band that had everyone on the floor the rest of the night.

This was an occasion that I will never forget, actually, a week I will never forget. It was such an upbeat, happy, joyous, and memorable time.

Photos of the wedding day will be posted on a website for all to see (when Ben and Jill get home from their honeymoon).
Sunday, March 16
R & R day. Pat greeted me this morning with a hot cup of Espresso. When Savana got up, she and I took a nice, long walk on the beach in search of shells, but found none. I think it was too late and the tide was in. Everyone from the wedding was getting off to a late start except some that had to catch flights back home. I'm glad we took an extra day to rest up.

Later in the evening, we took a taxi to the end of 5th Avenida and we walked back the 30 some blocks and did some more shopping. We had an early dinner and early to bed.
Monday, March 17
Travel Day. We went to breakfast with Pat, Tracey, and Savana and then they took off by 8:00. After they left, we went back to the restaurant and sat with Dennis, Lois, Casey, and Tony while they had breakfast, then said our goodbyes to them. What a wonderful extension to our family we now have!

It was hard to put this wonderful week with no electronics, tv, radio, and stress behind us. It certainly was a week I will never forget and will look forward to a time in the future when we can have our families together again in a beautiful setting.

The return trip was long, but uneventful. All flights were on time and we had no trouble getting through customs. Our car was right where we parked it and we made it back to the motorhome and Frisco by about 10:00.
March 18 - 23, 2007
Tuesday, March 18 Back to work already - sure wish we could have timed it differently. It was a busy day. The weather has been kind of stormy all day with some heavy rain and a tornado warning this afternoon.

Mike had an appointment for his annual checkup today and the doctor is recommending some cardio checkups that we need to schedule for April before we leave. I will have to do the same. We were reviewing our work schedules and have started panic mode - there will be very little time to fit in appointments as our work schedule is awful. Lucy and Myron will be going on vacation from the 2nd to the 10th and we will be covering for them - that means very little down time during the month. We're already having regrets that we extended through April. What to do?? We're supposed to be retired!

Wednesday, March 19 Last night we had high winds and it blew a yellow-brown coating on everything. Some say it is sand from the Gulf of Mexico and others say it is pollen. I tasted it and it didn't taste like salt so I'm thinking it is pollen. Also I can feel it in my throat. What a mess!

Another busy day, as we had 9 incoming RVs (spring break week). The park is so much different from when the winter texans are here - they is a lot more activity and a lot more to do. Mike spent his day directing people to their sites and cleaning the pool.

I got the worst parts of the motor home cleaned and got the gunk washed off the car too.

Thursday, March 20. Another busy day at the office and in the park. One of our guests reported a cooler stolen at about 2:30 this morning. He heard it going on and followed them, had them trapped in a corner of the park but they got away, scraping a tree as they left. He called the police but no luck in finding the thieves. I've heard that stolen coolers and beer are a common occurrence in the summer time.

We got to see some pictures of the wedding and the vacation from Casey today - a reminder of what a great time was had by all.

Friday, March 21. Another busy morning and another report of a stolen cooler during the night. This time the cooler was stolen and all of the fishing gear was left behind, guess we know what they are after.

Tomorrow starts another mini-vacation, as we will be picking Pat and
Roger up at the San Antonio airport, spending the night there and then going to Austin for 2 nights. We're looking forward to hanging out with our good friends from Wisconsin again.

Saturday, March 22. A call from Roger this morning informed us that due to another 10" of snow yesterday, their flight out of Madison was delayed by an hour. Once the got to KC for their connecting flight, it too was delayed by another 2.5 hours. So we left Rockport at about 11:00 and headed for San Antonio, arriving at the airport just in time.

When we got to the St. Anthony Hotel at exactly check-in time, we were told that checkin time was 4:00, so we wandered around, walked to the River Walk and had a drink. We got back to the St. Anthony and were given room # 358. Mike and Roger went to park the car and get the luggage while Patty and I went to the room. Guess what? There were people in that room already. Back to the front desk where we were told they would upgrade us to a suite that had a queen bed and a queen fold-out sofa ($600/night) plus free breakfast the next morning. Off we go to room 554 where we found it had a queen bed but no fold-out sofa. The bell boy told us to wait and they would get us another room. While we waited to hear from the front desk, we watched some TV and had *bleep*tails. By 7:00 we finally had a room with 2 queen beds and 2 full bathrooms ($660/night). Not bad for the inconvenience.

Once we got settled we walked along the Riverwalk and had some dinner at the Texas Roadhouse. I ordered shish kabob but the meat was so tough I couldn't eat it. I had plenty to eat and they didn't charge for my meal. Back to the room for a good night sleep.

Sunday, March 23. Our 40th anniversary - WOW! After a nice breakfast, we walked to the Alamo where we watched the history video and toured the site.

On to Austin, an hour's drive from San Antonio. Our reservation for the next 2 nights was at the Austin Motel, a quaint family owned business since it was built in the 1950s located about a mile south of the capital on Congress in the SOCO district.

After getting settled, we took the metro bus up to 6th Street and wandered along there. Since it was Sunday and Easter Sunday at that, there wasn't a lot open. We had a *bleep*tail and a snack, then walked up to see the state capital. Mike suggested that we eat at Stubbs BBQ located at 8th and Red River, a short walk from where we were at the Capital.

The bus ride back to the motel was interesting with some friendly and colorful characters. The bus driver wasn't from Austin, so he didn't know to tell us which stop to get off at. We were assured by some of the other riders that they would let us know. Across from us was a guitar player from England who offered to play us a song, but the driver said NO. It was an entertaining ride back.
March 24 - 31, 2008
Monday, March 24. On the recommendation of the hotel, we started the day with a great breakfast at the Magnolia Cafe, another one of those businesses that lives up to the "keep Austin wierd" trend. The wierdness started with their large sign in the front of the restaurant that says "Magnolia Cafe, Sorry We're Open".

Zinger's Hardware was the next stop on our list, a store that had everything from soup to nuts and then some. We bought a salad bag (for keeping vegetables fresh), a clip to keep the shoulder harness from rubbing on my neck, an anti-Walmart bumper sticker, and a clipper for Frisco's nails. Hoovey's ended up buying stuff that they didn't really need too.

We set out to locate the Broken Spoke, a music and dancing club where we hoped to be able to see Dale Watson this evening. Unfortunately, he plays there on Wednesday, not Monday. When we got back to the hotel, we walked to the Continental Club to see who was playing there tonight and, guess what? Dale Watson. Yeah!!

Back at the hotel, we sat around the pool playing dice games; Farkel and Right, Left, Center. At dusk tonight, we went to the Congress Avenue bridge to watch the bats from the deck at TGI Friday's. Just as the sun goes down, thousands of bats leave the bridge to search for food. It was a little too early but we were able to see a few clouds of them.

For dinner, we walked to Doc's, across the street from the hotel. Their specialty tonight was two for one burgers and they were delicious. Patty and I played a game of 500 Rummy while Mike and Rog napped.

Off to the Continental Club at 10:00 to hear Dale Watson. What a show it was. Not only was Dale and his band excellent but there were 5 other guest performances; a female singer from Nashville, 3 local guys that sang and played guitar, and one of the bartenders. It was 1:30 when we got home, the latest we've been up for a long time. Well worth it.

Tuesday, March 25. Back to Rockport with a stop at Lady Bird Johnson's Wildflower Gardens. There wasn't a whole lot in bloom other than some of the bluebonnets and Indian Paintbrush, but much more than when Mike and I were there in the mid 90s. We did have a very enjoyable walk through one of the woodland paths.

It was a long 4-hour drive back to Rockport. We fixed some redfish on the grill and had a nice, relaxing evening.

Wednesday, March 26. Back to work. Yuck! Tonight we took a drive to Port Aransas and then stopped at the Moondog for dinner but it was closed. Ended up at Charlotte Plummers and the food was all overcooked. I think I have written about that in the past and kind of regretted that choice.

Thursday, March 27. Pat and Roger treated us to dinner at Los Comales this evening and it was excellent.

Friday - Sunday, March 28-30. The Hoovey's left here on Friday afternoon. Jim and Diane, some friends from the park gave them a ride to San Antonio to the airport.

We were scheduled to work on Saturday, but since Lucy and Myron's vacation will be started on Wednesday and we agreed to work Tuesday afternoon for them, it would have meant on 2.5 days off this week. So they agreed to work for us and the day off felt so good. We did absolutely nothing but relax all day. Even though we had a great time on vacation, we have been on the go since the 3rd of March, either working, traveling, or vacationing. What a relief it was to have a day to do nothing.

We went to happy hour but it attempted to rain a few times and sent the women in different directions. We ended up under Erwin and Carmen's awning and sat talking until almost 8:00.

Today, Sunday ended up to be more of the same, although we did take care of a few chores. Mike wanted to test some of the systems on the RV and when he went to start it up, we heard just a click - the batteries are either dead or shot (they are the originals). That will be added to the list of things to do before we leave the park. The slide did retract and extend so that is a plus.

Basically we just hung out at the park. We did walk over to see Ron and Ruth's new Kountry Star motorhome - very nice. They are made by Amish people and the floors and cabinetry are beautiful. A little out of our price range but very nice. We're always looking.

We did take a little drive this afternoon to the Fulton Oaks RV Park where I had seen an ad for a park model trailer for sale. We stopped to look at a different park model, very nice but a bit pricey - $44,000. We also drove through south Rockport where there are lots of little beach bungalows for sale near the bay. Another nice area to consider if we ever decide to settle down. The general feeling in this area is that it will start expanding since Texas has some of the fastest growing areas in the country right now.

Monday, March 31. Mike had to fast this morning for his cardio and stress tests in Corpus Christi. Hope the results are good. That took most of the day. We were both pretty tired when we got back.

This evening we were invited to another fish fry at the rec hall. Ron, Erwin, and Dave cooked their favorite recipes and they were all real tasty. All of the side dishes were excellent and we got to have a piece of Georgia's delicious lemon meringue pie (wish Pat Hoovey could have been here, it's her favorite).

The park has cleared out and many of the people that were here for the winter have gone. There are lots of empty spaces and not much activity.

Created on 03/02/2008 07:49 AM by bridge
Updated on 02/01/2010 05:30 PM by bridge
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