The next stop on the big adventure is back to Orange City and to Blue Spring State Park. Again, only 10 minutes or so from the house, so it’s convenient for mowing the lawn, going to the dentist, and the final house emptying out step.
Blue Springs – The Happy Place
My mother-in-law love, love, loves this place. We took her every time she visited starting in 2002 up to last year. Now I guess we’ll have to all be on vacation to go there together again. I have to say, it brings us a lot of peace as well on those trails and to get back to the natural setting we so love.
We were able to stroll the boardwalk with Jackson and there were quite a few manatees in the spring run due to the colder weather. The spring water is a constant 72 degrees which turns out to be much warmer than the connecting St. John’s River this time of year. The manatees suffer from cold shock if they are in the cold water – 50s or so – for too long. They go into the river to feed and then warm back up in the spring run. There are big ones, littles ones, mamas & babies, and the ones scarred from power boat propellers. The park rangers do a count every day and have names for them based on markings and scars.
Unfortunately the best day with crystal clear, calm water was the day I didn’t have my camera with me. I vowed to come back for pictures. I did, but it was windy and overcast. You’ll just have to settle for these two pics and take my word for it – lots of manatees to see along with alligator gar and other big fish.
Coming up for air. You can see the baby one behind if you look closely. Sorry – not impressive pictures this time around.
The Rough, The Loud, and The Funny
We do like Florida state parks since they have nice wooded campsites, a little more privacy between sites and a natural setting. No concrete pads or ports here. I could do with a little less sand to track into the motorhome, but that’s what you get in Florida and that’s why I love my Shark vac.
The rough….The site we were assigned ended up being a first for us. First one we could not make work no matter what we tried. By that I mean we had a site that looked to be a wash-out spot and there was no hope for leveling out the coach. Not with jacks, blocks, or creative parking angles. We tried. We really did. I walked the site and Pat even got out to survey the scene before backing in. In the end, we parked Lucy and took Bitsy back to the ranger station to see if there was another spot we could get for our 3-day stay. Aaaaand we’re in luck! Not flat, but one we could deal with much better.
The loud….So, we get settled in the second site and take Jackson for a walk around. Two different trains go by, blasting the train whistle. My, I didn’t realize the train tracks were right next to the park. We think about this and ask another camper. Do the trains come by in the night? “Oh yes!” was the enthusiastic reply and he chuckled. Indeed they do at about 11:00pm and 4:30am. I sleep with earplugs, but still heard that coming by and felt it a bit, too! Peaceful park? Mostly.
The Funny….You just never know what will strike you funny. I see signs all the time that make me laugh. This one was a favorite for this stay:
Stating the obvious don’t ya think? I checked it out and inside appears to be just a water spigot and some ground level access panels for something. Pretty much an empty enclosure. But nay, nay. NOT a dumpster.
So we’re leaving and drive around the OTHER side of the enclosure. It all becomes clear:
I envision people lobbing big, stinky bags of garbage over the wooden walls to the emptiness inside. Eureka! We just need another sign on the other side to stop that practice. Anyway, I found it a stitch.
The House – Again
This stop is primarily due to my final dental appointment before our Florida exodus. I get a clean bill of health, a big bag of teeth cleaning supplies and a promise of a phone number for a dentist in Homer, Alaska. Turns out the dentist who used to own the practice I’ve used since childhood has a son who is a dentist in Alaska. We’ll be there right about perfect timing for my next cleaning. Small world.
The other reason for this stop is to check in on the house. We need to mow again and dispose of the leftover house paint. We also do 2 loads of laundry and then bid farewell to my washer and dryer.
And there they go! Exit stage right to a new home. Nothing, and I mean nothing, remains in the house. I used to think my least favorite aspect of full-time RVing was the laundromat scene, but most places have big, bright, clean laundry areas. You can get mounds done all in one shot instead of taking all day, a single load at a time.
We’ll make one more visit to the house to mow, pre-sign the closing papers, and turn over the keys. Can. not. wait.
On The Road Again
Blue Springs is now in the rear view mirror as we depart for Bushnell, FL. We’re spending over two weeks at Sumter Oaks RV Park so we can change our legal address to this location. We won’t have a house, but we’ll still be Floridians.
On the way, we stop at a spot we scouted out on another trip. This park overlooking Little Lake Harris is perfect for our lunch stop. Whew! We’re going a whole 75 miles or so and need a break in the middle. Ha! We don’t like to travel very far in a day, but this is short even for us. Nice view though, and plenty of room for Lucy and the Bits.
Driving over that bridge you saw in the last shot. I’ve always marveled at how big “Little” Lake Harris is. Another favorite interior Florida view since it was on the way to Grandma’s house in Bushnell back in the day. Over the lake and through the woods I suppose.
I’ll leave you with this shot. Don’t forget to take a little couch time now and then, preferably with someone serving you orange sherbet from a big bowl. Yeah, Jackson is super spoiled rotten. But we wouldn’t have it any other way.
All about Bushnell in the next post. See you on the way!