My daughter Tiffany and her daughter Destiny will be here in just a few days, and in the meantime, Terry and I have been very busy trying to get some things wrapped up before they arrive. So in today’s blog I will try to bring you up to date.
I mentioned the other day that our friends Aaron Borovoy and Peter Ambrose were in our area for a while, and after having dinner with them at Dustin’s Bar-B-Q one night, on another day, they came over and spent some time with us here at the house. They really wanted to see a manatee, and usually we have a lot of them in the canal here in our little subdivision. So we took them down to check it out, and as luck would have it, there were no manatees to be seen. I think this is the first time we’ve ever not spotted at least one or two in the canal, and sometimes as many as 30 or 40. Due to the loss of seagrass that they eat, Florida’s manatees are starving, and we have had over 1,100 of them die in the last year. That breaks my heart because I love those big, gentle creatures.
When we took Aaron and Peter over to our fishing pier, we did see some dolphins playing in the water, which is always cool. I have seen all kinds of watercraft going up and down the Intracoastal Waterway, everything from kayaks to fishing boats to yachts, but when this big boy came through it really caught our attention. It’s the multipurpose vessel Snell and is operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers. Launched in 1945, it was originally called the Seaplane Wrecking Derrick YSD-78, and assigned to the Sixth Naval District at Charleston, SC. It was transferred to the Corps of Engineers and renamed Snell in 1960, and used as a dredge/snagboat. It’s usually based out of Wilmington, NC, but has worked as far away as Galveston, Texas, setting floating buoys, repairing piers, clearing channels, and doing other tasks.
Though we got skunked on seeing a manatee, Aaron said I redeemed myself when I remembered at the very last minute that there was a Space X rocket launch scheduled and hustled everybody outside to see it lift off. We see so many launches here that we’ve come to take them for granted, but for someone just visiting the area, it’s quite a treat.
That was on Thursday, then on Friday, we went back to the Ram dealer in Palatka so they could install the new trim piece around the radio console in the Laramie to replace the ugly one it shipped from the factory with.
Being an old car nut, I got a treat yesterday when we went to Hibachi Grill & Supreme Buffet in Daytona Beach with Jennifer and Jesse and Dennis and Tami. As we were arriving, the owner of this beautiful 1958 Lincoln was getting ready to leave. He was gracious enough to let me take a couple of pictures of it and told me that it had not been restored. He purchased it in that condition and only had to do some minor engine work on it. Now that’s a classy ride!
We had a great time at dinner with our friends, and then when we got home, Jesse and Dennis helped us get the pontoon boat onto the scissor trailer and out of the garage. Even though I once took an Army truck driving school and could back an 18-wheeler up with little problem back in the day, I am terrible at backing boats and small trailers and such. But Jesse is a pro, and it took him no time at all to slip it in next to the garage where I wanted it to be. I want to get it cleaned up and make sure everything is running right before the girls get here, so we can take them out on the water.
Big Lake Ranger is still setting in the world on fire, with very nice sales. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the support of so many of my readers. People are asking me when my next book will be out, but I won’t start any projects until after the girls leave because we want to give them all of our attention and time while they are here. But if you like reading mysteries, my friend Cleve Sylcox just released 13 Steps, the fourth book in his David Winter mystery series. Check it out.
And finally, here’s a chuckle to start your day from the collection of funny signs we see in our travels and that our readers share with us. If you cut yourself on this sign, don’t blame me. You’ve been warned.
Today is your last chance to enter our Free Drawing for a copy of the new hardcover edition of the RV camping journal donated by Barbara House. Barbara makes several variations of these, and they all have pages where you can list the date, weather, where you traveled to and from that day, beginning and ending mileage, campground information including amenities at RV sites, a place for campground reviews, room to record activities, people met along the way, reminders of places to see and things to do the next time you’re in the area, and a page for notes for each day.
To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn this evening. Note: Due to the high shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books to foreign countries, only entries with US addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed.
Thought For The Day – Gut feelings are guardian angels.