Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

Mark Twain

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Rainbow Springs State Park/Dunnellon FL

Monday February 17, Moving to Rainbow Springs today. We packed up and pulled to the dump station and I tried to help Jeff by hooking the hose up to backwash the black tank, well I didn't get it tightened down so the water ended up going someplace it wasn't suppose to and was running out the bottom of the RV. It ended up not being a big  problem, just tightened the fitting and all was well.  We finished up there and got on the road about 11:00 AM.  It was a really nice day to travel our 160 miles. After our arrival we registered and then pulled into our pull through spot #3. This was the same site as  last year. It's a full hookup with 50amp service with great views out the doorside of the woods and the bald eagles that hang out here.  Jeff went to plug in and our power management box said low voltage.... Yikes not that again. We already had started unloading and had the rig unhitched and everything. Another thing learned, always check your power source  before unhitching. Jeff came inside to look for a paper he had printed out, procedures to check the voltage on the rv pedestal. He  wanted to make sure that it was ok to plug in. We both looked and neither of us could find it. Jeff went to open up our slide, I was outside when Jeff stopped and came out to ask if I heard that? I didn't hear anything so I followed him in and saw that a cabinet door was left open and it was in the way of the slide opening. So he brought the slide in so I could close the cabinet door. The slide went out fine and good news the cabinet door survived as well. After all that Jeff  checked the voltages and our power source started working. Now to finish this set up. Just when you think this set up thing is easy you run into a big snag, but we got through it. We love our spot and this park. I walked around our loop to just get out and look around. The day was over before I knew it.

Tuesday February 18, It was a bit chilly to start but a really pretty day. I got my walk in. They have a nice place to walk. It's actually a tram road they use in the summer. When I got back I saw we had some neighbors with Iowa plates so I talked with them to see where in Iowa they were from. After chatting for awhile with Dan and Carie we decided we would all get together for a drink or an outing later in the week. Jeff wanted to go to Camping World to look for a new toilet so he could see it before either buying or ordering one. The Camping World was a very nice one and they let us open the box to see what we wanted. We found and purchased everything we needed and also had our propane tank filled there, you save a dollar per gallon if your a Good Sam Member. I just happened to see a fabric shop so we stopped there on the way home. For lunch we  stopped at Sonnys BBQ. This was our first visit to this chain restaurant, and I loved my sandwich. Would definitely go back there. When I got home I did laundry. Then I decided to freeze the rest of my strawberries. Since our lunch was so late and large we just had some leftovers for supper.

Wednesday February 19, We had a tragic start to our day....the coffee pot died. Jeff could use it to make coffee but had to boil the water, it was quite an ordeal. We went to Walmart for groceries and gas. Came home and had lunch. It was so pretty out we decided to take the kayaks out. We loaded up the boats, put them on the carts and rolled them to the launch. We, Jeff, me and Soffee jumped in the kayaked and paddled up to the head springs. It was a beautiful day and the river was as pristine as I remember. We floated back down the river looking at the wildlife and the scenery. It was a nice day and a nicer afternoon on the water. A bonus we noticed Soffee was feeling better.

Thursday February 20, We had decided to go to 3 sisters springs today. Talked to our neighbors and they said to go early because it's so busy. Well when we woke up it was very foggy so we didn't get the early start we wanted. We did leave around 8:30 and it was about 30 minutes away. First we drove to a visitors center who was of little help. They told us about a launch at Hunters Bay but we couldn't find it. We drove in circles trying to find it. We pulled into a place called Pete's Pier and I was gonna ask directions. The lady said we could launch here. She even let me borrow a map she puts in the kayaks they rent. I thought that was really nice. We got in the water and headed over towards the springs. Our neighbors were right it was crazy busy. It wasn't to bad going down the canals but as we got close to the springs it reminded me of Disney.... I love love loved watching the manatees so it was so worth the trip over for sure. We got to see many different manatees. We had a couple that swam between our kayaks for quite awhile which was really special. The water closer to the springs was so clear but with all the boats and people we chose not to kayak back in there. We got lots of pictures and sweet memories. Another special adventure.....

Friday February 21, The weather forecast was calling for rain but I did get my walk in. Since the weather is yuck, Jeff decided to install our new toilet. Both of us were a bit nervous because it involved cutting a water line and installing a new fitting. Jeff jumped into the project and surprisingly it went in with no problems. Both of us were happy about that. Then the rain came in and boy did it rain. Along with the rain was wind, thunder and lightning. It was kind of a long day but I kept busy quilting. It did clear up after supper so we walked down by the river with the dogs. We ran into our friends John & Joan and visited with them. 

Saturday February 22,  Really cloudy and foggy this morning. It seemed to take forever to clear up. I noticed the bald eagles were up in the tree behind our rig. I got my phone out and opened up my bird app. I found the bald eagle and hit the speaker which does the birds call. I was also trying to get pictures of them. All of a  sudden they start talking back. It was pretty impressive. I even got a picture with his beak open. So cool.........Then we drove over to Yankee Town which is about 20 miles west of the campground to check out a launch site that we are thinking about using. It puts you into the Gulf. On the way over we spotted a sign FollowThat Dream. It seems this is where a lot of that 1960s film with Elvis Presley was shot. We arrived at the launch site and with the weather it was a bit eerie. It looked like a place we would enjoy. Just have to wait for the right weather. When we got back the weather had cleared so we sat outside watching the eagles. One had landed in the field behind us. He either caught something or was digging up stuff for a nest. Really neat to watch him. He was there awhile and I got some pictures. Jeff invited our neighbors from across the street over. They are from Iowa too. We sat outside and visited with them til into the night. It's always so fun to hear were others have gone and what  they've seen.

Sunday February 23, Mermaid Day.... We had made plans with Dan & Carie to go over to Weeki Wachee Springs to check out the mermaids. I have to admit I was really excited about this. We arrived at the park and the admission was only $13.00 each. They have mermaid shows, animal shows, a boat cruise, and beach area with a place to get in the springs to swim. In the summer there are water slides. I pretty much came for the mermaids. They have been swimming here since 1947. The show was great and after we got on the boat cruise. It was very short but gave us a view of the very clear water. We would love to come back and kayak it. They also showed us a bald eagle nest that had eagles in it. It was a wonderful day... I loved it. After leaving we wanted to get a bite. Dan had heard about a place that had a crunchy fish sandwich. We found out the name of the restaurant and headed there. All of us were surprised when we arrived at Betty Jacks. A very small and unusual place. I think they had about 6 tables inside. We got us one and looked around. Very quirky but I loved it, so did everyone else. This was before we ate. The guys got fish sandwiches, Carie fish tacos and me a burger. All of us loved our meals. The food was great, the service was great and the prices very reasonable. We all drove home with full tummys and a great memory of a fun day. So glad that we met Dan & Carie.