OTRA - AL - Mobile
Apr 17, 2013
|Today we're headed for Mobile, Alabama where we'll be for a week...or so. Easy driving along I-10 through Georgia into Alabama but you sure could tell where one state ended and another began because the condition of the highway just wasn't as good as in Florida. Not bad, just not as good. Stopped at a rest area on the way here so we could take a little break (we're just not used to traveling for any length of time anymore!) and I could get a geocache.
Pulled into the Shady Acres RV Park around 2:30 (we're in the Central Time Zone now) and got a very nice shady, long lot right next to the laundry! How convenient is that? This is an old mobile home park that's been converted to an RV park. There's a nice trail through the woods ("Nature Trail") and you can walk down to the Dog River, about 300' from the end of the trail. AND, to top it off, there's an ice cream truck that comes ringing it's way through the campground every night!! Now is that neat or what? *I* think it's neat 'cause they have good ice cream sandwiches and I haven't lived where there was an ice cream truck since I was in 6th grade or so. Oh, on the way through Mobile (on the interstate), we saw the Carnival cruise ship, the Triumph, the one that lost it's power in the Gulf of Mexico while on a cruise and had to be towed into port then broke away during a storm. It was snugly tied up now though.
For some reason, we've just not been doing much of anything while we're here. I go out and get my cache-of-the-day and that's about it. We've got big plans of where we want to go and what we want to see but we've just not acted on them yet. We remind me of the commercial "A body at rest tends to stay at rest while a body in motion, stays in motion". We're "the body at rest"...which is NOT good at all!!
Took Nellie to the vets a couple of days ago for her "allergies". I don't know what else it is but each year about this time, she starts washing herself almost continuously and scratches a lot. No fleas. Was talking to someone at the campground and they said the very same thing happens with their cat and it's allergies. So she got a cortisone shot plus two booster shots of something and now she's not speaking to me. Unfortunately, she's still scratching. She really likes this campground though 'cause she's asking to go out as soon as I get up. I tie her out on her leash and she just lies on the patio or under the trailer and keeps an eye on whatever activity might be going on. The other day, she, Taco and I took a nice walk down the nature trail and she did quite well. I think we only stopped 3 or 4 times so she could take a "look/see".
Yesterday I made a flag pole for our American flag. It doesn't look too bad if I do say so myself. Before, we used to hang it on our awning but if the awning wasn't open, it didn't go out either. Now we can set it up whether the awning is up or down. Bought another flowering plant and Bob bought 2 cherry tomato plants so we'll see if we get a little garden with our flowers.
Today we go rolling and took a trip to Dauphin Island where we visited the estaurium and took a walk along the boardwalk. Pictures of that trip are here.
Today is supposed to be the last nice day for 4 or 5 days so off we went to spend the day at the Bellingrath Gardens/Home Tour/Cruise. We were not disappointed. The gardens (and there are many of them) are beautiful even though not all flowers are in bloom yet or have already bloomed. I imagine if one visited while everything was in bloom, it would be a visual overload! We had an hour before the Fowl River cruise was scheduled so we just moseyed our way to the landing where the Southern Belle River Cruiser was tied up. Through the Asian-American gardens, the Gazebo Garden, the Delchamps/Boehm Porcelain Gallery and the Live Oak Plaza we wandered, oooing and aaahing at all the absolutely beautiful flowers and porcelain.
We boarded the cruiser for the 45-minute trip up the Fowl River and the captain gave a very nice history of the area including the Mavilian Indian part in the settlement of the area. There were some beautiful houses along the river but didn't see nary an alligator! I've posted the pictures from Bellingrath Gardens and the river cruise here.
Luckily for us, we docked just in time for the last house tour of the day. This 15-room home was built in 1935 using bricks dating back to 1853 and ironwork from the 1870's salvaged from historic structures in Mobile. All the antique furniture is original and it is said that Mrs. Bellingrath seldom bought anything new. It was the time of the Depression and she helped her less fortunate neighbors by purchasing various pieces of their furniture and giving them more than a piece was actually worth.
Today we took a trip downtown to the Exploreum Science Center and IMAX theater. Had a great time but remind me I cannot go into any more IMAX theaters because I get seasick!! Spent about an hour going through the Body Works section with all it's hands-on tests and displays. I did learn that I cannot hang by my hands for even a minute but I do have exceptionally fast reflexes. Quick but weak. Like Bob said, we're in trouble if we ever have to grab and hang on to something to save our lives!
Got 2 geocaches, walked down to the waterfront and saw the Carnival Triumph being thoroughly worked on from stem to stern, rode the free trolley for one complete circuit, and visited Fort Conde. And home...right before the rain came!!
I know why there's a drought in the middle of the country!! Because Mobile is using all the rain!! There were thunderstorms last night from about 7 p.m. until 3 or 4 a.m. And when it rained, it POURED!! They say we got 10" to 13" of rain and I most definitely believe them. Poor Taco wasn't a happy camper because he gets very upset during thunderstorms but Nellie sat out under the awning on her chair until it was time to go to bed...just watching the rain and rivers as it gushed through our campsite. And once we went to bed, the rain was very loud on the bedroom roof...so loud that I finally got up and put my earplugs in. Then it started all over again this afternoon...no thunder but tons of rain. So there you have it, folks. Mobile has all the rain and isn't sharing with the middle of country.
Not too much has been happening around here. I've been doing my geocaching. It's rained off and on. There are a lot of tall trees at this campground and I'm watching this one squirrel just flying from tree branch to tree branch...all alone but having a blast! Have you ever watched a squirrel bury the acorns he collects? They dig a little hole, put the acorn in, then pounce up and down on it with their front paws. Really cute. And did you know they usually don't remember where they've buried them but tend to find ones that other squirrels have hidden?
We've had the usual culprits at our bird feeder (we always put one out if we're staying more than 2 or 3 days) ... cardinals, chickadees, wrens...but we've also had an indigo bunting and a small golden bird that I don't recognize. And there's an owl and her baby somewhere here at the campground...she "whos" to us every evening.
We'll be leaving here on Tuesday, the 14th for Duson, LA where we'll spend 2 nights then on to Beaumont TX for another 2 nights and finally into Houston where the Ti will be getting lots of work done to it. I have to find a hotel to stay in. After spending less than $20 a night for campgrounds, the $60+ for a motel is sure going to be a shock.