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  • Writer's pictureInger and Jeff Latreille

What a Life!

~Thursday, January 28, 2021~

Day 228 (Travel Day)

A smooth pack up morning in The Everglades and out by 11:00 check out time. We will certainly be back. An absolutely perfect spot to really immerse ourselves in the spectacular Everglades and get a little dose of The Keys. Nice that we only have a 4-hour drive ahead of us as we head north to the Fort Myers area. One of the well known sections of highway we drove over was Alligator Alley which is an 80-mile stretch of highway that cuts through the Everglades between Naples and Fort Lauderdale. The name stems from the swampy area that alligators call “home”. It is now fenced off to protect alligators but also the endangered Florida panther. We didn’t happen to see any panthers or alligators on this stretch of freeway but gators are known to sneak onto the nice warm tar surface for a little sunbathing time. As I mentioned before, you become a little immune to seeing them after a while (kind of like seeing a horse in a pasture), but obviously are more on guard. For every 20 people in Florida, there is at least one alligator. And there are 21 million people in Florida so now you can do the math. That’s a lot of gators.

My, the Fort Myers area is beautiful. Lots of trees, lush vegetation, and beautiful neighborhoods. When we finally arrived at our destination, we were greeted by our dog loving host, Larry. He has a lovely oasis right on the Caloosahatchee River. Right away he was on a mission in dialing us in with electric and water hookups, accompanied with orienting ourselves for the best views. Larry told us all about how he acquired the property to enjoy warmer winters after years of living in Ohio. But best of all was the added joy brought to our day hearing of his amazing adventures traveling throughout the U.S. and abroad with his beloved Golden Retriever who has since passed on. He even offered use of his kayaks with 2 stipulations…… go out in pairs and you must wear a PFD. No problem!

Oh, did I mention this is also a dog lover’s paradise? Sadie has an acre of lawn area to run around on, plenty of shade, and an enticing river at her doorstep.

There is a 5 foot drop off from his property to the water, but just down a ways, an easy launch area for the kayaks and a spot for Sadie to get in the water. Will have to watch that girl as there can be alligators in this stretch of river.

While we began our usual set up (me inside, Jeff outside), Jeff was playing ball with Sadie while chatting away with Larry and another fellow boondocker from North Carolina. He’s in his second year of traveling with his mother in his refurbished skoolie (converted school bus) and foresees this as a “forever” way of living as he continues to work remotely. Another reason for the surge in RV’ing is the flexibility that so many people have, being able to work from the road. If Jeff and I foresee long stretches of RV travel in coming years, one idea I’m toying with is teaching English remotely. I’ve been in communication with a fellow RV’er who has told me about her experience and loves the fulfillment, income and flexibility it brings. We’ve learned so much by the traveling community either through direct meetings or social media. Everyone is so willing to share.

I was definitely in the mood to cook tonight, Jeff not so much. It’s really funny how over the years, we don’t even need to question who is in the cooking spirit or not. One of us just picks up where the other doesn’t. We both really enjoy our kitchen time, and it’s worked out great that we don’t fight over rights in this tiny space, on most occasions 😉. This trip has definitely forced me to be more creative in the kitchen. I am generally a recipe kind of girl. But since we don’t always have easy access to stores, or are more limited with ingredients in stock, I will simply see what we have on hand and come up with a creative solution. Some successes, some failures with tonight’s dinner being a success for the most part-Pasta with everything but the kitchen sink! I say for ‘the most part’ because of the pasta water. We noticed a funky smell once I boiled the water for the noodles, then came to the realization we were overdue in changing the water filter. Ah, now we’re talkin’!

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