Fort Myers, FL Dec 20 to Dec 31 (leaving Jan 3, 2006)

We drove 173 miles of mostly two lane roads to get to Fort Myers from Vero Beach, right across the state.  It sprinkled on and off through the trip.  When Diane went into the campground office the manager said, "Hi Diane."  This surprised her since she had never seen the man before.  It turned out we were the last ones due that day, so he knew who she must be.  We quickly learned that about everyone was friendly in this campground.  Last time in this area we stayed at Fort Myers Beach, but we had a shorter motorhome.  The spaces are tight:

Our neighbors have been very friendly.  We got the Christmas tree and the presents we had on hand out:

The tree does have lights and we would leave the curtain open in the evening so people could see the tree.  Many sites had large light displays, I always wonder where they store the stuff the rest of the year.

Since we had been in the area in January 2004 and that campground was about two miles away we knew the area.  We shopped, we explored, but we ended up not taking many pictures.  We made two visits to our friends Barb and Dave Jenkins, is their website with a journal.  The first visit was when we realized we were close by and called to see if they had time for us, they did.  The second we were invited to bring the bikes and have lunch with them.  Here they are greeting us for the second visit:

The Jenkins are volunteering at Lover's Key State Park, .  By being volunteers they get a campsite and can be there all night, the park closes at dusk.  They have enjoyed many sunsets over the Gulf of Mexico, which most of us are not allowed to see.  Their main duty is to maintain a nature trail, so we went out on the bikes to see that trail.   Here is an interesting flower that Barb pointed out:

We went up to one pond on foot and saw this Great Blue Heron (GBH):

The pond is "owned" by a Little Blue Heron who chases anyone his size or smaller out, but the Little Blue Heron leaves the GBH alone.  Here is the "owner" of the pond:

We did watch the owner chase off a small white egret which we didn't get a good look at.  Here is a really good shot of the GBH's head:

The two herons pretty much ignored us after a bit.  After our ride we had lunch and then went to the beach.  Here are some shots of the beach:

We also saw an Osprey with a fish and Barb showed us lots of shells, the second picture is of shells on the beach:

Barb is an avid shell collector and this is a great beach for her.  On the way back Barb had to show us an old palm tree a woodpecker lived in, but the woodpecker wasn't home:

They have a really nice campsite, here is their backyard:

Another day we ventured to Everglades City and didn't do much because it was windy and there were some thunderstorms.  Here is one shot looking south towards Chokoloskee:

On December 31 Dave and Barb were to come over for lunch and a visit but Barb wasn't feeling well and only Dave came.  We sent some dessert home for Barb and she did appreciate it.  We didn't take any pictures, but Dave did so he might post some on his website.

We went to bed early on New Years Eve and apparently so did our neighbors, the fireworks went off at 10PM and then it was quiet.

We have found two good places to eat in the area.  The Sunflower Cafe, at the corner of San Carlos and Summerlin, has American and some Greek food and we have enjoyed it twice.  Bill highly recommends the pork chops.  We also tried the local Mexican chain Iguana Mia where we both enjoyed the enchiladas suiza.

We had survived another year on the road and are still really enjoying it.

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