December 3 to 16, 2007 - Clermont, Orlando and Bushnell, Florida

On December 3rd we left Hanna Park in Jacksonville and traveled to Thousand Trails Orlando in Clermont, a journey through Orlando itself on I-4 that was 182 miles long.  We ended up in a spot about 100 feet from where we camped in October.  Driving through Orlando was not bad, we expected worse.

Once we were setup we noticed that a few spaces down was another green Dutch Star, just past an Allegro Bus:

The Allegro Bus and the Dutch Star occupants were friends from Virginia Beach and we had a good time visiting with them.  Here is a photo a few days later showing the other Dutch Star, with it's sunscreens up first and our Dutch Star, with the green sunscreens, further back.

Our friends' Ken and Carolle came down to use their timeshare condo in Orlando while we were in Clermont and Ken's sister, Marie, joined them.  We ended up spending time with them all. 

Here are Marie and Ken outside the condo:

Carolle getting her camera ready:

Carolle, Ken, Diane and Bill.

Marie and Ken.

The walking bridge over to the other side of the Marriot resort the condo is part of.

More of the outside.

Diane, Marie, and Ken with the first floor condo behind them.

We ended up trying Nick's Grill at the condo for lunch one day, it was OK.  Better was we all went to Maggiano's Little Italy, an Italian chain owned by Chili's, and Mimi's Cafe.   Ken, Carolle and Marie were familiar with Maggiano's, but we introduced them to Mimi's.

We did spend time on our own and part of it was watching the wildlife in the campground.  We saw the sandhill cranes many times but only have this one photo to share.

We also saw gopher tortoises a few times.

Our favorite male northern cardinal did find us and he did play with Evita.  We also had other birds at the feeder, like these little ones:

An immature male northern cardinal, we thought was a female until reading only the males have red:

Some more little birds:

We have a whole web page devoted to Evita and the cardinal

Our last Friday in Clermont we drove an hour and a half to visit the Nutty Buddy's rally in Bushnell, Florida where Ken, Carolle and Marie went after Orlando.  We had last visited with the Nutty Buddy's in November 2005.  It was good to see them again and we had a good time even though we got home quite late.

On our last Sunday we received a phone call from our good friend's Ken and Joan, their motorhome body repairs were finally complete so they had quickly travelled from Ohio to Bushnell, Florida and had just arrived.  We had not seen them since the April 2006 Spring Escapade 2006 in Chico, CA.  We decided it had been too long so we again drove to Bushnell and visited.  We all went to the Old World Restaurant in Floral City for dinner, a fine addition to our restaurants list.

Now we were ready for our two-and-a-half month stay in Fort Myers Beach, Florida.

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