Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Weather and Vacation

    It is January and the temperature in Illinois has been in the upper 50's!  The weather seems to be developing new patterns.  Last year everyone was amazed at the warmth of the winter, the wetness of the spring, the dryness of the summer...  I continually heard people say, "I can't remember a winter (spring, summer, fall) when the weather was like this."  It seems this year is setting new records, too.  I talked with a man from Minnesota last night.  He said they have yet to have a significant snow and the temperatures have been amazingly warm for MN this year.  I saw on the news last week that Valdez, Alaska, has had 26 feet of snow since November--a record for them!
      I must admit, I am not too concerned about the weather patterns right now, though, because we are sitting on the beach in Longboat Key, Florida, where the temperature is predicted to be in the mid to upper 70's for the next 10 days!  It is 70 degrees at I sit on the balcony typing this.  Here's the view from our deck:

      Our vacation time coincided with my sister Barb's trip to Illinois for business and pleasure so it worked out well.  She is house-sitting for us and is able to use our car while we're gone.  It seemed more than coincidence that she is going back to Arizona the day we return from Florida so she will take herself to the airport and leave the car for us. 
      As we left Tuesday from Illinois we drove through a thunderstorm with much lightening.  The temperature was 58 degrees.  I just checked and discovered the temperature there is 16 degrees right now with snow flurries forecast for tomorrow.  I have to admit it is good to hear we are missing some cold weather, even though I feel for those of you who are enduring it.
      Our plane arrived in Tampa almost 20 minutes early.  We were able to get our luggage, pick up our rental car and be on the road to our destination--Longboat Key--by 10:00 a.m. Illinois time.  Isn't that something--sleep in our own bed and be in Florida by 9:00 a.m.!
       We have been to Longboat Key several times but this is the first time we have stayed at the Casa Del Mar.  It is a 2 story complex.  Our room is facing the Gulf of Mexico on the second floor.  Here is a photo I took standing on the deck looking back into the condo.
   It is comparable to the Sand Cay where we usually stay but the rate was better and we thought it would be interesting to stay in a different complex this time.  It turns out to be only 3 units down from the Sand Cay.  
    On the way from the airport we stopped for lunch at a restaurant in Palmetto, called Popi's, which I found on the Internet.  Our gyros were very good.
    We checked into the Casa Del Mar early and went for a walk, read for awhile, and then went to dinner at the Dry Dock Waterfront Grill.  It was excellent!  (I spent an afternoon before the trip researching places to eat and things to do while we are here so we have several excellent recommendations we are eager to try.)  Our waitress recommended the crab cake combination which was yummy!
    Right now Country Guy is taking a walk on the beach while I write this, so I had better quit and join him.  It is too beautiful to stay inside very long!  
     More later...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It looks so beautiful! I wish we were there!!!!