Sunday, February 17, 2013
My husband recently had some business to take care of in Florida. In the past we’ve flown, however, since I’m still unemployed, we decided to save some cash, and have an adventure, by driving. So we packed up Sunday morning, leaving the cold Michigan weather for sunny, warm Florida.
One of the things that made me fall for my husband was our matching interests in trying new things and looking for adventure. We both have these (sometimes annoying) responsible streaks that sometimes butts heads with these characteristics but we find ways to balance life, especially with each other.
To make the adventure a bit entertaining, we took a small stuffed lioness with us on the journey. We took pictures of her in funny locations (in a palm tree, eating at the Waffle House, watching TV at the Hampton Inn) and text them to our family. Totally dorky (as my older sister put it) but we laughed a lot and entertained the family, especially our five-year-old niece.
Driving from Michigan to the lower portion of Florida can get boring, no doubt about it. Especially when nightfall hits, shading any potential
pretty views. But we made the most of it and had lots of laughs and goofy moments. I love our ability to talk about everything and nothing. I’ve also come to appreciate our ability to enjoy quiet, comfortable moments together.
I once worried about those stretches of quiet; no conversations, just two people sitting side by side in the car, watching television, sitting on the deck. Then I recognized over-analysis (I am a female after all!) and came to realize those stretches of sitting quietly together aren’t because of boredom with each other, but a relaxing comfort and contentment with the other. And that ability – to be quiet and comfortable with someone – is more difficult to find than you’d think. It makes me appreciate our relationship and is an important point toward long-term success in marriage. At least in my book.
When we crossed into Florida, we stopped at a welcome center to take pictures in front of the “Welcome to Florida” sign as tourists do. I pulled up local caches on my Geocaching app, happy to learn a cache was hidden a short distance from the car! After quickly logging the find, we headed south. We finally arrived in Fort Myers Tuesday evening. It was so much warmer than Michigan!
After a long drive, several items stuck in my mind (what else was I to think about during 20 hours in the car?). My random observations:
Georgia is a really long state to drive through, and with mostly 55-60 mph on I-75, it makes for many hours in the car.
Hospitality staff in Georgia are really friendly.
Starbucks advertises a LOT on the southbound I-75 expressway through Georgia – almost every other exit sign advertised a Starbucks and even a few billboards. Coming back northbound we didn’t see one advertisement until Atlanta.
There are lots of fast food options, not many healthy restaurants advertised (I’ll stay off my soapbox for now). If you don’t eat fast food as we don’t, pack good snacks in the car for the long stretches of looking for good restaurants!
Tracking your drive progress via the maps app on an iPhone can be fun (and frustrating when it shows a many miles to go).
Lexington, KY is one of my favorite cities to drive through – horse farms everywhere!
The Waffle House is almost as populous as Cracker Barrel. We felt adventurous when deciding to eat at The Waffle House.
It is important to check that the air conditioning unit works in your vehicle when heading to a state with 80-85 degree temps.
Palm trees just make me smile.
Opening the windows to a soft, warm breeze after months of cold, snowy weather lifts your spirits.
Good music makes a road trip much better.
Great company, like your sweet husband, makes a road trip lots of fun.