Sunday, March 4, 2012

Daytona 500 2012 (what should've been)

At this point I have had a few trips under my belt, both by myself and with company, yet somehow anticipation crept up on me and I was feeling like I did for my first trip. I guess that is not the worst thing that can happen, matter of fact quite the opposite as I grow fonder of camping.

This trip was a planned urban camping trip that I was determined to make an "off the beaten path" one. Getting some so much needed time outdoors, but also I little time with my dad whom I haven't seen since he was released from the hospital back in November.

The campground Daytona Beach KOA was actually nice, and had an area for tents, small trailers and pop up campers that somewhat resembled a state park campground with trees, and an open field that accommodated everyone very well.

Thursday was driving in day, and setting up not much else since I like to be on the road early to avoid all traffic, which means going to be early that evening.

Friday morning spent at "The world's most famous beach" for a 3 mile walk along with other exercises, after all these years I still need my morning work out by the sea.

In the afternoon a drive to Kissimmee to see my dad and get some dinner with him and his significant other.

For Saturday I had planned to visit Tomoka state park, and although I was feeling lazy at first I talked myself into going, and boy am I glad I did. The park is full of trails to hike thru, fishing areas and picnic tables that sit overlooking the water. The campgrounds in the park are phenomenal, and all the while is off road driving, even with a section that used to be their "dump" that is now open to hikers, bicycles, and vehicles (I wouldn't recommend driving a non four wheel drive vehicle thru). After driving off road all over the park I continued to drive the area outside the park at one of the ranger's recommendation to the north entrance of the park, and the biggest oldest oak tree all thru a scenic route that was filled with wild life that if one wasn't paying attention might miss (or run over, as was the case with a tortoise that would have gotten ran over by the next vehicle after me, of course I stopped traffic and moved the turtle to safety, lol) along the way there were alligator crossing marks across the road, ruins of old building, and all kind of birds too. This place was so captivating that I have to come back just to explore it and attempt to document its beauty to share it with everyone else.

Sunday race day! Or so I thought, from problems at the "will call" with the tickets to the rain delay, that eventually became a postponement of the race (first time in 54 years of the event). Joe and I decided to make the best of the soggy, cold situation by walking to the Hooters across the track where we stood in line outside for a table for about 40 min. Still worth waiting since at the time there was no decision made on moving the race back, and what better place to do it at, right? Long story short we waited until the decision was made to postpone the race and in the meantime made new friends and almost made up for the lack of racing.

When I sat down to finish this blog entry I almost decide to not publish it since well, this trip was quite not as planned, but then I remembered that like life itself its about the journey and not the destination. With that said this was a great example of it, where friendships were strengthen, nature was breath taking and the journey was an amazing one!


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