Well that week of vacation went by too fast. My wife and I just returned from sunny Florida. I always enjoy visiting that state as it feels like a totally different country than where we are from. Especially during winter of course. As it turns out, we left during a great time. The temperatures dropped pretty fiercely and we did receive more snow. I must admit, it felt pretty good checking my phone to see the minus 16 degree windchill reports from back home while sitting on the beach in low 80 degree temps.
We had an early flight and flew out in quite a strong wind. It actually took two attempts to land the plane when we arrived to our second hop due to the 50 mph wind gusts. A little nerve wracking as that was definitely a first. We also had a little delay as we waited to catch our next flight due to weather from the night before. No big deal though as we had no other connecting flights after this point. We decided not to get a rental car and just use Uber to get around. The cheapest rental car I could find was around $350 for the week and since we were able to walk to most places, it was money saved. I’m a big Uber fan and it didn’t let us down. We had a ride that picked us up within 5 minutes from my request at the Tampa airport and drove us 35 minutes to our hotel in Clearwater Beach. I felt that the price of $24 was reasonable for the ride.
The beach is very impressive. You can walk a long, long ways and the sand is mostly white with tons of seashells. We immediately thought of how hard the shells were to find in Jamaica and Mexico. Not the case here. Even as the spring breakers started to roll in, there was plenty of room on the beach to lay around or play catch with a football.
We loved trying out some of the fresh fish from the local establishments down there. I think I had grouper literally every single day. Fried, grilled, cajun, blackened, we enjoyed it about every way possible. The grouper tacos were also delicious. Safe to say I let the diet go a bit on this vacation but I did only have red meat twice and only gained about 2.5 pounds. The meals weren’t exactly cheap but that’s to be expected when you are in a tourist area. We did catch a couple lunch specials that brought the price down a bit. If you do get down there, check out Frenchy’s.
A lot of miles on foot were put on as we did our daily walks up and down the strip of shops and eateries. This place really has a nice vibe about it with people walking around all over the place. I’m normally not much of a people person but it was fun I have to admit. We would usually go out early and then wind the day down pretty early as well. Things got quite a bit busier at night so we didn’t mind skipping out on that. It was a funny mix of spring breakers, retired folks, and everything in between. Oh, and the fancy cars…..There is some money down there!
I enjoyed visiting with fellow baseball fans that were there to watch their respective baseball teams. The Phillies and Blue Jays have their spring training facilities near there and also the Yankees about 30 minutes away. We did take in a game and had a fun time. Steinbrenner Field is really nice for a minor league stadium. We also went to an aquarium and took a boat cruise to see some dolphins and of course some multi million dollar mansions.
Back To The Grind
We really enjoyed our vacation but we were really missing our son. Soon he will be involved in every vacation but he is a little young yet to fully enjoy. Plus he enjoyed spending time with Grandma and Grandpa too. Also it was nice to get back to our spacious house instead of a small hotel room. Even though we weren’t in it too much with the exception of sleep of course. We both agreed that we will return to Clearwater Beach again someday soon as it was one of our very favorite vacations thus far!
I was hoping to ease back into work the first day back. Wrong! I came back to find out that my coworkers didn’t exactly cover me and there was some time critical work that needed to be done immediately. Thanks guys. I thought that was pretty inconsiderate since I have covered for them several times in the past. Frustrating to put it mildly. Thankfully my wife had a much better day as she continues to love her “new” job. It has been a year already. Time flies! Anyways, back to the real world and dreaming of our next excursion!