Thursday, February 4, 2010

On the Road

FL was nice,but cool. We are in Abbeville,LA. It is raining and cool so I thought I would try to start updating our blog. Jan left off at Titusville where we spent a day at the NASA Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force base(I think it is fascinating--Jan not quite so--she saw her first live armadillo and lots of wild pigs. She likes the wild stuff). So---- we traveled down A1A to Palm Beach where we visited Whitehall, the Flagler House Museum. Henry Flagler built most of the east coast Florida tourism by building the railroad and hotels in many of the towns along the coast. The biggest are in St.Augustine and West Palm Beach. He, also, built many churches along with his hotels. Key West was also developed by him, because he thought that it would become the major US seaport in the south, but he was wrong and New Orleans became the great seaport. He did build the railroad to Key West. In some places along the highway to Key West you can still see some of the railroad bridges he built---they are listed on the National Historic Register.flaglermuseum The internet is great because you never hear of people like this until you start searching for things to see. We left Palm Beach and traveled across Alligator Alley (even with the cold weather,the alligators were THERE)------I-75 West to Naples and Fort Meyers Beach on the Gulf of Mexico. We stayed overnight and toured Sanibel Island, a cracker house museum, a Sears catalog house, the lighthouse and the shell covered beaches. Left there and went to Sarasota and the John Ringling circus museum and John & Mable Ringling's house. ringlingmuseum They also have a 200 yr old theater that was brought from Asolo, Italy-- rebuilt and is now being used for meetings and shows,etc. A very interesting and amazing place. We learned that he created the Sarasota tourist business with his winter camp for his circuses. He also owned more than 1/4 of the land in and around Sarasota. We left there and returned to Whispering Pines and a couple more days of really cold (20's & 30's) weather. Turned nice and we spent the last few weeks there visiting jam sessions and the Orange Blossom Opry --- lots of great music in the area along with Jan's cards and bingo.

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