Sunday, May 1, 2011

April 29-30, 2011. St. Augustine, FL

St. Augustine is a beautiful old town (the oldest continually occupied European settlement in the US), very conducive to walking. Friday morning Dianne and Jan attended a tour of Flagler College to see the extensive collection of William Comfort Tiffany stained glass windows, and Bill and I just walked around town.We got in the truck about 11:00 AM and headed south, planning to watch the Space Shuttle Endeavor launch from someplace closer. We were not sure how close we could get, but gave it a try nonetheless. On the way there we passed this airplane being hauled down the highway. Just when you think you've seen everything...
As we were nearing Titusville (after 2 hours of driving), Dianne called to tell us the launch had been delayed at least 48 hours. I was pretty disappointed, but what can you do? We turned around and headed back, stopping for lunch at Daytona.

Saturday morning we went to the Alligator Farm with my sister Joan and her husband Bobby. I had been looking for alligators in every creek and pond along the bike route, seeing none. We certainly saw enough gators at the farm! There was a rookery as well, where we saw many varities of birds.

Among the alligators were a few rare white gators--they look like the concrete ones people put in their gardens until they start moving!

When we finished with the alligators we went downtown and took a trolley tour, including seeing the old jail. The gallows still stand, and the cell blocks are all in tact with their iron bars and wall mounted bunks. The guides all wore stripes and made jokes, but the jail was a pretty horrible place in the early 1900s.

In the evening we walked to town again, had dinner and looked around some more. The original city gates still stand, saved by a group of women who staged a sitin in the 1880s when the town officials wanted to tear them down. There are stories everywhere you look here. We did not go for a carriage ride, and looked at the fort (in the background of the carriage photo) but did not do the guided tour. There is so much to do and see here!

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