Sunday, March 16, 2014

Trip Home from Captiva- Day 2

This morning we arose early around 5:30 to begin the final leg home.  We had a quick breakfast in the lobby....nothing to write about....typical motel lobby breakfast.  The weather is cool and rainy this am.  The drive begins on I-26 for 26 miles and then is on I-77 all the way home.  The distance to cover today is 600 miles and should take about 9 hours.   I had packed our lunch again and we did not have to stop to eat,  saving time.

We started out in fog and rain which turned into snow and ice near Charleston, WV and lasted  about an hour of the drive (And I was at the wheel for this hour).  It then cleared off around Parkersburg and was smooth driving the rest of the way.

We stopped at Old Carolina Barbeque Company for a carryout of  pulled pork sandwiches with sides of baked beans and coleslaw  before driving home.   Guess that drive through all that barbeque country in SC and NC made us crave some BBQ.

After eating, we unloaded the car,  mostly done by Al.  We found everything at home in good shape thanks to our neighbors, Mike and Pam, and no snow on the ground but cold.

This concludes my coverage of our Captiva Trip for 2014 but  I'll be back next year to cover the next trip.  For those who follow our blog, I hope you enjoyed our adventure and even some of the boring details that I cover.  Thanks for following along.

Goodbye until next year.
 Crocus-First Signs of Spring at Home

Saturday, March 15, 2014

On the Road Home - Day 1

We were up around 5:30 to begin our trip home.  The car was pretty much packed except for the last bags and computers.  We finished loading in the dark as the sun does not rise until around 7:30.
After coffee, juice, and toast we headed out about 7:45 on the first leg of the trip home.

The drive home is 1199.15 miles which takes about 18 hrs 42 mins. We are driving to Orangeburg, NC and will spend the night there. This should have been a 9 hr drive but took longer because of some delays on the interstate  because of heavy traffic.

We took I-75 out of Ft Myers up to Ocala but then took NW 77th St/Hwy 326 to US 301 N to I-10 to connect with I-295 to I-95 then 26 miles on I-26 into Orangeburg.  This route avoided some of the delays and traffic on the interstates and was a pleasant change from interstate driving. 

The weather was sunny and warm .....a beautiful day for driving.  We arrived at the Hampton Inn in Orangeburg ( 3583 St. Matthews RoadOrangeburgSouth Carolina 29118 1-803-531-6400)  just before sunset .....was about 11.5 hour drive.  This could become our stopover on trips from Captiva.
                                   
We had dinner at Fatz Café located next to the motel. Al ordered a half rack of baby back ribs with  rich and tangy BBQ sauce served with fries. I had fresh chicken tenders, served with honey mustard sauce for dipping and side of cheesy grits.  We both ordered Caesar salads but waitress messed up orders and salad arrived after entrees so manager apologized and remove charge for salads.  The restaurant was full of energy and very busy.  We'd probably come again but not order as much food. 
 
 


Friday, March 14, 2014

Day 41 on Captiva

Note: Sometime posts sent  in emails cannot be fully opened.  The posts on my blog Captiva Days with Al and Theresa may be read easier by going to the blog  by clicking here.  

Today is the last day of our 6 week stay.  The time has gone so quickly....it is hard to believe we head home tomorrow.  I finished planning our route home and printed out the directions.  I finished packing the kitchen items except for cold items and food for the trip. 

Choppy Surf
video
To view the above video, you may need to open on the blog by clicking here
  
This was another lovely day.....perfect for our last day.  After lunch we headed to the beach which was a bit choppy and windy but very warm!  We enjoyed our last afternoon watching for dolphins and enjoying the surf and sand.

Surf's Up!


Pelican Swimming Up Close to the  Shore in Choppy Waves

Tonight we returned to Lazy Flamingo for our Last Meal.  We walked over.....just a short walk across the Blind Pass Bridge. This photo made from the bridge shows the bay and the back of the house of the owner of our vacation home.
 
It was a busy night at the LF with all the tables filled and a waiting list.   We managed to get seats at the bar after a short wait.  We started with our usual dozen oysters on the half shell.  Al ordered fried grouper with Caesar salad and I had the fried oysters basket with fries.  We enjoyed sharing the dinners and Blue Moon Beers.   A nice finish to a great 6 weeks.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Day 40 on Captiva


            
We had another cool morning on the island.  It was a good time to begin packing and organizing our trip home. We  have decided to drive through GA, SC, NC VA, WV and not stop over in TN.  This is a shorter route and we can do in 2 days rather than the 3 we usually do. I spent some time planning out the trip with map quest and reviewing options.
 I served lunch of sandwiches and chicken soup inside because it's a bit cool on the porch.

We did some laundry and packing.  We partially loaded the car so we do not have to it do all in one day. I did some more posting on this blog from the notes that I make daily and photos that I have downloaded.  I try to do the posts daily but it is hard to do so I have to play catch up when I get behind.

I made Shrimp Puttanesca  tonight with a salad and rolls.     This clears out a lot of the ingredients left in the kitchen. I have managed not to have a lot of food and supplies left over after 6 weeks.

These photos are from the garden and grounds of the Vacation House,




Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Day 39 on Captiva

Last year a pair of eagles would visit the beach nearly everyday when we were in Captiva. They would sit in an Australian Pine tree directly behind the area where we sat.  This year we have only spotted them on the beach only a couple of times.   But today an eagle flew in and landed in the same tree and perched there for about 3o minutes,  I caught a picture as he flew above the roofs before landing.....


 
Today was a windy day but it was warm and was a great day to be at the beach.
The photos below gives an idea of how windy it was and how high the surf was.
 


 
Dinner tonight was at one of our favorite restaurants, The Mad Hatter.  We had early reservations at 5:15 with a table by the window.  We shared an appetizer of Portuguese Oysters roasted with chorizo, grilled corn and roasted pepper crusted  and Duck Salad-sliced cold duck on a bed of spinach  with orange, pecans, bacon and chopped onion dressing.  Al ordered Short Ribs, red wine braised, served with horseradish cream and truffle yucca fries,  I ordered the Triple Tail Special  pan-fried  topped with crab meat and fruit and served on saffron rice and asparagus.  Enjoyed with Pinot Noir and Pinot Grigio. A Lovely meal and great service by Michelle.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Day 38 on Captiva


Today we went out to the Bay Side to watch the sunrise which now is around 7:30 am because of DLS.  It was a cloudy morning and there were only a few birds.


 
 
 
 
We then drove to Bailey Tract to walk the trail looking for birds and wildlife.  We saw ducks and a couple of rabbits  but not that many birds.
 

 



 
Rabbits 




 We made a stop at Bailey's Fish Market to get some triple tail fish for dinner,   I made Tuna salad for lunch and served with fresh tomatoes and lettuce with Iced Tea.
We spent a couple hours at the pool and then headed to the Beach until 4:30. 
 If you want to see more pictures of the vacation house click here
 



 For dinner we pan-roasted the triple tail and served with lemon butter sauce and sides of  corn and romaine salad dressed with lemon juice and oil with garlic, anchovies, parmesan cheese.  Love this fish.  I am including the link to a video for the recipe here so I will remember next time.

 
 

Monday, March 10, 2014

Day 37 0n Captiva

Today is another beautiful day.  We had another great birding experience from the front porch.  About 9:00 a group of Ibis landed in a tree near us and sat posing for pictures.





 
For lunch we enjoyed sandwiches of leftover beef from last night's dinner. Great lunch! Then we headed to the beach for an afternoon of boats and sun. And dolphins!






Some pictures of a resident Osprey who spends most of the day in this tree near the house.



Tonight was Monday Night at the Races.  Al watched the harness races at Northfield online.  We had a casual dinner on the porch  of grilled sausages and red peppers on buns with chopped salad and beer while watching the races.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Day 36 on Captiva

This morning we went to the Farmer's Market for fresh produce for our final week on Captiva.  We will miss our weekend trips shopping here. Below are more photos of the market:





 
We then went to Jerry's Supermarket for a quick breakfast and to shop.  Al had a lox and bagel platter with chopped eggs, chopped onion and cream cheese....not as good as lox platter at Sanibel Café or Over Easy.  I had Eggs Benedict served with fruit.  Restaurant was busy so we grabbed seats at the
counter.   
                                              
 
 We spent the afternoon at the beach watching birds, boats, and babes.
 




 
We decided that we would go to Ding Darling for sunset and the gathering of the Roseate Spoonbills  which is always a sight to see.  We photographed other birds as we waited for the spoonbills to arrive.
 




The Spoonbills arrive:
 
 
 
 




video
To view above video, click on arrow or go to blog here and click on video.
 
For dinner, Al grilled steak and potatoes that we enjoyed with salad and hot rolls.