We arrived on Sunday to beautiful warm sun, white sand, and crashing surf. Fort Pickens is a barrier island located off the coast of Pensacola, FL. The drive out to the end of the island is about 6 miles and is lovely. The campground is wonderfully maintained and our walk to the open ocean or the bay is 5 mins in either direction! We get to hear reveille played each morning from the naval air base across the bay, TAPS in the evening. Dogs are not allowed on the ocean side so Samson has been relegated to the bay. I don’t think he cares because honestly there is more to smell on the bay side.
I met a really interesting girl named Jennifer, while I was checking us in at registration. She is about my age, recently an empty nester, and newly retired from the Air Force. She has been full timing, alone, since August. She had some great stories to share. She actually parked her RV in Miami for a month and worked on a small sail boat headed for Cuba. She said that it was an amazing trip except since Castro had just died, the entire island was in mourning. No music, no alcohol, no dancing, no museums open. In an effort to make lemonade out of lemons, they decided to go spend time on The Dry Tortugas. She said it was a “must see”.
Monday the weather turned….bad, REALLY bad. We were under tornado watches and warnings all day and into the evening. The wind, rain, thunder, and lightning was relentless. Since the road was flooded, we had nowhere to go. So, we pulled in the sides, (I prayed), and hunkered down. The next morning when it was all over, only the parking pads were above the water line. It looked like everyone was parked on a lake! The folks in AL were not as fortunate. That storm claimed five lives. But we were blessed and everyone was fine.
Our neighbors are friendly and we met a couple that has our exact coach model parked down the way. The only difference, they have theater seats instead of a couch. I can hear the wheels turning in Mark’s head. Usually that is accompanied by the ringing of a cash register somewhere…. It was nice to talk to another couple that are more experienced and to have extra confirmation that we had made a great decision on our Newmar Ventana. They have invited us over to take a look. We still need to make it over.
Tuesday and Wednesday mornings we got to see the Blue Angels practice! A few of the formations were right over us! It’s exciting watch. We have plans to visit the Fort and Naval base this weekend. I sure hope the weather cooperates. Our hometown of Atlanta is currently under a winter storm watch and the rain is coming up thru our area first.