East Coast 2021:
Day 13 - Titusville, FL


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East Coast 2021: [Day 1 - Erie, PA] [Day 2 - Syracuse, NY] [Day 3 - Littleton, NH] [Day 4 - Ft. Kent, ME] [Day 5 - Bucksport, ME] [Day 6 - Hampton, NH] [Day 7 - Branford, CT] [Day 8 - Bensalem, PA] [Day 9 - Jessup, MD] [Day 10 - Petersburg, VA] [Day 11 - Columbia, SC] [Day 12 - Baxley, GA] [Day 13 - Titusville, FL] [Day 14 - Homestead, FL] [Day 15 - Homestead, FL] [Day 16 - Homestead, FL] [Day 17 - Tavernier, FL] [Day 18 - Marathon, FL] [Day 19 - Gainesville, FL] [Day 20 - Natchez, MS] [Day 21 - Nashville, TN] [Day 22 - Heading Home]

Wednesday, September 22, 2021: Fog blanketed the area when we left the hotel at 7:30 AM.
We were trying to mix up our breakfast foods, so we stopped at Hardee's this morning. After all, they serve Georgia's best burger, so we're pretty sure they rate their own breakfast pretty highly too.
This Pineland Bank building has to be the most space-age bank ever built. And their ATMs are 24 hours. Can other banks offer that same convenience?
The fog was burning off and there were patches of clear blue sky out there.
By 9 AM the fog was gone, and we were driving along swampland.
We head been on part of the Woodpecker Trail, one of the oldest automobile tourist routes in the country dating back to the early 1920s when it was listed in the Automobile Legal Association's "Green Book." It stretches from Augusta, Georgia, to Lake City and Jacksonville, Florida.
The swamp we had been seeing on the side of the road is part of the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, which covers more than 400,000 acres of southern Georgia and northern Florida.
Folkston, Georgia, is apparently the gateway to the Okefenokee, as it should be since the administrative offices of the National Wildlife Refuge are here.
Another body of water, ...
... crossing over the state line into ...
... Florida, the sunshine state. Welcome to our 44th state this year.
The crossing street signs here showed that we were on US Highway 1.
We started seeing a bunch of roadside businesses that were probably very popular during their heyday, and still retained a lot of the character of the old days, like this Holiday Terrace Motel, ...
... or the Dixie Motel, ...
... or the Bar and Package Cocktail Lounge. Who can pass up a place that offers both?
By 10 AM, we had completely clear skies, a divided highway, and smooth traveling.
Pretty bridge!
As were were entering Jacksonville, we saw the start of I-10. I-10 only goes west from Jacksonville.
Speaking of Jacksonville, here is the lovely skyline.
US 1 appeared to disappear around the St. John's River, so we hopped on to I-95 briefly to cross it, and then immediately got back off onto Route 1.
We saw this example of Florida's adopt-a-highway sign near our lunch stop, ...
... L&L Hawaiian Grill near Baymeadows Center.
We loaded up on three flavors of Hawaiian Sun: Guava Nectar, Strawberry Guava Nectar, and Strawberry Lilikoi.
We also ordered the musubi trio, which was three different musubi: spam musubi, BBQ chicken musubi, and BBQ beef musubi.
And finally, we got the BBQ Mix Plate Lunch, which was BBQ beef, BBQ chicken, and BBQ short ribs, plus rice and macaroni salad. We ate our lunch in the L&L parking lot, as it was far too messy to try to eat musubi on the road.
Back on the road, south of Jacksonville, the road went back to uncongested highway.
As we approached St Augustine, a private jet passed low over the road and landed at Northrup Grumman's runway near the Northeast Florida Regional Airport. This 150-acre facility repairs sub-assemblies for the B-2 Stealth Bomber and the E-2 Hawkeye radar early warning aircraft.
Just before 1 PM, we got a call from Camping World that they we in the final stages of selling our RV. We pulled over into a gas station under construction to text them our official authorization to sell it to their buyer and to complete some last minute details.
A few short minutes later, we were back on the road with mixed feelings about no longer owning the RV. We loved it while we had it, and were sad to see it go, but we were also relieved that the process of selling it was over.
South US 1 is certainly a Florida Scenic Highway.
This was the first time we had seen the US 1 logo printed directly on the road.
As were were driving through Holly Hill, Debbie started laughing out loud when see saw Florida's Merci Train boxcar in Veteran's Memorial Park. We had made a special trip here 2018, and this time we just stumbled across it. Neither one of us remembered that it was on Route 1 when we were here last time. It still looked in good shape, but like the South Carolina Merci Train, all of the shields had been removed from the back of the boxcar and placed on the front side.
There is now nothing of interest on the back, which probably makes it an easier drive-by attraction since you don't need to get out and walk around it to see anything.
The Hawaii Motel was another one of those places that retained some old school charm.
Near Daytona Beach, we turned into a roadside park to get a closer look at the Intracoastal Waterway and the hotels across the water, ...
... when Debbie spotted this snowy egret trying very hard to eat a pink shrimp that it had caught. The shrimp was putting up quite the fight, though, and we watched the epic struggle for a few minutes in fascination.
We drove through the Spruce Creek Preserve, a shallow cypress swamp on both sides of the highway.
We turned off US-1 and headed toward New Smyrna Beach. As we turned under this bridge, Debbie noticed that there was a sculpture of a manta ray hanging underneath the roadway of the bridge, and that the bridge pylons were decorated with various fish murals. That's pretty cool.
We crossed over the Atlantic Intracostal Waterway, ...
... which is quite a spectacular body of water.
We were headed to Twistee Treat, an ice cream shop that is in a building shaped like an ice cream cone.
Debbie got a choco-nut fancy cone with chocolate ice cream, ...
... while Tom got the same thing only a mix of chocolate and vanilla. For some reason, Tom's code is considerably shorter than Debbie's, even though we ordered the same size.
We drove to an alley beside one of the ocean front resorts just to get an unobstructed view of the ocean. For all of our drive down Route 1, we hadn't really seen the ocean yet and we were craving a good look. There was a lot of traffic in the alley though, and we quickly moved on.
Returning to Route 1 where we left it, Debbie saw this barracuda sculpture under the same underpass where we saw the manta ray before.
We were surprised to see Cape Canaveral National Cemetery just south of Scottsmoor, Florida. We didn't know there were any National Cemeteries other than Arlington National Cemetery. We decided to drive through it and take a look around.
The perfectly spaced rows of military gravestones are a really beautiful sight.
The grounds were absolutely immaculate, and we saw dozens of groundskeepers mowing, trimming, and tidying the grass around the stones.
This section had no grass after the first four rows of graves, and there were temporary markers in the fresh dirt to mark where new graves would be placed.
The graves were for both military personnel and what looked to be military spouses, and the graves here were very recent. Most in this section were from 2021.
We were fascinated to see a casket being offloaded and preparing for burial. We drove quickly by out of respect and didn't linger.
This was one of several columbariums, which is a structure for holding funerary urns.
There were many different icons on the top of the stones, and there were some that had no icons, ...
... and some that had hearts. There are apparently 78 different choices for emblems of belief, as the icons are known, plus the option of no emblem.
We stumbled upon this ice-cream-cone shaped building with the name "Frisbee's." Debbie had a map of the Twistee Treat buildings that we would pass, and this one was not one of them. It certainly seems to be of the same design, so it was probably a Twistee Treat at one time. Most of the Twistee Treats we visited in Florida are relatively new franchisees.
This building had a shuttle out front and several rocket-y things around the property. With the name American Space Museum, it must be legit.
More motels that must have been amazing in the 1960s, ...
... especially since they offer color TV as an amenity.
As we drove through Titusville, Debbie was the first to spot NASA's Vehicle Assembly Building across the water.
This park must have been very crowded during Space Shuttle launches.
Just after 4 PM, we checked into the TownPlace Suites by Marriott in Titusville, by far the best hotel room we'd had so far.
It had a full kitchen, and a full-sized refrigerator. We took full advantage of the freezer and froze every single water bottle we were carrying.
The TV even had a personalized greeting for Debbie.
We were able to see a long way from our fifth-floor room.
We could see thunderstorms in the distance to the west.
We kept going to the window to look out to see where they were going, and watched them all pass north of us.

Miles today: 284. Total miles from Fort Kent, ME: 2396.

Day 14 >

 

 


East Coast 2021: [Day 1 - Erie, PA] [Day 2 - Syracuse, NY] [Day 3 - Littleton, NH] [Day 4 - Ft. Kent, ME] [Day 5 - Bucksport, ME] [Day 6 - Hampton, NH] [Day 7 - Branford, CT] [Day 8 - Bensalem, PA] [Day 9 - Jessup, MD] [Day 10 - Petersburg, VA] [Day 11 - Columbia, SC] [Day 12 - Baxley, GA] [Day 13 - Titusville, FL] [Day 14 - Homestead, FL] [Day 15 - Homestead, FL] [Day 16 - Homestead, FL] [Day 17 - Tavernier, FL] [Day 18 - Marathon, FL] [Day 19 - Gainesville, FL] [Day 20 - Natchez, MS] [Day 21 - Nashville, TN] [Day 22 - Heading Home]

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