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Sunday
Mar212010

Downtime

Another quiet patch. This time because we went on holiday! Two weeks, doing very little, over in my parents' house in Florida. 

Little house

I think the house my Mum calls her 'little house' is actually bigger than ours! It's a three bed bungalow, they bought it before it was built and I remember spending a couple of hours waiting for them to specify every little detail, from the roof colour (I chose the green), to the carpet, to the type of tree outside (the three palms were their choice!). The estate - or 'gated community' - is now fully built up, with a couple of pools and tennis courts for residents! 

That built in garage came in very handy one day when it was raining pretty hard. The door is automatic, operated from a button in the car (I know! Pretty cool...) and we just drove right in without getting wet at all. Lovely. They also keep a couple of bikes in there, to get to the pool with. We didn't use them this time at all. Pretty unusual! We used the lanai instead...

No photos

Which is a word we'd never come across until we got this house! It seems to be a covered patio, which is properly part of the house. The roof comes right down over it - which makes it shady, which seems strange to our English, must-get-all-the-sun-we-can mentality, but makes a lot of sense in Floridian heat. It's really sheltered, which is more important in March. It can get a little breezy. So we move the furniture into the strip of sun along the edge, and spend large amounts of time reading lots of books and knitting and stuff. 

The view out the back is one of the reasons my parents chose that particular plot of land.

Rural

Just a band of trees, then an open field. A lot of the area has been built on since we bought the house, but not that field. That is still mostly used for...

Cow

Cows. They get a bit noisy sometimes, and I think Mum has had them crash through the undergrowth right outside her window, but it's a nice view. And the band of trees and the undergrowth (which Mum has embellished with bougainvillaea and various other plants) attracts quite a bit of wildlife. Mostly birds, including hummingbirds in season apparently, but this time we also saw a squirrel or two and a rabbit! The mesh on the outside of the lanai seems to give them the confidence to get really close, which is great. So I get to sit and watch the birds there too! 

We did go out and about a bit too. We shopped (of course), I did some running (it was so flat! Yay!), we went to Busch Gardens out in Tampa, and Epcot (they had their annual flower festival on! Yay!), and we went to Cocoa Beach near Cape Canaveral.

Blue

There's a pier on the beach, with a restaurant on it. 

Pier

Looked kind of rickety, but I'm sure it's fine! We had lunch there, and then went further along the pier. 

Fishermen

You have to pay to go along the pier (unless you eat in the restaurant) and we weren't entirely sure why you would. Other than to fish. There were other places to drink! But the pelicans were kind of cool. We saw a group of them flying over the car park earlier, they look sort of prehistoric. 

So yeah. A lovely restful holiday. We were feeling pretty good on Friday before the flight back, but unfortunately the nice confined quarters on the airplane seems to have left both of us with colds, just to undo that holiday feeling. Still, only 9 working days until Easter, I'm sure we'll survive!  

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