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Sunday, June 27, 2021

We Sold the Camper Today

2004 Dodge Roadtrek

Today we sold our Roadtrek camper for $43,800. We have owned it for 4 years and put 21,000 miles on it. We spent 76 nights in it. It has a total of 34,000 miles on it. 

A buyer drove down from Wrightsville GA - 4 hours away - to test drive it. 

He told us - he visited 4 other Roadtreks - and many were high priced - and many were sold out from under him. 

I think once the covid scare is over - the motor home market will be flooded. 

Friday, June 25, 2021

We Celebrated Our 50th Anniversary Dinner at the Home of Gianni Versace in South Beach on Ocean Drive

Lummis Park - Miami Beach

Nothing says South Beach Miami more than the home of Gianni Versace. He loved living on Ocean Drive and enjoying ambiance of this magical city. Sadly - he was shot on the steps of this beautiful mansion. In 2018 - the holdings of his company were sold for $2.2 billion. For the mere cost of a meal - we were able to enjoy his home and the wonderful Latin flavor and history. 

Lulu was stunning for this special night. She had lobster and I had steak along with a bottle of champagne. The evening was culminated with a proposal and presentation of a pair of garnet and gold earrings. 

Gianni Versace chose Medusa as the logo because she made people fall in love with her and they had no way back. That is exactly how I felt the day I met Nancy at the Bungalow Pool in Tamaqua PA.
Versace Mansion

Thursday, June 24, 2021

We Are Celebrating Our 50th Anniversary Today in Miami Beach

They said it would never last - The Golden Couple 
50 years strong. 

50 years ago today - Nancy and I were married in Finksburg MD. We then drove down to Miami Beach to spend our honeymoon on the beach. We were young and in love - and the first adjective changed but the second one didn't. We have had so many great adventures together - 2 great sons - and now 4 wonderful grandkids. When we married we were 6 years apart - and it was a scandal. 

Since then we have built 2 new homes - and Nancy is a world class professor and Fulbright Scholar. We have been all over the world recently including 6 months in China - where Nancy was a visiting professor. 

Miami Beach is a lovely lovely place. Start out with tropical weather - cosmopolitan culture - our minds always return to those early years on the beach. We have returned here many times - and love it more each time. We came here in the summer of 1972 - to take summer jobs. In 1992 - Hurricane Andrew hit the area an die came down to help our friend Doris clean up. In 2000 to 2004 our son went to college here to earn his doctorate. It has been a big positive influence on our lives. 

As I get older - I just don't like swimming in cold water. That is not a problem here - the surf is 90 - and our hotel pool is 90. I feel like our days of life guarding - surfing - and beach party lounging. Yes - it is hot and humid - you are always looking for shade - and ways of cooling down. It is easier to air-condition a place down 10 degrees - than to heat it up 60 degrees. the sea breeze is always rustling the palm trees. The air smells of tropical plants and sun tan lotion. 

We flew down Tuesday on American Airlines. They have a straight flight from our home in Tallahassee - 500 miles away. Tomorrow - Friday - we fly back. It is only 80 minutes away. After this lovely 4 days - we plan to visit more often - preferably in the winter. 

Our big day is just beginning - wish us good luck - the best is yet to come. 

Lulu at Nike on Lincoln Drive

Supper last night at Yardbird

The Lincoln Theater

Church on Lincoln Drive

Our hotel beach

Cabanas at our Surfcomber Hotel

Feels like 90 degrees

Lulu loves the water - sand - sun

She is just a wonderful friend

When we went to the church to marry - she did not know -
she remarried in that beach dress

Breakfast at The Front Porch - our bikes out front

We ordered a Tesla just like this one - 
posted out front of our hotel for gawkers

Our old Surfcomber Hotel - we are here now

No cars on Ocean Drive - South Beach

This is an electric mini moke. The original moke was 
a British jeep on a Mini frame

Thursday, June 17, 2021

On The Road Home In Richmond

 RICHMOND VA - it’s a beautiful morning! We just spent a lovely quiet night with the windows open and a wonderful breeze. There is a Cabella’s a couple miles from my son’s home here. We like it because it is level - quiet - and has water and drop facilities. They gave a separate lot for campers. There were 2 here last night. It also has great internet and TV signals. This is the 15th straight night sleeping in the camper. We have seldom had to use the AC in the camper to sleep this trip. In Florida in the summer - you must have AC on at night. It was 90 degrees and 90% humidity there yesterday. As I type - Lulu is in the Wegman’s Grocery here. She loves shopping there. I am busy calculating $32000 divided by 74 nights equals $432 a night. It is slowly coming down. 74 nights in 4 years is not a lot. It will eventually read $1 a night. 🙂 We will stay here a couple nights for the birthday boy. I am so happy to have a teenage grandson. He is a joy. Also we have a 10 year old tweenie granddaughter that lights us up. She loves to shop with mum mum. Sadly - we must hurry on to Tallahassee to catch our honeymoon plane to Miami Beach June 22. It will officially be 50 years on June 24th. We honeymooned in Miami Beach in 1971. It is a magic city.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

8 Nights in the Camper - and Still Counting. Florida to Pennsylvania and Back

On Center St in Pottsville - the museum.
I am parked here now - Lulu is inside. 

I am sitting in front of the Schuylkill County Historical Society building in downtown Pottsville. We left Tallahassee FL on June 2nd - spending nights in South Carolina - North Carolina - Delaware - and now an extended stay in Tamaqua PA. We have slept 8 nights in the camper - and are still talking - so we must be doing okay. 

Besides getting to see lots of friends and family - we managed to stop by to see the church in Finksburg MD where we married 50 years ago. It was the first time we visited it since then. 

Lulu is doing research here on another project. She seldom shares details with me because I have a big mouth. She spent 5 hours in there yesterday - and is working on another 5 hours today - and then tomorrow. After struggling to get quarters for the meter - a local bank would not give me any because of a shortage - I downloaded the parking meter app - and paid online. 

I run into another snafu with Facebook. Normally I write a web page on here - - then put a link to Facebook. But now Facebook flags me every time I try to post my web site address. I think "cracker" has been put on some obscenity list. After 16 year of the Florida Coal Cracker Chronicles - I am considering a name change. 

In the Schuylkill County Historical Society - I looked around. They are not as organized as the Tamaqua Historical Society. They do have some nice pictures. I will post a few here and comment. 

I drove by the Schuylkill County Prison.
The place still scares me.

Tamaqua was a coal mining town -
railroad town - and dynamite town

A Tamaqua guy was killed at Gettysburg -
he went to college there.

The area was a hotbed of labor organization.
The Molly Maguires was a secret labor society.

Black Jack Kehoe was a Mollie -
not many know that his home in Girardville
was formerly the St Jerome Church in Tamaqua.

Kehoe was hung in the prison for murder. 

We have a busy rest of the year. Next week - we go to the Jersey Shore in Ocean City - where the cousins used to beach together in the 1960s. Then we stop in Richmond VA to see Drew and family. The week of June 22 to 25 - we will recreate our honeymoon from 50 years ago in Miami Beach. After that - we will fly to Europe from June 28 to August 30 - to vagabond around and get out of hot and humid Tallahassee this months. Finally - we plan to spend October and November in Australia. Lulu has a funded project there - and she must use it or lose it. Much of the time will be spent in Canberra (the capital) - Sidney - and Melbourne. 

The camper has been excellent. We have a king size bed and spent every night in it. Most of the time we slept with windows open - but the last 2 nights we turned on the AC. We are plugged into Lulu's old home to do that. The toilet has been fine - but here in town - we have been using the shower in Nancy's old home avoid having to fill our water tank much. The propane refrigerator keeps our food and drinks cold. On the way up Lulu cooked in the camper - even on the move. To get to the church on time - we both showered standing up in the camper while moving - one at a time - because the other was driving. The stove and water heater are propane powered. We have both a gas stove and an electric microwave. 

I am typing on our kitchen table - waiting for Lulu to come out for lunch.