Friday, September 25, 2015

BACK AT HOME BASE . . .


Eleven o'clock AM came early. By the time we got up, took care of Jett, had coffee and breakfast and loaded everything it was time to check out of our campsite. Tim had the wheels turning on the Airstream by 10:45 AM. 


Over the years we have learned not to drive north through Tampa on I-275 on a Friday or any day for that matter. Our better route is to head south on I-275 over the Sunshine Skyway Bridge that crosses Tampa Bay from St. Pete to Palmetto. From here we can jump onto I-75 North to I-4 then home. This route supposedly takes an additional fifteen minutes. However the alternative aggravation of driving through downtown Tampa more than likely would take longer if you take into consideration - traffic, frustration, construction and accidents. 


The ride home was easy and uneventful. I'm always taking pictures of the Airstream Ranch along I-4. It's been there for years and I'm still not sure if I like it. I'm sure they all could have been rescued. LOL


We arrived home by 1 PM. By dark thirty we were completely unloaded and dealing with rain and no water at the house. We think the problem has been solved now after getting neighbors, dispatch, the police and the Town of Oaklands City Works Department Head involved after hours. Hopefully I can get some laundry done tomorrow. 


Overall Jett did better than we anticipated on her first camping trip ... even taking into consideration Day 1 of camping for her. Our next trip should bring us into the beginning of November. She will have a new friend to play with on that trip who is just a few months older than her so their energy level will be a great match. We can't wait to get back out again. Until then . . .

Thursday, September 24, 2015

WINDING DOWN . . .


This is Alice back at the helm of the blog. Jett thinks that not only is camping hard work but being responsible for the blog is as well. As this short trip winds down Tim and I are looking forward to returning home. There are so many projects to get started on back at the home-front that the sooner we get home the better. 


Since this is our last full day here we squeezed in what we could. All except for Jett's paddleboarding. We decided to wait for fresh water access before exposure to saltwater again. Jett was still able to pick-up a few more skills like lizard chasing, sleeping, bird watching and of course nothing more exciting than waiting on the sea wall for the scary killer jumping mullets. Goodness. She is good entertainment!


Tim went out on a fishing trip in his kayak today. He caught a good half dozen trout however they were all just short of being keepers. I took my last trip out on my paddleboard alone at sunset. I paddled out to the channel just the other side of the lagoon to watch. I was hoping for the pod of dolphins to come through but I guess I missed them. The moon was already at a full rise and there were many brown pelicans and blue herons that had landed for the evening on the tiny no name island out there. As the sun set I watched a massive cruise ship leave the mouth of Tampa Bay heading out into the Gulf of Mexico. It was one of the most active yet peaceful sunsets that I have experienced in quite awhile. These are the moments I live for. Wish I had pictures to show. The sunset was gorgeous! My new phone doesn't fit in my Otter Box and I forgot to take the GoPro along. 


Tomorrow morning will be a busy one. Loading and packing all the camping stuff up to head home. I'm glad this was a short trip not far from home. As it turned out Jett did better than expected. Considering she is just five and a half months old we think she did really well. Jett still has much more to learn. Many, many more camping trips ahead of her and so much more to experience all over this beautiful country. 


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

BREAKING FREE . . .


Yup! I did it. Right when no one was looking I escaped from my corral grabbing a shoe on my way out. My mom was getting me fresh water on the other side of the Airstream. Dad was inside making coffee. As I ran out of our campsite I heard my mom say 'Did a horse just run through camp!?' That's when she spotted me across the street by the playground with one of her shoes dangling from my mouth. 


Since I was so excited but also scared I didn't go far. I'm not experienced in this escape stuff yet and really didn't know what to do so I just ran roundies through our campsite and the empty site next door. It was good fun especially when dad came out and helped pursue me. 


After all the fun was over I took a nice long nap before lunch inside my cold Airstream. Upon waking I found out my mom had gone paddleboarding without me, dad had prepped his fishing gear without me and I think something had been playing with my stuff. It kinda smelt like squirrel since I know what that tastes like from my recent hunt. I'm sure my mom told everyone about the incident that happened last week. 


By afternoon the next thing I know is my dad hung yet another one of those cocoon like contraptions in the trees. I think they took power naps in them while I was taking my afternoon snooze inside. Are they having fun without me?



Then before I knew it my people threw me in the truck and off we went to South  Pasadena just east of St. Pete Beach. They stopped at a place called Ted Peters Famous Smoked Fish House and said something about it being their favorite place. Uh ... I think I've heard that before. This place looks like it hasn't changed since 1951! No dogs are allowed so dad and I stayed in the truck while mom went in and purchased what she said to be smoked Mahi-mahi, smoked salmon, smoked mullet fish spread and hot potato salad made with not only big pieces of bacon but the bacon grease as well. It sure smelled good! 



All in all I had a great day. Caused some chaos, chewed on stuff I shouldn't have and devised my first escape. I'm beginning to get the hang of this camping stuff. So far my favorite things to do are exploring new stuff, swimming in the ocean, escaping and barking at squirrels. I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings . . .

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

CAMP DOG IN TRAINING . . .



Tim and I decided to take it easy today since Jett needed a day of recuperation  from Camp Day No. 1. Camp Life is so much harder than one would think. This made Camp Day No. 2 much better for her. All that we do while on this camping trip prepares her for the future to be the best camp dog ever. LOL


Jett had a nice long walk through camp this morning and we even took a selfie! In the afternoon she was able to view more wild life by watching her new buddy The Blue Heron. 


Tim made my day by hanging my hammock. There are a few palm trees that are just the perfect distance apart at our campsite. The weather is also just a few degrees cooler than at home and with the Gulf Seabreeze it makes being outside very nice. I then spent a bit of time in the hammock this afternoon. Ahhh ... Life is indeed good!



By late afternoon I so didn't want to cook what I had planned so we decided to go out. My choice was to go to a nearby favorite hangout from a Tim Burton movie I worked on earlier this year. So The Chattaway it was! AND they allow dogs! This was Jett's first experience at a restaurant. It went well. We didn't get kicked out!



On our return to camp we made it just in time for a beautiful sunset ...


Monday, September 21, 2015

THE STARS ALIGNED . . .

 
Well sort of. Tim and I were able to take a last minute camping trip, out in the Airstream, happen. This will be Jett's first official camping trip other than the first three days we got her when she was just 8 weeks old. 


This trip has landed us just south of St. Petersburg, FL at FT. DeSoto. We've been here numerous times before but this will be our first time back in the 'doggy' camping section in a few years. Jett was a bit confused last night once she got fed here and then we never went back home. This camp life is hard work and exhausting. 


She did better than me sleeping in the Airstream. Somehow she managed to slip into and sleep part of the night in a storage bin area under the bed. I guess I was just more concerned about her being comfortable. 


Today started out to be a lazy relaxing morning. Camp coffee. A light breakfast. Unload kayak and paddleboard. Lunch. Then I went into the water behind the Airstream to check it out for Jett's first paddleboard session. I decided it wasn't a good area for her first time. Gunky, stinky ankle deep mud 30 feet out just to get to the stagnant hot salt water. 


Now that it was getting late in the afternoon we decided to instead take Jett to the doggy beach and then the dog park. While out we would scout an easier location to paddleboard with Jett. 


I'll make the next series of events as brief as possible:

Jett swims in ocean for the first time.
Jett chases waves. 
Jett lost her dog tags in ocean. 
Jett played in the BIG DOGs park. 
Jett had too much fun!
Jett had too much salt water!
On way back to camp Jett had a barf-o-rama inside the truck. 
On return to camp, outside of any vehicle, the 'other' happened. 
Yes ... that. 
Towels and Tim's clothes are now in washer. 

GOOD TIMES!!!