We got a late start.
That's okay. I slept until Noon and actually prefer driving at night for reasons I've explained here before... less glare, less traffic, better long-distance AM radio reception.
No matter how often I tell myself I need to make a checklist so I'm sure I've got it ALL as we back out the drive, I still haven't done it. Thirty minutes down the road Sara Jean says, "OHMYGOSH. Did you bring the keys?"
Yeah, those I remembered. But I the farther I drove the more I remembered stuff that I DIDN'T remember... and my laptop was one of those things. So here I am trying to make stubby fingers work on this netbook. It's better than nuttin'...
Most of the rest of the stuff we forgot we can just buy here.
Even in the dark we could tell Alabama had been pummeled. Lots of trees down alongside the highway, some of which were so thick they just topped 'em out right next to the white line marking the lane limit. We stopped for gas shortly after we crossed the State line and the "Pay at the pump" function worked until I needed a receipt. I had to get my receipt from the cashier. She looked frazzled and said they had just gotten power restored the day before. (And she knows she is one of the lucky folks in her neighborhood.)
South of Birmingham, everything looked pretty normal in the darkness. We had not a drop of rain the entire 12 hours we were on the road. Sara Jean slept most of the way with the dogs keeping her lap warm. They wake only when I slow or they hear a turn signal clicking, looking around as if to say "Are we here yet?"
We rolled into Destin at 4 A.M.. I stopped at Wally World for "musts"... BEER, eggs, bread, milk, etc.. Early Saturday morning, the store was empty except for employees restocking, and after the Friday night madness there was a LOT of restocking going on.
We were on the balcony at 4:30. It was still dark... the stars were beautiful. Though we couldn't see it we could hear the surf crashing against the shore... something you can't always depend on along this beach... sometimes the Gulf is so calm here I refer to it as "Lake Destin".
Cold beer in hand, bride and pups alongside, bed downstairs calling... life is a good way to pass the time.
We woke at Noon to one of those days you dream about. BLUE blue sky, low 80 temps, and an offshore breeze to put a huge smile on your face. Back on the balcony with coffee in hand this time we noticed an abnormal number of bikes on the road. Cousin Bonnie FB's me that "Thunder on the beach" is happening at Panama City. Good.
It makes the parade more fun.
So we're safely here with a whole week left to unlax and enjoy. We're dashing over to Pensacola this afternoon to grab Mom and bring her back so she can sit on the balcony and watch her beloved Pelicans fly by in formation. The dogs like that... Mom's lap is as good as any out on the balcony.
The water is four colors of green, making the whitecaps look extraordinary.
We truly are blessed. Thank you Lord.
Wish you were here.