This evening, Sarah is on a mission. I have to accept some responsibility for this. After a few gardening jobs on what has turned out to be the hottest day of the year so far in the UK, my mind projected ahead to our August road trip around Florida. “We’ll have to get the map out,” I said, as I brought out some drinks to where she was sitting on our garden swing. Within a couple of minutes, I had obeyed my own instructions and located our big map of the USA (complete with all our Route 66 scribblings from our last US road trip two years ago) while she wasted no time in pulling out a book on where to go and what to do in Florida.
We had already decided on a few things before today. Firstly, after flying in to Miami Beach and picking up our hire car (we booked all this a couple of months ago), we plan to drive up to Orlando. Here, we will go to Universal Studios to see the Harry Potter world and then to the Kennedy Space Centre. Sarah has done the latter many years ago; I have done neither. For me, Florida is uncharted territory. In a way, it is easier to plan than Route 66 because it is much easier to grasp distances as the Caribbean state is comparable in size to the UK. But when we did our adventure along the Mother Road from Chicago to Los Angeles, the journey was already laid out ahead of us. All we had to do was decide how we would divide up the 2,300 miles.
Sarah has always wanted to go to the Everglades and to Florida Keys. I have always wanted to see a crocodile in its natural habitat. That’ll do us both nicely then. While sitting on our garden swing in the Welsh sunshine drinking our English tea, we worked out a route going anti-clockwise (or do we have to say counter-clockwise?) from Miami up to Orlando on the east coast, across country to Tampa on the west coast, southwards to the Everglades, then Florida Keys and back up to Miami to end the trip.
So far, this is what we have decided upon:
When we arrive at the Miami we’ll spend a night at a hotel close to the airport. Then we’ll have three nights in Orlando to do, well, Orlando stuff of course. The last two nights of the holiday will, again, be at Miami. The two nights prior to this will be spent at Key West, which, she tells me, is the southern-most part of the USA. Everything in between will be arranged when we’re in Florida, giving us the freedom to come and go as we please.
Sarah’s mission this evening is to look for hotels. She is better at searching for things like that than I am. As I write this sentence, she has just disappeared from the garden swing into the house, presumably to book the Hampton Inn and Suites, Orlando, for three nights.
Now she’s back. I was right. She’s now talking about Miami Airport. More to follow over the coming weeks…