Thursday, 8 October 2015

An update from Key West- Dry Tortugas National Park

 I'll do a overall update later but to cut a long story short, I needed a holiday badly. In case anyone hasn't been watching the news, South Carolina is devastated by massive flooding. One of the most badly hit cities was Columbia where I live. We left right as the crap hit the fan. As a result our first two days in Miami were fun but intermingled with the stress of wondering if our house was underwater. Once some of the water receded our friends checked our house, on the morning we were heading to Key West, and it was fine. Car safe-check, house safe-check, dog safe-check, the holiday can begin!!
 We headed to Key West and everyday I feel a little bit of stress, I didn't know I was carrying around, lifting off my shoulders.

Yesterday was the ultimate relaxation day. Although, when I say it began at 6am some people might not agree. Key West is beautiful but its commercialised (in the nicest possible way) and busy! Yesterday was about getting away from all of that.

The Florida Keys do not actually end at Key West, just the road through them. We sailed, abroad the Yankee Freedom Ferry, 70 miles west of Key West to another Key in the Dry Tortugas National Park. We got on the boat after our 7am check-in and had breakfast. On the journey out  we stood at the bow and I saw a shark, jellyfish, some turtles and a school of feeding dolphins.

We sailed for around 2 hours and arrived in Dry Tortugas National Park. This is the home of Fort Jefferson that was used in yonder years as a Navy base and prison. The fort is unused and crumbling in places but you can still walk around the upper walls.
We mainly came for the beaches and crystal clear water. Snorkling was possible straight from the island, you can see small patches of coral that has colonized the walls and boat landings. After lots of walking around the island we snorkled in two spots. One was inundated with jellyfish (we both got a couple of stings) and we soon hightailed it out of there, but the other area was amazing and full of colorful fish.
It turns out Martina is a natural at snorkling and I couldn't get her out of the water!! Like most things I'm unsure of (even though I've snorkled before I was a bit panicky) I spent an hour or so and enjoyed the experience but after lunch on the boat I decided to wander around taking pictures. We didn't stop moving the entire day. It was such an amazing experience.  It felt too short, I was so jealous of all those lucky people who were camping overnight. I hope to come back again!!

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Travel plans

I am so excited!! I go to Miami and then the Florida Keys in a week. This was a wedding gift from my parents. How awesome is that?
I've been dying for a proper break. The last time I took more than a day or two off was last Christmas. I know I have a looooong break ahead of me soon but it'll be nice to do this and have some spending money. We have a ton of stuff planned so let's hope the weather stays good since some of it involves open water boat trips, ekk!
j.R.R Tolkien photo:

I'm also surprised my credit card isn't screaming at me as I booked two sets of flights the other night. One to accompany Martina to Texas at the start of December well also to run RnR San Antonio. As I won't be working I was flexible with my days and got a return flight, SC to Texas, for $200. What a steal.

The second is my flight home the following week. Again by being flexible and wiling to sit in an airport for a lot longer than I'd like, I knocked a few hundred dollars of my ticket price. I can't wait. It's been so long but I'm sure after a day it'll be like I never left. I was sad that I was leaving Martina here alone for our first married Christmas but at least if everything goes well I'll be back for New Years Eve. 

I wonder if I'll be well and truly sick of travelling in January somehow I don't think so!!