- Twin size mattress/bed in back of car – check
- Two plastic containers for kitchen supplies and miscellaneous stuff – check
- Duffel bag with travel clothes – check
- Bath supplies/makeup – check
- Lotions/potions/pills, etc. – check
- Afghan, pillows, rechargeable fan – check
- Gallon bag of home made travel mix – check
- Gallon of water and Tervis tumbler – check
- Breakfast supplies/French press/coffee/creamer & energy bars – check
- Computer/Kindle/iPhone and cords – check
- Shoes/hiking boots – check
- Maps, Atlas, brochures, planner, notebooks, pens – check
- Money, credit cards – check
- Cold weather clothes & bedding in rooftop carrier – check
- Inflatable kayak in rooftop carrier – check
- Extra folding chair & tent in rooftop carrier – check
- New tires and oil change – check
OK – I’m ready to boogie.
My first day on the road was the usual mundane drive from Port Charlotte, FL to Atlanta, Georgia that I’ve made so many times to visit my daughter and her family. Just getting out of Florida is a major accomplishment and boring. But, since this is MY roadtrip and MY adventure and MY journey of discovery, I stopped to explore a sign I’ve passed a hundred times near Bushnell, Florida, “Dade Battlefield Historic State Park”. I’m a bit of a Civil War buff and always thought this was the site of a Civil War battle. No, it’s the site of a battle fought during the Second Seminole War.
When you drive through the gates you enter a beautiful, dark green canopied landscape. Serene. Mysterious. In December 1835, 108 US troops and officers were marching from Tampa to reinforce Fort King in Ocala when they were attacked by 180 Seminole warriors. All but three of the soldiers were killed. The Visitor Center is small but provides a 12-minute video explaining the history of the war and the battle, with artifacts, exhibits, weapons and a gift shop. You can also walk the trail that features interpretive signs and monuments. Well worth a stop if you’re traveling on I-75 near Bushnell. I’m a native Floridian and found it fascinating.
I arrived in Atlanta two hours later than expected but was welcomed by my joyous grandson, a wonderful New York strip dinner and a comfortable bed.
Not bad for day 1 of my Great Escape.