Saturday, June 28, 2014

Road Trip - Ass numbing Awesome - in search of beaches, food, coffee, urban street art...

Road Trip
June 2014

was it a classic Summer Vacation
or Ass numbing Awesome-ness

off in search of white gulf beaches
or wide expanses of tourist filled ocean beach

finding fun foodie, coffee experiences
or urban street art in whatever nooks 'n crannies can be found...

in town, near historic downtown
not the beach--which was very good

Sole' Inn - Mermaid Fountain
what a Fab thing to do with the old hotel pool

link to Sole Inn and Suites...

Walk in the park
Art archway

Dinner - Dharma Blue (as Global Grill was closed)
pear, goat cheese, walnut salad
ordered despite the bad rap on Foursquare or was it elsewhere while checking in
Keylime pie dessert--of course, we're in FL
I grew up in FL, I've been to Key West
I know what Key limes look like & what Keylime Pie is suppose to look like

sunset walk in old town
church reminds of Norway or Germany or
someplace else other than Pensacola, FL
love they've kept it in brilliant white wash shape
(maybe next trip we'll see inside)

Love this firehouse mural
you can imagine that's what it might have looked like too
way Way back when, complete with 'spotty' dog

as elsewhere in FL or LA or anywhere with a coast or river delta
there's been a few foreign conquerers/pirates/settlers who've run thru town
flew flags, built stuff, drank rum/buried treasure, moved/sailed on

Sego Palm
taken for a friend
who was discussing male/female plants for this species
or what they look like after the typical small variety planted in yards
that then become gianormous & this is what they can look like
after a lot of years & trimming
(we've discussed too that seeds have been said to be toxic--keep dogs from chewing them)

my second visit to Sole'
wrote up on Trip Advisor
liked it just as much the second time around
plus had more time to go walk old town  & eat out, even better
sometimes you just don't need the beach--we had other beaches in mind,
so skipped Pensacola Beach, this time

Museum of Pensacola
went for 'Art of the Brick'
but enjoyed the local juried art as well
this one a Red Ribbon Winner I liked a lot
it's a 3 CD changer upcycled to art, I like that as well

And the 'Art of the Brick'
aka Lego's, Lego Art
And even better they 'encouraged' photo taking!!

link to Pensacola Museum - 'Art of the Brick'...

link to Nathan Sawaya - Wiki...

link to Nathan Sawaya - The Art of the Brick webpage...

writer shadow
if only in the middle of the night a shadow writer
would come in finish what you started/left off at during the day
kinda like those fairytales you may have read about when you were a kid

feeling stuck, held back, grasped
(Yes, I am making up titles on my own)

link to about Nathan Sawaya's 'Hugman'...

note: he's a real title, I did not make him up...
he also made a full size Hugman & at least one of them hugs a tree,
tree hugger!!

the views close up or far away or from the front or side or behind were all intriguing

my Fav were the Fab Flat Framed Art
especially stepping up to them & then stepping back from them
loved these 3 especially - look like 2 recreated portrait photos & 'the' Alfred Hitchcock
(entitled just "Al")

few shots from the video
set up in the room where the kids had a table full of Lego bricks to make their own sculptures
as well the gift shop had a few posters from the gallery pieces & a few mini figures for sale

love the speeded up frames/time lapse photos to sit down 'n watch a brick sculpture go from a brick to a whole body in like a hot minute

again I like the Art Shots the artist has made, but these photos weren't on display here
like the ones where the scene has been made for real, with real people,
but somewhere in it is the Art Brick/Lego structure
here a tree, another a railroad track or umbrella or a dog...

in all grey bricks, face covered
where oh where would you get this many just grey bricks

Grayton Beach
the Woodpecker House
at the Hibiscus B&B
(have stayed in 3 other rooms here so far)

link to Hibiscus Coffee & Guesthouse...

The Red Door restaurant
go for the atmosphere
not there for fine dining
a chalkboard for a menu
fish 'n (not chips) salad
skipped those dressings & the peppers/pickles & the roll

next up 'shark' sighting...but on the beach, not in the water...

Grayton Beach before/after the rain
trying to find sunset
not tonight, maybe tomorrow
still--there were white sands, surf sounds, broken skim board...

Breakfast at the Hibiscus Coffeehouse
chose waffles with organic peanut butter
and lots of fruit plus coconut sprinkles
also lots of Florida kitsch all over the place
in the Coffeehouse & throughout the Inn's various rooms

Grayton Bar & Grill
newly redone, new menu
Scallops 'n pasta
then for dessert--buttermilk pie, Oh my, with homemade cream
I'm not sure I've ever eaten this before, but will again
I will 'not' make it at home tho...

link to Grayton Bar & Grill...

link to Buttermilk Pie Recipe - you're Welcome to try, if you've not...

Grayton Beach
another try at sunset
settled again for sugar white sands, surf
& this night surprised by seashells

Breakfast at the Hibiscus--free with your room
a whole breakfast menu, could of had a frittata
Cinnamon roll french toast
would of never thought to slice up a cinnamon roll before
and again with lots of fruit, feeling like eating healthy

'A Place to Be...'
they change their chalkboard sign out front every day I think
with different inspiration:

'Be Serene'

Fernandino Beach, FL
The Old Florida House B&B in historic downtown

link to the Florida House Inn...

One bedroom off the front porch, first floor,
next to the side patio & the next door bar
Was surprised to find the tub right in the bedroom
we did not take a bath or shower in it
we do not think that's romantic

shrimp 'n grits
would like to think it's not just a Southern thang
I love cheesy grits, then add shrimp
and I have very happy taste buds doing a happy dance

grilled scallops over corn? never tried that...then add to that
bacon...mmm...this was a special named bacon I don't recall the name of
(probably from a certain Farm) topped with sprouts...lovely different combo

Lulu's at the Tompson House

don't find these selections on the online/webpage menu
it's possible they change it up, go seasonal or
farm to table whatever, as the chef pleases...

we were pleased I found this place
and were tempted by dessert, that someone wanted
to stab with a fork so quickly that I could hardly snap a photo
it's why it's blurry--right now can't even tell you what it was
it's like a dream...mmm...

link to Lulu's restaurant...

Mermaids everywhere
I like the mural at sunset

fish weathervane
at first I thought it was upside down
that would of been a lot more fun

walking by was just interested in the Celtic Cross
next door to the what I thought was upside down fish
then I spied the wee brown chameleon lizard on the pedestal
grew up with these in St. Petersburg, FL
before the larger lizards came to take over
always enjoyed their grapefruit throat displays

walking around old town
old Florida
even older than what I remember of St. Pete. FL
where I grew up (so said then the retirement capital of the world)

Sunset by the docks
I had just read about the 'green flash' at sunset
and I will from this day forth be ever in the pursuit
of seeing it, then photographing it
tho I am sorely disappointed in the YouTubes that tried to capture it
I've seen a lot of sunsets in many states or countries & cannot say I've ever seen it
but now perhaps I'll know what I'm looking for
In this sunset series tho...
I had more fun trying to make the fake shark eat the sun/sunset?!

link to Wiki's explanation of the Green Flash at Sunset...

link to a more Science-ful explanation of the same event...

sailboats at the dock
along with the sunset kayak group returning
we did not take the sunset cruise on any boat
in the distance is what we think is the papermill smoke stack
a lovely addition to the horizon
but it's possible the whole town may not be here if it weren't for it

Mermaids everywhere continues
this time a sculpture in the fountain of the courtyard
behind the old Florida House B&B

sitting by the mermaid fountain
between the music in the old Florida House
and the music next door on the porch of the bar

the Florida House front porch
out from the red porch door to the hall where our bedroom was for the night
then at the front door not just more Mermaids but what looks like a ship bow decoration
in a somewhat smoke shop wooden Indian style

Myrtle Beach, FL
only for the kids
even after growing up in FL & visting such tourist places
or I should say avoiding such places

link to Broadway at the Beach...

link to WonderWorks at Broadway at the Beach...

note: this is where I want to go when the kids grow up enough to enjoy it
only viewed from the the earth layer, the palms, the front porch light,
the telephone pole, all upside down...there must be a lot of fun rooms in that place!

Murrells Inlet, SC
a short hop from Myrtle Beach, SC

link to BrookGreen Gardens & Zoo...

clown of the sea/river

dragonflys everywhere
in every color
oh to have had a real camera with settings to capture them
only so much can do with a cell phone camera
then again I've never like read instructions or anything

baby praying mantis
could not get the focus right
he/she's on the cross wire

link to Instructable - on How to Raise Baby Praying Mantis...

note: there is indeed an Instructable for everything under the sun...
as well prob a YouTube & an Facebook page/Instagram/Twitter feed
or Pinterest?!

oaks or what I thought of as Fairy Oaks all over
there was a video about them called something like the Grey Ones
but in the heat with kids tagging along no patience for it this trip
I'll just have to use my imagination & keep thinking 'there are fairies' right?!

Spanish goats, with freckles or spots like Appaloosa horses
it was so cute to hear their "ma ha ha'"s" (is it bleating or is that just for sheep talk)
then to have the kids repeat after them--priceless cuteness

link to the Spanish Goat Association...

note: yes, they're organized...but then I read elsewhere they're like if you can't figure out the ancestry of a goat you call it this...something about conquerers bringing them with them for meat then letting them loose to run wild, breed a wild thing grows...still I like the freckled/spotted ones & can't recall seeing them before--not your everyday petting zoo variety I guess is why...

the kids little learning houses garden
or the Enchanted Storybook Forest
of course there would be Dr. Seuss

there was a Nature Trail & Sensory Garden before this
then came the castle & pirate ship & Snow white cottage a misting run to run thru, like a few times

butterfly house with moths
next door to the Enchanted Storybook Forest

the Labyrinth
I didn't walk it

link to Wiki's description of a Labyrinth (not a maze)...

always reminds me of the movie of the same name
not the kinds of creatures you care to meet everyday

or I should say the ones in the 2006 movie not the 1980's movie
first one by Guillermo del Toro & second one with David Bowie

link to Pan's Labyrinth - the 2006 movie...

in the literary garden
we never found the children's garden
"How Doth the Little Crocodile" poem by Lewis Carroll
also recited in Alice in Wonderland

link to Wiki to

How doth the little crocodile
Improve his shining tail,
And pour the waters of the Nile
On every golden scale!
How cheerfully he seems to grin,
How neatly spreads his claws,
And welcomes little fishes in
With gently smiling jaws!

fountains, sculptures abound in the gardens

the Apollo of Dogs
a great dane
with or without the ears cropped


I spy another dragonfly, a blue one, do you
I think Dr Seuss & the Literary Garden are influencing me

fairy oak trees
fairy statues
or is it, can't read my full sun plaque pic

there was a house here
now there is a fountain or water reserve for the gardnes
I didn't read why there are cherubs & a god like figure on fish & aligators

the Goddess Diana
I think she's in every formal garden in the world
here with her bow & hunting dog
(I have a friend named Diana, I often send her these)

a tree, among many, I cannot ID

the Fairy Tree Oaks continue

I have never ever seen a horsie/donkey topiary made of succulents
I thought my horse loving, horse rescue sister would love this
cannot imagine how hard it would be to recreate this
whoever thought of that hair & tail--Fab u lous imagination

not just any peacock statue
but one wearing a dragonfly on his crown
may be my Fav shot all day
but then I love me a dragonfly pic

the view in both directions from the beach condo
have not often stayed in a condo
again will do it once, for the kids
but what a total tourist experience
we did a lot to avoid all this when we were kids
and on into college or beyond as well

link to Pirates Voyage...

note: we were told we were allowed to take photos at the pre-show
and before the main show started
we were on the blue side
we had to buy a flag
again I have never done this, but for the kids
they took portrait photos at the start, which are obscenely priced
as was the rest of the evening, but what good are credit cards if you don't use them
we were making memories

I only got talked into this evening in the main due to it being a Dolly Parton production
and her program for Reading in which she sends books to kids for years
and they are good books, I have read them to the kids
so we are supporting the cause, would like to think a good cause

link to Imagination Library...

plus getting thoroughly entertained & stuffed, it is dinner theater to the max

kids fav part--mermaids (but they're at that age)
my fav part--the giant sea lion, which I'd never seen one act like he was a wee seal doing tricks
I don't know the physiology of it but may never understand how he can be trained or even can stand on one flipper with his tail in the air weighing a ton probably...I was impressed & do hope he's treated well, saw he got a lot of treat fish for rewards along the way

more photos to come
yes there is more
there's still NC, TN, MS, LA to go...

note or perhaps it's a rant:
I worked all day All Day yesterday on this next part
then the PC started running something & then this froze up
and then I lost everything Everything I did all day...sigh...
why do I still own a PC, do I want to recreate--on it...
proverbial questions continue, but do I...