Wednesday, November 7, 2012

A Day in Lake City

As I alluded to in a previous post, there was more to my Lake City detour than just a waterfall.  The main purpose was to meet up with my friend Sara Healy, whom I met through the wonderful world of blogging.

We met through her site, "a sharing connection" about three years ago when I first participated in one of her story photo challenges.  I don't think I've missed a post since.  A sharing connection is funny, thoughtful and thought provoking.  Sara puts herself into each photo story challenge, offers words of wisdom and delights us with her fictional stories.  She has also been a great inspiration to me as I explore the world of writing.

So after a number of emails and Google searches for a place to meet, we finally settled on a date and time, each coming from a different direction.  We spent the night in Brunswick, GA and they drove in from Tallahassee, each about two hours. 

I had been looking forward to this for a long time, and I will tell you that Sara is just as delightful in person as she is online.  We had a wonderful double date with her and her boyfriend.  The long-awaited lunch took place at Mike's Cafe & Grille.  

I was worried about being late, so we ended up at the restaurant about a half hour early.  We walked in and when the hostess asked "two for lunch?" we told her we were having lunch with another couple that we hadn't met so we chose a table where we could see the door and keep an eye out for them.  Even though we'd never met in person, it was instant recognition, like greeting old friends after a long absence.

We chatted non-stop for two hours trying to cram as much in as possible.  We talked about food, wine, traded cat stories, and talked about their home renovation project (I hope that has been completed now), and of course, blogging.

Sadly, lunch was over way too soon - I felt like we had barely gotten started and could have gone on talking for hours.  We hugged, took pictures, and they headed home while we set out to see what Lake City had to offer.

Alligator Lake Park
First up was Alligator Lake Park.  Although we saw no alligators at the park, we did see a long-legged white bird hunting for its dinner, squirrels and dragonflies.  There was a playground for kids, and a wonderful screened in picnic shelter overlooking the lake.

Spanish Moss on a Live Oak
Then there was this old bearded tree.  At least all the Spanish Moss hanging from its limbs made it look bearded.  While I always thought that Spanish Moss was hazardous to trees, I find that is not true.  It is actually not even related to moss, and derives its nutrition from the air and rainfall.

Pretty Berries
I have no idea what these berries are.  I found these at Falling Creek Falls on a bush growing beneath a large tree.  They almost look like miniature grape clusters.  If anyone knows what they are, please share in the comment section.

Falling Creek Falls
Falls were not something I expected to find in Florida, the land of the flat, so I had to check this out.  While it doesn't have great height, only about 10 feet or so, it is still pretty and peaceful.  I posted the video of this recently.

Overnight at Cabot Lodge
Calling an end to our Lake City adventure, we looked for a place to bed down for the night before continuing on to St. Pete.  Thank goodness for smart phones, and Trip Advisor.  We found this small chain hotel only a few miles away.  Can you guess what was a big drawing point at the end of the day?  That's right!  They have a nightly social hour from 5:30 until 7:30 where they serve beer, wine and snacks.  There was a TV in the lobby and baseball fans were gathered around routing for their favorite team.

This was a lovely day, and our visit with my friend, Sara was definitely the highlight.

7 comments:

  1. Awwww! I'm so happy your meeting with Sara was so awesomely excellent! That's terrific. I love meeting other bloggers in real life!

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  2. Linda,

    What a thrill to read this post. We had so much fun and you're right it's nice to meet a fellow blogging buddy in person. It's also nice to know you have so much fun talking and sharing lives.

    I really enjoyed our lunch. It was great that all four of us hit off so well. We couldn't stop talking. Sometimes you don't know if things will work out, but they did, didn't they? I am so glad you suggested this. And thanks for nice words about my site:~)

    The other pictures are lovely, as well. I see those berries all the time and I don't have a clue what they are, but they're pretty.

    In closure, I would echo, but slightly change your words, "It was a lovely day and visiting with Linda and her husband was the highlight."

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  3. Aww meeting bloggie buddies is a blast. I've met a couple of them, myself and have read many posts from others who have had the same thrill. I've never read a bad story yet. Lovely pics. I'm glad that all of you enjoyed it.

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  4. Hi Linda, I just dropped in to say hello. I'm so glad you met your blogging buddy! I'm jealous she saw you and I didn't! Sigh.... If only I still lived in Florida. Wouldn't that be fun? Sounds like you had a great time. I think those are beauty berries. I've seen them in fair competitions.

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  5. Hi Linda and Sara - hey .. what a great meet up - so wonderful to see you both!! Isn't it lovely that when we do meet fellow bloggers we seem to get on so well ...

    Well when my time comes I feel as though I'll have the same rapport ... in the next year I'm sure I'll meet some from here in the UK.

    Though if Sara comes over to see her daughter - I'd hope we could tie in together in London or in the Sussex countryside somewhere ...

    A Day In Lake City - sounds such glorious fun ... so happy to read it - though had to check it was in Florida (for some reason I immediately thought of Salt Lake City - so had to do a quick search!) .. cheers Hilary

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  6. Meleah- It was totally awesome!

    Sara- We did have a great time on our "double date". I know that you never know how things will turn out at an off-line meeting, but I had a feeling it would be wonderful. I hope we can do it again sometime.

    Hilary- I've read a lot of posts about bloggers getting together, and like you said, it is always fantastic. I wish I had more time to travel around meeting people.

    Ashley- Thanks so much for dropping in. I did have a great time. You would really like Sara, too. Her boyfriend was very nice and interesting, too. We had some good visits when you lived there, ddn't we? Yeah, I miss you too!!
    I'll have to look up those berries - they're so pretty.

    Hilary- We did indeed have a wonderful visit (but I knew we would). I'll bet you have some great meet-up soon, too. I'd never been to Lake City before, so it was a day full of firsts.

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  7. Congratulations to Ashley, who identified the mystery berries as
    Beautyberries.

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