Saturday, August 24, 2013

The Everglades

With the bike just having been put back together, and a new helmet for me, we wanted to do a “test-trip” to check for safety, comfort and overall happiness. So off we went to the West Coast of Florida to check out Miami and the Everglades where Roel desperately wanted to see an alligator.
The heat and humidity was unbearable. It felt like we were moving through mud, But we made it to South Beach by mid-afternoon and managed to cool down with a dip in the ocean. People watching near the bike was quite entertaining. As we were in a bike parking area, we met several other guys on bikes, but given that it was Miami, they were all in the crotch-rocket family. Regardless, they were all interested in what we were doing and by the time we left, we had members of the local biker gang directing traffic so we could back out of the parking spot and get on our way.
If the sign wasn't enough to keep you out of the water...
We stopped for a delicious Cuban meal in Little Havana and then headed for the Everglades. Per usual, we were looking for a spot to camp, well after dark. When we eventually stopped to pitch our tent, the mosquitoes descended upon us like were had invaded their territory. Before we were in the tent we each had well over 20 bites. And the heat was intense. It had only intensified in the evening, so needless to say, it was not a restful evening. The next morning a nice little alligator tried to sneak up on Roel while he was relaxing next to the lake we had camped by. We toured around the park a bit after that, but without deet, the mozzies were truly unbearable.We gave up on the Everglades and headed to Key Largo, so Roel could see what all of the hype was about. We had a slice of Key Lime Pie. Got stuck in a nasty traffic jam. And turned back around to head home.
On the ride back, we saw 5 alligators. Set our tent up next to a man-made lake and soon found out we had an alligator to keep us company, resting 5 meters from our tent.
Returning to the comfort of my Mom’s home the following afternoon was a relief, to say the least. The pool was quiet and refreshing and we thoroughly appreciated the modern conveniences of air-conditioning and refrigeration.

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