We’ve reached Florida, our destination for the winter, and will meander around this very large state for a while until we reach the southern tip, Key West, in March. Crossing the border brought back some joyful memories of my childhood. My father, my then new stepmother and I drove from New York to Miami Beach for several summers when I was between 11-14 years old. I remember SO looking forward to those trips. We sang songs, counted license plates, laughed at the billboards (South of the Border, South Carolina anyone?) and just had a great time. And I remember looking forward to the free plastic cup of fresh Florida orange juice at the visitor center. My dad would buy me the pressed penny and the plastic alligator; I still remember that hot plastic smell. Wow, that was a simple time, and this moment also reminds of how much traveling means to me.
Today we arrive at the visitor center and find that they STILL have fresh orange juice as well as fresh grapefruit juice. And they have, I kid you not, what looks like thousands of brochures for all of the different regions and activities in Florida. We walked out with about a hundred of them (don’t worry, we’ll recycle!).
We approach the Destin area toward Henderson Beach State Park and it’s pretty highly developed, about 1/2 mile from the park all I see are buildings. Then, a little oasis appears to my right and we are at the border of the state park. The sand on the dunes is snow white, as are the beaches in this area.
And I have to say wonderful things about the Henderson Beach State Park RV Campground – it is beautiful, pristine, beautiful, well designed, beautiful, has huge campsites and great vegetation around them for privacy, and did I mention beautiful. WOW!
They also have the cleanest bathrooms and shower area I’ve ever seen – they very proudly mention this when you check in. And there is a boardwalk that goes out to the beach just steps from our campsite.