Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Life in the slow lane

Keaton Beach has only one restaurant, called "The Hotdog Stand".  Lynne back in the RV park said, "You should stop there for lunch before you go--they really do a good job with seafood."   She also said,  "The locals keep trying to get them to change their name but they're stubborn."  So the Hotdog Stand was my target for lunch.

I had to sit on the beach for 1/2 hour until they opened up and I kept saying to myself, "Are you crazy?  This is hardly a 5-star eatery" Well, Lynne was right,  I had an exceptional lunch.  I dined on a dozen raw oysters (ice cold and fresh from the Gulf) and a shrimp salad ('Shrimp Louie' if you were in a more expensive restaurant) for a grand total of $11!  And I do not think there was a hot dog listed anywhere on that menu.  (I love life's little surprises.)

And further down the road I found some more of those "Pod People". If that thing is two-story then there are no windows on the ground floor.  It's only further proof that the sun's rays would melt those aliens like salt on a snail!

There is an epidemic of misspellings in Florida and evidently a real desperation for alcohol.  I decided this was a restaurant I could skip. 
 I stopped in a tourist trap to get out of some bumper-to-bumper traffic then decided not to take their tours to "see the manatees up close!"

This guy was fun to photograph up close though.

Have you noticed the price of gasoline lately?  I am trying very hard to stay within my budget so am boondocking (sneaky free parking) more and more.  I have discovered that Cracker Barrel restaurants are very accommodating and quite often are in lovely settings.  The one above is just outside of Tampa.  Cracker Barrel puts out a very helprul map of all their restaurants across the country and next to each listing where overnight parking is allowed they place an asterisk.  I consider that to be very friendly of them.   My second favorite boondocking spot has to be hospital parking lots--after visiting hours.  The lots are never completely empty, are usually well lit,  have ample lighting, sometimes security and the hospital has a really good and cheap breakfast in the morning.  Just don't put out the lawn chairs or crank up the radio amplifiers.

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