Monday, March 29, 2010
Wow! So much has happened in the last 48 hours, I hardly know where to start. To begin with, I had no way of knowing that getting ready for this trip would drain me as much as it did, nor could I have predicted that the things which filled me up were the friends and neighbors that we left behind. The "island", for those of you unfamiliar with Nela, is a little piece of serenity amidst the bustle and chaos of Orlando. It is tucked away in a rather unexpected area and is home to some of the most welcoming and friendly people I have had the privilege to call neighbors. Every month we get together and invade a family's home, trading stories and eating food so good it makes you beg for the recipe, and of course, we indulge in a little liquid refreshment. Torben and I attended our last party the night before we hit the road. Late into the night the party moved to our motorhome, parked across the street. During the party I admitted to a friend that I had always wanted to jump off the bridge leading to the island. My friend Roy is never one to back away from an adventure, and if there is a little risk involved, all the better. He held me to it, despite warnings that it was illegal. An hour before we left Nela I trotted down to meet him at the bridge, having no idea of the crowd of eager spectators that had gathered to both cheer us on and laugh at our idiocy. The water was cold, but the jump was well worth it. So much so, that in fact, we did it twice. Each time our friends hauled us up in the boat and toasted us with champagne. I couldn't have imagined a more thrilling send off. The farewell is a treasured memory I hope I never forget. God bless Nela and her lovely inhabitants. p.s. On our first hook-up I tried to be all smart and strong by volunteering to hook-up and drain the grey/black water tanks...What's Dad's motto about no good deed going unpunished? Yeah, you guessed it...the howl of my husband's cackling is still ringing in my ears as he hooted with glee at seeing the poo water explode on my arms while I tried not to vomit. Camping is great.