Add to Technorati Favorites expat Abu Dhabi Dispatches: Annual Leave 2011 Part 2

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Annual Leave 2011 Part 2


So I stayed in St, George, Utah for awhile. I visited where I used to work and saw a lot of my ex-coworkers and friends. St. George is one of the most beautiful places on Earth, it is in between the mountainous Colorado Plateau and the Mojave Desert. This gives the area a unique geography. You have granite mountains on one side, red sandstone on another and  real desert on another replete with Joshua trees I love the changes. Each turn of the road reveals another scenario. I never get tired of it.

St. George, Utah. Heaven on Earth
.
A Joshua tree,they are not to be screwed with! I love the desert.



 After a few days there socializing and taking care of some personal business, I had to drive to Las Vegas for a flight to Florida to see my mother.

Virgin River Gourge

Interstate Highway 15 Though the Virgin River Gourge
























My Car-- Topless in Mesquite, Nevada
Virgin River Gourge

Interstate Highway 15 Virgin River Gourge


I am here to tell you that there are few things more pleasurable than hauling ass at 90 MPH in an American Ford V-8 Mustang GT five speed convertible on a long, straight desert highway. The rumble of the engine combined with the sun on my face and wind in my hair made the journey one to remember.

The Virgin River Gourge was one of the last sectors to be completed in the American Interstate highway system due to the rugged terrain. To this day, mountain goats and dynamite marks can be seen on the mountain sides which makes this one of the best 20 miles of road in the USA.



I got to Las Vegas OK and stayed with some friends and flew to Florida the next night. One complaint I have is my flight left out of Terminal 2 and all the bars were closed at 9 o'clock. That just ain't right as I was in the supposed fun capitol of the world and I couldn't even get a cold draft beer before my flight! Bullshit!

The overnight flight to Florida went alright except the airline misdirected my baggage in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. They made up for it the next night by delivering my bags to my mom's house. Mom was doing well and after being reunited with my clean skivvies from the recovered luggage, I was good to go. I got lucky at the rental car company as they gave me a new 2011 Fire Engine Red Mustang. I flirted with the attractive Filipina attendant and she gave me the Mustang instead of a boring Buick Lucerne.God love her!

2011 Mustang...Mom's house, Ft. Walton Beach Florida
Loved the Car!


I spend a few days relaxing in Florida as it was hectic in the previous week. I haven't felt so rested in months I spent time driving around neighborhoods where I grew up and to the beach. A year ago, the coast was threatened by the large BP oil spill. The area dodged a bullet as there are few signs of the accident now. Maybe all the crude is on the sea floor but none is evident on the beach.

A Sandpiper

Not a Good Day for the Beach

Wayside Park
Wayside Park
Inclement Weather


Southern Speak

N
Children's Art From Destin Elementary School

I Found This Hanging From a Tree Branch

One day I went to the Blue Marlin Tournament at Sandestin. I was early as no boats came in to the docks that day for a weigh in but I had a good time nevertheless.
No Thanks!
Northwest Florida Wetlands
More Wetlands Maybe a Gator or Two In There
A Cool Bar

Baytowne Marina, Sandestin Resort
I Don't Think So








Life is Good!
World's Largest Fishing Lure


Are you Shitting Me...My Speedo does Not Go That Low!

One of the Premiere Billfish Tournaments in the World




While at Sandestin, I met this little buddy. They are commonly known as cameleons but are really anole lizards. They change from lime green to tobacco brown in an instant. You can see the color change in the photos. He/she is turning brown. The throat thing is a territorial sign for me to keep away. Didn't work. They are good cat toys.


Turning Brown and Threatening Me
Edited June 10 for more photos and content.
Stay tuned for part 3

6 comments:

Neil Roberts said...

I'm very jealous of the Mustang and that great drive too! Nice pics too.....

Chuck said...

Nice car! Northwest Florida looks similar to the way I remember it.

Dave said...

Magnificent scenery!

Ace said...

Thanks for the comments guys! I had a helluva time but I fear my trip just made me more homesick than ever. I have been in a terrible funk since my return to the sandbox. It will pass I am sure.

There are positives here and positives there. Wish I could be in both places at the same time.

Driving was actually an enjoyable activity as most followed the rules and the "random surprise" maneuver factor so common in the UAE was largely absent.

Look for the final installment in a few days with some parting thoughts and observations.

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