Sunday, August 10, 2014

Anniversary trip to Florida

This year we chose Florida for our anniversary celebration venue, we wanted to see a rocket launch, check out one of the resorts in our family of resorts in Davenport, and just see what Florida was like, since I won a couple of nights at the Renaissance Resort at an AHABay auction, it was all systems go.  These are some of the pictures I captured while we were there.
After breakfast inside the Renaissance Hotel lobby

Looking down into the lobby from our hallway on the 10th floor

Our suite, love the ceiling, and the views were lovely
Ground view, looking down from the front window in our room

Ground view from the second window

Ground view from the third window - the night views were even more beautiful, but I sure had a hard time capturing night views :-(

The resort was so nice, and our suite was so comfortable - we relaxed and just hung out while we got our bearings the first day, we had supper at the pool after the sun went down, then headed over to one of  the shaded hot tubs for a leg and foot massage - so relaxing!  That night we lounged around the pool and watched a lightening storm in the distance, sooo pretty (unfortunately, no pics to share of  that)

Friday morning we headed out to the Space Coast - to the Kennedy Space Center
The pic below was my vision of what that launch should look like, (that's actually the space shuttle that's being launched - maybe they thought we wouldn't notice ;-)  but  impossible to get, the closest you can safely be to an actual launch is 4 miles, and since the Atlas V wasn't launching until 11:32pm we decided to watch it from our hotel on  Cocoa Beach, it was much quieter, but still quite a site - just saw the northern sky light up, then its fire ball blast off and then we heard the rumbling of the rocket as it arced over and up into space - very cool!

The Atlas V at Cape Canaveral - the rocket we watched launch on Cocoa Beach - no rocket boosters - they said it would make a brighter, slower launch

This is the Saturn V Rocket - thought the 5 engine bells were so impressive, its actually about 10-15 feet behind us - very cool!

This is one of the "crawlers" that carry the rockets the 3 miles from the garage out to one of the launch pads - I think they said it moves about 3 miles an hour as well, travels on a gravel road, just like in the scene in Apollo 13.

After our soggy bus tour at Cape Canaveral, we decided to head over to Cocoa Beach and check-in at our hotel - we got some supper, then set the alarm for 11p so we could have a nice nap before the launch.  We headed out to the beach which was just a short walk down the street where, everyone had gathered for the nights big event.  It was really cool, kids were running around on the beach with flash lights, lots of chatter and laughing, good times!  Chad and I decided to hang out with the crowd on the bridge over the dunes - thought I could get some pic's - that was a joke, guess its like trying to take a pic of the sun, all you can see in my pics is the fire ball, in a black sky - does not do justice to the launch! Oh well, "Clark, baby,  I can see it in my mind, and its beautiful!" (Christmas Vacation)

Chad being attacked by a stuffed alligator on the Exploration Tower - Port Canaveral

Port Canaveral Harbor

Cocoa Beach Pier at dawn - too cloudy to get a really good pic of the sunrise
Our hotel was right next to the Pier - we had lunch there, and watched the surfers - some of them were quite good!
Our hotel is behind Chad
After a couple of nights in Cocoa Beach we headed over to our resort in Davenport for the remainder of our stay.  I considered this part of the trip a business junket of sorts - wanted to know what this resort was all about and if its worth considering trading for - its not!  Glad I know this now -  I will happily keep Galveston and Tyler - the next time we are in Florida - we plan to stay at the Renaissance ;->
Chad checking the movie listings in our unit in Davenport while we wait to go to Tampa

Florida Aquarium in Tampa Bay - reminds me of Moody Gardens, maybe on a slightly  larger scale
We had a lovely time in Florida - so glad we got to go.  I have posted a small portion of our trip pics, I usually don't like to post pics without someone in the pic that I know, but this one is lovely;  its the last look at the beach as we said our goodbyes to the Atlantic Ocean  - Chad was making fun of me for saying goodbye to everything, when we got to the car rental place at the airport, he was saying "Goodbye car, goodbye rental car guys, goodbye airport..."  - such a silly; even after 37 years of marriage - sheesh!

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