Posted by on 15, Apr 2019 in 2019 - Orlando Northwards, Tilly the Tandem, USA


When you think of Florida the last thing youll probably think of is a dreary rainy day like we get in the UK, but that’s what we got just past Gainesville. We quite enjoy dodging the torrential downpours here as they are short and warm and if you get soaked it’s quite refreshing. Cycling all day in one however is not our preferred plan and when those days arrive we tuck up in a hotel for the day and rest.We duly did this and were going to move on the next day but my tummy decided to play up and so we stayed put which rather put a spanner in the works for our planned rendezvous with Cousin Annie (not the secret one, quite the opposite really!)We had booked an Airbnb for a night on Friday at Tarpon Springs and were going to go down from Talahasse that day as Talahasse is the first city past Gainesville where we could find car hire. With two days lost we didn’t fancy long cycles to make up time so hired a car from Gainesville extended our stay in Tarpon Springs and left Tilly in Gainesville for a week. Tarpon Springs is an unusual US town. Full of Greek restaurants, shops etc it’s obviously been settled by Greeks and sold proper bread, made without 4 tonnes of sugar per loaf and was delicious. I was less keen on the Greek meal, and when I say less keen I mean “I’m not doing that again in a hurry” . Still, the catfish in the river next to the restaurant loved it. In fact you could almost walk over the river there were so many of them it made the river look solid when they tried to get the food. Fortunately the Greeks do better Ice cream and we stopped on our way back to our Airbnb for a quick cone.Our airbnb was lovely as was the host, but sadly looks can be deceiving. After we left she friended us on Facebook and one of her many racist posts was calling Obama “a Black C*nt”. Unfriended. How can someone who’s seems so genuine and lovely be so vile? I suppose the clue was in Fox news being her news of choice. So sad.Anyway, we thoroughly enjoyed Tarpon and made a trip to St Petersburg which was a fun day out, though nothing special. It did have a British Pub which we took advantage of to satiate our Curry cravings and a lovely waterfront area.After that it was reunion time with Cousin Annie and her friends who very kindly hosted us in their guest cottage. We had a hectic weekend seeing the bottle of Genever I brought empty after two nights along with around 2 cases of wine, some rum, cocktails and probably anti freeze and rubbing alcohol. Boy can these Americans drink! To say nothing of the medical Pot!Despite this intake (which was mainly not us!) We managed to canoe, see the Rolling Stones in concert on stage at the local food festival, miss the mayor being thrown out for, what appears to be a local illness – intoxication and go to a street chalk festival. It was a fab weekend and we were sad to see Annie go home but relived we could go back to Alcohol free beer!

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