Posted on: November 30, 2015 Posted by: Cole Ruth Comments: 0

I realize this is old news, but: We made it! We’re in Florida!

Bear with me as I bring you up to speed. I stopped blogging about our roadtrip on the day we reached Florida: November 30th. We left Lafayette that morning and stopped off in Baton Rouge for sandwiches. I read that Anthony’s had the best Muffaletta sandwiches outside New Orleans, but since it was only 10ish when we drove through, we got them to go.

Then we drove to Fontainebleau State Park on Lake Pontchartrain for a walk and a picnic lunch. The park, home to an old sugar mill, showed signs of decay. Boardwalks had caved in, some of the interpretive signs and trail markers had fallen down and the visitor’s center was closed. The ruins of the sugar mill had a big sign instructing people to steer clear because they were unstable. We weren’t sure whether this was because it was low season or if perhaps any extra money in Louisiana’s budget was still going towards post-Katrina efforts. Still, it was beautiful and the signs warning about alligators (fortunately those were still standing) and the Spanish moss hanging from old oaks all seemed to say: Welcome to the South.

We hit Florida sometime late in the day.

We made it just in time to secure a campsite at Big Lagoon State Park outside Pensacola – our first campsite of the trip! But we forwent the fire pit for dinner in town. My mother had insisted we eat at McGuire’s and she told us just what to order: one pepper steak (she said they’d split it for us and we’d still have food over for lunch the next day) and a wedge salad with blue cheese and bacon bits. We were also told to order the Senate Bean Soup for .18 cents. Here’s what McGuire’s menu says about it:

Same recipe as was served in the U.S. Senate for 18¢ in 1977. We’ve been selling this wonderful Homemade Soup at this price since 1977. The Senate cafeteria has raised their price to $6.00, but we all know Washington can’t control costs. ($18.00 if it’s your only purchase.)

This doesn't really capture the glory of the place - which is not lit with red lighting - but has an estimated million dollar bills hanging from the ceiling.
This doesn’t really capture the glory of the place – which is not lit with red lighting – but has an estimated million dollar bills hanging from the ceiling.

She also suggested we get the bread pudding but the steak meal also came with onions rings, two sides (we chose creamed spinach and garlic potatoes) and a cheese-broiled tomato. We returned to our tent stuffed to the gills.

We were without internet that night (by that I mean I had to drive to the local library to get enough reception to use email) and a ton of work landed on my plate (the one that wasn’t already piled high with food). Those two challenges continued over the next two days and I quickly fell behind on my blogging…