Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

Inconsiderate and Interesting Campers

Friday April 19 and Saturday April 20, 2013
Site 41 St. Joseph Peninsula State Park
Port St. Joe, Florida




All pictures are from Saturday April 20.Saturday & Sunday St. Joe 004

Today is our first full day in Site 41 and I’m anxious to go to the beach but the weather is not cooperating.  It is dark and stormy looking, high winds and temperatures in the 60’s.  Not so much beach weather.  I do go out running and then I do the laundry and work on the blog even though I can’t post it without going over to the Marina Store.  Thank goodness for Live Writer.  No internet in the Campground even with our antenna and amplifier.  Do we need new equipment?? 

The rain doesn’t actually start until late in the afternoon and then it goes all night long.  This is when I really love being in Winnona and not in a tent as we did for years when we were at state parks!!   I wanted to go down to see what the gulf was doing during the heaviest down pours but it was dark and too late even though I have a great raincoat for it.


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As you know by now, I love Florida’s State Parks but there is one thing I don’t like and that is their extremely varying rules enforcement.  Those without good rules enforcement, which is the case here, allow people to make a lot of noise long after quiet hours have started.  At 2am I am jarred out of my sleep by some sort of car alarm that goes on and on and on and on and on and finally stops only to resume 2 or 3 minutes later and continue like this for an hour.  It is pouring down rain so I suppose the owner, who is in a tent just kept hoping the battery would die and he wouldn’t have to deal with it.  Not so nice for his neighbors.  But in this day and age it seems that it is “all about me”.  Do I need a new less curmudgeonly attitude?





I wake up groggy this morning and have  a hard time getting going due to the long and irritating interruption to my sleep.  David of course slept through the entire thing although he says when asked that he “sort of heard it”.  It was LOUD and our nearest neighbor agrees with me.  It kept them up too.  So either he is a dead sound sleeper or he has serious hearing problems.

In the trees just outside our living room slide window, we notice relatives of friends from St. George.   I am thrilled to see them.  I feel better about this site thanks to them.


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I take a walk over to the beach and find that the weather is cool this morning and the waves are up.  As I am walking back I notice Winnona off in the distance.  Can you see her there in the middle with her blue awning.  The beach really is nice and close to our site and we benefit from that proximity in the nice breezes we get.

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A little closer view

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We decide it’s not prime beach time just yet so we walk around the campground looking at other potential sites.  Some have excellent views of the Sound marshes.  I wonder about the bugs there.  The no-see-ums are better here than at St. George but I wouldn’t want to push my luck since they are still definitely here.


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We take the boardwalk along the marsh from our site in the Gulf Breeze campground over to the other larger campground Shady Pines.  The section on our end is quite new and has a spur overlooking the marsh.

It’s a lovely walk and there are information signs about the things growing in the marsh.  Off in the distance we see a couple of herons.  But there are not many birds here today.

We’ve come to Shady pines to  look at their campsites.  Although Gulf Breeze has fewer people, there are only a few semi secluded sites and at least half the sites are jumbled together near the back.  We want to take a look at other possibilities for next year.  IF we can get a reservation of course.

Shady Pines definitely has bigger sites and more secluded but there does seem to be no enforcement of rules again and a group from Missouri has a compound of 4 sites with about 20 tents and 12 cars.


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We do see this interesting motorcycle tent/trailer.  As a former Harley owner, David is checking this out.  No thanks for me but I love his banner with all the patches.  I didn’t know you could get state park patches.  I look to see how many of those he has listed are places we have camped. Looks like he’s got a lot of Florida and is starting on Georgia.  I also like his little ‘States We Have Visited’ Map.  You color the states in with ink.  It’s a patch.  Cool!


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He even has AC in his home on wheels.  Sure wish he’d been there so we could talk with him.  Perhaps we’ll have time to come back and check later.

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Another trailer that catches my eye is this darling vintage Shasta.  I have vintage trailer envy even though I know they would be extremely difficult to live in full time if only because of the lack of a freezer.  But it sure is sweet.  Love that color.  My very favorite.

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How about the vintage lawn chairs.  One a rocker.  The table is aluminum too.  Where do these folks find all this great stuff??

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If nothing else, Shady Pines has a more interesting clientele than we see in Gulf Breeze.  And much larger sites.  How about this great sign someone had at the edge of their site.

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Time to walk back and hit the beach.

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And when we get back to Winnona, look who is here to greet us.  This time there are two pairs of Indigo Buntings and ultimately as we watch, 3 males and 2 females.  They must have gotten the word that we love them in our yard.  They are back by the dolly behind Winnona this time.  Don’t they just make you smile??





The sand here is like white powder.   Don’t you love the expression on the face of this woman leisurely flying her kite.

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Loree has asked a couple of times about shells and I have been remiss in not showing them.  So here is just a random shot at the detritus line.  They are nearly piled up.  No one was posed for this shot.  Not too many big ones but lots of scallops and many others as well.  Tomorrow I’ll post some more specific shell pictures.  Yes Loree there are shells and they are lovely.


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We go back for dinner and return for the sunset.  People are still picking out shells as it gets darker and darker.  That’s David in the chair.

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Another very fine day by the Gulf at St. Joseph Peninsula State Park.


  1. Another fine day indeed. We got dumped on big time on Friday with rain from about 3:00a through near 5:00p ... luckily the weather over the weekend cooperated and we had a nice couple of hours on the beach ... even without a sunset like yours.

  2. I don't pick up shells. If there was sea glass here, I would pick it up to make jewelry with.

  3. I too like to trailer gaze. Tho I know you aren't surprised by that! A lot of people who own vintage trailers have spent a considerable amount of time (and money!) online, in antique and thrift stores and at trailer rallies where they have their own swap meets to collect the authentic gear that they use. Others use newly manufactured in traditional style to recreate the ambiance of the olden beauties. I love it just the same while I am a purist at heart my pocket book doesn't match so I am consoled by my wannabee status. You would love it at a rally where generally they have an open house on Saturday where you can tour, inside and out of these gorgeous vintage trailers. It is remarkable to see what people have done to make these beauties their own.

  4. I get very upset about rude campers. But love to look at other RVs. The old Shasta is very nice.

  5. Cool campers and cool indigo buntings....thanks for sharing!

  6. Love, love, love those Indigo Buntings. I've seen very few of them in my life time. Maybe I need to get up to the panhandle.

    I hope your weather picks up so that you can spend some time on the beach.

    Before you go, why don't you leave a comment card regarding your complaints. I find they are very responsive to those cards and they go directly to Tallahassee, not the individual park.

  7. I have never seen an indigo bunting. I am really jealous. Looks like another great beach park.

  8. If I were on a beach like that, I'd spend the entire time looking for shells.

  9. Hey, you're letting the comments publish immediately! Whoohooooo

  10. Love the Indigo Buntings..they are the most beautiful shade of Indigo :) I'm with you on rude neighbors! People have lost the ability to be kind.

  11. The Indigo Buntings are soooo fluffy and beautiful ~ and I tell you .. that blasted car alarm owner and me would have had a word.... not in the rain and at 2am but I would and have addressed that sort of rudeness as soon as it got light! that's terrible.

    I also like to see what people camp in ... really interesting the way some really fix them up as truly their homes.

  12. I hate car alarms. Have I mentioned that I hate car alarms? People really think they deter car thieves? That guy is very lucky he was camping near nice people. In some places he would have had slashed tires or a broken windshield. Not that he didn't deserve it... ;c)

    Even your pictures of the shells are gorgeous, you have an amazing eye for nature's beauty. Thanks for sharing these gems on your blog! :c)

  13. The beaches at St. Joe's look amazing and those indigo buntings really make it a special place. Hopefully, your neighbors will quiet down and the weather will improve. How lucky you are to have sunsets on the Gulf there.

  14. How lucky are you -- you must be like a magnet to those indigo buntings! Send some of them this way. I've never been fortunate enough to see one.

    Love the aqua Shasta. Looks like it's in really good condition too.

  15. I too loved the florida beaches especialy along the panhandle. Would much rather spend time in winter along there then in the desert. When i had an rv for two years I spent one winter mostly in Arizona and one winter in Florida. Both nice, but I guess I enjoyed Florida more. Dont you just hate inconsiderate campers. Have not read your blog for awhile. Hope that you both are well !!!

  16. How rude of those car alarm folks - totally and completely rude! Maybe the owners have the same issue as Dad - they sleep like the dead or have really bad hearing. Interesting neighbors with their patches and old-timey camper - so fun to explore! Gorgeous shells, beach and indigo buntings! I knew without you saying that was Dad in the chair - wish I was there too :)

  17. Now I am blissful.... well, people who pick up shells have them in old granite ware, sitting hither and yon all over the yard, OR I have a lovely jar lamp at the Pottery Barn that I have select ones in and it is most pretty. People ask me if it came that way... no, I say, I bent over and picked up EACH and everyone of them!!! They remind me of fun, long, sunny days at the beach!!! :) thank you so for remembering!!


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