Trains and boats and planes…

Trains and boats and planes…

We saw them all today in the same place at the same time. But before we go there some unfinished business.

Answers to the previous two questions: 1. Walter, my childhood friend, at least knew the red car was an MG Midget but no-one even came close as to what that car was doing on that pontoon. Apparently someone with a great deal of talent and too little to do decided to take an old sports car that was mechanically shot and make it into a boat. However the car would not float so he set it on a pontoon boat that had been stripped down to a flat platform and made all the boat controls work through the car. The steering wheel turns the boat’s outboard motor. The turn signals and headlights work and the gas pedal works the motor’s throttle. I hope when we pass back this way on our trip downstream that he is out on the river.

2. The picture of the birds is unique. Look closely at the very end of the tallest limb on the tree and you will see a large black bird sitting beside one of the white ones. This is true integration in the bird world. That is a stork sitting beside a vulture. One brings you into the world and one takes you out. How about that for juxtaposition?

Now back to Sanford where things have settled down somewhat despite the national media and outside agitators. We have spoken to many people here both black and white and they are all unanimous in their opinion that this is not a racial thing. It is a justice thing. They just want the police to do what should have been done and investigate the shooting completely. The real trouble is likely to be if a new thorough investigation determines that there is no way to arrest or prosecute under the stand your ground law and the protestors refuse to accept this decision. This morning it was revealed that the shooter had a broken nose and an injury to the back of his head. Those would tend to support self defense. I have thought that this is one of those cases where I could choose either side and have a decent chance of winning. Everyone needs to slow down and let the system work. There are so many agencies involved that there can be no coverup.

Last night we ate at the famous Hollerbach Lemon Tree Cafe. Authentic German Cuisine. Fantastic wiener schnitzel, sauerkraut, German potato salad and apple strudel to die for. That is where I hung my hat on the stag’s horn.

They sell a huge 5 liter beer in a glass boot. Here is the story. A German general once told his troops that if they would conquer a city he would toast them by drinking beer from his boot. When they won he did not choose to drink from a sweaty boot so he had one made of glass and toasted his army. They loved it and a tradition was born. The rule at Hollerbach is that you must have at least 4 people to order the boot and once it is delivered to the table it cannot be set down until it is finished. You keep passing it around. The next to last one to drink has to buy so each person tries to leave more beer than the next person can possibly drink in a single try. You do the math.

This morning we were picked up by Derwin Smalls from Enterprise. What a nice fellow. We talked at length about the local situation and I appreciated his levelheaded approach. This community wants to heal and get on with their lives.

Off we went to Tavares where the great wooden Antique Boat Show was in progress. There were hundreds of gorgeous boats that you may never see again. There were seaplanes taking off and landing in the harbor all day long. There were motors of all types and a wood fired locomotive chugging right through the middle of it all. And there was an unbelievable sight or two but more on those after you look at boats. I could tell story after story on many of these but just enjoy the beauty like an art exhibit.

The rest you are not going to believe. How many of you have come face to face with a cottonmouth water moccasin and lived to tell about it? I am not talking a small snake here. This one was at least 5 feet long and as big around as my arm. I wanted to catch it and make a belt but the crowd convinced me not to.

And to top that, we were walking over a drain grate and heard a great hiss. Looking down there he was. A huge alligator had crawled into the storm drain from the lake and was looking up at people walking over the top of it. Can you see him down there? I was sure glad to have that storm grate under my feet. A large crowd gathered to watch me take these pictures.

After the show we returned to Sanford and visited the West Marine and Walmart. Both CO detectors had expired and needed replacing.

Tonight in town there is a beer festival. Remember I told you that half of the town is going on as if nothing has happened.

The following is an inside joke for my family only. Ever wonder what happened to the Chef? Well we may have found him. I will keep you posted.

Finally, look at this little fellow and tell us what he is doing and why.