It took two full weeks of visits and travel to get to the next Coast – the Gulf Coast of Florida. We’ll complete the full cross-country adventure when we travel to Miami in January. At that time, we’ll pick up our car in North Port at my son’s house where we’re leaving it to fly back to Portland next week. We’ll then drive it through Alligator Alley and down to the Keys to get to the Pacific Ocean. So far, we’ve gone nearly 3,000 miles, with stops in San Francisco (3 nights), Cambria (1 night), Desert Springs (2), Tucson (1), Marfa (2), Austin (2), Foley (1), Lake City (1), and now Venice, covering the states of Oregon, California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, and Florida. We’re here to start the build of our forever home in the resort community of Island Walk

We made another Cracker Barrel food stop, tying McDonalds’s in road-trip nourishment. I’m happy to report that I have not had one single Diet Coke in over three weeks. I’m sure their stock value has dropped dramatically, as I was once their number one consumer. However, it still hasn’t kept me from visiting the bathroom any less. Any lost fluids have at least been replaced by strictly water, with a few evening cocktails and/or wine. I’ll be curious to step on the scales once we return to Portland next week, considering the fact that I’m not getting healthy home cooked meals. I do, however, sweat like a pig on my daily runs to the point where my shirt sticks to my skin. This will be the new norm living in the Florida humidity, as opposed to the cool Oregon mornings. I’ve also yet to see a homeless person with the exception of a few hitchhikers. 

Today, I’ll take advantage of the washing machine we once bought my son. We’ve already decided on the pool specs, but will go through the model home one last time before my wife’s decorating meeting tomorrow. I’ll spend the day shuttling grandchildren around while enjoying another family meal for seven tonight – probably pizza. Last night it was Chili’s. We’ve finally arrived at our Coast-to -Coast destination and will spend the next four days entertaining the kids, as they get to know us again.