Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Home At Last!

Hi Everyone! I'm finally back to blogging and have lots to tell you. First off, I apologize for my extended absence and want to thank all of you for your thoughtful comments and emails. The move turned out to be more physically and mentally challenging than I ever imagined. I've had highs and lows, but I'm finally at the point where it is coming together and I'm beginning to settle in to my new home.

As most of you know, I had planned to move to the country in South Georgia to be close to family members from both my mother's and my father's sides. I was all set to do this and then found out that those small towns do not have FAST internet connections. With the work I do as a graphic designer, this would not work well. I started searching around to find a town that could provide me with the speed I need and still be in South Georgia. My daughter is the one who found the place I have moved to, so where did I end up you ask?

Historic St. Mary's, Georgia!

I live just a couple of miles from the St. Mary's River and let me tell you — it is beautiful! What I discovered and found most interesting is that the river begins deep within the Okefenokee Swamp and flows along a twisting and turning 130 miles before it empties in the Atlantic Ocean, only forty air-miles from its point of origin. On a personal note, my great grandfather was born in the Okefenokee in 1867 and during the Great Depression, my mother's family lived in the swamp. Then, great-granddaddy engineered the train and grandpa drove a lumber truck for the logging industry. Funny that I've ended up in the town where that rivers meets the ocean, don't you think? I guess I've come full circle with some of my ancestral roots.

St. Mary's is the smallest town, by far, that I've every lived in, but it is charming. The downtown riverfront park is lovely as you'll see in a few photos I took when I first came to check it out. Interestingly enough, is the fact that the St. Mary's Rives is the easternmost border between Georgia and Florida. In this first photo of the park the land you see across the river is Florida! 

This is an aerial view of town from St. Mary's website. Lots and lots of trees!

The sun over the river, isn't this a peaceful photo? I found this one on the town's website also.

The closest "big city" to me is Jacksonville, FL and all of the local news on NBC, CBS and ABC comes from there. It is very strange to live in one state and local news comes from another. Even more interesting is that the closest beach to me is Fernandina Beach in Florida. As the crow flies, this beach is only seven miles away, but because the only way to get there is by ferry or boat, I have to drive back up to the interstate to cross the border and drive back down to the beach. This only takes about 35–40 minutes, so you can just imagine how happy this beach girl is to have such a beautiful beach close by. I took these photos of my first glimpse of my new hangout:

Anyone know what kind of plant this is? It looked so unusual growing in the sand. The Gulf Coast of Florida doesn't have enough wave action (understatement) for surfing, so I was thrilled to see this surfer out with his board. Didn't look like a good surfing day to me, but I know there will be many to come!

Sandy Bottoms, I just have a feeling I'll be sipping on a few mojitos in this joint soon!

There is a lot of history in this area and lots of places to explore and share with you. Cumberland Island is just a ferry ride away and I am fascinated to learn more about it. There are wild horses that have lived on the island for generations and although there seems to be a controversy on the impact they have on the environment, I think it is very cool. I've always loved seeing horses on the beach, so to be able to see wild ones is something I'm looking forward to.

The wild horses of Cumberland Island. The first photo is from the town's website and the second is from Fans of Cumberland Island and St. Mary's on Facebook. I can't wait to see them for myself!

I love the beach and everything that goes with it! I love the waves lapping at my feet. I love the feel of the sand between my toes. I love the roar of the Pacific and the gentle waves of the Gulf of Mexico in Florida. Let's talk about beaches around the world, bonfires, building sandcastles, swaying palm trees, flamingos, clambakes, sunrises and sunsets. If it's tropical, it fits this blog!


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