this was sunday, January 4th, and i, personally, was very VERY excited because we were going to captiva island to stay at his wonderful place!  a hotel, but our own little cottage!

it was a busy day, and we took such a ridiculous amount of photos that i must divide this up into two entries.

first, we got up and walked over to the farmer’s market they have every sunday at the koreshan site.  it was really fun to hike over to the market; i’ve certainly never done that before, and who knows when i’ll have the chance again.  it wasn’t a huge market, but there was lots of good stuff.  we got there so early in the morning that there weren’t many people around yet.  we bought some bread from this great place; a loaf of multigrain, and one that had chocolate chunks in it, of course.  the multigrain turned out to be waaaay better than the chocolate one, but both were good.  we also bought some lettuce, in order to make some salad at our little cottage.  and a few other things…a guy was making guacamole in this GIANT bowl, but we didn’ wait aound for him to finish making it.

as we hiked back to our site, we stopped to take a picture of this giant tree.  it’s called a monkey puzzle tree, from australia, and the only reason i know that is because i took a picture of the little plaque on it!  there used to be two of these giant trees but i believe a hurricane took one down, so they planted two more little ones next to it.

we then headed to sanibel island, our first stop before captiva.

we stopped to see the lighthouse; it’s funny that i’d only been there once as a child, and now i’ve been two years in a row!  here’s the view from the car as we crossed the long, long bridge out to the island.

this year the lighthouse was draped with christmas greenery, very festive!

and this is the picture that kevin took of me taking the picture…

…and then we got somebody to take our picture.  so we thoroughly documented that lighthouse!

kevin took this picture of the water, looking all glisteny and wonderful and inviting.

he was then even inspired to take off his shoes!  he doesn’t go barefoot very much, because it’s risky when you have type 1 diabetes, but he decided that this occasion warranted it.

quite a few people were making a day of it, with beach towels and umbrellas and coolers and everything, but we were happy to keep moving.  we weren’t supposed to check into our cottage til 4:00, but we wanted to get closer…

as we walked back to the car, two women were stopped, looking up.  an osprey nest!

we drove through sanibel and stopped at their farmer’s market!  also something i’ve never done, two farmer’s markets in one day.  by this time it was almost noon i think, and almost over, but there was still plenty of stuff to look at and buy.  we bought some delicious stuffed grape leaves and a pie-shaped fig thing with almonds in it, both from the same place.  mmmm.  and there was another guy with the giant guacamole bowl!  so that’s some kind of chain, maybe all over florida?  and then we saw the same bread vendor!  we told the guy we’d been to the other place and he said, oh yeah, that’s my worker.  luckily we had bought the bread early!

by this time it was so hot and sunny that we tried to walk in the shade as we strolled around the market.

i wanted to go to the J. Ding Darling Nature Preserve because when mom and i had gone there, we had seen many birds.  since mom and i had hiked a little while there, and hadn’t seen many birds, and it was mostly just hot, we skipped that and drove down the scenic drive.

but this time, where were all the birds?

had they gone even farther south?

we kept stopping, and we did see a few.

but not many!

at one place we saw the teeny crabs.

plenty of other people were driving through, many of them stopping to fish.  but a woman in a van in front of us was creeping down the road – the speed limit was only 10, i think, but she was barely even moving.  and then, she just stopped!  right in the middle of the road!  you’re supposed to pull over and park, but she clearly didn’t care what you were SUPPOSED to do.

she just climbed right out of her car and waddled off to look at some nature.

this is the point when we’d had enough of the place, and headed right out.

we crossed over to captiva, and stopped at the green flash restaurant.  mom and i had lunched there last year, and i got myself a half dozen oysters, and i did the exact same thing again!

heaven.

Kevin enjoyed a big wedge of key lime pie.

most of the other diners seemed to be people whose boats were moored outside.  so cool.

by this time it was almost 3, and i called our hotel, Jensen’s “on the gulf” beach resort, and they said we could come over and take a little tour of the place, and our room would be ready by the time we did that.

we were quite happy, and headed right over…and that will have to wait, because there are many, many more photos.

ok then,

mrs. first day of february hughes.