Monday, June 11, 2012

Travel Week (Part 1)

Awhile back, I was trying to plan a kindly complicated trip, where we first went down to my sister's (in central Florida) for my nephew's graduation on Thursday, and then worked our way back up to Chattanooga, TN for Ryan's doctor's appointment on Monday (today).
But then J didn't get approved for the days off we needed, but then he was able to swap a shift so we could make the graduation, and then right at the end someone else's plans fell through and they decided to not take off, so J got the shift off after all.

I knew these two things right off the top: one, I didn't want to spend too much time at my sister's, and two, we always cry when we pass the Jacksonville exit because we don't want to go home, we want to go to the beach and vacation. (Okay, maybe it's only me that cries, but you know what they say: What Momma wants, they all want.)(Okay, maybe it's only me that says that, too. Still...)

So, I suggest that we'll spend a night or two in Jacksonville on the way home, but J wasn't thrilled with the idea.  For some strange, crazy, weird, dumb reason that I can't fathom, he's "not a fan of the beach". Gasp!

Okay, well, he likes Historical stuff, Civil War and all that, and we've never been to Savannah (GA), and it's just a bit north of Jacksonville, plus it's at the end of I-16, the highway that goes right back over to I-75 to take us north to TN, so I thought we'd go to Savannah instead.

I looked on the map to see the best way to get there, and St. Augustine jumped out at me. My grandparents live in St. A for a short time back in 1946, and my parents took us on a family vacay there back in the early 80's...maybe even late 70's. John or the boys hadn't ever been there, so I looked into some of the things to do there...and there was too much to do in like a day and a half. 'We'll come back and spend a week another time," I said.

I went on to look up what Savannah offered, and pretty much what I found was tours - looking at the outsides of old houses/buildings, shopping, and eating. Bo-o-r-r-ing.
How about Jekyll Island? I could stay at the beach, J could go fishing. But all the reviews and everything I read on Tripadvisor was basically saying to me "Don't go there".
Looked at St. Simons, Brunswick, Waycross....
I continuously kept ending up back at St. Augustine.

Eventually I made a deal with myself - we'd stop in St. A and spend the afternoon and see the Castillo de San Marcos and the Fountain of Youth on our way to Savannah. Okay? Okay. Good? Yeah.

I made a tentative plan for doing a Ghost tour and eating out at Savannah, but that was about the extent of it. I didn't even start looking at a hotel to stay at, or decide if we'd stay two nights, or move on up the road, or head on to Chattanooga or what.

As I was working on inventorying my Little People collection - and ignoring our travel plans - in a totally unrelated event, a lady comes along and posts her father's name on my Family Tree Facebook page.

I started this Family Tree Facebook page awhile back for other's with my (maiden) last name to meet up, share info, look for contacts, whatever. It doesn't get a lot of traffic, every so often someone will come along and post their lineage and occasionally, seemingly not very often, someone will connect with them.
In the meantime, I'm a member of a Family newsletter so I share info from it to the group, mostly Obituaries. It had almost gotten to where it looked more like it should be the Family Tree Obituary posting group instead.

Anyway, as it happened, I thought I recognized this lady's father's name, and asked if her father's parents names were (Mark and Mary Jane).  But then I went on her FB page and looked through her photos and saw that her father was who I thought he was, which was my grandfather's brother.  So she's my Dad's 1st cousin; my 2nd cousin, or 1st cousin once removed, whichever it is.

I emailed my Dad, and both him and Mom knew this Cousin when she was a little girl. Dad's only a few months younger (older?) than her older brother.
I scanned some pictures I had of her Dad as a little boy, and her parents as young newlyweds, and her grandparents (my great-grandparents).

She was so excited and emotional. Later she told me she almost didn't even post because she saw all the Obits on the FB page and wasn't sure she was supposed to post her lineage there.

The reason I'm detailing all this is because - I kid you not - she lives in St. Augustine, and she's a tour guide at the Castillo.

How crazy is that?!

(To be continued....)

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