Sandy! I can't hate her. I've had friends named Sandy and I never hated them. It's just that... well, it's like old Thor, who I outran last summer, with his weird monster northern storms and thunderbolts, is letting me know he hasn't forgotten me thumbing my nose at him (I didn't really, honest) and had a little chat with Sandy and lo and behold, here I am in the shyte again. At least this time it's a warm bath.
It was picking up on the coast.
And providing some spectacular cloud patterns.
A1A was providing some great neighbourhoods.
The end of the day had me leave the coastal route at Ft. Lauderdale and find the Comfort Inn out on I-95.
Price was right but I had a roommate.
Sandy was closing and things were picking up. By the next morning the rain had set in and I decided to reroute myself as far inland as I could get to hopefully stay out of the worst of it. Looking at the animated doppler weather maps showed me a hole in the clouds encroaching about 11 am that day so that was my checkout time. It worked well and I got about 3/4 of the way past Miami on 27 and 997 before a giant looming thunderhead seemed to be getting closer. Pulled off for lunch hoping it would work its way away west thru my lunchbreak.
It did and I made a run for it. Right into the next giant looming thunderhead. With this one I could actually see the wall coming right at me. Accompanied by whom, you might ask. Old T-bolt throwin Thor himself. It might have well been a waterfall I was riding into because the similarities were uncanny. Immediately soaked right thru, (figured I might as well just wear the Oly protective outerwear because well frankly it was like a warm shower) I was also being hit with nasty wind. Nasty! Had just come thru an overpass so I made a hasty u turn and buzzed under it. Pulling over I could feel the blast at my back. In a second it increased to a howl and I was bombarded with palm fronds. Two other cars made hasty stops under there and all of a sudden it was hitting me full force in the face. Brakes locked and feet planted I waited for a couple of minutes and it lightened.
I wont say it was a twister but to be hit from the back and then from the front, well, something was whippin around.
And it did back off in the next five minutes or so to let me head on down the highway.
I managed to avoid the wet all the way to Key Largo where I booked into the Key Largo Inn to wait out two days worth. Reviews had this place pegged as old but clean and that was just fine with me. Good people, right price. And no La Cookaratchas!
The wind and rain carried on thru those two days.
And todays checkout had a blue sky but bedammed if it still wasn't blowin. Kind of a wobbly ride as I hit the firt of the bridges and stopped for a few pics of the first real key scenery.
Someone said wind gusts were anywhere from 30 to 40 but all I know was that I was getting knocked about pretty well. Not that BG couldnt handle it but with me sitting up there with all that gear I guess I was just screaming 'Blow me down!" I began dreading the 7 mile bridge crossing and when I saw it coming up I decided to check it out.
Got chatting with Brad who had a table set up with literature with a petition to save the original seven mile bridge.
Now Brad informed me that right now. I mean right now! Was the Key West Fantasy Fest weekend and I prolly didn't have a hope in Hell of getting a tent sight or a motel room for under 2 or 300 bucks. Seems I had stumbled into it again.
Add to that that tomorrow it was over and tomorrow the winds were supposed to drop off and I had convinced myself that biting the bullet and grabbing something in Marathon would be the correct course of action. And, it just so happens that he knew a nice lady who ran the Sea Dell Motel and, altho over budget it would prolly be better than most. And so it is. I will enjoy the local sights here for one day and have booked a campsight at Bahia Honda State Park starting tomorrow. And, like the postman, neither wind nor rain nor wind nor rain will stop me from tackling this baby in the morning!