Fast away the old year passes…


A grey day.

I walked to the beer store today, as rain in predicted for tomorrow. The beer store is about a 1/2 mile away, so it’s good exercise, and in about an hours time I’ll walk the 1/4 mile for dinner. The result is that I’m walking (with the walker) fairly well.

The hotel is moderately busy–a lot of families with kids (ugh!), so I expect it will be a noisy night. Actually, it started last night with a bunch of dimwits partying at 2:00 AM.

I received my 2013 report on Gerry B’s Book Reviews, and it is quite favourable. Have a look:


Cool day (mid-sixties)

Today is ‘bookreview day.’ This week I have chosen a story set in Nova Scotia during the first World War. It’s not a GBLT theme, but it is interesting just the same. BTW, to see my book review page, Gerry B’s Book Reviews, go to:

The tourists are thinning out–at least some of them. They are an interesting lot. One group, from Spain, are quiet and sophisticated, and speak remarkably good English. Another Spanish-speaking bunch are from Miami, etc., and tend to be loud and pushy. Their kids are the same, and there is no such thing as discipline. Personally, I cringe when they walk into a restaurant because I know my meal is going to be ruined.

The dollar is 93.90 this morning. I took $100 from the ATM yesterday, and it cost me $113. However, it’s either this or -2F for a daytime temp.

Better get at it.



December 29, 2013:

Raining, but mild. It would really be warm if the sun was shining, but even so I am able to work by the pool.

I like working outside when it is raining–so long as I am dry, of course. Fortunately there is a cabana by the pool, so I am able to sit under it. Of course I get a lot of odd looks, but I’ve long since stopped worrying about those.

Went for breakfast at the coffee shop again this morning. I go fairly early (9:00 o’clock), so I am ahead of the crowd. Tomorrow, with the bulk of the tourists gone,I should be able to go back to my usual haunt. Sunday nights and Mondays are generally the quiet times.

Speaking of such things, that group of idiots who come around at 2:00 AM were back again this morning. They are intentional morons, yelling and playing rap music in the parking lot. I’ve complained to the management, but I suspect they only have one staff member on at that time of the morning, and he/she is probably asleep.

Should be able to get some writing done, today.

December 28, 2013

IMG_0339Working by the pool, today. The temp is 69F, and there’s a faster wifi connection at this location (…not the hotel’s). The manager says the owner says that he expects Comcast to replace this server in the new year, but I am sceptical.

The good news is the temperature in predicted to be in the high 70s tomorrow, but the bad news is it is going to drop from there.

The town is crawling with tourists, so I’ve been going to the coffee shop for breakfast, the last two mornings. My other haunt has been just too hectic, plus screaming kids.

However, I saw something yesterday that quite amazed me. The coffee shop has a corner-conversation area with settees and coffee table, etc.  Well, curled up in the corner was a c.12 y.o. girl with a book, and there she stayed for a good hour or so–as quiet as a mouse. Incredible, and reassuring!

Glad to see the temp is moderating up north (for today, anyway); now if we can just do something about the Canadian dollar. Presently it’s at 93.40¢, so every dollar I spend costs me $1.07 + bank charges.

PS. My friend Colin wrote me to say it was -32F in Kirkland. That should make everyone feel luckier, 🙂

More tales from the inn – December 27, 2013

Happy Birthday, Glady … And just remember: The more birthdays you have, the longer you live!!



Saw my first Florida snake, this morning–An Eastern Corn Snake. it was lying  on the driveway to the hotel (dead, unfortunately). I respect snakes as one of nature’s creatures, but I let them go their way while I go mine.

corn snake

Coolish in Florida (low 60s) and it just started to rain. Warmer on the weekend, though.

The hotel has started to fill up for the weekend, which is always bad news for me–sleepwise. Already, there was a bunch of yahoos running around at 4:30 this morning. If it were you or me, we’d probably be talking quietly so as to not disturb sleepers, but not these. They belong to a breed of people who never speak lower than a shout–usually on either side of a room or parking lot–and their kids are just the same.

Until next time,


December 26, 2013: More tales from the inn…

Yesterday morning I had the pleasure of sitting next to a family of English tourists–father, mother, teenage son, and adolescent son. Their conversation was polite and quite sophisticated, given the age of the two boys. However, what was most delightful was that after eating the two boys got up and thanked their parents for breakfast and wished them a Merry Christmas!! Oh, that we could import some of this politeness.

A cool day in Florida (low 60s) and overcast. The wifi is even slower than usual this morning, and so I have to keep my hands away from what little hair I have left. That doesn’t stop me from expressing my frustration, and the air is presently quite blue.

The manager has assured me that a new provider is coming in the new year, but since the owner is somewhere else (in the world) I am sceptical at best.

Will do some writing today, still battling with one scene that just won’t come together, but it’s too cool to work beside the pool.

December 24th, 2013

CowboyChristmas+home copy

Merry Christmas, everyone.

I’ve been keeping an eye on the weather back home, and about all I can say is “sorry about that!” The temperature has dropped around here as well (30s at night), but that doesn’t compare to -9F in Orillia. Yikes!

In a short while I will be heading next door to the St. Augustine Cafe, but otherwise it’s just ‘life as usual.’ Tomorrow, the Cafe is open for breakfast but closed for dinner, so I guess I will have to eat with the screaming brats at Denny’s.

The hotel is busy–mostly with European tourists–but there are some others at well.

Do have a very Merry Christmas!


More tales from the inn…

December 20th, 2013

More tales from the inn: Someone tried to break into my room last night through the connecting door. I was in bed trying to sleep, in spite of the racket next door (why they would put a party of 4 next to a party of one, I don’t know. I don’t think they meant any harm, just being curious, but this morning I promptly moved to a new room (one without a connecting door).

Beautiful day in Florida. Temps in the 70s.

Catch-up time … Again

Temp in upper 70s today.

This may sound strange, but I wonder where the time goes. It seems that I have been getting ‘settled’ ever since I arrived here three weeks ago yesterday.

As most of you know, the problem here at the Days Inn is with the wifi system that is like going back to dial-up–it is sooooo slow. Loading graphics is frustrating, and videos are practically impossible.

The hotel next door, a Holiday Inn, is much better, but it’s also more expensive ($16-a-day more expensive). I love the restaurant, though, so I thought I would post a few pictures of the inside.

This first shot is of the scene that greets you when you walk into the restaurant. Also, at this time of year they have classical Christmas carols playing discreetly in the background.

cafe st augustine - corner


I like the artistic touches, too (red napkins, etc.). They add so much to the dining experience … And, of course, there are no kids!

cafe st augustine - tree v


The prices are quite reasonable (no higher than at Denny’s), and the portions are humongous! Here’s a clubhouse sandwich…

cafe st augustine - sandwich


And here is the rest of the restaurant

cafe st augustine - tabes by window


The other evening they had the Lighting of the Lights. It’s a big deal, here in St. Augustine. St. Augustine was voted 13th in the world for its lights. So I will leave you with this…

st augustine lights (3)


Until next time,


A stretch of gloomy weather…

This has been the longest stretch of gloomy weather I’ve experienced in the four years I have been coming here. Generally speaking, it is unusual for the sun to be gone for more than half a day, but it has now been gone for three days and not in the forecast for another three.

It hasn’t been particularly cold (it’s 59F now), but with the wind it feels colder than what it is. In addition, it’s depressing.

I have been under the weather, too. I usually am when I come to Florida. I think it’s because I’m exposed to a lot more people than I am at home, and I haven’t built up an immunity to Florida germs. Whatever, I have been running a fever for the past couple of days, but it is starting to clear now.

I still haven’t resolved the wifi problem (slow.) The manager I deal with is out of town until Monday, so I will speak to her then. In the meantime I haven’t been able to do any writing–just haven’t felt like it. Hopefully, I will be able to get back at it tomorrow.

Until next time,