It became obvious on this last camping trip that I need to replace my stolen bicycle.  Everyone was riding their bikes and it made me really miss my 3 wheeler.  I don't mind walking around the campgrounds but sometimes it's just better on a bike especially if I can carry my little dog with me.  She loved riding in the basket on the trike.

So this is what I ordered this morning.

A folding bike that can be stored in the basement of the coach ...

and a bicycle trailer/carrier for Xi Shi Quan.  It can be used as a free standing stroller as well.

The folding bike was on sale at Camping World for $109.00 and the bicycle trailer was $95.00.  They should arrive in about a week.  Can't wait.  My next trip to the beach at the end of August will be a lot more fun riding this around the place. 

They both collapse and will fit inside the basement of the coach so no need to worry about anything hanging off the back and possibly falling off.  Remember what happened to my trike carrier?

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Left the beach around noon and got home at 2:00.  I really enjoyed my week away even with all the rain.  The cats and dog were glad to be home and settled into their old routine.  I like going away but always like coming home.

I have reservations for the end of next month at the same campground for 4 days.  I'm averaging one trip a month which seems to placate me while waiting for my property to sell so I can take longer trips.  It won't be long now and summer will be coming to an end.  It's not likely that it will sell during the winter so it will be next year before I see any interest in the property.  I'm getting real tired of waiting.
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I dug out more photos of Fort Livingston that I took when I was on Grand Terre Island back in 2008.

Construction on the fort itself began in 1841 but was halted with the start of the Civil War, and was never resumed so the fort was never fully completed. The fort was briefly occupied by Confederate forces during the Civil war, but never saw combat.

Here are some aerial views of the Fort.




My transportation to the island.

The back side of the Fort.

Where the cannons were placed.  The Fort was equipped with 15 guns, including a 32-pounder, an 8-inch columbiad, seven 24-pounders, four 12-pounders, and two howitzers.  The guns were removed in 1889.

My Captain, tour guide, and friend Pat.

One of 2 sets of granite steps that are awesome.

The other steps

These granite steps have remained like new after all these years.  There's a story about some guys who tried to steal one of the steps.  I don't remember how it goes but I remember that they got caught and the step was recovered and replaced.

I was terrified to climb them without a railing but got to the top by climbing with my hands and feet.

The view from the top.   That's Barataria Bay with Grand Isle in the distance.

The walls were constructed of cemented shell, faced with brick, and trimmed with granite.

There is an ongoing restoration project to clean oil off of the bricks, with little success.

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Well I got my wish. It has gotten a lot cooler here at the campground, however, it took thunderstorms to do it. Not complaining though. We enjoyed sitting outside today and watching the kids play in the rain and didn’t get bitten by any mosquitoes. Some folks continued fishing and figured what the hell... we’re wet anyway.

I am not getting good reception on my Verizon Air Card and am not able to access a weather channel on my computer. My roof antenna is not picking up any local TV channels either. So I’m pretty much in the dark as to the weather forecast. It may rain all day so if I wait for it to stop I’ll be stuck inside the camper all day with no TV or Internet. Gotta make the best of it. 

So... I packed up my rolling cart with my camera, umbrella, and towels. Placed little Xi Shi Quan inside the netting of the cart and on top of the towels and off to the beach we went - under my umbrella. She usually walks to the shore but likes to stop and smell every bush and blade of grass along the way so I rode her there today. There is a long ramp up to the bathhouse and onto the beach so it was easy rolling all the way with a very light drizzle. She absolutely loves the beach. Once she gets close enough to see the beach she pulls me to follow her.

The beach had accumulated some large puddles of rain and she walked around in one of the large ones and took a few drinks of it. Then it was on to the Gulf. It was pretty calm and no waves to speak of. She went in a ways but was more interested in the smells along the shore.
I had planned on swimming this trip but due to this warning sign I decided against it. 

There were maybe 4 people on the beach this morning and a few in the water fishing, yet the park is full. I’m sure they will be out there this afternoon.

The sun came out for a few hours this afternoon and I decided to take a walk to the fishing pier. It didn’t really look like it was too far away. Put Xi Shi in the rolling cart with the camera and took off on the paved road that leads to the RV park. There was only one car parked in the parking lot near the entrance. We took the winding ramp up to the entrance to the pier and tower. By this time I was getting pretty tired and sweaty as it was further than I thought and I hadn’t brought any water. When we got to the end of the pier there was a water hose and I offered some water to Xi Shi and I took a sip. It was windy and nice over the water and I wished I had brought a chair. I took lots of photos and enjoyed the view.

From the pier you can see Grand Terre Island and Fort Livingston which is a part of the State Park, separated by the infamous Barataria Pass. It was on Grand Terre Island - the same spot that now houses the old Fort - that the pirate Jean Lafitte had his headquarters in the early 1800s. It was at Barataria Bay where the British anchored their ships in order to have a meeting with Lafitte and offer him money to join their forces to capture the city of New Orleans during the War of 1812.

Instead of going back the way we came I thought it would be cooler to go back along the beach. So we headed out that way. It was hard to roll the cart on the sand so I had to stop and rest a couple of times. Then the back right wheel came off of the cart. I put it back on but could only roll a little ways before it dropped off again. This happened at our mid way point so it took a long time to get back to the camper. I’ve had that cart for about 5 years and used it a lot. It’s getting pretty rusty and I’ll probably get another soon.
Came back to the coach and fixed supper. Having corn on the cob, fried green onion sausage with some French bread - both made locally, and a glass of Sangria. For dessert... rice pudding. Um um good.

Tonight’s movie marathon is "Back To The Future."

Had a great day.
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Lily & Lola & not much else.

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Lily loves Lola in Pure Beauty magazine (& on Facebook too!)

First things first I wanted to tell you folks that I have set up a Facebook page where I will be posting new blog posts, photos, and other bits and bobs. I'd love it if you like my blog if you would like my Facebook page too? Thanks peeps!

I'm really excited to tell you that I am in the latest issue of Pure Beauty magazine. They asked me a little while ago if I would like to be their guest blogger and of course I was flattered and said yes. I must admit I forgot all about it but then up popped a tweet last week from fellow blogger Phoebe saying she had spotted me and off I went to have a read.

It is very exciting seeing my ugly mug in print like this (I'll even forgive them for getting my surname wrong, hehe).

Head on over to the magazine here and look out for me on page 63!
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Got to the campground this afternoon around 3:00.  Hooked up and opened the awning.  Set out my floor mat, table and chairs.  Then went inside where it was cool.  It's hilarious.  I had to laugh out loud at how ridiculous the whole situation was. 
When it cooled off later this evening I walked the dog on the beach till dark.  When I got back to the camper the mosquito fog truck was spraying the campground.  The mosquitoes are REALLY bad.  So it's stay inside or get eaten alive by the mosquitoes and faint from the extreme heat and humidity.  It's an outrageous situation.
Boiled shrimp tonight as I usually do but this time I cooked inside the camper.  Not a very pleasant smell to have permeate throughout your interior but the alternative was far worse.  I put too many lemon wedges into the water and everything tasted bitter to me.  So supper wasn't so great.
My neighbor has a little dog and they have put up a ramp for it to get into the camper.  I thought it was cute so I took a photo of it when they were gone.
Gonna watch a movie now and have some dessert.  Strawberry short cake... yes... that's what I'll have.    I can't ruin that, can I?
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Sunday, June 24

My #1 Co-Pilot - Xi Shi Quan

My #2 Co-Pilot - Bunny Kitty

My #3 Co-Pilot - Caiche

Got here at my friend Pat’s house yesterday and hooked up to his 30 amp electric outlet. Didn’t hook up to water because I’m only here till Monday at noon, then I’m off to the State Park. There was another camper with a couple of guys in it who are friends of Pat also staying near me. Usually I am the only one camping in his yard. They were really nice and gave me some boiled crabs that they caught and cooked the day before. The crabs were delicious and I had them for supper with a nice cold beer. Yummy.

It rained all the way to the island which was the first time I experienced driving the coach on wet and slippery roads. Stopped at the super market to get some bread which I forgot on my kitchen counter at home. Could not find a parking place. The island is packed with tourists and I usually don’t like to visit during this peak season.

Folks who come here really like to party and the one road in and one road out is backed up most of the day and night with people riding around drunk and hollering holding up signs saying, "Honk if you’re..." - well you know what I mean. Grand Isle in the summer puts New Orleans to shame as a party town. There are swimming pools set up in yards along the highway for the kids and folks grilling meat on the pit in every yard. Music is blaring from every direction. The bar rooms are overcrowded and the police try and turn away from most scuffles and displays of nudity. It’s kinda like, "Let the good times roll."

This coming weekend is the annual Tarpon Rodeo and I sure don’t want to be around here for that. It is a bigger event than the Fourth of July and the highway is literally blocked by a line of cars bumper to bumper not moving. The event gets larger and larger every year. I used to set up my tent and sell my crafts and books at the pavilion but the booth costs $400 for the 3 day event and that is just too high so I don’t do it anymore.

The recent rain has caused more mosquitoes than usual and it is no fun walking the dog. Pat and I sat on his covered swing this afternoon and enjoyed the rain and cool breeze till the swarm of mosquitoes came and covered our legs. So it was back to the coach for a movie and some blackberry pie that Pat made.

The Cat's Lair

Slept good last night but must get some new pillows. These in the coach are really too soft. Walked the dog for just a few minutes due to the mosquitos. It’s worse than I have ever experienced here on the island. Can’t wait for winter. Winters here are wonderful. No tourists and no mosquitoes and no one on the beach. No need for A/C. Campfires at night wrapped in a blanket. I just love it.
Got to my camp at 11:00am and was finished cleaning at 3:00pm. By the time I got to the downstairs area it started to pour down rain. I was so close to completing the job so I just kept going and got soaked. Never did get to clean the pool house.

When I walked around to the back of my property I noticed that a part of my fence was torn down. There was a large dog kennel and a kiddie pool in my back yard. Not mine. I called the neighbor and asked what that was doing in my yard. She said she didn’t know what I was talking about. I asked her to remove the objects and she said she would tell her roommate.

About an hour later I noticed he was moving the dog house and I asked him if he was going to repair my fence. He apologized and said he would. I also asked him to remove his stored tires that he had leaning on my front fence as well as all of the debris he had placed in my side yard. By the time I left, all had been done.

I’ll never as long as I live understand why people encroach on another’s property. Even having a fence does not stop this neighbor. I hate this neighborhood! I was so angry that I made up my mind on the spot to rid myself of this property immediately no matter what I have to do... lower the price again or a lease purchase. I’ve got to do something soon.

Came back to the coach and dried off. Pat invited me to eat some Bar-B-Q chicken so I changed clothes and enjoyed the rest of the afternoon. We went for a ride to Elmer’s Island where you can drive your car on the beach. It was great to be in the co-pilot seat for a change. My little Xi Shi Quan sat on my lap and hung her head out the window. And wouldn’t you know it... I forgot my camera.

We’re all chillin’ now on the sofa while I write this blog and thinking of what to have for supper. It’s been a pretty good day over all. Tomorrow we head for the State Park. YEAH!!!

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Delly Dumpling on Etsy - handmade phone cases.

My Sister, Adele, has just started out making phone cases but they're not just any old cases. They are extremely girly, and pretty, and packed full of charms and trinkets. Adele is selling her creations via Etsy (here's a link to her store) but she also has a fanpage on Facebook which you can 'like' in order to hear about her new designs first. Please pop on over there, have a browse and see what you think.

At the moment there are designs for the iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, Blackberry Torch and the HTC Desire but if you have another model of phone, or you can't see your favourite design for your particular phone, you can contact Adele to see if she can take your request. Please bear in mind that designs will vary due to their handmade nature and the style of each phone case. Alternatively you can just purchase one of the ready-made designs currently listed on Etsy to get your mitts on one even quicker!

If you have got any questions you can contact Adele through her Etsy page or ask me and I will pass the message on for you. 

I've got my eye on the J'adore Paris case for my iPhone 4. How about you? Which one takes your fancy?

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A Hundred and Ten In The Shade

I Love John Fogerty

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I dreamed your dream for you, and now your dream is real.

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