Friday 11th August
This morning we drove (slowly, at the speed limit of 35mph on the A1A), sixty miles north of Daytona Shores to the oldest city in America: St. Augustine. In the 1500’s Pedro Menéndez explored and colonised the city, on instruction of King Phillip II of Spain. In the 1700’s English troops besieged and then burnt the town to the ground ~ a reason why there are no buildings older than 1702 in St. Augustine today.
We began by checking out the Visitor Information Centre, and armed with a map, we began our stroll in the midday heat down narrow streets lined with tourist shops, bars, restaurants and palm trees. Spanish colonial influence was everywhere, from the names of the streets to tapas bars, and even in the public toilets where a ‘potted’ history of waste disposal is given!
We walked down St George’s Street to the basilica, across to the marina, and back again. It was hot; we felt wilted. We had a great lunch at the Bull and Crown pub, along with copious amounts of iced water, and completed our eating with a wonderful tub of pecan and toasted coconut ice cream from a gelateria just around the corner.
Our drive back was much faster, as we drove down I95 at twice the speed of the outbound journey.
The late afternoon was spent walking along the beach and paddling in the sea, watching pelicans fly and dive for fish, right in front of us.
I think you would have liked St. Augustine, my darling, with it’s ancient cemetery, torture chamber museum, ghost stories, pirates and dark history. Not sure about the heat though ~ it was sweltering.
We miss you poppet
Love you forever
Beloved Angel son