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Friday, July 15, 2011

DAY 180: CAPE CANAVERAL - COCOA BEACH - & A1A SOUTH, FLORIDA

Please say HELLO to Carrie Elaine.

My supply of SAM & ME Business Cards was down to the last 4 or 5, so I stopped in at Pioneer Printing in the town of CAPE CANAVERAL. Carrie met me at the counter...yes we can do that. I hurried to SPIA to retrieve my Mini Computer where the Art Work was stored.

It took Carrie all of 15 minutes to extract my file, process it through her software, and print out 250 new high-gloss business cards...then she refused to accept any $$.

As clients came and west, Carrie and I chatted for quite some time...I could talk to you all day...said this beautiful Native American - CHEROKEE INDIAN from the Carolinas -.

Alas, Michael asked for more cards to distribute to a "Bloggers" Seminar he was attending later in the morning, so I reluctantly left Carrie with a promise to stop in if I came this way on my return from KEY WEST.

Mike and Catrell arrived only 2 minutes after my cell call that I had more cards. They took a handful, and rushed off...again offering to welcome me on my way back from KEY WEST. As they drove out of sight I yelled my thanks - again - for having me for breakfast in their home earlier this morning...Hi, Harrison...

Driving to find a parking place for SPIA, I passed this "Welcome" sign which two girls were photographing...Hey, I thought, I must have a photograph of that sign...it has been one of my important mini destinations for nearly 50 years; so, I quickly parked in a church lot and walked back.

The girls were getting on their bikes as I introduced myself. Next thing I knew, they were taking photographs of me at the COCOA BEACH, FLORIDA Welcome sign.

Guess first impressions were acceptable...in a few moments, we were posing arm in arm before our various time-delay shuttered cameras.

Please say HELLO to Julia and Laura. Laura, a school teacher, has traveled extensively beyond the USA.

I walked for two hours before returning to SPIA.

By now it was nearing noon. I found another parking place at Ace Hardware - where a young lady helped me repair SPIA's broken fan - the wires were so old, they fell apart like a brittle Artery...which, by the way, was the cause of my Mother, Leona's, death while receiving bypass surgery a few years ago.


Outside Mc Donald's window from my table was a fountain. This blackbird came to the fountain three times. Each time he had a nut of some kind, which he purposefully dropped into the water, let it soak for 30 seconds or so, picked it up and gulped it down.

A gentlemen sitting next to me told me if I could wait a bit, a white Egret came to the fountain on a regular basis - seemed like that gentlemen spent a bit of time at that table to know that.
I thanked him, but had miles to cover, so left without seeing the Egret.

COCOA BEACH "DOWNTOWN" had their own Welcome sign. It was placed in the middle of Highway SR A1A, surrounded by a beautiful garden. Must say, COCOA BEACH, FLORIDA does have Class. 50 years ago, it was a couple short blocks long, cut thru by a 2-lane A1A, with not a single waterfront Condo. The only landmark of those days was the STARLIGHT MOTEL & LOUNGE...a regular hangout for many famous Astronauts of the early 1960s.

I was present to see Ham, the monkey blast into space, followed by Alan Shepard, followed by John Glen. Minuteman flew 14 times while I worked in the Cape Kennedy Space Center.
The very first Minuteman to fly nearly hit the bulls eye nearly 5,000 miles down range in the South Atlantic. The solid rockets that help boost the Shuttle into space were descendents of the very successful Minuteman ICBM (Intercontinental Ballistic Missile).

Probably the most popular place in COCOA BEACH, FLORIDA is Ron Jon Surf Shop, planted in mid town only one block from the Pure White Sands of the Atlantic Ocean.

Patrick Air Force Base has their own beaches. This walkway leads from the PAFB parking lot to the beautiful beach which continues for miles North and South. Everyone can use the beaches, but to park in the lot, one must have the Base Commander permission.

I parked there after stopping at the Guard Shack, introducing myself, and pleading to leave SPIA for ony a few hours while I continued my afternoon walk South on A1A. I was sternly reminded that at dusk, the tow truck impounded any vehicles still parked there.

In fact, I was told that ALL beach-side parking lots prohibited parking after dark.

A family walking to a favorite spot near water's edge to enjoy the afternoon Sun.

The Atlantic Ocean Beach opposite Patrick Air Force Base. This view looking North, is duplicated by the view to the South.



50 years ago, A1A was a narrow 2-lane roadway parallel to the Atlantic Ocean Beaches. Except for a few buildings in tiny COCOA BEACH, there was not a building to be found for nearly 20 miles South on A1A. The above....and the next few photographs are just a very small sampling of the shoulder to shoulder of Condos, Resorts, Private Clubs, and VERY upscale housing communities I found walking A1A on this July 15, 2011.

The actual beach is only 100 feet on the other side of this Condo. The entire land mass - all of it sand - sits only 5 or 6 feet above mean high water level.

I closed my eyes remembering the desolation I walked through in BILOXI, MISSISSIPPI...still abandoned many years after Hurricane Katrina wiped the waterfront clean...including massive buildings just like those lining A1A.

Sand and scrub was the only thing to be found at this spot 50 years ago.

Mile after mile of truly elegant living.
A private Community - across A1A from the unending line of Condos sitting on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean.



As I walked back to SPIA after my third walk of the day, these black clouds rolled in from the North West, over my head, and far to the South. By the time I reached SPIA, the first rain drops fell. It is now 9:40 pm...still raining.

DAILY UPDATE: Walked 23 miles today

SEE YOUR4 IMPACT.ORG: Credit 23 miles @ $0.02 = $0.46 for the day.

Tomorrow, I will leave SPIA parked in the lot of the Win-Dixie Grocery Chain, and walk South on A1A to and beyond the town of MELBOURNE, FLORIDA.

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