Friday, January 4, 2019

Fully 8-1/2 Months Late, My April 2018 Flagler Beach and Daytona Beach Trip 50-Photo Grand Finale (With Limited Text, Otherwise I'll Never Get This Damn Entry Posted)

The Daytona Beach Pier and surrounding beach at low tide, Daytona Beach, Fla., 4:39 p.m. April 21, 2018

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[Start of my "intro text" preamble …]

This is my 8-1/2-month-delayed photo essay finale of my April trip with my mom down to Florida to visit my dad. I'm posting these pictures -- 50 in all -- with limited commentary except for the captions.

The First Day: April 19th, 2018 …

Descent into Hartsfield - Jackson Int'l Airport with Stone Mountain visible, 1:02 p.m. April 19, 2018

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As a synopsis, the trip took place April 19 - April 23, 2018 and included two nights at the Topaz Inn in Flagler Beach, Fla., and two nights in the Daytona Regency in, yes, Daytona Beach, Fla. I went down there with my mom by jet from BWI Airport to Daytona Beach Int'l Airport via Hartsfield-Jackson Int'l Airport in Atlanta.

The Atlanta skyline visible on descent into Hartsfield - Jackson Int'l Airport, 1:07 p.m. April 19, 2018

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My dad lives in Flagler Beach. He stayed with us in Daytona Beach for one of those two nights.

Having my parents together like that is inherently an unusual situation for me -- since they separated when I was, like, 6 months old and divorced when I was 4 years old (in mid-1974) back in New Jersey, and my mom was remarried to Ray (my stepfather) for 42 years before he passed away in Jan 2017.

Takeoff from Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson Int'l Airport, 3:22 p.m. April 19, 2018

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The pictures are not that great since I took them with my flip-open cellphone's cheap-ass camera. There is one exception witht hat pic taken by another camera phone. It should be obvious which one it is.

Descending along the north Florida Atlantic coastline into Daytona Beach, 4:06 p.m. April 19, 2018

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As a preliminary postings on this trip, I posted back in April two entries linked here and here. A handful of the pictures are repeats from those entries.

Descending along the north Florida Atlantic coastline into Daytona Beach, 4:09 p.m. April 19, 2018

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You'll note that I emphasized certain portions of them trip and not others. Again, the image quality is mostly MEDIOCRE TO POOR. If you don't like that, tough noogies.

Crossing the Atlantic coastline looking south while descending into Daytona Beach Int'l Airport, 4:16 p.m. April 19, 2018

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I also opted to not include some pictures of my ugly-ass self. Just FYI, my hair is a lot longer now than it was in these pics, when I had just buzzed it.

Descending over the Daytona Beach area into Daytona Beach Int'l Airport, 4:16 p.m. April 19, 2018

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We arrived at the airport and took a Goober, I mean, and Uber to Flagler Beach to the Topaz Inn, where my dad soon showed up. (My dad lives a few miles north of there in a seaside but otherwise thoroughly depressing trailer park called Flagler-by-the-Sea. It should be called Dumpwater, Florida, like in that Married, With Children two-part episode.)

That goddamn Flagler Beach pier sign, Flagler Beach, Fla., 5:14 p.m. April 19, 2018

Of note, this was by far the sunniest it would be on the entire trip.

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To reiterate, I am only posting the pics with captions but otherwise limited information. At this point, I just want to get this damn entry posted. It has languished in my Blogger account "DRAFT" stage for at least six months. 

[This ends my "intro" text preamble.]

My parents with the Atlantic Ocean in the background, Topaz Inn, Flagler Beach, Fla., 6:34 p.m. April 19, 2018

Having them together in any picture is just a rare event (see explanation above).

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My dad singing at Johnny Ds, a beachside bar in Flagler Beach, Fla., 6:51 p.m. April 19, 2018

He was singing Wagon Wheel. My dad's name is Robert, but he is known as "Goodtime Bobby" (or is it "Funtime Bobby"??) in the finer karaoke bars of Flagler Beach.

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My mom and I, Johnny Ds, Flagler Beach, Fla., 7:44 p.m. April 19, 2018.

How'd I get so goddamn old and ugly?? As for my mom, getting her to smile in a photo is noteworthy. Usually, her photographic expression is akin to that of a refugee who just barely escaped Nazi-occupied Poland -- but the rest of the family didn't make it.

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My parents in my dad's dinky trailer in Flagler-by-the-Sea, Fla., 8:52 p.m. April 19, 2018

There was a sort of slightly out-of-body experiential quality to the whole thing.

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My dad prattling away about something; Flagler-by-the-Sea, Fla., 8:59 p.m. April 19, 2018

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My dad playing the keyboard, Flagler-by-the-Sea, Fla., 9:22 p.m. April 19, 2018

He has a certain talent for song-writing and can play the keyboard (and piano) quite well. I have none and can't play either. He also once got into Mensa to impress some idiot woman (circa 1980). And he had a second degree blackbelt in karate and owned / flew small airplanes. Again, I do none of that. Today, he's an eccentric 77-year old man living in that part of Florida. 

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The second day: April 20, 2018 …

Inside the place called Snack Jacks at High Tide, Flagler Beach, Fla., 12:41 p.m. April 20, 2018

We actually went there twice.

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Another picture from inside Snack Jacks at High Tide, Flagler Beach, Fla., 12:41 p.m. April 20, 2018

You can see the ocean in the backdrop. The weather had turned squally-windy with a strong onshore flow, turbulent seas, and intermittent showers.

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The Flagler Beach pier and adjoining beach, Flagler Beach, Fla., 2:11 p.m. April 20, 2018

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Turbulent surf of the Atlantic Ocean, Flagler Beach, Fla., 2:11 p.m. April 20, 2018

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The turbulent Atlantic Ocean surf, Varn Park, Flagler Beach, Fla., 2:27 p.m. April 20, 2018

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Atlantic Ocean surf on a gray and windy day, Varn Park, Flagler Beach, Fla., 2:35 p.m. April 20, 2018

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My parents atop a stairway leading to the beach, Varn Park, Flagler Beach, Fla., 2:35 p.m. April 20, 2018

Multiple hurricanes and other ocean storms in recent years have caused a significant amount of erosion not to mention caused a fair amount of damage to wooden structures such as this one.

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The next set of pictures were taken on a ride in the Mala Compra section of an area called "The Hammock" north of Flagler Beach in the vicinity of Palm Coast.

A house among the sable palms and live oaks, Mala Compra, The Hammock, Fla., 2:48 p.m. April 20, 2018

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A sandy dirt road among the sable palms and live oaks, Mala Compra, The Hammock, 2:48 pm. April 20, 2018

More on that little horned red bobble head on the dashboard in a bit.

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A one-story house in the Mala Compra section of The Hammock, Fla., 2:50 pm. April 20, 2018

In brilliant sunlight, that house's turquoise blue hue would really stand out.

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The sand berm dead end separating the road from the beach, The Hammock, Fla., 2:52 p.m. April 20, 2018

Here you can see the horned, double-pitchfork-wielding bobble-headed red plastic figure on the dashboard of my dad's SUV. Just FYI, he also has one of those Catholic little image cards of the Virgin Mary taped near the rearview mirror.

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Sable palms at Bings Landing, Palm Coast, Fla., 3:18 p.m. April 20, 2018

We stopped at this boat marina where there is also a weird archeological excavation site under a wooden roof of some 160+ year old Seminole structure.

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My parents, Bings Landing, Palm Coast, Fla., 3:29 p.m. April 20, 2018

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Back at the trailer …

View from the backside of the trailer, Flagler-by-the-Sea, Fla., 3:52 p.m. April 20, 2018

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Front porch with steps -- such as it is -- of the trailer, Flagler-by-the-Sea, Fla., 4:10 p.m. April 20, 2018

There is a bar next to this place called the Iron Boot. It only serves beer and wine -- and you can still smoke it in, so the place reeked. But they love that down there.

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A picture of myself outside the trailer, Flagler-by-the-Sea, Fla., 5:03 p.m. April 20, 2018

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Third Day: April 21st, 2018 …

Windy morning view of the ocean as seen from the Topaz, Flagler Beach, Fla., 11:29 a.m. April 21, 2018

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My dad looking out at the ocean from the Daytona Beach pier, Daytona Beach, Fla., 6:32 p.m. April 21, 2018.

The weather cleared up for the evening of April 21st.

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My dad and I, Daytona Beach pier, Daytona Beach, Fla., 6:33 p.m. April 21, 2018.

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Daytona Beach boardwalk, 6:36 p.m. April 21, 2018

Of note, there are a lot of homeless people living along / on / under the Daytona Beach boardwalk and many sell palm fronds. It's the American Way.

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Daytona Beach pier and ocean, 6:38 p.m. April 21, 2018

We were down there, obviously, during a tidal phase when it was low tide in the evening.

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The ginormous Ocean Walk tower, Daytona Beach, Fla., 6:49 p.m. April 21, 2018

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Fourth Day: April 22, 2018 …

Beachgoers, Daytona Beach, Fla., 1:33 p.m. April 22, 2018

The weather had turned squally showery again.

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Another picture of the Daytona Beach pier on a cloudy and windy day, Daytona Beach, Fla., 4:55 p.m. April 22, 2018

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My parents at the Daytona Regency balcony, Daytona Beach, Fla., 12:37 p.m. April 22, 2018

There was an endless racket of the construction site directly across the small parking lot (visible as the backdrop in this picture).

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The first and quite possibly only selfie ever to be taken of my parents and me in the parking lot of the Daytona Regency, Daytona Beach, Fla., 4:38 p.m. April 22, 2018

My dad was heading back to Flagler Beach.

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My mother battened down against the wind on a stormy day, Daytona Beach, Fla., 4:59 p.m. April 22, 2018

My mom and I walked over to the Daytona Beach pier to Joe's Crab Shack as a rainy squall approached.

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Daytona Beach pier on a stormy day, Daytona Beach, Fla., 4:59 p.m. April 22, 2018

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Approaching rainsquall as seen from the Daytona Beach pier looking south, 5:16 p.m. April 22, 2018

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Me and an expanse of low-tide wet sand on a gloomy evening, Daytona Beach, Fla., 7:56 p.m. April 22, 2018.

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My mom in the gentle surf on a gray evening, Daytona Beach, Fla., 7:57 p.m. April 22, 2018.

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Fifth Day: April 23, 2018 and time to head home …

Waves Beach Bar, Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort, Daytona Beach, Fla., around noon, April 23, 2018

We waited for a while at the hotel next door -- the ginormous Hilton -- which has a lot more amenities.

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Palm trees and the volley ball sand pit and the ocean itself, Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort, Daytona Beach, Fla., 12:56 p.m. April 23, 2018.

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Ascending from Daytona Beach Int'l Airport across the Florida coastline, Delta flight 2439, 6:14PM April 23, 2018.

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View from around 25,000 feet over southwestern or western Georgia, 7:01PM EDT, April 23, 2018.

The jet was descending into Hartsfield -- where a monster rainstorm struck, deluging for a couple of hours and dropping over 4 inches of rainfall officially that day at KATL and delaying an hour or so our flight back to BWI.

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Phew.

--Regulus

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