Monday, April 17, 2017

Girls vacation Florida 2017 Day 2

Cape Coral, Matlache
April 6th 2017

Day 2:
I woke up several times during the night as it was so hot. (We found later that there was a problem with the air conditioner.) I eventually opened the window and was greeted by this little friend. He was between the screen and the window, Well good morning little buddy! I'm not sure how he got in there, and I hoped he hadn't been sleeping with me sometime during the night, But he sure was cute.

We had plans to go to a few local areas but first we enjoyed the sun and pool. Unlike my "normal" vacations there was not one day where we were rushing to get out the door. I guess this is what "normal" people do on vacation. I'll admit I struggled with this. My family and I generally are LETS MAXIMIZE our vacation OUT kind of people! Kelly and Patti are more...vacation is for relaxation kind of people. There was a compromise however...and I convinced everyone we needed to see some local sights.
Beside's beaches and a water park,  Cape Coral is not traditionally a tourist town, but I did find a Rum Distally in the area with free tasting and a tour. Everyone agreed this would be FUN! Kelly's son had stayed up late to play video games so he was still sleeping. I called and made reservations for the 1pm tour.

I have been to a winery, and just a few weeks ago I was at a brewery, but this was my very first distally. Wicked Dolphin is a rum company out of Cape Coral. We arrived slightly before our 1pm tour.
There was an area for Wicked Dolphin gifts.

We also got our picture taken outside of the facility.

Finally time to learn about RUM. There was actually quite a crowd who had arrived to participate in the tour. Must be a pretty popular event. We were soon called to meet in the touring area and were welcomed with RUM punch!
 These were delish!

 Our tour guide offered information on the making of the rum. The flavor as well as the proof has to do with what is added to the mixture. Yeast seems to be the ingredients that they all share. Brown Sugar and molasses are the differences between white and dark rum. They offer additional flavors such as coconut!
 They also have a moonshine made with fruit and 50% pure alcohol. Somewhere I thought these cute little jugs were not as potent as they were. I purchased a strawberry flavored "rumshine" thinking it would be as sweet and delicious as the rum punch that had been offered at the beginning of the tour. I was SO WRONG!!! Turned out to be so strong I spit out my first taste and never touched the stuff the entire vacation. (It was left at the house before my return to NY.)

The tour continued although I missed much of the details. Not because of the rum punch, but because there were so many people and it was hard to hear over the noise in the room. There were several machines running while we listened to the information.

 There were certainly lots of large vats pouring tons of liquids through them.


On to the storage room. This area was much quieter and I was able to hear a bit more. I learned that the company name was founded as a result of a pair of dolphins that would arrive around the same time every afternoon at the tour guides Aunts home. She is the owner. The barrels are re-used and incidentally play an important part in the taste of the product. The number of years the liquids are stored in the barrels also play an important role. Like wines, aged rum apparently tastes different and COSTs much more.  

 Our guide told a story of storing some barrels in the bottom of the ocean. I must have missed why this had been a good idea, but none the less, this method was botched both due to theft (one barrel was taken.) and the FDA. Apparently storage in sea water is unsanitary. (Because alcohol does not kill any and all bacteria).
 The tasting room was next. We had a few "shots". These included the coconut and dark rums. And my favorite was a lemonade mixture. (this was what I thought I was getting when I purchased the Rumshine.
 The tasting was very generous. We had several and they offered more if asking. Yeah I suppose I should have asked to try the rumshine before I slapped down $21-. Can you guess I am still a little upset by this un-researched purchase. (Between the rum and the unexpected checking of my luggage I was down about $75-). Its only MONEY!!! right????
What a fun and different experience. After our tour and a few purchases. (My bad decision to buy RUMSHINE) we were soon on to the next adventure.

We made a run to the local Game Stop for Kelly's son and decided to hit up the Dollar store while we were at it. We got some pool floaties, some other fun junk and some TP. (We had someone run out) What is it about $ stores that you always end us spending a ton of money on things you really have no need GLOW STICKS!!! What did I really need glow sticks for?

More of the afternoon was spent enjoying the pool back at the house before we decided that having a meal would be a good idea. Kelly's son thought Sandy Hook was a good choice so soon we were all off the enjoy dinner in the area of Matlacha. Matlacha is one of the communities located on Pine Island.

 Once a small fishing village, It is now a hip art community and #1 on my MUST STOP RV bucket lists. (I started a RV places to stay Bucket list while I was visiting.)
Sandy Hook is located along this inlet of the bay. I searched for a luck.

Apparently there are dolphins among other creatures that are seen here. We didn't get so lucky on our visit. The evening hours didn't start until 4pm leaving us a few minutes to view the bay. 

One of the most amazing things about Florida besides the weather is the PALM TREES everywhere! I didn't realize there were so many different kinds. I have decided that I need to plant my own Royal Palm. There are the most beautiful. This guy was cool too and just look at those coconuts!

We were soon seated in the restaurant, This fisher village motif had a host of fish like dishes to choose from. (I still do not eat anything fish) but there were also burgers, chicken and FROG LEGS!!! Kelly and Matt ordered these appetizers.  I guess I can always count on Kelly and Matt to try just about anything and I give them all of kudos. I wouldn't go near them. My daughter tried some as well.
They kind of look like chicken tenders. I have to admit, they were not really a hit even with our table of eating dare devils.

Both Alexis and Kelly simply could not get past the veins......EWEEEE!!!!!
I stayed away from the frogs....and the fish, but I did indulge in a fruity cocktail and some chicken parm.

It was pretty good!

After dinner we headed back to the house. I would have loved to do a little exploring before we left. I bet this place has some NEAT! things to look and and enjoy. 

I caught a few pictures as we were leaving the area and heading back to the house.
I would have loved to check out these little art shops. These and ones like it line the streets.
That evening as we waited for Kelly's older son Joseph to arrive we had some house guests. Theresa and her son CJ came to join us for a little evening fun.

 What incredibly nice people. We all enjoyed Theresa's company. She shared her incredible journey as a mother and we planned to meet up again before she traveled back to NY. My daughter enjoyed her son's company. Great times!!
Day 2 ended. WOW what fun we have had so far! Beach is in our future tomorrow!