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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Swimming in the Gulf

Since the weather forecast was a bit grim for the rest of our time in Saint Petersburg, we decided that the only clear day in the forecast (today) would be the best day for a trip to the beach. What an absolutely gorgeous day. The drive was quite nice with many lovely views of the gulf. When we got to the parking area, I wasn't sure what the beach was like due to the trees between the parking lot and the beach. Once we crossed over the foot bridge, we saw a gorgeous white sandy beach and blue-green water meeting the big blue sky. Perfection! There weren't too many people there, so we had no problem finding a great place to put down our towels. After getting ourselves slathered in sun block, we hit the water. Micah got so excited by the water rushing up on the beach and Laural wanted to get right in to the sand with her assortment of beach toys. I slowly made my way out into the water and before long, Laural wanted to join me. Micah wasn't real thrilled about going out into the water yet, so Steve stayed on the beach with him.

I'm not sure what it was, but something sharp kept scraping against my legs - not just my ankles but all the way up to my knee and it totally freaked me out. I moved away from where it started happening and whatever it was followed me so I really freaked. I headed for the beach. I had both kids with me and forgot to shuffle my feet on my way toward the beach and I stepped on a sting ray. Fortunately, I just got a wing and slid off it and it didn't get me with it's stinger. That would have totally sucked. Once I made it safely to the beach, I sat with the kids in the sand and we made sand castles and collected sea shells.

While we sat on the beach, we saw two Coast Guard helicopters and a black military type helicopter fly by.

After we had enough sun and surf, we found a picnic table in the shade and had some snacks. It wasn't long before a laughing gull realized we had food.

A few minutes later, his friends arrived, though he didn't seem too happy about having other birds in his territory.

Before we left, I took a great pic of the area. How awesome is this? I would love to have a house right in the spot I stood to take this pic. (This pic is wider than the blog. Click on it to see the entire pic.)

It was an awesome day at the beach and I really didn't want to leave but if we had stayed any longer, Steve would have been crispy from the Florida sun. It's going to take a couple days to get over his burn. Ouch.

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