A Sunrise, A National Park & The Garlic

It was such a phenomenal day, I have to share it in photos.

Since we were camped, right on the beach, we awoke at the pre-crack of dawn so as not to miss the sunrise. Living on the West Coast has hampered our ability to see this spectacular beginning of the day.

 “Sunrise looks spectacular in the nature;
sunrise looks spectacular in the photos;
sunrise looks spectacular in our dreams;
sunrise looks spectacular in the paintings,
because it really is spectacular!”
―Mehmet Murat ildan

I had no idea there was a National Seashore, so when we saw this place on the map, we detoured to Reflect on the Real Florida. Since ancient times, this barrier island has provided sanctuary to both people and wildlife. Many threatened and endangered species find refuge here, including sea turtles who nest on its shores. We were invited to stroll down a wooded trail and reflect on a pristine undeveloped shoreline - the way things used to be.
We also came to learn about the Timucuan people who lived here long ago. Steve is standing above an archaeological site, one of two large shell mounds which hold information to this native people's way of life. From 800 to 1400 A.D., generation after generation left evidence behind to tell their story at Turtle Mound.

We ended our day in the beach town of New Smyrna Beach. The area was first settled by Europeans in 1768, when Scottish physician Dr. Andrew Turnbull established a colony here. No one had previously attempted to settle so many people at one time in a town in North America (1300 colonists). Also of note, its high school is home to the award-winning varsity dance team, the Showdolls who have won 11 national dance team championships, something the town is very proud of.
We like to walk through neighborhoods. Several homes had these lifeguard stands for their mailbox holders. I liked them.
Our day ended with dinner at the ÜBER cool restaurant called The Garlic. We loved how the specials were written on a lasagna noodle. Clever!
Steve had the Shrimp and Scallop Scampi, fresh sea scallops and shrimp sautéed in a light white wine and  garlic herb butter sauce. I delighted in the Pasta Puttanesca, with their house specialty sauce - spicy, chunky tomatoes with imported olives and capers. Both were served over perfectly prepared linguini and served with fresh bread and a whole head of roasted garlic. Oh man.
I am a firm believer that all little towns hold treasures. One just has to embrace the hunt. What great finds we are discovering.

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Cyndy Brown said...

I don't know how you are finding all these special places but I agree...small towns do have secret spots!

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