Fortunately, my dad provided me the tools (both literal and figurative) to deal with such a problem. On one of the keys, I found a hardware store where I hunted down some L brackets, screws and a cordless drill (we needed a new drill at home anyway, right Dear?). Unfortunately, the drill motor is too long to fit between the wheel well of the trailer and the support post I was repairing, so I had to resort to the tool bag. The regular screwdriver was too long, too. So for the first stage of the screwing I used the drill's screw attachment (two-ended so it was a bit longer than it might have been otherrwise) and a wrench to make 3/4 of that installation. But then I hit some hard wood and just couldn't turn it.
I finished just in time for the girls and I to make the boat tour into the heart of Everglades park. We'd considered renting a canoe, but given my limited canoeing experience, our limited knowledge of the park, the variety of hazards here and the true stories of people going missing here (NEVER to be found), we opted to take what we all felt was the safer route. It was nice to have a guide point out the sights, identify plants and animals and share some local stories.
There's an inland waterway that connects Flamingo to Everglade City that would be fun for a rugged outdoors type with canoeing skill and a lot of backcountry skills. It's apparently a 90-mile paddle, best done "downstream" from north to south. Since there's little dirt in the mangrove river, some platforms have been erected for the hearty ones who attempt the trek. I wonder what climbs on the platforms overnight...
|Welcome to Shark Valley|
Our dilly dallying, though, meant a late arrival on Sanibel Island, about which I'd done VERY little research. I'd hoped to camp at the island's only "campground," but when we arrived the RV park (ala Grandmother's Park) was closed for the night. Visitors were asked to camp in any of three spots by the entry and register in the a.m. That was all fine and good, but I took a little hike into the darkness and couldn't find the restroom. I suspect the campground is intended for entirely self-contained vehicles. We carried on to plan B - a hotel for our stay. After the heat and rain and wind and dirt and poisonous critters, I felt this break was in order.