Day 94 – Tallahassee to Clearwater Beach

This was going to be a longish trip of more than 250 miles and we got away early – though that probably had more to do with my disgust at the room than the actual need to get away early! We left around 8:30 and the trip turned out to be a bit slower than expected. Even so we still got to the Clearwater Beach Hotel at about 2pm and was fortunate enough that our room was ready to check in. The room was ok, but not great, though it was cheap for the area and you get what you pay for – still a helluva lot better than the Motel 6 in Tallahassee! We tried out the Wi-Fi which was ridiculously slow (worse than Internet in SA!) but I still managed to update a couple of days on my blog as I was wayyyy behind (still am as it happens!).
We eventually decided to go out and check out the beach and the rest of the town. Well, the beach turned out to be packed and we both agreed that we would have been much better off having stayed in Pensacola for a couple of days where they have lovely clean and quiet beaches! It was a nice beach even though it was so busy and of course the water is lovely and warm and everywhere you can see people just sitting in the water on chairs, basking in the sun. We walked up the beach and past the pier before going back inland and walking around the streets to find the bars and restaurants. Clearwater Beach is quite a small town but there are massive developments and building going on everywhere and in another few years it will just be big hotels and apartment complexes, whereas at the moment there’s still a few smaller motels and houses around. The place is very busy though, with lots of people everywhere; and quite a lot of young people or people with young families, rather than retirees – like us!
We walked around quite a bit and had a happy hour drink at Cooters, before walking back into the direction of our hotel. On the way we stopped at Crabby’s Bar & Grill where they also had happy hour, so we had to have a couple of drinks there as well – and bear in mind it was VERY hot and sweaty! I had some buffalo fried shrimp to keep my strength up, which were ok, though a bit on the cold side! We kept on going past our hotel to Gondolier Pizza, a pizza place I’d read about and wanted to try out. We had really good pizza (I didn’t have much of mine as I’d already eaten) and a couple of drinks, before making our way back towards our hotel. On the way there we spotted another bar/restaurant (Pan Filo), where I got a bit over-excited to see a truck with a Burger 1 numberplate! We had to stop for pictures and then got talking to the owner of the truck and having another couple of drinks in the bar. We went to bed fairly early for the area – it is quite the party town apparently, and the only issue was that we got woken up by someone banging on our door in the middle of night, though by the time I checked there was nobody there anymore. This tends to be the issue with motel like places – they have doors to the outside and anybody walking past can just walk straight up to your door and try and gain access; and we were on a major road with lots of drunk people walking past!

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