"I went there once, to Florida." Florida by kiwi

Florida Travel Guide: 21,361 reviews and 46,828 photos

These cops I spotted in Orlando. Kinda cute huh!

Yes, I went there once, and I plan to go there again, one day.....
It was 1975, and I was a travelling teen. A long time ago, but nevertheless I went there.
So this is my little story of way back then. Lots will have changed, but who said these pages have to be uptodate? I mean your trip to timbuktu is obsolete the moment you get home.......

Here's my story:
I had heard so much about the sunsets/sunrises down the Florida Keys. So I was in the USA and decided to see it for myself. Travelling on a Greyhound Bus Ameripass, I had been making a habit of catching a nite bus out of town changing wherever at midnite and coming back to town after a nice comfortable sleep. Saved on accommodation costs and seemed quite safe back then. So, in order to see the sunset, I had to travel at the end of the day and I just figured I could do the same and catch the midnite bus back north from Key West.
The drive down the Keys was amazing. The road just hopped from one small island to another and was a series of bridges linked together. It felt a bit like we were driving out further and further into the sea and I wasn’t entirely comfortable with that. After all we were in a bus, not a ship!! The sunset was suitably impressive and evoked feelings that previously I had been too young to realise. I was beginning to see the beauty in nature rather than things commercialised. My trusty little camera brought home only one photo of this beauty, apparently the operator was too taken with the sight to think about snapping more.
When I arrived at the Key West Greyhound station I discovered that there was no scheduled bus back up the Keys!! This was devastating as I didn’t feel too happy about being stuck late at night with no place to stay. And I had heard a little bit about the life in Key West on the street!!
Fortunately for me the driver, who was in fact driving an empty bus back to Miami, offered to take me back. I am eternally thankful to this man as I realise he put his job on the line to do this. I also was aware I would end up on a bus alone with a (strange) man. I took the risk as I didn’t have a whole lot of options. Eventually I couldn’t hold back any longer and drifted off into a very deep sleep stretched out on two front seats. I was woken later by the driver as we stopped for some food somewhere. I don’t remember where, there can’t be a whole lot of places up that road.
When we got to Miami, he took the bus to the garage, and not the station. After clicking my Ameripass ticket he dropped me at his car and checked in the bus. Then he drove me around to the bus station so I could sit there till morning as he knew there was a security guard and that I would be safe.
I was a kid from New Zealand and enjoyed the ride in his pristeen shiney Cadillac that we only saw on tv back home.
That guy I will never forget, I’ll never be able to repay nor thank him, but I will never forget him. That’s the true spirit of travel!

For current views of this wonderful State visit my friend tropicdiver's page. He takes the most amazing photos I know, and his captures will really show you what Florida can be like through the lens of a camera.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Amazing sunsets, sea and alligators!!
  • Cons:Very flat contours, no hills to be seen!
  • In a nutshell:There's so much to see here.
  • Intro Updated Jun 24, 2004
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Comments (20)

  • Jul 31, 2007 at 11:26 PM

    I truely loved that story! Thank you, Ms. G.

  • catalysta's Profile Photo
    May 18, 2005 at 3:29 PM

    Love your bus story! Guess we have to just pass-it-on when someone helps us out on the road like that (and it's fun to help too, isn't it)...cat

  • asturnut's Profile Photo
    Jan 12, 2005 at 1:28 AM

    Lovely story! Brave woman.

  • biljah's Profile Photo
    Dec 18, 2004 at 2:27 PM

    I like the cops... they sort of look like the cops from Chips!

  • jadedmuse's Profile Photo
    Aug 5, 2004 at 1:25 PM

    Very sweet story. Tks for sharing.

  • CandS's Profile Photo
    Jun 30, 2004 at 5:13 AM

    Wonderful page! I'd love to go there some day - and yes, visit Disney too! :) Love the story about the bus driver too...I love stories like that...I had a great 'act of kindness' on my way home from Broken Hill once... :)

  • Pawtuxet's Profile Photo
    Dec 15, 2003 at 4:44 AM

    A wonderful "busman's" story. We had one of those long bus rides into Key West....decided to FLY out. They say there are no accidental meetings. He really touched your life.

  • tini58de's Profile Photo
    Jul 25, 2003 at 4:49 AM

    Wow, what an adventure - and how wonderful to hear about kind people....! Very enjoyable page!

  • grandmaR's Profile Photo
    May 4, 2003 at 4:29 AM

    Love reading about near-past trips - a wonderful story, and I know it's much more difficult to write about those trips than someplace we've just traveled to. Although the cars in Miami aren't that much newer now than they were then.

  • John_P_LSU's Profile Photo
    Apr 9, 2003 at 12:58 PM

    What a great, interesting, scary, fun adventure of a story!!

kiwi

“Travel is the world's best education.”

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