We left behind our sweet New Orleans digs at the crack of crazy to get to our swamp tour location the required 15 minutes before it began. All the traffic we’d assumed we would be battling never showed up, so we arrived early enough to do a quick but futile search for a decent cup of joe.
Then we browsed the gator souvenirs at the gift shop until it was time to board our vessel Gatorbait #5.
We had thankfully rugged up as sometime Gatorbait #5 moved quickly through the swamp at times and our faces (and Kara’s toes) were stinging in the frigid air. My hair was whipping Kara in the face.
The swamp is beautiful, it’s vegetation so varied and different to what we know, thriving with wildlife. We did not see any gators, way too cold for them this day. No snakes either.
We did encounter a swimming family of raccoons. They REALLY wanted to come on board the boat, but contented themselves with climbed the tree next to us and peering in at us instead. They were so cute, I could scarcely believe that they are the pest Emmett our captain insisted that they are.
Captain Emmett was a complete crack up- it certainly helped that I think his accent makes everything he says even funnier.
A little later on we came upon a colony of wild pigs that the boats are all familiar with and that the captains have named.
The pigs swam out to us except for poor old Oreo the Outcast, who watches all the action but gives both humans and pigs a wide berth.
More raccoons came up to ogle us.
Flynn later asked Emmett what was the worst thing he had seen. Emmett replied that once he had a small group of school kids in his boat, watching one of the friendliest pigs, Michael Phelps swimming around the boat, when a gator snatched Michael Phelps up out of the swamp and tore him to pieces right in front of them, blood splattering all over the boat! 😳
When we got back to the car, we cranked the heat to defrost.
We planned to meander our way towards the the airport via the Garden District. Only a few minutes after getting back on the highway however, we came to a halt, three cars behind the scene of a very recent car accident. Two cars had collided as they merged and then crossed over the highway and hit another oncoming car going our way.
14 emergency service vehicles and 2 medivac helicopters attended the scene. After waiting an hour, the crime scene tape went up and we knew it was time to try another route.
We lunched at a mall close by where I was reunited with the best pretzels ever, Aunty Anne’s. I do not know if there is another place that makes a better pretzel. Soft, salty buttery goodness.
Oh! We actually stopped in at this mall because it has a Cafe Du Monde outlet and we needed to get some beignets and cafe au lait in our bellies.
No one was exaggerating about how good those beignets were. If you grew up in Kenya, imagine the best, most freshly fried mandarin ever dusted generously in icing sugar. Best thing ever!!!!!
We made it to the airport for our flight to Savannah with full tummies, then dropped off the rental car with no problem.
Thankfully, contrary to what the unhelpful Delta rep on the phone told me, the checked luggage was $25 NOT $30 per bag and the checked luggage went all the way through to Savannah, so we did NOT have to get it and recheck it at Atlanta.
Despite booking this flight over 7 months ago, none of us were seated together. It is so annoying that the push to make extra money means you can only sit together if you pay for it.
We were given a complimentary snack and drink on the first leg. Poor Flynn didn’t realise it was free so he turned it down as he was too far away from me to check, poor kid.
From Atlanta airport we had no seat numbers until we boarded and then we were seated together. Woohoo! No refreshments but it was a short flight.
Savannah’s airport is clever and pretty, with the arrivals area set out like one of its famous squares.
We were horrified at the price of an Uber here-nearly $50! Horrific. It was less than half that for a similar trip in New Orleans. But, still it was cheaper than a taxi and it was past 11pm. We just needed to get to our new home for three nights.
This Airbnb is the one that came through for me when the first one pulled out the day before our trip started. Remember that?Unfortunately their address is so new it does not show up on a GPS. We gave the Uber guy the closest known address but he kindly helped us find the actual house.
It is a lovely 2 bedroomer, compact bit modern and close to everything as far as the map showed. I couldn’t see much as we arrived ear midnight.
We pretty much went straight to bed.