Jeep, Sandals, and the Beach

To continue our seemingly constant travel for 2017 I was given the opportunity to go to Tampa in March for training. It was a boot camp for Microsoft Skype for Business and it was a 5 day course with a MS exam at the end. The best part was that it was in Tampa in March and it was absolutely beautiful every day I was there. It was freezing ass cold in Iowa, and about perfect weather for me while in Florida. Luckily for me, my work allows me the opportunity to use Turo to pick my rental cars so this time I knew I had to get something more fun than the standard Chevy Cruze or whatever other generic econobox. I went and found a TJ wranger with a 5-speed. It just had a 4-cylinder, but I didn’t need anything else to enjoy the sun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The pictures didn’t do it justice. It was really in great shape. The best part was that I only had to put the top up once and it was on Friday and only for a few hours. It was perfect weather the entire week. Every single day I was there I made sure to do my studying at the beach. As I sat there on the beach just observing I continuously found it hard to understand where people that live there find to vacation. The peace and solitude of the waves is something I could listen to every single day. Watching the birds fly around and dive into the water from 30 feet in the air and perfectly grab a fish was really interesting to watch. It’s amazing to see what these creatures can do. Although it gets a little lonely when you’re travelling by yourself, it was nice to be able to see such a beautiful setting every night.

While travelling I try and stick to the rule that I will not eat anything I can get in Iowa. I try to keep this as strict as possible even if I’m in a bordering state. With that said, my two favorite meals came from within a block of each other and were in the Siesta Beach area. This was the area I went to at least twice as it was very peaceful and few people were there. Clayton’s Siesta Grill was where I had supper. It was absolutely delicious. I had the boneless beef short ribs and a slice of key lime pie. It was perfect. Then later in the week I went back to the area and went to the Orange Octopus for ice cream and was again blown away. Fantastic ice cream for sure.

Although Clayton’s was my favorite meal, the Sandbar Beach Bar was my favorite restaurant. The parking is scarce and there was a wait, but who gives a shit when you can wait with your feet in the water. The food was really good, too. You get to sit outside, on the beach, maybe 100 feet from the water. You sit and eat while you listen to the waves come in. It was an absolutely perfect setting. And a little less busy place to eat with a similar setting was Bongos. Their food was good and the view was great.

The best part of the entire trip was the views, so here’s a few pictures.