October/November 2021 Vacation PAGE 1. 

Editors note: It is just after 11:00 AM on Tuesday, November 19, 2021 as I begin publishing this page.  Today is a normal day in the USA.  As always, the dates in BLUE on these pages will show the day of the photos and the story behind those photos.  If this sounds familiar, I posted the same opening for our 2019 and 2020 vacations.  This year, the travel route is much longer, as we begin in Florida and Georgia today with a motel room reserved in East Ridge, Tennessee.  I am using US Postal Service two-letter state abbreviations for the remainder of these pages for the vacation this year.

Many of our road trips north for friends, family, fall vacations usually begin by getting on the Florida Turnpike.  This is the same Google Earth image I used last year.  I get the idea, we could see this one again.  And here we are again in 2021.

October 26, 2021:  It is Tuesday as this road trip begins.  Just like last year, we are using Linda's NEW Chevy Equinox SUV for this vacation trip.  She traded cars getting a demo car with about 2000 miles on it from the dealer on February 29, 2020.  My GPS shows 11:07:33 AM for the first data point when we backed out of the driveway at home.  The local traffic on US 441 was slow getting out of the neighborhood and reaching the Florida Turnpike entrance.  The time was 11:13 AM as we pass through the toll gate seen in the image above.  We have stopped on US 301 near the end of the Florida Turnpike to walk the dog in previous trips.  Linda brought her dog named "Chase" with us on this trip as we head north.  These trips with Linda are very different from my solo business trips in a rental car going north to PA and NJ.  She is a wonderful travel companion and adds to the experience for me.  Chase slept for awhile as we headed north.

I have not been this way for quite a while.  Here is one of the changes near the north end of the Florida Turnpike where "THE VILLAGES" have been expanding on the south side of the turnpike in the area of marker 304.  This is a bridge for pedestrians and golf carts.

We got off I-75 at the first rest area north of the Florida Turnpike.  I parked the car near the dog walk area at 12:20 PM.  We departed at 12:42 PM heading north on I-75.  This Google Earth image entering the rest area is from May 2015.

The Google image below was from December 2007 showing the dog walk area.  I met a couple of people with dogs while Linda and Chase were  down near the south end of the dog walk area.

Our next stop was at Wendy's on the south side of Valdosta, Georgia for lunch at 2:34 PM.  Chase was ready for another pit stop.  Linda kept him in the area at the back of the parking lot while I went inside to get our usual lunch items.  That blue SUV back by the dumpsters is where we parked to be near grass for Chase.  Linda and I both took a break while at Wendy's taking turns to stay with Chase in the car.

We finished lunch at 3:32 PM and headed over to the nearby Murphy Express to get fuel for the car.  We stopped for gas at 3:36 PM.  Gas into the car was quick and we pulled out at 3:40 PM and got on I-75 North at 3:47 PM leaving Valdosta.

Our next stop was when we reached the Macon Rest Area on the I-475 bypass on the west side of the city at 5:42 PM and departed at 5:57 PM where all three of us had a rest stop.

Chase was very happy with this rest area.  There were plenty of smells for him to find.

It was 8:44 PM, well after dark when we arrived at the La Quinta motel at exit ONE on I-75 just inside East Ridge, Tennessee.  After checking in at the front desk, I moved the car to the south end of the main building as the rooms for pets were on the ground floor, one level below the office at the north end of the building.  I started unpacking the bags we needed for the night at 8:54 PM.  The image below is how the motel appears with morning sunlight as it was when we departed.

CLICK HERE for Tennessee - PAGE 2