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North America’s Oldest City, Part 2…

Posted by on April 8, 2017

PLAN FOR THE DAY. It was bright and beautiful this morning, but there was also a brisk, chilly wind. We decided to visit a national monument in the colonial district and then take a look at Ponce de Leon Fountain of Youth Park. I was pretty sure that if I could consume a pint of that Fountain of Youth elixir I’d be good to go for another fifty years. That didn’t really work out, but at least I tried. And after that we hoped the weather would be a little warmer so we could introduce Molly to the ocean.

CASTILLO DE SAN MARCOS NATIONAL MONUMENT. The Castillo de San Marcos is the oldest masonry fort in the continental United States. It’s located on the western shore of Matanzas Bay in St. Augustine. Construction began in 1672, 107 years after the city’s founding by Spanish Admiral and conquistador Pedro Menendez de Aviles when Florida was part of the Spanish Empire. This Spanish fort stood firm against English attacks and helped Spain to hold Florida for many years. During the American Revolution it was a British stronghold. Later it became a battery in the U.S. coastal defense system.









PONCE DE LEON’S FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH ARCHAEOLOGICAL PARK. Located along Hospital Creek which is part of the Intracoastal Waterway, this park is the likely 1513 landing site of Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon. The park contains an artesian well claimed to be the freshwater source of water which preserves youth. Not. I tried it and didn’t notice a bit of difference. But maybe it’s not too late…perhaps I’ll just continue looking as I do today for the next twenty years! Anyway, here’s the deal about the water: The spring water here is the same water that has risen to the surface of the earth from the Floridian Aquifer for millennia.  It is filtered only by the layers of the limestone through which it passes. It probably tastes the same as it did when Ponce de Leon in 1513.









MOLLY’S FIRST TRIP TO THE BEACH. Yesterday afternoon we found a beach where it’s legal to drive 4×4 wheel drive vehicles right on the sand. This is unheard of in Southern California!  The first time we had a chance to take our Jeep into the ocean was at the Pacific Ocean in the state of Washington at a beach called Quinault. The next time we were in Corpus Christi, Texas on the Gulf of Mexico and today of course we’re at the Atlantic Ocean. Anyhow, we decided that it would be fun to drive to a remote stretch of beach and introduce Molly to the ocean. It was interesting to watch a four pound dog interact with the vast Atlantic Ocean. and we had to keep a close eye on her lest a hungry pelican swoop her up and have her for lunch!











I’ll continue my story next time.

2 Responses to North America’s Oldest City, Part 2…

  1. Randy

    You need to get her a tiny little surfboard – I think she could pull it off.

  2. Greg

    Randy: That’s a grand idea!

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