Monday February 18th 2019
Today was a hot and humid travel day. Several new record high temperatures were set in the area. It was in the high eighties with full sunshine as I got set up at the Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park south of Gainesville FL. Cool cloudy days make better travel days.
The first order of business after hitting the road this morning was to fill the motorhome with gas. I should have filled it before parking for the ten day stay. Gas was priced at $2.09 a gallon when I arrived on the eighth. The huge gas price signs that advertise for business along the highway are visible from the campground. The price of gas stayed at the low value until Friday the fifteenth. On Friday the price went up to $2.15, on Saturday it was $2.19, on Sunday it was $2.20 and today it was $2.25.
The price rise was going to cost me more than ten dollars by the time I filled the tank, but then the gas station layout conspired to cost me even more money. The way the RV accessible pumps are configured is unique. There is one pump for each grade of gas lined up along the island. I didn’t pick up on this feature right away. I picked the pump that kept my RV from blocking access to other areas of the parking lot. After I passed my credit card through the reader and got the prompt to select the grade of gas, I was surprised to find only one button to select. As I pushed the button I realized I was selecting the highest octane grade at $2.75 a gallon. The pump with regular grade gas was ten feet down the island. I put in ten gallons of high octane gas then moved the RV to the correct pump and repeated the process. The result is I spent more than fifteen dollars more than I would have ten days earlier.
The actual driving was uneventful. I used all interstate highways and squared out all of the corners that the secondary roads would have cut across. Not having to deal with traffic lights and stop and go traffic made the extra distance worth it. The overall time was probably comparable. I was on the road before eleven thirty and off the road shortly after 2PM.
I’m at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park until the first of March. The campground is in an old growth Florida forest on the side of lakes, and Florida prairie which seems to be more of a marsh. There is a lot of water and open space in the area. Once I got my RV home down the narrow tree branch draped road to my site, I’m pretty happy with my new location. A quick bike ride down to the lake was rewarded with a couple of bird sightings that I’ve missed seeing the last few weeks.