Animals, Colorado, Dogs, horses, House Sitting Pets, house/pet sitting, living like a local, Living Like Locals, long-stay travel, nature, Travel

We’re Back and More Excited Than Ever: Traveling After the Pandemic Lockdown

It has been a while since we last updated you on our journey. The truth is we have been having so much fun exploring Charleston, South Carolina; Savannah, Georgia; a lot of Florida (especially the Everglades and Cedar Key); Big Canoe, Georgia (again); Nashville & Memphis, Tennessee taking and editing a zillion photos, there has been too little time for writing.

Now this update will be longer than usual but we promise you’ll enjoy it.

Where We Are

This is being written from a pet sit located in Groom Creek, Arizona, a lovely spot smack dab in the Prescott National Forest. Our charge is a sweet, handsome, and mature Golden Retriever named Casey.

Our Boy Casey

We are surrounded by pine trees, blue skies, spring flowers, and deer, lots of deer.

Where We’ve Been

The Florida Everglades

This was a short stay that we wish had been longer. The wildlife is amazing, often beautiful and sometimes a tad scary.

The Male Anhinga is stunning
Crane with Lunch
A Beauty
Anhinga Drying Wings and Grooming
Osprey ready to fly
Tri-color Crane
Mom and baby racoons in the Everglades
Spoonbill and White Egret
Iguana in Key Biscayne
Orchids at Naples Botanical Gardens
Great White Heron
Smiling Gator

Big Canoe, Georgia (again)

Our second pet sit, for our now great friends Bob and Ann, was just as wonderful as the first. Rudy, the 11 month old Boxer mix, was away at “school” so it was just Bev and I with big Blue, the 11 year old, 95 pound Pit Bull, and Snickers, the cat that is more dog than cat and the most vocal animal we have ever been around.

John with Rudy and Blue in Big Canoe
Bev lovin Blue
Snickers during a rare moment of quiet
Spring Flowers in Big Canoe, Georgia
Two kids among the Daffodils at Gibbs Garden
Kiera, the Owner of Steel Magnolia Restaurant in Valdosta, following our fabulous two hour lunch.

The Great Smokey Mountains

This stop was another big treat and quite an adventure. We were hoping to see a bear or two during our visit to Cades Cove, but we had to settle for wild turkeys and stunning views.

This big guy wanted no part of John taking pictures
and actually chased him back to our car.
We decided to do a short hike. Nearly 1 & 1/2 hours later we arrived at Abrams Falls. Worth every step.
We weren’t in the Smokey Mountains 10 minutes when we caught
this Elk crossing a very busy section of road in Cherokee
This guy was completely oblivious to us and the traffic. Food was on its mind.
A beautiful ranch just over the mountain
This raven just stood on a wooden post waiting for us
to roll down the window and take a couple of pictures.


To maximize our time in Nashville we stayed at the Grand Old Opry Hotel. The hotel was enormous and from what we could observe, pretty empty. Covid restrictions hit the hospitality industry hard, and it shows. Good news for us but unfortunate for the hotel. In fact, our experience during our road travels over the past year was similar everywhere — Santa Fe, Austin, New Orleans, Florida, Charleston, and Savannah. Everywhere we went, we had it pretty much to ourselves.

Gorgeous Flowers
Gorgeous Color hanging from the ceiling.


We wanted to stay at the Peabody Hotel specifically to see the ducks. There is a little wading pool in the middle of the lobby. Some many years ago the hotel manager went duck hunting with a friend. As the story goes, they had a bit too much “Jack” and thought it was a great idea to bring some live ducks back to the hotel and put them in the wading pool. Well, the hotel guests loved it and the Duck Branding at the Peabody Hotel began.

Today, there is a Duck Manager who cares for them, trains them, and orchestrates a live “Duck March” show twice each day. He parades them down an elevator, off the elevator and into the pool, then does an interactive show with guest participation, rounds them up, parades them back to the elevator and up to their homes.

Both daily performances are largely sold out (it is FREE but the lobby is completely full). People love it. And, as you might imagine they have taken the “Duck Brand” to extremes. Note the picture below from our room at the hotel.

Memphis Ducks Everywhere

Well, we told you this would be long. The good news is we have brought you up-to-date on our travels. Next stop will be a look at The Wild Mustangs of the Salt River and then our current Pet Sit in the Prescott National Forest.

See you on the Road,

Bev & John


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