My brother was kind enough and generous enough to lend us his extended cab truck while we were in Tampa, so we didn't need to rent a car. The only downside is that we had to drive him to and from work. I got up on Wednesday morning, June 1st, our first full day in Florida, to take Nathan to work. Then I picked up breakfast sandwiches and cafe con leches for breakfast.
After breakfast we headed to Ballast Point Park because it was very close and has a splash pad. We wanted a very low key activity for the morning since the afternoon was going to be jam packed.
First we walked out onto the 1,000 ft long pier.
See the kid in the boots next to Elliott? His name is Elliot. That was confusing for both of them when their moms were calling for them.
I'm not quite sure what we did for lunch this day. Maybe nothing because breakfast was substantial and late. In the early afternoon we drove to Clearwater to meet Michael's parents to go on a pirate ship.
The ride was a booze cruise for adults and a pirate playland for kids. It would have been perfect except that the whole ship was outdoors with no air conditioning and it was hot and humid and sweaty.
Each kid got a musket as they boarded the ship.
The first activity was a kid vs adult water gun fight. It was pretty intense so I kept my camera and phone safely tucked away from the water during the fight. This was the prep.
There was a search for gold coins which ended in tears because the kids were told they could only have two coins each, but the adults were not informed of this so Michael was encouraging Elliott to find more and when he did Spencer took it upon himself to be the dictator he strives to be and screamed at his brother for breaking the rules.
They shot off a mini canon that did not have a mini sound.
Face painting. Elliott had no interest.
There was a booze deck just for adults.
There was a dance party right at the end before we docked.
Michael's mom bought the special frame and family picture for us. It's in the guest room if you want to come take a look in person.
After we got off the ship we went to a restaurant right next to the dock. We were all so hot and sweaty and had no interest in sitting outside, but there were no tables left inside and we were also very hungry so we were faced with sitting outside or not eating. The manager was very apologetic and promised to put us in the shade and to angle the big fan right at us. We took his offer and as he left the table after seating us he said, "My name is Elliot if you need anything." WHAT? Two Elliott's in one day???? We never meet other Elliott's, so a kid and an adult on the same day is just unheard of. I also asked because I'm curious like that and both spelled their names with two L's and one T.
It ended up being fine sitting outside because the sun dropped below the horizon a few minutes after we got there and with the fan and the shade it was nice.
We had crab fries as an appetizer, which I didn't get to photograph because they were gone about 30 seconds after they got placed on the table.
I ate shrimp and grits with andouille sausage.
Michael had seafood pasta.
Spencer got chicken strips.
Papa had fried fish.
The manager really did feel bad about putting us outside, so after we were done eating the waiter brought over a tray with two dishes of ice cream, a huge skillet of banana bread pudding and a big slice of key lime cheesecake and put all of the right in front of Elliott. Then he said, "Elliott, this is from Elliot. He wanted you to have dessert and he said if you want to share it with your family you can."
That's Elliot the manager walking towards the table.