Wednesday, April 22, 2009

St. Augustine, Florida

What a disappointment.

In all of our drives to and from Florida, I never had an opportunity to visit St. Augustine until our trip last month. And was I ever disappointed.

I'm not sure what I was expecting. Well, yes, actually I do. I expected to see the historical old Spanish Quarter as just that...historical and old.

Instead, the old Spanish Quarter is now a pedestrian mall with the old homes renovated into shops.

Sure, the oldest schoolhouse is still there, held together with chains. But it was obvious where the it had been patched as the wood boards were still clean and new. It was obvious that no effort had been taken to age the boards before installing them.

There were plaques on the outside of some of the buildings listing when it was built, by whom and who lived there. But it was really hard to imagine what it might have really been like, trying to 'see' past the racks of clothing, souvenirs or restaurant tables.

We stayed at the Best Western in the Spanish Quarter, which promoted itself because of its location. And that was accurate, as we were able to leave our car and walk to everything. Fortunately, we were staying only one night. If we were planning on staying longer, I discovered that there were many bed and breakfast options just one street off the pedestrian mall.

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