Panama City Beach

We spent several days in Panama City Beach, Florida during the off season.  While it was really too cool to splash around in the Gulf, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.  I highly recommend the Days Inn right down on the beach.  Even if you don't have a first floor room with a beach side patio, all you need do to reach the beach is ride the elevator down, walk about 20 steps, and you're there.  But if that is too much effort for you, just sit out on your patio, bask in the sun, grab a cold beverage from the fridge, and wonder what the poor folks back home are doing in the snow.  And in the off season it is a true bargain.

While it may not be Mallory Square, every sunset is a special treat. Especially from your own private balcony.

This photo was taken immediately after the one just above.  If you look closely you can see this one is a high zoom close-up into the center of the other.

The First Lady and First Daughter brave the cold weather to walk along a chilly gulf.

This pier is within walking distance of the Days Inn.  It has a small bar and grill on the shore end, and is open to the public. You are allowed to fish from it.  There is no admission charge.

Helicopter tours of the beachfront are available.  But the cost is not inconsiderable

Like everywhere else on the Gulf Coast, sport fishing is a big business.

This grainy shot was taken just as the night sky around Mars turned that "profound blue" alluded to by Tolkien describing a sunset in The Hobbit, as "night leaped into the sky."  Mars burned bright red every night we were there.  Shortly after taking this shot, I put my Sony Digital 8 camcorder on the tripod, set the lens to the maximum optical zoom value of 20x, and recorded Mars as it fell below the horizon.  While it's not exactly NASA quality, you can clearly discern the planetary disc.  As the horizon occludes the disc the reddish color of the planet intensifies until finally, just as it disappears entirely, a steak of red light flares briefly, reflects off the gulf, and true darkness descends.

Despite warning signs posted everywhere this particular guest found out the hard way why you are not supposed to feed the seagulls.  Especially from the balcony.  If you have not seen the movie Finding Nemo, I can only say that they are perfectly described.  The only word they say is "mine."  Mine!Mine!Mine!Mine!Mine!Mine!Mine!

Hey Hey, Gardner McKay!  Take us on the leaky Tiki with you!

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