Around Florida
 Although traveling all over to new places is lots of fun and very exciting,
I've also had a great time just hanging around my hometown of St. Petersburg and 
traveling around Flroida. Somedays it's just fun to pretend like you're a tourist
and run around and do all the stupid tourist things that I always make fun of 
tourists for doing.

I love Florida and one of the main reasons why is 
the beach. I love the beach. This sounds crazy, 
but I can always sense whether or not I'm near 
the ocean. I've talked to other native Floridians
and they can do the same thing. It's just 
something about the ocean and the sand and the 
sun. When I was in high school there was 
nothing better than getting a group of friends 
together, cutting class and heading out to the
beach for some fun in the sun. That's what we 
did for this picture. My best friend, Katherine,
me, and some of the guys decided that it was
too beautiful of a day to spend at school so 
out to the beach house we went.

Another good tourist spot besides
the beach is the oldest city in the
United States. Saint Augustine is 
where I'm talking about. There's a 
lot to see in do in the town or you
can drive 10 minutes to St.
Augustine Beach and lay in the sand
and do nothing. The Colonial Spanish
Quarter is preserved to be exactly 
like it was in history, complete 
with actors in period dress who are
always willing to give a quick 
history lesson. There are also lots
of shops and restaurants. The 
picture at right is Mike and me at
Flager College. We were visiting a 
friend of mine but the campus is 
beautiful and worth checking out 
even if you don't know anyone there.

A big tourist attraction in Florida 
is Daytona. Famous for a multitude 
of things including it's reputation
for crazy spring breaks, bike week 
and especially the birthplace and 
epicenter of NASCAR. The Daytona 500,
held yearly at the speedway as the 
kick-off for the NASCAR season, 
is the Super Bowl of auto racing 
with a trip to Victory Lane 
(right) as the ultimate prize.

When you win the Daytona 500, your
car is put into the museum until 
next year. Jeff Gordon won the race
in 1999 and I had to see my 
favorite driver's car. There's a
cool tour that takes you around and
under the track. If you're really 
feeling adventurous you can, for a
fee, take a few laps around the
track in a real stock car at the
Richard Petty Driving Experience.
But even if you don't feel the need
for speed the track and museum are
worth a visit just to appreciate 
the shear enormity of the speedway.

In addition to those place Miami is a popular tourist destination. I went there
once and didn't really like it so I don't recomend it but other people have a 
blast. The Florida Keys are also a big attraction. It's a little too touristy
for my taste, but then again I was born and raised in Florida so anything that
is a little touristy is too touristy for me.

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