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Padre Day 7: Dolphin Quest

Vi and I had our own plans for today which involved a little bit of shopping and some dolphin watching. Mike wasn't too interested in either so he elected to stick around the condo for a last day of surf fishing. Since we were stealing the car for the day, we took him to get some bait then drove into Port Isabel to do a little pre-dolphin shopping. We found one of the best beach-themed stores I've ever visited (which is saying a lot). I don't remember the name of it but it's on the corner of the square where the Lighthouse is located, right next to the Pier. They have really cute, beachy home decor and some beautiful jewelry items. I bought a silver starfish ring and my traditional Christmas ornament, a handpainted flip-flop. We actually returned to Padre 10 months later when Vi's son got married and the first thing I thought when I heard that's where the wedding would be was that I would get to go back to this store. That's how good it was.

It was getting close to noon and time for our dolphin trip so we walked across the street to the Sea Life Center to meet the boat. No one was inside and we entered to find a giant tortoise entangled in an extension cord on the floor. We untangled him and I have to admit this was a bit disturbing to me. But we headed down to the boat dock anyway. Unfortunately, the actual Dolphin Lady was not on our trip. Her very talkative husband was the guide. We shared the boat with another couple and a mother and her two young children. Also on the boat were the owner's two dogs and Cheetoh-eating pig.
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We made our way out into the bay and had a nice view of the Padre skyline.
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We did spot our first Atlantic, bottle-nosed dolphin in this area. Not having much luck here, we headed over to another area and came upon a couple in the water. The dogs helped us spot them.
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A pelican was watching over the action.
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Once they disappeared, we had a bit of a scenic trip to look for others.
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The pig was tired from all the work.
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The pelicans follow the dolphins hoping to get scraps of leftover food.
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The dolphin trip lasted about two hours and we were back at the dock. We were hungry by this time so we grabbed some nachos at a little cafe on the square and finished up our shopping. We met Mike back at the condo and talked about his day. He caught a small catfish and met an 88-year-old Battle of the Bulge veteran on the beach. As a military vet himself, he loves talking to other vets about their experiences.

For our last dinner, we met Vi's sister, Diana, and her husband, Frank, at Pelican Station in Port Isabel. They live about an hour away and we really enjoy spending time with them when we can.
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Dinner was very good. I started with seafood stuffed jalapenos and Mike started with clam chowder. My main entree was flounder with crawfish and mushrooms in a cream sauce and Mike had lobster tail.
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After dinner, Frank and Diana followed us back to the condo and we all went to the Wanna Wanna for drinks and cigars (for the boys).
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After they left, we got things packed up and went to bed. The next morning we finished our packing and cleaned up the condo. We left the condo around 11a and stopped for lunch at Senor Donkey before leaving Padre. We drove to the airport where Mike and I caught our flight to Dallas via Houston Hobby and Vi waited for her sister to pick her up. She was returning to her parents' house so that she could drive back to Dallas with her daughter and granddaughter. It was a nice trip and a great time of year to visit Padre; no crowds, nice weather, and good friends.

Posted by deniseandmike 16:43 Archived in USA Tagged padre vi

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