Yesterday was my first full day in Florida. While my husband was off at his assigned job while he’s spending the month in that state (he works for NASA and it’s his turn to oversee one of its contractors, Harris), I basically spent the first day exploring the Melbourne area. Melbourne is a pretty small area. In fact, there’s an airport located there and they get around 10-15 flights arriving and departing per day. (I was in for a shock when I flew in to that airport late Wednesday because I’m pretty used to the big airports like BWI, Dulles, O’Hare, Austin, etc.)

I drove to the historic downtown area and I thought it was a pretty cute area. It reminded me of downtown Scottsdale in Arizona that’s full of historic architecture and nice shops that are all locally owned. The only difference is that downtown Melbourne is much smaller than downtown Scottsdale so I was able to go through the bulk of the stores. But I liked it. I ate lunch at this burger place that has a 1950’s style decor and it continuously played 1950’s era music like “At the Hop”. For dessert I went to this local ice cream parlor that also played 1950’s era music like “The Book of Love”. (It seems like the stores in that area love to play music that was recorded in the 1950’s.)

I also checked out this museum that’s located very close to the hotel where I’m staying at called the Liberty Bell Memorial Museum, which has a replica of the famous Liberty Bell. I saw the original in Philadelphia a few years ago so I decided to check out its replica. It’s a pretty good likeness with one major difference–there is no crack in this replica. What’s really cool is that, unlike the one in Philadelphia, you can actually ring this replica. So, for the first time in my life, I got an idea as who what the ring of a Liberty Bell sounds like. (It has a very deep “BONG!!!” sound to it.)

There were other exhibits in that museum as well. One person donated his collection of Liberty Bell souvenires to the museum, which was cool. There were also old military uniforms and medals from World War I and World War II. There were a display of actual Confederate money along with older U.S. dollar bills. I learned one new fact: the bills that were printed prior to the Great Depression were much larger than today’s dollar bills. I can only imagine the size of those wallets needed to hold these older bills! There were also the photos of every single president (including President Obama) that were mounted on Liberty Bell-shaped plaques and hung on the walls. All in all, it was a small museum but it was jam-packed with stuff.

I briefly saw the beach yesterday. I didn’t go swimming because I was still trying to acclimate myself to this area. I did go to a nearby store to buy a beach towel since I forgot to pack one.

Today my husband has off for a long weekend. (During his time in Florida he works nine-hour days for nine weekdays then he has every other Friday off.) We are going to take a side trip to Orlando and check out some of the theme parks like Disney World and Universal. Ciao!