Nancy's Notes From Florida

Author Nancy J. Cohen discusses the writing process and life as a Florida resident.

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Naples Zoo

Posted by Nancy J. Cohen on March 26, 2012

Day 2 on Florida’s west coast found us gobbling breakfast at Mel’s Diner. Don’t mistake this one with another franchise of the same name further south. The buildings look nothing alike.


After filling our stomachs, we headed for the Naples Zoo where we got an early start before the temperatures soared. Graced by century-old trees that rose magnificently toward the sky, covered with leafy vines, many of them had enough roots and branches to nest a substantial tree house. I admired the foliage more than the animals as we strolled along the trail. Having been to Disney’s Animal Kingdom many times, I gave a cursory glance to the black bears, giraffes, tigers, coyotes, leopards, and alligators on display. There were snakes, poison dart frogs, parrots, lemurs, and other interesting creatures.





This little fellow is signifcant in Warrior Prince, book one in my Drift Lords paranormal series.

Hungry again, we ate hot dogs at the café. By now we were hot and sweaty after having walked all the way around, so we skipped the animal shows and the short jungle cruise and left to cool off in the nearby Coastland Center Mall. We spent some time here and then slowly made our way back to the hotel for a rest. We’d moved to the Holiday Inn Express for night number two.

Recommended shops in the Bonita Springs area: Trader Joe’s for interesting food items; Best of Everything and Charming Charlie for accessories—hats, jewelry, scarves, handbags, wallets, etc. Fun places to visit!

We dined at Pinchers Crab Shack which had a mob of people, testifying to its popularity with the natives. I had grilled shrimp with a tasty broccoli salad and garlic mashed potatoes. My husband had crab cakes. The food was good as was the service and ambiance.

Day 3, we headed north on I-75 again to Estero where we spend a couple of hours at Miromar Outlets before my next talk for the Southwest Florida Romance Writers. This workshop was on how to write a mystery. I’m a member of the chapter so it’s always good to see my writing pals on this coast of Florida. It’s a great chapter if you live in this area.


Then it was time to come home and get ready for next week’s event, the UCF Book Festival.


4 Responses to “Naples Zoo”

  1. I love that your husband goes with you and you make a family event out of your traveling to workshops! Sounds like great fun! Great pics too!

  2. Thanks again for stopping by, Mary. It’s tempting to forget about writing and just go on these excursions!

  3. jamieayres said

    Sorry that I missed you speaking at our SWFRW meeting . . . I’m a UCF graduate and have always wanted to attend that book festival. Have you been before?

    • I have not attended before. I think this is the second or third year that they are doing this event. I’m looking forward to being on a mystery panel with Neil Plackzy and Bob Morris.

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