Driving around yesterday reminded me of the five years we lived in Florida. First in Jacksonville right after college and then outside Tampa, in Dover - strawberry land. Without someone to talk to I did a lot of thinking and remembering. I also did a lot of looking. I returned to the condo last night, tired and cold and wanting to put down my impressions. Below is a list of the impressions from this trip, which I wrote last night. However, this morning one thought overrides the others - this blue sweater.
I only brought one big sweater - everything else long-sleeved was tee shirt weight. So, I've worn this same sweater every day and was reminded of how I don't care for Florida in the winter.
It's been a good trip, though, and I'm so thankful to have had the chance to be here (thanks again, Mama and Daddy)
Florida in January-
Cold, cold water of the Atlantic lapping over my bare feet.
Seagulls silent and still, all turned the same direction, waiting for the sun to rise out of the gray-blue water.
The sun, a ball of fire peeking above the horizon bit at time until it's a flaming ball of neon orange shooting liquid flame all the way to the shore at my feet.
Spanish moss draped almost to the street from gnarled, old live oak trees. Palm trees and palmettos not planted by landscapers, but shoved up next to trailers and ancient store fronts.
Sky-high, arching bridges joining the strip of sandy beach front land to the rest of the country.
Water pounding, Water pushing, Water traveling, Water reflecting, Water rolling, Water splashing, Water being Water and doing it everywhere.
Lots of old bodies in swim suits and not worried about what anyone thinks.
Hotels and condos stretched to the sky.
Cement block houses like our house in Tampa.
A cloudy sunrise reflecting pearly light onto green waves.
Now, it's time to pack and head north. I'm ready to go home. When we would visit my mom and dad when the kids were little and when they'd be excited to be going home, my mom would say that's a wonderful thing -to be happy when we get to go home. We should all have a home we want to return to- even from vacation.
Isn't that the way to be happy? Love home more than anywhere else?