Friday, February 03, 2012

Back from Florida

Periodically, we head to Florida during the fall/winter for some family time and R&R. This year we headed out just after our anniversary since we have not been there since October 2010. Both of Aleene's brothers are there, one permanently and the other winters there. Our experience over the past 12 years has been that January can be a "crap shoot" as far as weather is concerned. There was one year that when we walked each morning, there was frost on the grass; but not this year. It was 80+ every day.

We flew to Tampa (best rates and connections were through Texas and not Minnesota or other northern states) leaving early (6:00 a.m. pacific) and getting in mid afternoon.We were in Sebring just after dark the first day. We like is not the coast and it is not wall to wall has oranges, nice people and an easy-going life style where Brother Will lives. It also has the race track (12 hours a Sebring in April) which is fun to visit and eat lunch. The drivers practice there and there is a racing school that furnishes noise and excitement.

We spent a month in Sebring six years ago, so we know it fairly well. It is flat, sandy, agricultural (oranges and more oranges). Dana and Willie are great hosts and we thank them for letting us crash there. Lots to see and good places to walk.

Sunday we drove to Ft. Myers where Brother Don winters...well just south of there. This is a somewhat different community from Sebring: condos are apartment-like and it is situated just a few miles from the Gulf. We hit the beach there January fact and sought out the shade, no less, after baking in the mid-day sun on a beautifully improved white sand beach. Bobbie and Don are also gracious hosts...supplying lots of hospitality.

On Monday, I met a former HS classmate for lunch. We have not seen each other in 53 years. Actually, we were more than classmates. Jack and I went to Sunday School for years, sang in the church choir, shared the same vocal coach and were in the Boy's Quartet in Concert Choir our senior year. After graduation we went our separate ways, he to Virginia and now Florida. His parents were youth sponsors at church during my sister's high school years, so we have known each others families as well. We had a great visit for an hour and a half. Just a great reunion.

We flew home yesterday...leaving Tampa at 4:00 p.m. Eastern and getting back here at midnight our time. Good flights, no problems, just tired.

We settle in for about six weeks before we head out again, this time to Arizona for about three weeks. We have rented a house there for two weeks and Asher, Truman and parents will join us for a week during spring break. Going to take in some spring training games.

For those who know my family, Brother Dave underwent some rather extensive surgery lately and is doing splendidly. Probably added about 20 years to his life the surgeon says. Grateful for that. The doc says ten years ago what they did this time would not have been an option.

Hey, we had a great time and after 12 hours, we are pretty much settled back into our routine...but is is 50 degrees here and not the 80s we left behind.

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