Cousins on the Coast

My cousin, Shane and her family, visited Orlando for their Spring Break recently. Lucky for me they came over my way last Friday.

Even though the day started off a cool and breezy 52 degrees by mid-afternoon it was in the low 70s and warm enough for a trip to the beach.

After lunch, we spent the entire rest of the day playing and relaxing with our toes in the sand. A nearby surf fisher kept us entertained as he caught two sharks and then a stingray in short succession.

We stayed for sunset, hoping for a green flash, but no such luck. Regardless, it was a wonderful day. My only complaint? Their visit ended too quickly.

Hopefully, I’ll see them all again real soon!

Book Lover

A couple weeks ago, I popped into Goodwill on my way home from work. I’ve been a thrifter for decades, those stores can be a big help for a woman with a tight budget.

As I wandered through the household section I passed a man who was clearly homeless. He had that disheveled appearance; thin with long, uncombed hair, soiled and ragged clothes, and worn out shoes. His only possession? A blanket tossed over his shoulder.

I didn’t pay much more attention to him until we both hit the checkout lines at the same time. I finished signing my credit card receipt and looked over to see the cashier ringing up his purchase.

What I saw took me by surprise, he wasn’t buying shoes or the clothes that he desperately needed. No, instead he was buying two hard cover books. Of all things. He didn’t even have a backpack to carry them in.

That hit me hard, so I tapped the cashier on the shoulder (yes, violating social distancing, I know) and handed her my card. I told him to keep the money that he had crumpled in his hand.

I didn’t want to embarrass him or make him uncomfortable and I doubt I’ll ever see him again, but I really would’ve liked to have known his story. Because there’s definitely a story there…

Sunset, Treasure Island, Florida March 2021

Fresh Fruit

On my return trips from the beach I like to stroll through a quiet, bayside neighborhood. Growing near the curb at one of the homes is this lovely banana tree.

Since the house is currently vacant, and I am loathe to see things go to waste, I often pluck myself a ripe berry from the bunch. No, that was not a typo, I called a banana a berry. Though we tend to not eat the thick (though pliable) skin, it is edible. Coupled with the fact that the small seeds are nestled inside the flesh it qualifies as a berry, botanically speaking.

The flesh of this banana variety is creamy with a mellow vanilla flavor. I always take the peel home for proper disposal, mindful of an incident from my father’s side of the family.

My aunt had a newspaper clipping in her scrapbook printed by a small town Illinois paper over 80 years ago. A scant three lines long, the article lamented the death of man (their great uncle, if I recall correctly) who met his demise by slipping on a banana peel.

With so few details I cannot verify the veracity of this story but a part of me wants it to be true. What a unique way to go…

For the Halibut…

During my college years, there was a station in Tucson that played silly songs from previous decades on a certain night of the week. That station is long gone but I still remember some of those ridiculous ditties.

As you may have noticed, I am fond of word play. I find it rather titillating (in the non-erotic sense of the word – sheesh, people).

Since I live by the water I thought I’d share this modern sea shanty. It is just teeming with eye-rolling innuendos and, in my humble opinion, everyone needs to hear this at least once.