These are strange and difficult times. Of course, you don’t need me to remind you of that. We all have our unique challenges wrought by our lives being turned upside down and put on hold. As I’ve mentioned previously, we’re grateful to have a safe and beautiful place to ride out the pandemic. We know how lucky we are, in many ways. But…
The Heat, Oh My God, The Heat
I left Florida behind at age 29, and never dreamed that I would spend another summer here. Although we enjoyed a blessedly mild spring, the heat has arrived with a vengeance. Combine mid-80s temperatures with mid-80s humidity, and the heat index is hovering somewhere around “melt” and “simmer.” It’s miserable.
I know it’s gonna be a bad day when the cicadas start up a deafening chorus at daybreak.
I asked my sister the other day how we survived growing up in Miami without central air-conditioning. “We didn’t know any better,” she said. Although it’s hard to imagine now, no one had central A/C in those days. Instead, we had cool terrazzo floors, banks of windows, and fans humming day and night. We also spent most weekends in the boat and most afternoons in the swimming pool. “You’ll acclimate,” my sister assured me. That can’t happen any too soon.
Meanwhile, we trudge on, moving our daily morning walks and bike rides earlier and earlier in the day. Even getting out before the sun is fully up, we return home completely drenched. Poor Eric, with his lineage of Swedish blood, southern California upbringing, and many years of living in Oregon, has never experienced a Florida summer. I tell him it’s good for sweating out toxins. “I am never spending another summer here,” he replies.
Then again, what do we know? If there’s anything that 2020 has shown us, it’s that we can’t predict anything. Nada. Nothing. Nothing at all.
Why We’ve Decided To Swelter In Place
Back in March, Eric and I began an excruciating mental game of “Should we stay, or should we go?” We mapped out all of our options. Continue with our summer plan of traveling to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula? No. While some people feel safe traveling during the pandemic, we don’t. We didn’t want to be traveling to places where the virus was worse, we didn’t want to risk getting sick on the road, we didn’t want to strain the resources of the small towns we were interested in visiting, and we didn’t want to contribute to any possible spread of the virus. Plus, as much as we love our adventures in nature, we also like visiting small towns and big cities and discovering what it is that makes each place so unique. With so much of what we enjoy shut down, it didn’t make sense for us to travel.
Our second option was to hightail it back to our hometown of Oregon. But that would have been a grueling 3500-mile trip, with not much fun along the way. We still have a home in Oregon, but we have wonderful friends who’ve been renting the house for seven years, and we’re not ready to move back in and give up on our travels.
Option 3: Stay put in Florida in my parents’ home? Sigh. Okay.
Of course, when we made that decision, it was early March. It is now July, and although we’ve grown somewhat desensitized to the terrifying word “pandemic,” the reality is that the virus is more virulent than ever. It appears that we’re not going anywhere for a good long while.
Adjusting To Our New Normal
In our seven years of fulltime travels, flexibility and resilience stand out as two of the most important traits for surviving and thriving in a lifestyle of constant change. We’ve had challenges small and large, ranging from minor (blown-out tires, appliance malfunctions) to major (running over a boulder, Eric’s surgery, managing my elderly parents’ care). These are not unusual circumstances in life (although not everyone high-centers their RV on a boulder) but we’ve always adjusted and adapted and continued happily on with our life adventures.
This Great Pause, though, feels fundamentally different. Coming to an abrupt halt in our travels, far from our hometown, with no certainty as to what the future holds is the biggest mental challenge we’ve faced. Will we be able to travel freely again? Will things ever be the same? What will our ‘new normal’ look like? As much as I want answers, there aren’t any.
Every day, I remind myself of just how fortunate we are and how insignificant our challenges really are. We’re hot and sweaty and bug-bitten, we’re lonely for family and friends, we miss our travels and adventures. But we’re healthy and safe, we have each other, we talk often to family and friends, and we have a home to live in while we wait for the dust to settle.
Tackling A Home Renovation
Speaking of dust, a month ago we decided to renovate my folks’ home. It’s a nice, solid brick home on a gorgeous piece of property across the bay from Apalachicola. But it was mired in the 80s and needed significant updates. “If we’re going to be here for a while, we might as well renovate the house,” I said to Eric. He looked at me warily. He was happy with his life of early morning bike rides, having a big house to roam around in with central A/C, watching the many birds visiting the feeders outside of the breakfast room windows, and sitting out on the screened porch overlooking the beautiful bay.
I loved all of those things, too. But the hum and flicker of the fluorescent lights in the kitchen was driving me crazy, the floor tiles had exceeded their 35-year life span and were sticking to my feet, and the interior was in serious need of repainting. It was depressing. The entire house needed a facelift.
We’ve been deep in construction dust for three weeks now. Things are going splendidly. But could we have chosen a worse time for a home renovation, in the middle of a pandemic, in the middle of a Florida summer? I think not. We’re staying out of the house, wearing masks for brief forays indoors or standing outside to talk to the construction crew. Meanwhile, we’re living in our trailer and listening to the roar of the air conditioner as it struggles to keep us from baking. “I am never spending another summer in Florida,” I say to Eric.
Meanwhile, I’m remembering my sweet dad’s approach to life, of always looking for the best and finding joy in the everyday moments of life.
We have so many creatures that come to visit us here, from birds to armadillos to foxes.
We go to the beautiful beach on St. George Island, just a few miles away.
And we have a science project going. We’re fostering caterpillars that we found on the parsley in my herb garden. I had no idea that caterpillars poop so much. We have to change their box three times a day. Thankfully seven of the nine have transformed into their chrysalis state, which means no more poop. We thought we would have butterflies in a few weeks, but just discovered the transformation could take months! That’s okay. We’re not going anywhere for a while.
Love them pictures. . . .
Thanks, Bob! Hope you’re doing well.
OHHHH the joys of each day. Attitudes change, we change but most of all, we find an appreciation of what is in front of our eyes. We take pride in what we see we can change. We will get through this. We ache with you in not traveling, a dear friend shared the journals we wrote of spreading her husbands ashes. We knew each stop, we savored those beautiful memories and David’s life again as we clarified a few details. Yes, we remembered each place. We honor those people as we grieve them and are better for having known them. We are so honored to have this opportunity. We have one more stop, Trinidad… How difficult to not have that closure in this time of COVID!!!!
Know we are all blessed for your sharing blog….and for your friendship!!!!! We will get through this!!!!! Did our patience need this test? NO, but we appreciate the little things more, we are much more tolerant and we dream of what is ahead!!!!
I know how much you and Martin love your travels, Julie. And I know how hard it is to have our dreams put on hold. You have a great attitude in the way that you appreciate and share the beauty in your backyard during this challenging time. Keep those dreams alive and keep on enjoying this moment!
As always, another delightful post – complete with exquisite photos, each one a work of art.
I’m so glad you enjoyed the photos, Janie. We feel lucky to have a continual parade of wildlife right in our own backyard, and the sunsets are spectacular every single day. I hope you and Russ are doing well…any chance you might write some posts about your summer at home?
Good idea to use this time to renovate. I can’t wait for the big reveal! Your photographs make me homesick for the Forgotten Coast. Sweltering?? – wait until late August!
Uh-oh. You know I didn’t want to hear that the heat is going to get worse, right? :( When things calm down, I hope you’ll come up this way for a visit, Suzanne. I’m envying you your swimming pool right now. Stay cool!
Wonderful to see you again and hear that your positive, buoyant spirit is still alive even in the sauna that is Florida. I hope neither you nor Eric will have to spend another summer in Florida. For you, but for us also because if you’re still stuck there, we’ll still be stuck here!
We have many future plans….plan A, plan B, plan C, etc. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for at least plan B or C to materialize but fully realize that they may not. I’d love to be on the road again this fall, we’ll see.
Construction seems to be the pastime du jour for those of us used to traveling. Our lower level remodel is coming along slow but sure. Dave is enjoying his time and freedom to make his own decisions about how to do things. As much as I cry in my beer about not being able to…….bla bla bla……I do realize how very lucky I am to have a great, lakeside safe space to live with the love of my life and everything I need. It’s just that dam n hitch itch! Is there a cream I can apply to stop it?
Stay safe and stay in touch
Sue, with the way things are looking, we’re not planning to go anywhere until next spring at the earliest. I just don’t think I can stand going through the effort of making all of those reservations again, only to have to cancel them. Plus, after all of this work on the house, we want to enjoy it for a while! And we were planning to be in Florida for the winter, anyway.
I hope it works out for you guys to head out in the fall. If you have to be stuck somewhere, your lakehouse is a beautiful place to be…but I understand why you would prefer someplace warmer for the winter. (If you find that magic cream, please send me some, lol.)
Oh so sorry for your loss. God bless you and your family.
I would add buckets of patience to your resiliency and flexibility. I have learned so much patience.
We are on my nephewinlaw’s lot near McCall, ID. Beautiful hiking and kayaking, bird watching and wild flowers so I can’t complain. I am originally from Louisiana prior to air conditioning so I feel you when you say hot, I know what you mean. Yeah, we didn’t know better.
I always laugh when people say I hate bug spray. Are you kidding? I love bug spray! If my option is stay inside, I want it all over me.
Good luck to us all.
Thank you for your kindness, Nancy. It sounds like you’re in a gorgeous place in Idaho! I trust it’s much cooler than Florida. Since you grew up in Louisiana, you know exactly what it’s like to endure a long summer of heat and humidity. I agree with you about bug spray…we have at least a half-dozen bottles, all-natural stuff that really works, but you have to apply it frequently. We wear layers of sunscreen, bug spray, sweat, and sand. Yuk.
And yes, good luck to us all. We need it.
Yes, I could not agree more that “flexibility and resilience” are the two most important traits for thriving in a lifestyle of constant change. And you guys prove time and time again that you have a deep reservoir of both. Then add to that your dad’s approach of finding joy in the small things each day and you have a pretty good formula down pat.
My first experience of life in the U.S. was spending two years in the humidity and heat of Miami. I grew up in a climate which can only be described as close to perfect, in Johannesburg, South Africa. What a shock life in Miami was, wow. Now of course having lived in Nicaragua, Sri Lanka and Vietnam, all three countries with constant tropical heat, I would say that for the most part I have adjusted and adapted, although I will still always prefer to stay indoors during the heat of the day and I still prefer lots of fans to air conditioners.
Totally hear you re the fluorescent lights. They drive me crazy.. and having them flickering in the kitchen while making food would make me want to make some changes too. I can’t wait to see the before and after pics.
Uncertainty is our new normal.. Interestingly, because our plans are so fluid anyway all the time, we are probably adjusting to this state of reality better than many, as we too have had to be flexible resilient and adaptable because of our lifestyle in “normal times” whatever that now means….
Lovely to read you, as always
Peta, I think of you and Ben often, and how amazingly adaptable and resilient you both are. You’ve been through far more life changes than most people ever experience—and always, with such grace.
Although the heat and humidity can be intense, there’s also something kind of exotic about being here this summer. Life seems more relaxed and nature is just so incredibly beautiful. And, of course, there’s the beach and swimmable Gulf, which is a welcome change from the freezing ocean of the Oregon coast. I agree with you…I don’t like being cooped up in air conditioning. We spend most of our time outdoors on the screened porch beneath the ceiling fans, and we set the A/C in the house to 78-80 degrees just to keep the humidity down.
Spending so much time hunkered down in one place and managing so much uncertainty and stress is one thing, but Florida in the Summer? Come ONNN… Ugh… Oddly enough, even though Kevin’s family lives there, I don’t think I’ve ever actually visited Florida in the summer. We’ve always come down in the cooler months. But I spent 20+ years in the swamp that is DC and I know how oppressive it can all be. (Hell, I had to wear pantyhose for my job. *Shudder*) There’s no denying it, southern summers are the worst. Maybe you do get used to it after a while, but I know you’ll be happy to never find out. This too shall pass.
Like you said, it’s all about being flexible and patient and you guys have plenty of experience with both of those. You’re making the best of a not-great situation and staying busy. And just think, by the end of all this, not only will you have a beautifully renovated house, but you’ll have an even greater appreciation for living a life of travel, an unwillingness to ever complain about being cold again, and a farm full of hoarded animals. It’s gonna be great!
Summer in DC, and wearing pantyhose?! You win the prize for the most miserable summer, for sure! Speaking of pantyhose, I tried to buy some here when I was working on a gardening project and needed it to tie up some plants, and there was NONE to be found in any store. So save your pantyhose. You might need it someday.
Laura, you have always provided so much encouragement for me to get a pet(s). I knew you would be thrilled to hear that we’ve started our farm, lol. Caterpillars today, goats tomorrow!
I’m sending you and Eric some cool, semi-sunny, 70 degree Lopez Island weather. That said, the majority of the things you enjoy about Lopez are severely limited. Bucky’s has outdoor seating, the bakery serves only at the door, the thrift shop is closed, Vita’s is not having any music this summer, but they are serving to-go and frozen fare we can heat up for meals. The community center is not having any concerts this summer. There are no personal social music gatherings.
Of course, you can still do all of the outdoor exploration, although bring a mask to the parks. We’re still on the winter ferry schedule until sometime in September (much reduced ferry service), and the border to Canada (my biggest heartbreak, as that’s where we go to get away) remains closed until late August.
I don’t envy you the heat and humidity, but oh, the wildlife you get to see that doesn’t exist in the PNW is wonderous. There’s some sort of balance there, I think.
Big elbow taps to you both.
Oh, Sheila…what we miss most about Lopez is seeing you two! And music gatherings with friends. Of course, we also love Friday evenings at Vita’s, and the farmers’ market, and concerts at the community center…thinking of this makes me homesick for our idyllic island summers.
You’re right, there is much here to enjoy, despite the heat and humidity. Some things (like swimming at the beach) are best in the summer. And the wildlife is truly wonderful. But you can be assured that we will return to Lopez as soon as we can. What a celebration that will be! Hugs to you both from a safe distance.
You’ve brought a whole new, clever meaning to SIP! Nicely done! I am quite nervous for you, though, that you’ve both said OUT LOUD that you’re never spending another summer in eff-ell-a. Shhhhhhhhhh!
I hope that remodel is completed soon. They’re rough to go through, but so nice once you can live in the fresh space (with quieter A/C!) At least it’s a great distraction, as are the many critters. Who knew caterpillars pooped so much?
Thanks for the wonderful Sunday morning read. I can’t wait for your travel blogs to resume, even if they’re “old.” We can always use pretty pictures and nice stories to remind us that there was — and will be again — a beautiful life out there.
Thanks for spending some time with us on your Sunday morning, Joodie! I’m looking forward to getting back to posting about our last summer and fall travels and I’m very glad to know there will be at least one person who is enthusiastic about our tardy blog. It’s going to be kind of surreal writing about last year, knowing how much things have changed.
I’m hoping, as you said, that we will be able to resume our traveling adventures. Meanwhile, we’ll get this remodel wrapped up and have a comfortable place to stay while we wait. And we’ll see how many other critters we can find. :-)
This has certainly been a year of uncertainty. Shelly and I arrived home in early April and rescheduled our Airstream renovation for mid September. We naively thought travel would be easier then. Now it looks like we will be in Buffalo through the winter at least- we pulled the plug on our winter trip to Arizona and California and Oregon looks to be a no go for mid September.
But Buffalo is beautiful in the summer. There are lots of fruit farms: cherries are in season and blueberries will soon follow. We have a few home improvement projects to keep us busy and we both got new bicycles! Stay well and safe. ( love the grey fox)
Sigh. I understand about pulling the plug on travel plans, Pat. We’re not planning on fall or winter travels, either.
So glad that you’re enjoying Buffalo. The fruit farms sound fabulous (cherries and blueberries! Two of my favorites!). And your new bikes sound like fun. You two stay well, too.
We love your pictures! They make Florida seem so inviting – until you provided lurid details about the heat & humidity! :( We spent two years in Tennessee and our first summer there was a revelation about how we DO NOT LIKE humidity (our hearts go out to Eric). So now we’re back in Oregon where it’s hot but not humid!
Ah, caterpillar poop (aka, frass). Last year we were rafting the Colorado and were always looking for trees for shade. At one camp we had the trees and shade, along with a gentle shower of frass from the caterpillars that were infesting it!
I’m so glad you like our photos! Florida truly is exotically inviting (except for the heat and humidity). We figure we only have about two months to go before it starts cooling off, lol. Meanwhile, we’re going to the beach. Lucky you, back in Oregon. I just looked at your blog and I love your photos and your hikes!
I did not know that caterpillar poop had a special name. So thanks for the education. It is astonishing how much they poop. I told Eric they were more work than our cat was.
Thank you for sharing your journey with us. Sharon
Thank you for coming along with us, Sharon. It makes all the difference knowing that friends are reading. :-)
I really appreciate and understand your story having been there. In spite of the frustration of staying in one place for months and canceling all travel plans, I’m thankful to be”stuck” on Lopez Island in WA state where the temps have only recently gotten near to 80, and mostly in the 70’s here. Stay strong and take care. We’ll meet again one of these days.
Ann, you’re certainly ‘stuck’ in a beautiful place with idyllic summer temperatures. Still, it’s hard to be stuck when you had other adventures in mind! We just have to trust that eventually, we’ll all get back to our normal lives. We’re looking forward to the day that we see you again on Lopez. Take good care.
Hi Folks- Your great photos of birds, fox and other wildlife are really enjoyable and make it look like you live in a Paradise. It sounds like you do, minus some of the heat and humidity. That Tanager is incredible. Too bad you missed some of the cooler weather we had in Oregon prior to the unofficial start of summer- The Fourth of July. It was quite cool until then, and now today it’s 96 degrees in Portland- but without the humidity.
Glad to hear you’ve found something to enjoy there rather than making that long trek back west. But remodeling?! Yikes! You are adventurous! I might opt for a good long book and a tall lemonade.
Trying to remember John Prine’s song about Mexican heat, something to the effect of:
“My God ! I cried, it’s so hot inside you could die in the living room
Take the fan from the window, prop the door open with a broom.
The Cuckoo clock has died of shock and the windows feel no pane
The air’s as still as the throttle on a funeral train.”
Enjoy your time there and we’ll see you somewhere on down the line! – Love, Tom& Georgina
Oh, John Prine! The lyrics are great and just perfect for our hot and humid summer. That was a sad day when we lost John Prine to COVID.
I’m glad you and Georgina are continuing along with us in our adventures, Tom. We’re going to miss seeing you two on Lopez and in Portland this year. If things get better for travel and you feel like making the trip to Florida this winter, we would love to have you here! We’d have fun playing music and enjoying the wildlife.
And you are absolutely right about the remodel. We should have contented ourselves with a good long book and a tall lemonade. What were we thinking? 😳
I could hear those lights buzzing as you described them. The days are already getting shorter which might help with the heat. Ok silly comment.
Deb, I like that thought…if only the shorter days meant less heat. But from what we hear, August is going to be even hotter. :-(
Perfect title for a summer in Florida. At least you are in the Panhandle with some lower (relative term) temps, that is if that is a thing. Ah, but that humidity!! Ugh! I can’t imagine surviving a summer in Miami without A/C but as your sister said, you didn’t know any better. Glad you both are well and settling in for who knows how long. Sure was a wise decision to stay put. With every state having different demands and so many places closed or reduced, traveling wouldn’t be much fun. We are all doing the best we can with what we have. Looks like a huge construction project happening there in the homestead! Maybe you won’t want to leave…only kidding!!
I love your science project!! What a fantastic idea! Watching nature happen in real time is so cool. Glad Eric is sharing photos on social media. Both the caterpillars and butterflies are so pretty.
Hang in there! I keep waiting to wake from this nightmare. Miss you both.
Pam, ‘sweltering in place’ aptly describes our situation, lol. I might as well laugh about it since we’re stranded here for a good long while. I see the photos of you floating in your beautiful swimming pool and wish I could be there floating alongside you! Practicing social distancing, of course.
I think we made a good decision in staying put, and we’re lucky that this is such a beautiful place (even with the heat and humidity). It’s hard not knowing when we’ll be able to resume our travels, though. I know you understand. I often think exactly what you said, that I’d like to wake up from this nightmare. Meanwhile, we have our caterpillars and remodeling project to keep us busy. We miss you guys, too.
The “Great Pause” — did you make that up? What a wonderful term for this. The other day, a friend called this a “soft apocalypse.” I like Great Pause better. Thank you for another spirit-lifting post.
Heather, I think I first encountered the term “The Great Pause” in an article in the Atlantic, way back at the beginning of the pandemic. Back when I thought it was going to be a couple of months, not a year or more. :-(
I’m glad you find our posts spirit-lifting. That makes me happy. And it makes me very happy to hear from friends who are reading…that definitely lifts my spirits. We’re all in this together.
Scarlet tananger…grey fox…the bay…the dock …swallowtails…and that magnolia!!!! Wow you are surrounded by beauty … muggy or not… and now for the renovations! Having grown up with the table saw coffee table I can totally relate except that I’m sure there will be an end in sight and not too many detours along the way… unlike my entire childhood of house building projects which were still unfinished when both parents died. A clue to my “get ‘er done today” attitude with any project… lovingly referred to as “slave driver tendencies” by some.
Only wish I was there while you make those millions of decisions that culminate in a coordinated, functional, and beautiful home…yes, I just said the H word referring to Florida just to take some of the foreboding out of it. As Thich Nhat Han chants in walking meditation…”I have arrived….I am home”… being at home in the moment is the ideal and it sure sounds like you’re both arriving “home” daily.
As always your photos and words arrive on hungry eyes and ears as you are missed more than you know and kept close in memories and remembered laughter! Morning coolness and stars stunning the sky, Diana
Diana, I can’t tell you how much I wish you were here for this big remodeling project! It’s always more fun co-creating with you. As you said, there are millions of decisions to be made. And all online, these days…no browsing through fabric stores like the good old days with you. And there’s no one like you for just getting ‘er done!
We really hope that you and John will make the trek across the country this winter so that you can enjoy the beauty and wildness of this special little piece of Florida. For however long, this will be home for us (thank you for the beautiful reminder) and we would love to share it with you.
We obviously agree with everything you said, since we made the same decision to stay put for the very same reasons. I do think it would be a lot easier to accept sitting in one place if we could get involved in community activities (fun runs, chili cookoffs, seafood festivals, plein air art events, etc.) but all those things are of course cancelled. But then again if it were safe enough to hold those events we wouldn’t have to be stuck in one place so we wouldn’t feel so lonely and adrift in the first place. The whole situation is a ball of paradoxes and unappealing options. But I do think that having a regular house to call home is an important benefit when we may be facing ongoing waves of closures and restrictions.
Shannon, we’re selfishly happy that you and Ken have also decided to stay in Eastpoint for the duration. But dang, none of us ever thought it would get THIS hot!! I know we made our decisions for very good reasons, and I have to remind myself of that when I’m feeling lonely and hot and anxious about the future.
You’re right, having a place to call ‘home’ seems like it will be even more important in the months to come. I’m glad you guys will have a house to move into in the fall while your home is being built, and that we’ll have a house to move back into in a month or so when the construction dust settles. Living in the trailer right now isn’t much fun.
What a lovely calming post Laurel. As you know I share your feelings about all of this and your worries about whether we will ever have back the full time life that we love. I must say your heat and your humidity are no worse than mine in Virginia and you have a much more beautiful place to be. I NEED WATER! Mine’s lovely but no water and that makes all the difference in the world to me. You are going to be so happy when the renovation is over and you can enjoy that wonderful house in such an absolutely fabulous spot. Can’t be long now. Perfect post title! Wish I’d thought of it first.
Sherry, I’m glad this post felt calming to you…I’m trying to find calm in the midst of this crazy time so that I don’t make myself miserable. Fortunately, there are many moments of joy here to keep me happy. But still, I miss our travels, as you know.
I agree with you that being near water makes all the difference in being able to tolerate the heat. Still, we are definitely ‘sweltering in place.’ Come visit, and we’ll go to the beach!!
Love the title, how appropriate! Your description of summer in Florida reminds me of my hometown in the Philippines, hot and humid and oppressive.
But now that you have two ongoing projects, home renovation and science, i think you will forget at least temporarily the reason why you left Miami. But watched out, the reveal of your home project might entice you to live there permanently and perhaps that is all your Dad’s doing.
The little joys are big joys!
MonaLiza, I know you understand all about heat and humidity! Which is probably exactly why you’ve decided to settle down in Arizona. It might be in the triple digits there, but you’ll never have to suffer humidity!
We’re excited about the renovation, and it’s giving us something to focus on while we’re stranded here. It’s going to be wonderful to have a comfortable place to be for the next year (or however long the pandemic continues). I think you’re right, my sweet dad would be very, very happy to know that we’re here. :-)
Right there with ya on that “I’m never spending another summer in ____” thing…how I feel about my hometown. But yay for your remodel, that sounds exciting, and even more for all the small and large gorgeousnesses which surround you. Hang in there, y’all. Sweat on!
Gretchen, I think living on Lopez Island, you’re in the most idyllic place to spend summers. Oh, how we’re missing our time there! Meanwhile, we’re loving the beauty of nature here, and we’re excited about the remodel (and we’re REALLY ready to move back into the house). It’s great to hear from you…I trust you’re playing lots of music and enjoying the pristine beauty of the island.
Ugh. I can only imagine how miserable it must be in that heat & humidity. It really zaps your energy, doesn’t it? We had it in Lincoln (NE) and Fort Worth (TX), but it wasn’t nearly as bad as the East coast. I think the worst I ever experienced was in Durham (NC), when we were visiting family. I thought I’d pass out, as we walked around the Duke campus. People have been complaining about the cool, foggy days here on the coast, but I’ll take it!It may not feel like summer when it’s only 58 degrees, but I don’t mind. We’ll get our second summer in September. We hope to do a little traveling after Labor Day, just venturing out at some nearby campgrounds. We made reservations for Friends Landing and look forward to that. We desperately want a change a scenery, even if for only a few days.
Lovely photos of the birds! We’re seeing a lot of brown pelicans this month. Finally!
Take good care and stay safe!
Les, I was just saying to Eric that we’re accustomed to spending our summers in fleece. I had to buy a dozen sundresses just to survive this summer! I know exactly what you mean about the beauty of September on the Oregon coast…that was always our favorite time to travel there.
Meanwhile, since we’re stuck here, we’re enjoying the exotic aspect of summer in Florida, the wildlife, the swimmable Gulf, and the spectacular beach. Might as well make lemonade, right?
Great post, once again. Thank you for writing it. These are strange days indeed. I feel lightened this morning, reading your words and knowing that we are not alone in this. I still have your business card at my writing table and I look at it every morning. These days, it is a good reminder to, “Be Amazed”.
I’m happy to know that Mary Oliver’s words speak to you, too, Susan. And that you still have our little card from the day we met on the trail at Rockhound State Park. :-) I remind myself every day to take joy in the little things…it’s so easy when we’re traveling and even more important now to keep our spirits up in this uncertain time. It really does help to know that we’re all in this together.
Again, again I’m getting caught up. Amen to the unreal reality of our new normal and the unique challenge of having no end in site. My first thought is “At least we don’t have your humidity!”
Miss you two a lot, miss not being able to check our itineraries to see where we might meet up :-). We’re glad we completed our kitchen reno before Christmas and really wanting to do the bathrooms now! Can’t wait to see your reveal :-))))
Haha, the days just roll on by, don’t they? I’m happy to hear from you, Jodee. We miss meeting up with you two in our travels, too. Here’s hoping that will happen sometime in the coming year!
I’m equal parts excited and exhausted by this home renovation. We took on a lot at once. Reveal coming soon (better be soon…).
I jumped over to your blog from Suzanne’s blog and have really enjoyed looking around. I love “swelter” in place! Although where I am (coastal San Diego) it isn’t too bad, my friends and family to the north sure are suffering. I look forward to reading more about your adventures.
Hi Janis! I’m happy to ‘meet’ you and look forward to reading your blog! Coastal San Diego is probably one of the best places to be right now. The beach here is gorgeous and I’m loving the opportunity to swim in the bathtub temperature Gulf, but wow, is it hot and humid here. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. :-)
I also wandered over here from Suzanne’s blog. I plan to hang around a little longer, but I enjoyed this post and LOVED the photographs. My wife, Helen, and I are RVers and travel about six months a year in our fifth-wheel, named Lucy. When not on the road, we make our home in Knoxville, Tennessee.
This summer, like you, we debated whether we should travel, and decided that we had put so much effort into planning a trip to the Northwest, we had to go. Right now, we are in Coos Bay, Oregon where the temperatures are hovering in the mid-70s. The crowds are small in the National Parks–no international travelers and no tour busses have made our experience very enjoyable.
We love St. George’s Island, but nothing was available for this winter. We do have reservations in Crystal River and Lake Kissimmee, but Florida in the winter is a tough ticket, so we may have to call that trip off this year. I’ll ramble no more, but wanted to say hi. I’m sorry for your loss. Good luck with the renovation. I spent 20 years building homes and, I look forward to seeing the finished product. Joe
Hi Joe, thanks for stopping by, and thank you for your kind comments! I must say I’m a bit (okay, a lot) envious that you’re in the Pacific Northwest right now. As far as we’re concerned, there’s no place better in the summer months. I’m looking forward to reading your blog and discovering where you’ve been.
If you do make it to Florida this winter, please let us know. It would be fun to meet up in person!