Dateline, Golden Beach, Florida
The lovely weather continues apace and my year-round friends are frustrated. They'd like to have a chance to wear woolly hats and scarves. We would rather not. Hubby gleefully scrutinises the western New York weather forecast every morning. I look at it here and there and sometimes forget to change the website back to Venice, Florida. You can get a nasty shock first thing in the morning - Huh, WHAT?! Snow and ice! High of 13 degrees! (Fahrenheit that is.) It's like one of those nightmares when you dream you're back at school taking exams. The Christmas and New Year visitors have largely departed and - until it gets busier again at the end of the month when the short-term "snowbirds" come down - life has returned to the New Normal. Well there have been some exciting moments - an alligator's been found in someone's swimming pool, local ladies have been making quilts for the tornado victims in Kentucky and they've set up a new Covid testing site at the Community Centre, the queues of cars stretching all the way round the island (well almost).
Building everywhere continues, with an old house being pulled down, it seems, every day and you have to weave around trucks and cement mixers and builders' vans parked along the narrow roads. - a shame for the pastel-coloured little island houses. They squeeze the new monstrosities into tiny spaces and once you've put in the obligatory glorified bath that passes for a swimming pool and giant, ugly cage over the top of it, there's hardly any back garden left. I know I should say "back yard" but I can't bring myself to do it. One of those "divided by a common language" moments. Recently the Wall Street Journal ran a feature on the British Royal Family's homes and described Buckingham Palace as having "London's largest private backyard". Ugh! That those stately gardens could be called something properly belonging to scrap metal and prisons!
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