A Southern Respite

At the very end of February, Tony and I packed a few things in a carry-on bag and hopped a jet (okay, two) down to visit some friends in Orlando. We had no plans; we were just getting out of Dodge for the weekend. I could chronicle the things we did, but it would quickly become embarrassing, because the vast majority of the list would consist of things like “ate donuts again” and “had another large high fat, high sugar frappucino.” So instead, just a smattering of my favorite things…aside from all the food.

Color. Sure, we’re getting more and more sun (thank you time change!), but still our world Up North is mostly black and white, with occasionally cheerful blue skies. Our friends’ neighborhood was lined with live oaks draped in Spanish moss, and dotted with vibrant flowers. And the grass – Florida’s crab grass (St. Augustine grass?) is so springy! I forgot that stepping on it feels a bit like wearing moon shoes. Or how I imagine that feels.


Ease of walking. We took a few walks around the neighborhood – in the same clothes we were wearing inside the house (which included flip flops!). This is a big deal, because our walks for the past few months have involved artfully layering so that you’re both warm and comfortable.

Conversation. I think I actually came home a little hoarse. When we weren’t eating, we were pretty much chatting or sleeping, with the balance tipped far toward “chatting.” One day of our trip, Jed ended up having to work 15 hours (not hyperbole), so we hung out with his girlfriend Victoria all day…which could easily have been awkward. Thankfully, she’s more adept at socializing than Tony and I, so we had a great time.


And then she paid Jed back by leaving him on his own with us for a day while she worked. I’m not sure who came out ahead, but I do know there was a trip to a flower garden, plus donuts and coffee, so I think it was me.
Orlando-9

Live oaks and Spanish moss. I realize that these are practically on the list twice, but look at them. Why aren’t all trees this magnificent and cloaked with these beards?
Orlando-10

Astonishment. The day Jed had to work included him filming the City of Orlando’s Blues-B-Q (still not sure why they didn’t just go with the easier-to-say “Blues and BBQ”) event, to which he acquired VIP passes for us. It was attended by a large crowd (not my favorite), but a friendly crowd (makes up for the size almost entirely). Denise Lasalle, a 75-year old woman recognized as a “Queen of the Blues” performed a few songs/acts, which I had thought were one-offs, but in my attempts to find some video of the night, I have since learned are not. If you can youtube, and are not at work (because, seriously, NSFW) go ahead and have a listen. If you’re in a hurry, just skip ahead to about 7:50. And since I cannot top that, I’ll leave you here where I’ll pick you up next time. Stay classy 🙂

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11 thoughts on “A Southern Respite

  1. LOVE this post!! Have been waiting for it. Can hardly type straight though coz am swaying to Ms. Lasalle singing in the background…can’t believe she’s 75! Older than Mom and half as young! She’s a hoot and a holler she is 😉

    And may I just say am totally floored by those trees. They are like Grand Old Dames of Nature…stern yet inviting…like Granny 🙂 I’m so glad caught a slice of Spring and got to hang out with friends. What could be better? Perhaps only being kissed by the Kissopotamus when you got back?! 😉

    Before I sign off I must put my ignorance on display and ask what NSFW means. Moon shoes and live oaks and Ms. Lasalle…you’ve done good for yourself Missy 😀 Snap, Crackle & Pop 😛

    • When you passed on your compliments to Ms Lasalle, I wondered if you played her in the background, or if you actually gave a listen! About lost it when you posted “Snap, Crackle & Pop.” Oh my goodness gracious. Could not believe what my ears were hearing. And the two teenaged boys in front of me were hilarious! NSFW = Not Safe For Work 😉
      Since we work from home, we don’t often get greeted with Happy to See You, I Missed You So Much kisses from Petey. But we did get those on our return, and that was special 🙂 Love that guy!
      Tried to track down the happiness thing you shared on FB the other day. It just rang so true for me, considering our Orlando trip and this past weekend when we played host to three college girls and mostly did an eating tour 🙂 Happiness…is eating!

      • Hahhahahaa…oh I heard her Loud & Clear 😛 She should come with her own ‘Too Hot to Handle’ sticker me thinks! Oh those poor boys 😉 😛

        I like that…food pics on the way then?!

        • Yes she should! And it was the poor event planner’s first big event for the city! Should have seen his face.
          No food photos :-/ I didn’t carry the camera around much – just on a couple of walks and to the flower garden (or you’d have seen some shots of downtown and the Blues-B-Q). I’m apparently only good at landscapes and people…but not when they’re eating 😉

  2. A perfect summary of your trip! Although, I think a side by side of coffee and donuts must be included. Let’s be honest, they were the highlight of your vacation 😉

    • If I hadn’t been so quick to consume them, the donuts should definitely have been photographed and gotten a spot on the list 😉 And if I were really being fair instead of writing a blog before it became sadly outdated, I’d have put you and Jed on the list. We really had a great time with you guys. Can’t wait for your Traverse City wedding 😀

  3. What a refreshing break! Glad you could get away, sounds (and looks) so different from what we normally see on your blog! Coffee + donuts + company + balmy climes….so comforting 🙂

    • I think all company should require coffee and donuts. Or wait. All coffee and donuts should require company. Either way 😉 But if I’m honest, I’m not really a coffee drinker or a donut eater. I like specific espressos (not a dark roast) with lots of sugar. And my favorite donuts are from that place we visited, though it is a chain. Coffee I can get up here, but the donuts I just pine for 😉
      Anyhoo, visiting friends is always special, and is even better when we needed a break from the constant and continuing cold!

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