Escape from the Sunshine State

Well, I’m back.

I don’t really have much else to say, I suppose, except that after a week in Florida I’m so relieved to be back in DC. Now don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed hanging out with my parents and all the accompanying perks of reverting to childhood like eating all the chocolate and cheese you want and drinking two bottles of champagne solo while watching movies til 3am and not having to make a single decision about anything. Ok, maybe that wasn’t quite my childhood but you know what I mean – total absence of responsibility. But after a week your body and brain begin to rebel and begin to crave the bustle and hum of the city. And that is one thing the particular corner of Florida that my parents inhabit severely lacks.

It’s Venice, a quiet little town on the Gulf Coast with some lovely wild beaches (my favorite – Caspersen) and a cute avenue with local merchant shops and a real soda fountain cafe. It manages to feel very sleepy while also being developed within an inch of its charm to hold the first wave of the retiring Boomers as they flock to Florida’s no income tax and temperate climate.

Now, with apologies to my parents, I could never ever live in a place like that. Everything revolves around the car, of course, as with the exception of the little avenue most everything is strip mall shops. Its infrastructure hasn’t quite caught up to the expensive real estate being built everywhere – though the gated communities for the Northern snowbirds are in abundance the local movie theatre has closed, restaurants are nothing spectacular, only golf courses abound. It’s very casual and the classic idea of retirement that everyone says the Boomers are going to eschew but they seem to be moving there anyway. Everyone calls you “honey” and are so perfectly outgoing and friendly in that Southern way that makes you wonder what they are saying behind your back.

Sigh. Let me repeat – I could never live in a place like that. City life for me. I am so glad to be back in DC. Now it’s off for a night on the town with visiting guests from crazy Amsterdam. I hope I don’t overdo it in my desire to re-urbanify.

This post appeared in its original form at DC Metblogs

As one of the founding editors of We Love DC, Jenn’s passions are theater and cocktails. After two decades in the city, she’s loved every quirky, mundane, elegant, rude minute of her DC life. A proud advocate for DC’s talented drinks scene, she’s judged the Corcoran Gallery of Art’s ARTINI contest, the DC Rickey Month contest, the Jefferson Hotel’s Quill Cocktail competition, and is a founding member of LUPEC DC. A graduate of Catholic University’s drama program, she toured the country as a member of National Players, and has been both an actor and a costume designer before jumping the aisle to theater criticism. Writing for We Love DC restored her happiness after a life-threatening illness, and she’s grateful to you, dear readers. Send your suggestions to jenn (at) welovedc (dot) com and follow her on Twitter.

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