Al Fresco Freezing, FLA-Style

IMG_4771So any vacation’s a gamble, right? There’s the good and then there’s the bad. There’s the mini-bar stocked with every drink/snack you can think of but who can fork over 15 bucks for a fistful of almonds? Who can spend 20 bucks for a mouthwash-sized hit of bourbon? These days as the bellhop advised us, if you but touch, never mind take out, any of these treats, boom, you’re charged for it.

I however am always ready to take the bitter with the sweet. Also, my standards are pretty low. All I had hoped to do on this getaway weekend was bask like a salamander on a small sun-warmed patch of sand.

It didn’t happen that way though, of course it didn’t. When my mate and I arrived at this Florida’s Coast hotel it was downright NIPPY, with 30mph winds gusting to 50, such that when we went on that first afternoon to get some lunch at poolside eatery, two waiters dashed over and wrapped us in towels, heads and all. We looked like the poor souls in the lifeboats in Titanic. I thought David looked especially like this. “Jaaaack! Ja-a-a-a-ack!” I croaked at him in my best impersonation of Kate Winslet calling for her blue-eyed lad shortly before she has to watch him sink down and down into the icy North Sea.

Still, we were happy. From my point of view there could have been insects the size of butter plates bunny-hopping across the floor of our hotel room and I’d have stayed happy. We had fat terry cloth robes and fluffy white slippers and if we couldn’t quite SWIM, or even comfortably SIT in the poolside lounge chairs, we did have in our room both a Romeo-and-Juliet-style balcony as well as a big sliding door.

For intervals while we were down there, we got to visit some dear friends but we spent the rest of the time here in our pretty room, reading our books just inside that wide sliding door and every few minutes glancing up to take in the lapping wind-tossed beauty of that blue, blue Gulf of Mexico. Ah!

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Fun at the Fancy Pants Hotel


Here’s where WE stayed last night, woo!- a onetime jail that is now a hotel.

We won the right to sleep here almost a year ago and only now cashed in.

The fun unfolded this way for me:

  • 3:30: Arrive. Champagne in the room, wh-a-a-a-a-t? Drink every drop.
  • 4:30: Nap seems in order. Take one.
  • 5:30 Wake to play with various hotel room gizmos. High tech heaven. This is how the 1% lives!
  • 5:45 Hunt in vain for in-room coffee maker. Hotel’s wish: that you spend $15 on room service coffee instead. Nah, forget the coffee.
  • 6:00 Have Nap Number Two
  • 6:30 Wake once again. Read fascinating amazing book on Kindle. Alice Hoffman rules!
  • 7:00 Have Nap Number Three. (“What happened to sight-seeing?” says Old Dave. “What happened to striding purposefully along the Charles River in 35 mph wind?” say I. Nice enough just watching it all out the window.
  • 8:00 Jump up and dress for 9pm dinner reservation at Scampo Lydia Shire, chef.
  • 8:30 Descend in elevators, passing at least 100 30-year-olds, the guys peering into the faces of their ladies in a way that connotes One Hope Only if you catch my drift.
  • 9:00 Killer drinks. Flat-top haircut on genial young waiter! Killer apps, killer entrees, killer desserts!
  • 10:30 Ride back up in the elevator, look out at cupola of the old jail again, this time softly illuminated. Gorgeous. Feel like Middle Passage Alaskan cruise ship passing iceberg. Spectacular! Only fly in all this nice ointment: the moment when, on pushing big cozy chair closer to picture window, we spy, just under the hem of the draperies, one (1) pair of Champion Men’s boxer briefs, flung away in moment of gleeful abandon by previous hotel guest.

HUMANS, what can you say? Nothing human is alien to us! We kicked ’em back under the drapes and went cozily to sleep.