It’s been quite a while since I have ventured out of NYC to come down to the scary southern hemisphere of the USA where my parents have retired to. Sure, it seems like a bad stereotype when it comes to those hitting a certain age and heading to warm sunny Florida to bask in their golden years, but my parents are living the dream! They live in a very nice gated 55 and over golf course community – but don’t golf. Go figure. It’s in central Florida in between Orlando and Tampa in an area known as “horse country”. It is an interesting, but kind of sleepy part of the state. Think “witness protection program” where they hide you away to die of suburban boredom. Heck, even John Travolta lives here and has been known to shop at Walmart late at night. I can picture the in-store announcements – “Travolta aisle 5, clean up, aisle 5, Vinnie Barbarino, aisle 5”!
Yet, even though I have been down here a bunch of times since they have moved I still just can’t get used to the oppressive heat down here. I arrived last Tuesday for work and attended a convention in Orlando for a few days. The area was in the midst of record setting heat with temps in the 90’s and humidity that had the “real feel” heat index in the low 100’s. Can you say “Swamp Ass”? Heading to the convention center each morning was an ordeal in sweat and wetness. The facility itself never seems to have the AC cranking high enough to stay comfortable when wearing a suit. Heading back to the hotel seemed even hotter. I could not wait each day to get into my room with arctic AC blasting and peel off my sweaty damp clothes. I had a good biz trip overall and can’t complain though. Still, this clip from “Fools Rush In” always seems to pop into my mind when in hot sticky Florida.
Coming from NYC certain parts of the country just seem like strange lands to me. Florida is one of those states. Even though a good amount of people living here started out someplace else it just seems like bizarro world to me.
Slow ass drivers that pull out on the road ahead of you and just die. Step on the gas before I kill you!
Drivers that will sit at a red light and refuse to make a right on red even though it is allowed. AHHHHH! What are you waiting for?
The speed limit is 70. Why the hell are you doing 45 in the left lane?
Why do some rednecks down here have confederate flag stickers on their trucks? Not playing with a full selection of chromosomes, eh?
This is the land of chain restaurants and fast food. Over by International Drive there is an awesome display of what seems like every one of them in the country. Yet, I do love me some Cracker Barrel and Waffle House!
I know it’s seriously hot down here but please stop wearing wife -beater tank tops. Along with the multitude of bad tattoos many of them sport it just looks like a marathon of “COPS” should be filmed here – forever. That, and “Tattoo Nightmares”.
I have to admit the radio stations here play a different variety of music than NYC stations. Up there we are stuck with crappy Top 40, Rap, and Hip Hop mostly. Down here it’s a weird mix of Country, Christian, and Heavy Metal/Hard Rock. I give it up for some good rock they play here, and bang my head while on the way to the gym.
What is up with the huge prehistoric looking bugs down here? Whoa! Must be all the heat that makes them grow. Some of those things hit my windshield and I thought the car was being shot at!
Culture? Don’t even get me started. I live in NYC. No comparison. I did pass a “Dinosaur Land” and “Reptile Show” on the way here. Yee Haw!
I could go on and on but I actually like Florida – to visit. It’s been teeming rain today with booming thunder and lightning, but my family still had a good Father’s Day get together. We got to my sister’s house right before the deluge. The heat is cooking my brain like a beef stew. I actually welcome my gym workouts here just to stay inside with cool AC. Give me real change of seasons in NYC any day over this. Hey, I kid Florida so if any of you take offense just go back to some of my older posts to see that I bust on NYC and it’s people too – and I’m a New Yorker! I’m an equal opportunity ranter!
Swamp Ass indeed!