I may have been a tad judgemental.

Dear Friends,

Here are some little known facts about Florida.

  • It’s flat.
  • It’s warm when the rest of the country is freezing.
  • It’s pretty. Like, really pretty.

I’ve never been a big fan of Florida. We’ve only vacationed there once — at Fort Walton Beach, not at Disney World. And Parker, who was five at the time, turned up missing from the resort at which we were trying to have a good time with two small kids in tow (which is not that easy, despite all the cash we threw at the endeavor). Obviously, he was later found and survived unscathed. But I didn’t. I was scarred for life, and I think that trauma and the basic Jeb Bush-yness of Florida influenced my opinion in a not-too-flattering way. I kind of figured it was nothing but an over-commercialized playground for desperate parents, rich college kids, and over-privileged snowbirds.

But I seriously, ridiculously underestimated the allure of a Saturday morning run on flat terrain in 60 degree weather in January. Holy cow . . . I just didn’t know that Florida was, you know, so flat. And so warm. And so pretty.

Maybe part of Florida sucks. (Surely it does, don’t you think?) But not Naples, not the part I’m in. It may be over-privileged, but it is lovely.

And I intend to eek out every bit of enjoyment I can in the 60 hours I’m here.

With gratitude {for January junkets},

Joan, who feels deep remorse for talking trash about the Sunshine State

PS: You probably didn’t know this, but they have great seafood in Florida. I had crab cakes made with fresh crab for dinner last night. It was mind-blowing.