Living in Florida – One Year In
Having lived in New England (in both Rhode Island and Massachusetts) with it’s cold weather and boatloads of snow, it had long been a plan to move to Florida. We had been on countless vacations to WDW. Like tons of vacations – about 30-40 since 1992.
Well the time came last year. Kim & Steve and Courtney moved down in August. We all drove down and helped out in the blazing sun and stifling heat that is Florida in the summer. We were coming from the end of summer/ early fall so it was an adjustment to say the least. I followed behind them in October.
I was in full fall mode in RI so I was melting but was assured that this was the “new” fall and I would acclimate eventually. My world went from the leaves beginning to change to palm trees. I was lucky enough to find a job right away so the transition went smoothly. I was still melting while my coworkers were wearing sweaters and shivering. I joke and say that I almost broke out the socks on three different occasions last year!
We’ve all traveled up north for visits and been lucky enough to have a lot of visitors. It’s fun and yet exhausting to play travel guide. Most of my vacation time is now spent entertaining. Not too bad, just more time to spend in WDW! My daughter, Dea, got engaged here a while back! Kim and Steve’s older daughter, Amanda, spent almost the whole summer visiting. She’s a teacher. Our great nieces and nephew were here and it was so fun to visit WDW with children.
There are times when I miss my old home. Those are the days that I head to Disney’s Yacht Club Resort and enjoy all the nautical touches and of course the light house. I almost feel like I’ve stepped into Newport, RI. Going to the Captains Grille for some chowdah warms the soul. Kim still cooks like there is a small army even though there’s just a few of us. Visiting the Christmas Tree Shop is like going into Foxboro, MA. Same store, same stuff – don’t you just love a bargain.
We’ve discovered the world outside of WDW too. Shocking, I know! I enjoy Flagler College and the Lightner Museum in St. Augustine. The beaches in Clearwater are so warm and wonderful. We found a great family owned restaurant chain – Columbia’s, that we have visited in several locations, including Celebration. The manatees at Blue Springs Park are a majestic sight to behold. There were about 75 there the first time I went. Truly amazing! Wekiva Park is beautiful and can definitely fill in the nature fix. Downtown Mount Dora is about as adorable as it comes with it’s quaint shops and eateries. They even have a train ride! I still have to head south and I haven’t been to Gatorland yet. I’m working on it.
So far, I am loving Florida! The people are a blend from all over and not just America. I can enjoy the sunshine and the rain and the lack of snow all I want without pouting about having to shovel to leave. I feel like I’ve just touched the tip of the iceberg as far as exploring but I’m so willing to keep on searching! On to year #2!