Tuesday, January 27, 2009

God's Waiting Room

I'm not being disrespectful, honest, but the place I'm in right now (the physical place not the emotional/psychological place) is truly God's Waiting Room. It's cold in Northern New York (freakin freezing) so Larry and I head South to Florida to relax in the warmth and sun of Punta Gorda Florida.

Punta Gorda is on the Southwest coast of Florida, between Sarasota and Fort Meyers ( I know, what do you care where in Hell it is. If you're reading this then look outside to see snow and ice you really don't give a damn about where I am at the moment-but somebody might want to know, so I'm telling them).

Punta Gorda was slammed by hurricane Charlie several years ago and you can still see signs of the hurricane all over the place. Where there were buildings, there are holes, like someone who has missing teeth when they smile. Last year we saw many buildings in the state of repair, but most of the other buildings didn't survive the hurricane so they've had to rebuild, a lot. We are witnessing a rebirth of sorts here.

Most of the folks who come down here, and the ones who live here are old. I mean O-L-D. I don't think I've ever seen so many scooters (not the kind you ride for pleasure, the kind that gets you in and out of shops and down the aisles in markets running over those of us on two feet-without even a "sorry") or other wheeled conveyances in my life. The ones in the conveyances are the good ones. They can get around. Most of them have big huge vans with little hydraulic platforms on the back of the van for their little scooters, so they can move about freely. They're the ones with the handicapped hangers on the rear view mirrors...(They can't see when their vision is not obscured but yet they put those hangy things on the mirror to further mess up their vision-nuts).

Honest to God, I think some of these folks are the living dead...This is an observation here, not disrespect. The worst part of all is the driving. You must be a defensive driver here at all times.

The men are really bad. I think they feel driving is one thing they have control over, so watch out world here they come. They take the most ridiculous chances when pulling out of parking spots, or worse yet pulling onto a major 70 mph highway. I'm beginning to think this is a new form of attempted suicide for some....or maybe a game of chicken I'm not old enough to know about...I know one thing, I watch out for these nut cases.

The women are nicer about their lack of driving skill. I watched one lady on the same 70 mph highway, hunched over her steering wheel, head pushed forward, squinting...yes, I said SQUINTING as she kept her old Buick at a consistent 45 mph. She smiled as everyone went by her giving her one finger salutes as they passed.

We've gone to some events here. A Banjo band (all the songs sounded the same, they were all 75+, but they were having a ball....), a Robert Burns night (actually I met some folks who knew my family in Scotland...that was a mind blower), A Celtic Festival, and assortment of other smaller events. Everything here starts early in the morning and finishes early in the afternoon. Now, I know what you're thinking, "Things start early to get away from the heat of the day". Yes, that's what I thought too, but that's only part of the reason. The real reason is everyone takes naps in the afternoon so they can stay up until 8:00PM. Then go to bed for the night, to wake early the next morning to be the first at events.

Garage Sales start at 7:30 am down here....and you better get there at 7:15 to get a good spot or else someone in a scooter will run you over in their zest to get at the nick knacks. By 8:00 the frenzy starts to subside, the true garage sale folks have gone on to other venues and the normal folks start to arrive to look over the leavings.

I have to give the old folks credit ( of which I am official one this year, since this is the year I can start to collect Social Security- and you bet your sweet bippy I'm signing up for it ASAP) for their ability to do anything. As I said before many of them look like the living dead. They are not well but down here their life is easier than where they came from. It's a good thing they can be down here in the sun and take advantage of the weather. I just wish some of them would hire drivers.....