Rain and Sponges

Libby and I rose at an early hour Tuesday for our last “day” together in Florida. We had rented an Air BnB in Hernando Beach on the west coast, and were headed from there to Tarpon Springs to hang out for a few hours before continuing on to the Orlando airport for my 4PM flight back to Boston.

The weather was overcast, but we still had an enjoyable time walking the main street in Tarpon Springs. Apparently the town has a very high Greek population and that was obvious for all the Greek restaurants on that main street.

Along the docks were many boats specifically for harvesting natural sponges from the sea, and all of the sponges seems to be for sale in the cheeky tourist shops along the main street too. I was on the look out for a postcard to send my Little, but aside from that, our goal was to take int he sights. It was chillier here, and there was rain coming. A shop owner mentioned that the rain would be there any minute, so we got comfortable in a funky bakery to wait it out. There were neon lights all over the interiors, Greek style painting details, and music you’d expect in a dance club.

Libby noted how often she and I get stuck in rain when we travel together and she’s not wrong! While we didn’t get stuck in any rain in Savannah, we did get stuck in four days worth in Dubrovnik!

I guess it’s our thing.

We relaxed int he coffee shop and eventually waited so long that it was time for an early lunch. So, we went into the restaurant right next door, where we ordered bubbling hot cheese, and the poor waiter had to yell “Everybody’s say ‘oo-pah!'” before lighting it on fire and serving it to us. “I was going to tell him he could skip that part for us” Libby said.

The rain never let up, and after our Gyros, we scurried back to her car and drove to the Orlando airport in a downpour that lasted ninety minutes, until we were about a half hour away.

We listened to podcasts and chatted about life, and agreed that using some days after the street painting festival to explore parts of Florida neither of us had been to was a great use of our time. Coming to palm beach County is great and I do enjoy it, but it’s different to visit a place that used to be your home, and visit and explore a new place.

Libby has been to the Florida Keys a few times, but we plan on going back next year. I went to the Keys on assignment when I was working for the Post, but I never explored as a traveler.



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