Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Hurricanes and Snowstorms

It's hurricane season. Sort of like February in southern Ontario. You're never entirely sure when the storm is going to hit. You regularly check the news for updates. Keep the pantry fairly well stocked. You're never sure how bad it's going to be. You can either stay inside all day or venture out with some informed caution. I'm not a fan of wind storms or snow storms, but hiding inside isn't a fun option.

When we first arrived in Florida, Tropical Storm Fay had hit Port St. Lucie and the surrounding area. Students had been in school for one day and then had 4 storm days. There was alot of flooding in the area and our friend Debbie's office was flooded.

After traveling to Disney and the Space Centre, we came back to Debbie, Jeff, Kristina and Evan's wonderful hospitality. You always feel part of the family when you stay with them, and that includes their extended family too. We had dinner with Debbie's parents and her almost 90 year old Nana. They took us to a baseball game between the St. Lucie Mets (farm team for the NY Mets) and the Brevard Manatees. The highlight was actually the fireworks after the game. Another highlight of the evening (can you have more than one highlight), well another item of note was finally catching a glimpse of an alligator. We'd certainly seen lots of warning signs but no alligator. While visiting Debbie's parents their "pet" alligator in the pond behind their house was swimming around and we could see its eyes and tail sometimes skimming along the surface of the water. That was enough so we can now say we've seen an alligator in Florida.

We were also hosted by Debbie's brother Eric and his family. They have a lovely landscaped pool in their backyard. The kids swam and swam and swam and swam....

There was also karaoke back at the Debbie and Jeff's. And Kristina eventually had us all dancing. Kristina is an excellent dancer. She gave Danielle special cha-cha slide lessons too.

I don't have a picture of the kids playing guitar hero or wii but that definitely kept Evan, Simon and Danielle entertained for many hours!

We were also treated to a boat ride out from nearby Fort Pierce. Jeff worked hard to get his boat ready for us. The storm had dumped lots of water and debris into his boat. The water is usually crystal clear in the area where we put the anchor in to swim, however the recent storm had churned up the water so it was pretty murky. We headed back in when the dark clouds started to roll in, and the boaters who were on the ocean side of the cove started streaming back.

One of the occupational hazards of traveling is having to say "goodbye" to special friends after what always seems like too short a visit. Debbie is like a sister to me. I met her 25 years ago (July 1, 1983) when we were Rotary Exchange students flying from New York to the Phillipines. I can't imagine not having her, and her family, in my life!

1 comment:

  1. Looks like you all had a blast (storms or not!!!). The diary has got me excited on 2 fronts.... The first is to have the DeWildes downunder to show them the same good time.... the 2nd is to visit the Kohuths and get to have the same experiences. Glad you are all having such a good time.