Monday, March 31, 2014

Old Goats and Wooden Boats

I believe I'm allergic to South Florida.  Every time I'm down there it doesn't take long for me to start itching to get the heck out of there.  This past weekend I figured out what it is that starts me to itching.  It's because every single person there... looks like me!

It truly is God's waiting room, especially this time of year when all of the snow birds are still there.  Oh, the people are pleasant enough.  Almost too pleasant.  I find that's a trait that I myself have become guilty of lately.  Well, maybe not, at least not to that degree.  But you know, at least some of you know how it goes when you reach an age to where you truly don't give a damn about the petty troubles of this world because you have finally come to a point to where you realize that there ain't one dang thing you can do about any of it and there aren't enough years left to do it anyway.  So... why worry?  Be happy.

What got this started was a weekend get-a-way down to Tavares, Florida to meet my old buddy Punch and a visit to the Sunnyland Antique Boat Show.  It seemed as good an excuse as any for getting out of town for a weekend adventure.

Found a nice old-Florida motel.  Pretty dog-eared but clean and operated by (who else?) an Indian couple named (what else?) Patel.  Suited our retro-weekend perfectly.  Although, I do wish they could find bath towels larger than diapers.
Saturday dawned cool and rainy but we got to the show before it really opened up later that afternoon.  I was really intrigued by these hand-made canoes and outboard boats.  They were beautiful but one of these babies, bare bones, will set you back about $3,600.  I suppose that's not so bad, all things considered.

Lots of beautiful old woody's.  They really are grand.
Did I mention there were boats?  Lots of boats.  Old boats...

... and new boats...
.. and whew boats...

... and rhythm and blues boats...
... and places to party...
...and stuff to look at...
... and stuff to buy...
...and a geezer orchestra on Friday night that laid down some fine big band swing.
... and a geezer rock band the next night that laid down some fine boogy and one of the best cover's of Sweet Etta's "At Last" that I have ever heard...
... and an old steam train that carries old people around in a big circle.  These folks were patiently waiting for the next train, scheduled to arrive in one hour.  See what I mean?

All-in-all a pretty fine weekend and well recommended.  As a plus, the nearby town of Mt. Dora is really a beautiful little tourist destination with all of the accompanying restaurants, boutiques and antique malls you would expect.

However, be that as it may, by Sunday morning I began to itch, and headed north to the comfortable confines of Baja Georgia.  I was so pleased to see a youngster that I didn't even mind that he gave me the finger in traffic.  How sweet it is.


  1. ha. its an invasion of the clones...smiles...
    i love old boats, so your shorts around the docks are very cool to me...
    sounds like a fun time....glad you escaped though back into the comfort of
    i need to get back to florida for a visit...

  2. Twas fun for sure. Just an excuse to visit an old friend, smoke cigars and swap lies but the boats were nice.

  3. Nice pics but the post makes me worried that you are being sucked into Pleasantville.

    1. I'm worried too. But I found that a well timed martini would dispel the spell.

  4. My mother, soon to be 82, refuses to hang out with people her own age. I'm gonna send her down to you.

  5. Please, please... she'll run me to death :)

  6. Nice pictures. But you're right, there's something unsettling about being surrounded by nothing but fellow oldsters. The town adjacent to where I live is mostly retirees, and there are constant jokes about how long it takes to drive through town because of all the slow elderly drivers; it's the only place in the world where every handicapped parking space is already taken, etc.

    There also are several really good local rock bands where all the band members are fifty-something (or even older).

    1. The musicians are probably like me, have been playing all their lives in their living room and now they have the time and resources to pursue their hobby. I'll bet you can get a reserved handicap space.

  7. I know how it is, you want to come and live here at Valley’s End. Lots of geezers and geezerettes - the young run when they see us coming, brandishing our sticks.

    1. I'm afraid the future will be filled with geezers as the "baby boom" matures. I suppose that's a good thing.

  8. I've never cared for Florida, regardless of the ages of the full-timers and part-timers. But that show looks like it was a hell of a lot of fun. As long as the weekend doesn't turn into a permanent habitat, why not? I don't know what's worse: hanging out with a bunch of old farts who are trying to act and drink like they're in their mid-forties or a bunch of middle age farts who are trying to act and drink like they're sixteen again.

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