Since I shared with all the lovely guests on the Celebrity Infinity, with whom I spent last December traveling around the coasts of South America, that I was in the process of moving to south Florida, while with them at sea, I thought I might share the results of the move. Everyone was so nice to validate our decision to relocate south, on the east coast, close to major cruise ports and airports. It is simply not possible in one lifetime to eat at all the restaurants recommended.
It is also not easy to sail thousands of miles from home and move households at the same time. During my month at sea we closed on the purchase of our new home in south Florida and the following week closed on the sale of the home in North Carolina. This required my husband to opt out of the cruise, which he was looking forward to all year. I left powers of attorney in his hands and left town.
Before sailing, the Cruise through History library, writing notes, and about 30 cases of our wine cellar were safely tucked in a storage locker, somewhere in Palm Beach County. This is not a trivia question. If you find the location before we empty the contents, however, you can choose the 2017 CTH t-shirt design.
I arrived at the Miami airport at 4 am, one week ago, delighted not to recheck bags to a connecting flight. The relaxed euphoria that settles upon you while on a cruise stayed with me while other travelers went into accelerating anxiety watching for bags to come off the belt in time to race to a connecting flight. There is a reason that so many frequent travelers live in south Florida. Now I join them.
Two days later I accomplished the task of filling our garage with empty boxes. There they waited for recyclable pickup day. Meanwhile, painters appeared to paint the outside of our home. This automatically happens every so often in south Florida communities. Our only task was to choose the color of the garage door.
While we sat on the patio having breakfast and waved hello to the gardeners on road-rally-rated mowers, we received a text from our former neighbors. There was a picture included of our former patio under snow. In front of us birds were landing on the lake and drying their wings on a yard sculpture. In Florida birds fly freely, while people live in caged patios and open-air houses. This is winter.
True, the average age in Palm Beach County is over 55. That is also the minimum speed in the slow lane of traffic. However, the “adult” movie theater charges $6 a ticket, a senior popcorn with drink is $3, and there is no charge for parking. Waiting for the theater to open, strangers talk to each other like old friends. Everyone here is from somewhere else. Everyone was new too not long ago.
Not everything in south Florida is rosy. Deli parking lots at brunch-time can be scenes of rage over the last parking space near the door. As I stood in a parking lot at Brothers Fresh Vegetable Market, guiding my husband out of a tight space, so the patient young couple behind could then pull in, I was almost hit by the newly arrived driver who rushed in around me to take the space, no doubt fearful he would leave this earth before he purchased his last take-out meatballs.
Summer in south Florida is hot and humid. By then we will have fully moved into our new home, packed our bags, and be ready with new Cruise through History stories for the upcoming months of cruises. I expect to see many fellow south-Floridians at the cruise pier. Hopefully, I will see you too on a ship very soon.
All Cruise through History storybooks are available in paper and e-books, through this website and at Amazon.com. More itineraries will be released in 2017.