Sunday, March 6, 2011

Weekend away

Those of you who are also my LinkedIn pals, may also know that I went to Florida this weekend. I signed up for TripIt ( an app that allows you to track your flight/car rental/hotel etc. in one handy dandy place)  a couple of years ago and somewhere along the line, I linked it to LinkedIn. Apparently, anytime I take a trip, it appears magically on my profile and ANNOUNCES my itinerary. My friend, Jen (full time mother and part time private investigator/paleontologist/genius marketer/top chef) alerted me to this fact on the day we were leaving. I quickly edited my profile on LinkedIn. Phew! Crisis averted (hopefully).

He was at least 12 feet long and amorous
So, just in case no one saw that alert, I purposely didn't blog that we were away and what we were doing.  I didn't want to tempt those intruders that might find my empty house an enticement.

Luckily, Bill had to speak at a conference in Ft. Lauderdale, FLORIDA and I got to play the role of the spouse. We had a superb time. For one thing it was WARM and we saw the SUN!! For another it was held at a really nice hotel that was on the beach and  that  also had  various pools. Waiters would come around and ask if you wanted a drink at the pool. That, to me, is the height of decadence. "I'm so lazy I cannot get off my sorry butt to get over to the bar which is less than 50 feet away. Yes, I need another vodka - and make it a double this time". Anyway, I was the one that got to laze by the pool in the morning (I carried my own drinks). Bill attended all the lectures in the morning and the conference allowed for free time in the afternoon. One of the activities that was planned by the conference people was a trip to the Everglades and a nature preserve. We took an airboat once we arrived at the Sawgrass Recreation Area. And we met a gigantic alligator who was trolling for a mate. We were very close and he was a little scary. I'd been to the Everglades a few years ago with my mum and dad and Will (when he was about 10). We went much further south - to the National Park -  to a place called Flamingo. That was a great trip. I thought about my dad while we were zipping through the sawgrass this weekend. He had arranged that trip for Will, mum and me. He wasn't feeling great then, and it took some effort for him to do the trip. It meant a lot to us. Even then we knew that it was one of those trips where memories were being made. So, reminiscing about my dad this weekend was bittersweet.
Everlades National Park circa 2002
After the airboat we boarded a bus and drove to a bird sanctuary and nature preserve. It was glorious. We saw hundreds of birds that were being cared for - hawks and storks and herons and spoonbills and raptors and owls and pelicans and a few peacocks and peahens wandering the premises. And, of course FLAMINGOS . Many birds were injured and were being nursed back to health. Our naturalist/guide (from NYC, of course) clearly loved his job and was very knowledgeable and kind to those of us who asked a lot of questions. Bill and I were the last ones on the bus.

We only had a couple of hours this morning in the sun before we had to leave for the airport. I was able to talk Bill into a walk on the beach and dip in the jacuzzi.
I think he's smiling. Right? No? Ah, the sun was in his eyes!

Weekends are supposed to be rejuvenating.  I feel younger already.

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