I’ve come to the realization that though I’ve fantasied about living in Florida for most of my life, it’s taken 43 years to realize, it’s not for me. And let me specify, I mean Southwest Florida. It’s not that it’s a bad area, it’s more of a this just isn’t for me, thing. At one point this week on our vacation, when we were walking .25 mile to the beach, I announced to my family,
“Maybe Alaska wouldn’t be all that bad after all.”
This is by far the number one reason I’d suck as a Floridian. Now full disclosure, I will try out Florida at some point in January when it’s -5 in Ohio but for now, the heat is unbearable. My husband manned the grill 2 nights ago only to be sweating onto his dinner plate between the heat of the grill and the temperature outside. This should not be a thing.
And in the evenings, I shouldn’t be producing the same amount of sweat one produces when working out for an hour, just sitting outside in the evening. Because of this, I found myself taking 2-3 showers a day.
So what gives? Does your body just get used to it? I found myself in amazement that some Floridians were wearing jeans when the temperature hovered around 100 degrees. Do you grow gills and/or scales? That leads me to issue #2
As I’ve written before, I have a severe phobia of snakes. Like, I won’t go the zoo or science museum where they have those stupid animal encounter people with a gigantic python wrapped around their neck. On the last night of our last vacation house in Florida, a lizard got into our home and climbed up the wall. Had the children not killed it (violently I might add), I would have absolutely slept in the car.
Yesterday when we ate at the Boat House, my husband kept trying to get me to eat gator bites. Call me crazy but eating gator bites is like eating an amphibian and that is on par with being a cannibal. I know that doesn’t make sense but it does in my head.
Mask Wearing in Florida
Did I mention how amazing it is, wearing a mask in Florida when it’s 100 degrees? The acne around my jawline is absolutely amazing. We had to walk to the rental car shuttle the first day from the airport and since it was a city that mandates masks, we were stuck in the sun, donning them. I get that it won’t be forever but it’s not going to stop next week or maybe even next month.
The Speed Limit and Stop Lights are Stupid
Though I love that you can make U-turns in the state of Florida, I absolutely hate that you can’t go 1 mile without a traffic light or stop sign. Because of this, 7 miles takes 14 minutes. 4 miles is 10 minutes. Everything was so close, yet so far away.
As for the speed limit, perhaps state officials are catering to an aging population but 45 on what I thought was a highway is a joke. And like the stoplights, I feel like the speed changed every quarter mile!
You Really Can’t Wear Makeup and Do Your Hair
Though my efforts were futile, I really did try to wear some sort of makeup and do my hair. Instead, I looked Amish with my hair in a bun and just waterproof mascara on most days. When we shopped at the outlet mall, I winced upon seeing my image in the bathroom mirror. I looked homeless or something. Though I was sure my hair frizzed a little, I didn’t know I looked that bad.
The Beach is Great in Theory
I like looking at the beach from an air-conditioned home, condo or restaurant. Sand gets everywhere and if you want to walk the beach you have to trust that all the strangers around you won’t steal any of your stuff. Also, I hate that you have the potential to need skin-grafts for the bottom of your feet just by walking on sand.
Additionally, I would love to go into the ocean if the most useless creature (jellyfish) on Earth wasn’t waiting to attack. What purpose do they even serve? Nothing, absolutely nothing. I don’t even know how to treat a jellyfish stings so when my son’s friend thought he was stung Saturday, I quickly pulled out my phone, looking for first-aid tips. I heard you’re supposed to piss on a sting but obviously that would not be a viable treatment option.
As a kid, I’d love jumping into the waves until a big one took me under and I swallowed a gigantic mouth full of saltwater. Extra points for when the saltwater goes through your nostrils and you can feel the insides burn slowly. As I’d jump through the waves, I’d contemplate if this was too shallow for a shark. In the past when I was braver, about 10 nightmare scenarios would go through my head ranging from death by shark to somehow being carried out to sea then death by shark.
So there you go, I’m not a Floridian and probably never will be. I’ve told my sons that next year, we’ll probably end up staying at the Ice Hotel.