You never know what the beach will be like until you get there. Today it's wild and windy, the waves downright seductive. We sat and ate our sandwiches on a high boardwalk bench while taking in the beach guests below. Check out this delighted little boy with his hands outstretched to the power of the wind. Surely, he's King of the Waves today. Nearby, a pre-teen scurries over the wet sand on his waterboard and a woman plows her netted shovel into the newly-arrived sands, hoping for sharks' teeth.
Gene Pollux turned up yesterday to do the Better Homes & Gardens KITCHEN & BATH MAKEOVERS photography of our new kitchen. Allen left the house for the day to read, walk, and, in general, stay out of the way. Around noon, he brought lunch from Nick's Cafe and we enjoyed watching Gene eat his pita sandwich in his lusty Dutch way. Adam, you'll remember Gene and his slurpy noodles in Sarasota five years ago. He's a fine conversationalist with international flavors, a total dining pleasure.
Our two houses are nearing the finish line--kitchen cabinetry is in, carpet and tile are laid, and the electrical inspections are done. With the exterior painting complete, today is the day for laying sod. The turnout--lots of young men and boys out of school on Saturday--supplied plenty of muscle and energy. The usual good ol' boys club that shoulders most of the work could stand back and supervise. The sign on the door says, "Wipe your feet before entering!"
We scouted a new place to visit next time you come to see us--Fishermans' Village in Punta Gorda. After a cruise on a boat to Cabbage Key from the dock, we'll have two hours to eat "cheeseburgers in Paradise" and explore the island (Uncle Adam did this in his kayak.) After we get back to the wharf at Fishermans' Village, we can stop at Harpoon Harry's, a waterside restaurant named after this pirate.
to Matlacha (Mat-la-shay)? From Venice, FL, take Tamiami Trial (41) south to Burnt Store Road (Lee County 765) and turn left on Pine Island Road (Lee County 78).
Matlacha is the gateway to Pine Island, an historic fishing village and artist community. We parked and walked to explore the colorful shops and art galleries after dining on grouper sandwiches at Al & Barbara's Mulletville restaurant. Matlacha has the "World's Fishingest Bridge" and a paradise for color-happy folks who love to wield the paintbrush and brilliant paints. It's a world apart from the heavily populated cities along the gulf coast. We loved the free-for-all and post a few cameos here.
Just an hour before sunset, the beach is laid out with towels and mats, sandals are kicked off and attendees lie back to breathe, breathe, breathe before Elin turns up. Yoga is free at the beach and anyone can participate. When it's all over you can leave Elin a tip in a sand bucket--it seems to be worthwhile enough for her to run a half-hour session twice a day. Becky likes to go at 5:30. If it looks as if a pretty sunset will materialize, it's a nice way to finish the day.
March came in like a lion, rushing us with fierce winds and high waves too hard to resist. OK, so we're not the ones on the surfboards meeting the elements head-on--we're safely parked in cars along the rocky shore of the South Jetty, observing the brave ones dressed in black bodysuits.