In the heart of Florida’s Emerald Coast, a 100-mile swath of coastline along the Gulf of Mexico, sits Henderson Beach State Park in Destin, a place we have called home for the past several days. It is a great park with a rolling boardwalk cascading down to the beach, sugary white-sand beaches, and emerald-green waters. Like most of the country, we have been touched by the wintery hand of Mother Nature. I must admit it has left me a bit lethargic, cold rainy days with only a solo anemic sunset.
I do not attempt to compare our winter chill with that of many other parts of the country but even the locals don’t expect temps in the 30’s and low 40’s here, dipping into the 20’s at night. For me it is more about the lack of sunshine than anything else.
On our final day in Destin the sun made her debut for a few hours, with rumor of temps reaching 50°, a day full of promise. Although I had braved the stiff breezes along the beach earlier this week, today I almost skipped down the well-maintained boardwalk, anxious to see the sun shimmering like diamonds tossed upon the surface of an emerald sea.
Destin is a beach community so early winter is probably not the best time to visit, unless you need some serious retail therapy, then come on down as they have a wonderful upscale outlet mall. And if you are very lucky, as we happened to be, you might find yourself parked just a few miles down the road from others who have also been bitten by the travel bug.
We feel fortunate for the ability to spend time with friends Janie and John, two full-time RVers whom we met over two years ago, the very first couple we shared drinks and a campfire with shortly after beginning our adventure of exploring this beautiful country while rolling our home down the road. Since the weather has not cooperated, it gave us time to catch up on each others lives, share a few laughs, sample some nice wines at two different wine tastings, enjoy a dinner at an Irish pub, and allowed me to dazzle them a bit with my cooking skills. 😉
Although we have not seen much of the quintessential Florida winter weather yet, I know that will come. As I stand looking out over this beautiful emerald sea, I know that life is full of these breathtaking, fleeting moments, never to be recreated in exactly the same manner. We can let them pass us by because of indifference or apathy, or we can choose to be alive in this very moment, savoring all the uniqueness that Mother Nature gifts us…our choice. I choose to bundle up and enjoy these sunny winter days. I know, easy for me to say; I am spending the winter in Florida, where I am certain to capture more than my share of balmy, sunny days.
Hope everyone is staying warm and savoring the moment!