I was born in Florida and have lived here forever, unless you count that year we lived in Denver, but I don’t count it because if you count that, then you’d count the summer we lived in Baltimore. We still had a house in Florida during those field assignments. Our address was still “Florida.”
I’m not bragging here. I’d love to not live in Florida. Have I ever really liked it here? No. No, I haven’t.
My childhood memories are all dusted in bright, white light. In pictures I’m squinting against it. As a child, I was forced to go to the beach regularly, where sand got everywhere and the salt water only left me sticky. I didn’t tan then, and I don’t tan now. I burn. Burn, burn, burn. I’m hitting my mid fifties now, so we’ll see what cancers I got from all that Florida sun.
I love sweaters! How can a person who loves sweaters so much tolerate this heat? I remember in the 60s and 70s we had cold snaps and I had the best sweaters then! In high school, the local Catholic church put on a fair every fall and I wore those sweaters! I’d come home from walking around and around and around, take off my sweater and jeans and find my ankles, neck, face, and hands grayed with the dirt from the fairgrounds. Even dirt up my nose. Those were the days.
I crochet. Do you know what I love to crochet? Afghans. I have a rack of them. Beautiful afghans! Can I use afghans in Florida? No. No one needs an afghan in Florida.
I can’t step outside my house, into the garage!, in the summer without sweat instantly soaking me, my upper lip beading. Talcum powder is my friend.
I cannot fathom how people lived in this mosquito infested swampland without air conditioning when they colonized this place. Why did they colonize this place? Why would anyone want to do such a thing?
My northern friends are preparing for fall and Halloween, getting ready to pull out that winter wardrobe, and I’m sitting here in the crotch of the United States like an old fart railing against the unfairness of it all.
I want my nose to freeze when I go outside! I want to wear sweaters and coats! I want green trails in mountains, misty and crisp! I don’t ever want to sweat under my boobs again!
Alas. Alack. It feels like 100° at 9:00 a.m. mid-August and all I can think of is hot chocolate with marshmallows.
Woe is me.