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June 15, 2017


We Yankees havee our prejudices, too. But I liked your description.

Beth, is that tall apartment building in the same area where J's relatives live? It looks very different from your description so I'm guessing it's probably somewhere else. Lovely shot of you and the waves.
A long time ago Reg and I drove from Vancouver to Florida in a Volkkswagen Beetle, camping out all the way, and found the most wonderful deserted beach in Florida, orange grove lining the coast and fresh fish practically insisting to be cooked on open fire for supper.

Of course we do, Peter :-)

Natalie, that apartment block was only a few miles away, but a world apart. That's the weird thing: the built-up, modern, endless mall-and-golf course that is urban Florida coexists with a sort of hidden, much older place you could probably miss if you didn't have access. I'm going to try to write more about our aunt and uncle's place. You drop into it from the boulevard and it's another world, in slow-motion. I'm sure you and Reg saw much more of that when you did that trip. My maternal grandparents, who lived in the same house with us, went to Florida every winter when I was a child, and what they told me about and showed in postcards and pictures was this other, older place. So much of it has been lost now, paved-over, but the vegetation, at least, refuses to be stopped: you feel as if an apocalypse happened and things became deserted, the plants and insects would take over in a very short time.

Oh, beautiful, Beth.

Beth: Have you seen the Netflix drama series, Bloodline? It's set in the Florida Keys.

The Old Florida, so hard to find now, is part of my family history, too. When we glimpse it, we suddenly know its grasp on the Northerners who found promise and respite there. My parents spent years further south, nearly in the everglades- if ever there was a fetid frontier that clung past civilization and refrigeration, that was it.

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.