My friends and family inquire, “how is winter in Florida?” Often followed by various versions of how lucky I am. There is no snow. No ice, except in my drink…and the nights do not require a jacket. Yet….
When you live at the coast, there is wind.
Not always, but during the “winter” we do have a fair share of too-breezy days. Today is one of them. The sky began clear, rich cerulean but by noon, it has dissolved to a boisterous battle grey. While not warm, the temperatures are pleasant, and appreciated after the long, humid days of summer. I have slung open the windows in this bungalow, letting the fresh air waft through my rooms. This is the month of new starts, and clean beginnings, and I am inspired to deep clean my spaces.
The palm trees that populate my yards, are dancing, bending, flipping. It shall rain, soon…you can feel it. I am surprised by my realization that I like this movement. I enjoy this breeze ratcheting upward, pushing away the old and used.
This is the first time in my many years, I have not complained about the wind. It usually makes me grumpy and ill-tempered. It hurts my ears.
In the Texas Panhandle, it generates power and dust. I grew up with a deep distaste for sand, dirt, and cattle dung in the eye. I wasn’t much fonder of the northern blast that travels down the front range of the Rockies when I lived in Colorado. Fierce, hurricane-like, and destructive, it can take out power poles, and rooftops, and it happened more frequently than I liked. But now, while I certainly prefer the calm, easy days of weather here in Florida….this ain’t bad.
The air is scented with hibiscus and sweet acacia, both dogs are snoozing on their beds, lawn mowers are working next door… sunshine tickles between the gaps of winter clouds along the beach. White caps rise and fall, patterned by the air. The shore birds teeter, weave, gather.
Pelicans fly in formation overhead, fighting against the wind. My papers blow from my writing table, scattering on top of the dog. He doesn’t move, but gazes at me as I type, wondering when I will come to his aid in this attack.
My thick socks are perfect, my sweater just right, and I move to sit on the porch. My mug of coffee is comforting between my palms, the dogs snuggle at my feet, and the day is ripe for reading the new stack of books by my chair. I am in my happy place, and I am grateful as I listen to the rain begin.