I loaded up the dog (and way more stuff than I needed) and visited Cousin C's for one of my favorite high-speed overnight relaxation mini-vacations.
We visited the family favorite beach restaurant. The view from 10 ft. outside the building:
This is the wreckage of the raw oysters:
These were eaten with extra reverence, because we are all watching the horror in the Gulf of Mexico, and at the same time trying not to think about it, because we can't do a damn thing about fixing it. It's so hideous, and has the potential to kill not just the Gulf, but get caught up in the currents and ruin Florida's east coast beaches on its march North. So we sat there on this perfect day, watching the waves and eating the best oysters around, and it was wonderful and also angst-ridden, as we speculated whether we'd be able to do this in the future.
Cousin C proposed dinner out, but dammit, I wanted my lobsters on the lanai. So we stopped off and picked up some lobsters, had them steamed, and rustled up random side dishes from freezer and pantry. The seafood lady apologized that the lobsters aren't as big as they used to be.
The weather was AWESOME - C lives about an hour, hour and a half in traffic, northeast of my house, and the coast really does have a different climate. You cannot sit on my patio in the evening. The "breeze" is so humid it's like hot dog breath, if there is any air stirring at all. On the coast yesterday, the sun was blazing and the breeze was still dry and coolish enough to be tolerable. We sat in the shade on the lanai, ate too much, listened to retro music on her laptop, talked, ate some more, drank a little more wine, and did not break a sweat.
Murphy was marvelous - he knows his way around that house and the neighborhood. When I walked him this morning, at 0630 BC (Before Coffee) I was delighted to see that he knew where he was and where he was going - he turned up C's driveway with total confidence.
I told C I hoped to be passing by her house next week, maybe with my new little girl aboard, and I'd definitely hop off I-95 to introduce her.