Went for a walk on the beach yesterday morning with J. The air temp was cool, but the water temp was very warm. He says the salt water helps heal the poison ivy on his foot. Got the NY Times at Barnes & Noble, then a quick stop at Target, back home. Had to lay down for a while; was anxious about my niece coming to visit from her conference in Orlando. Met her at the Winn Dixie, the easiest place off the turnpike, and we went on the train tour of old St. Augustine, comp tickets from T. who works there. Saw some awesome pooches across the street, went to visit them. Found out one of the owners of the Newfie was a dog trainer who said that St. Augustine is a very dog-friendly town, which is why he came here. Another woman had some fluffy white puppy, way too cute, and there was a street artist right there as well. A friendly tactile encounter all around. Cold on the train, but interesting nonetheless. Had done it once before, but hadn't remembered much. Showed her my house and some of the neighborhood, and J & T's yard (they were home but not feeling well). I was afraid she wouldn't like the hood and my house, but she said she did.
Showed her the wavy ocean out at Vilano Beach. Nice dinner at the fancy Casa Monica hotel restaurant, then I took her back to her car. Thanks, dear E., for making the trip. Made me happy.
Cool/cold again this morning, around 55 degrees again; got up to around 70 maybe. T. was home again sick with IBS; poor man. I went out exploring, first to SM &JH's place, but they weren't home, were supposed to be back in an hour. Felt very depressed. Went to get a cappuccino, visited a pet store and got very sad looking at the cat and doggie sympathy cards. Drove around some of the back streets of St. A, went into a gift shop, bought nothing, then back to JH/SM's place. JH was home, and we chatted for a while. JM showed up a while later. I had met her at a potluck supper on Saturday night, even tho it turns out I had met her once before. We had been emailing back and forth for a while since she was in CT for ten years and we knew some of the same people. The potluck was pleasant enough, and I was very open about my ambivalence about moving here. They all had different takes on the place, but they all liked it. JH said St. A is on the 30th meridian earth-wise, whatever that means, but it seems to bring good energy to a place. Some complained about the heat, some about the lack of "culture" (they were mostly New Yorkers), but none spoke of leaving. When I left, one woman who I had barely spoken to said, "The only thing missing from St. Augustine is . . . you." How nice is that?!
Before that potluck, I had coffee with the woman who sold me the house here, and even though she would like to leave, she can't imagine leaving all the friends she has made. She's been here 20 years and just wants to be somewhere else, she's not even sure where. Everyone thinks it makes sense to move here, occupy the house and property, reduce my expenses, fix things up, and then see how it goes. It surely makes sense. I just wish I could go POOF! and it would be done.
Back to today: JM and I went swimming in S's mom's across the street outdoor salt water pool. Ninety four degrees. The air was chilly, but the pool was so warm and comforting. My knees liked it. JM and I had a good chat. The resident doggie is some kind of corgi mix named Jasper who was adorable and sweet. Wasn't expecting to get into water today, so it felt very luxurious to be offered a swim in such a pool.