Monday, July 14, 2014

What I Learned On My Floridian Summer Vacation

Ahhhh....summer!  Sure school is out for the summer, but that doesn't mean you have to stop learning!  My family recently drove to Orlando for a family vacation. The vacation was fantastic despite the fact that I learned some rather interesting things.

1.  Florida is really far away from Ohio, and you may forget the distance when you see the price of airline tickets. If you live north of Georgia, fly to Florida.

2.  When you ignore the free advice offered in #1, you will drive South and pass several large signs offering fresh peaches, fresh pecans, boiled peanuts, and moonshine pickles. Yes, moonshine pickles.

3.  You will ignore these signs until the curiosity is too much to stand.  Curiosity killed the cat.

4.  Eventually you find yourself at Peach World.  You ask about moonshine pickles, but fascinatingly enough Peach World sold out of moonshine pickles earlier that day. Interestingly, Peach World also sells disarmed fragmentation hand grenades, confederate flags, ninja throwing stars, shark teeth, and coonskin hats. It's a long story that involves children, but you leave Peach World after purchasing peaches, pecans, a truckload of boiled peanuts, and a defunct fragmentation grenade.

5.  Shortly after leaving Peach World, you discover you are the only person in the vehicle who likes boiled peanuts. Good thing you bought 40 pounds of boiled peanuts.

6.  For reasons that are truly inexplicable, you will feel obligated to eat as many boiled peanuts as is humanly possible. Perhaps it's the endless freeway.  Perhaps it's the bickering children.  Whatever the reason, you will devote a solid hour of your travel time in trying to eat all of the boiled peanuts.

7.  After singlehandedly eating an obscene amount of boiled peanuts, you realize you don't actually like boiled peanuts.  You can't figure out why you thought you did and have only one place to lay blame. Interstate 95.

8.  Interstate 95 is a horrible, no good, very bad interstate. The speed limit varies from 70 miles an hour to 60 miles an hour to 45 miles an hour near some construction zones, but this is all irrelevant. Drivers on I-95 either travel at the speed of light OR they drive 25 miles an hour in the fast lane.

9.  Thanks to the salty boiled peanuts, your fingers will begin to swell and your tongue will feel weird.  This will remind you the cost of airline tickets is worth every penny. Please re-read #1 above.

10.  You will arrive at your destination in Florida, and you will discover that Florida is hotter than you ever truly imagined.  You will begin sweating in places that you didn't even realize had pores.

11.  You will spend a grotesque amount of money at any number of amusement parks.

12.  Dolphins, killer whales, penguins, sharks, sting rays, pink flamingos, sea lions, otters, and sea turtles are all ubercool, but they are no match for the common brown squirrel that will have your children riveted in their spot.

13.  Inevitably all the children within a ten foot radius will watch this squirrel as if they have never seen one. You can't swear to it, and maybe it's the Florida heat playing games with you, but you'll be fairly certain the squirrel will give you a look that says, "Think how much time and money you could have saved had you just vacationed in your backyard where about 150 of my relatives live."

When all is said and done, you are building wonderful memories for your kids.

And that fragmentation grenade?  Worth it's weight in gold!  On the way home your kids will believe you just might detonate that sucker if they don't stop annoying the be-geezers out of each other!