Image #28

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The sunset at Point of Rocks in Sarasota, Florida. It is likely my last Florida sunset for a while. I am moving lock-stock-and-barrel to Franklin, North Carolina. I’ve rented my home in Sarasota and the movers are due next week. I am on my way in about eight hours.

It is funny how life sends you little affirming messages that you have made the right choices. I have been staying at the home of my cousin while I finished the chore of packing and closing up the home where I have spent the last decade. She has this gorgeous piece of property on Point of Rocks. It has been in her family for more than 60 years. I was getting ready to leave in the morning when my eye seized on a pair of pruning shears and I decided to tackle some of the invasive potato vine that is at the foot of her drive. A couple drove by and stopped. The woman in the passenger seat was holding a cell phone and she said, “The tourist guides say we should see Point of Rocks and our GPS says we are there but where is it?” I explained they were within a few dozen feet but the problem was finding a place to park.

When I was growing up in Sarasota, back in the 1960s, it was no problem to find POR. You simply parked on POR Road and walked to Crescent Beach. But everything is over-built these days. The “public access” is about 18″ wide and well-concealed. The Point is groaning under the excessive McMansions of today’s neuveaux riche.

On a whim I asked where they were from. North Carolina! It seemed as if fate had sent me a sign in this young couple and I immediately invited them to use the access at my cousin’s house. They were stunned and rather tentatively drove up the drive. I showed them the gate and told them to take their time even though their reddened skin said they should probably limit their exposure.

About twenty minutes later they returned. The woman hustled past the door to the car but the young man lingered and I opened the door. He extended his thanks, still looking stunned that I had invited him up. He insisted I had been very kind and I thanked him. “Just paying it forward,” I said. “That’s how I was raised,” he said, “good deeds create more good deeds.”

It was a simple exchange and a nice way to close a chapter. Sarasota, Part II is closed. On to the next.

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