I start to take it for granted that everyone has wireless internet now. This isn’t true! Crazy. Been without it for, like, five whole days. And I survived!

But I guess there wasn’t internet in the farmhouse in Nebraska either. Or in Kansas really. And a couple of other places on this trip. So it isn’t a first.

Anyways. Spent the last few days in Boca with my grandmother. Doing the Thanksgiving thing and the family thing and all that. It was good.

Visiting Florida is really weird for me. Especially visiting South Florida. I mean, I grew up there and now I don’t go there almost at all anymore. I lived in Coral Springs from ’91 til I left for college in ’01. I would always go back during breaks and summers. And then I was even back living there briefly for periods between when I graduated in ’05 and when I finally moved for good in ’06. South Florida was home for a long time.

So when I visit there’s a mix of memory and nostalgia and bitterness. I was not the hugest fan when I lived there. But it was my home and there were a lot of things I liked and a lot of things I missed. Friends and I had good times. There are a lot of good memories.

I don’t have many friends left down there now and I honestly made a terrible effort to see even the few that are on this trip. This trip was almost exclusively occupied by spending time with my grandmother. She’s why I went there.

I did make it out Saturday night with Sheerah. We went for a beer at Chilis near the Sawgrass Mills Mall. Cause that’s what you do when you’re not in Miami and don’t feel like dealing with Ft. Lauderdale. You hang out at places like Chilis and Fridays and the Coral Square Mall. It wouldn’t be a visit home without it.

I did other cool things too though! I wasn’t just cranky and bitter and full of family time! On the drive down I skipped off 95 for a bit and drove down A1A. There’s a stretch just north of Jacksonville, south of Amelia Island, that is just amazingly gorgeous. I took pictures. Of scenery. And crabs. And then a lot of bugs bit me so I ran away.

Sheerah and I also went to the beach on Friday which was great. I absolutely love the Florida beaches. Those I miss without a doubt. Saturday my grandmother and I had lunch at another great restaurant near the beach that my grandfather used to love. I’m going to admit something here, don’t judge me too hard, okay? The vegetarian tried raw oysters. For the first time. What was I thinking?! Okay, I was thinking I was at an amazing seafood restaurant in south FL with fresh crazy things and this trip is all about trying something new as often as possible. And my grandmother really doesn’t understand the vegetarian thing and keeps trying to get me to eat stuff like Turkey. So I compromised and tried raw oysters. And… they were really good. Slimy and stuff. But good.

Eek. Okay. That happened.

Now family stuff is over. I’m in Tampa with my wonderful friend Jess. We’re going to go find a taco truck restaurant (literally a truck built into a building I’m told) and Tampa beer and I’m probably going to take more pictures. Cause that’s what I do.

I’m also gonna play with cats. Cause Sven and Frieja are super cute.

I may have possibly spent part of the drive up last night listening to Christmas music and Delilah. Katie! What have you done to me?!

I also drove across the middle of the state on a very, very dark road. There were stars. And orange groves that I could just barely make out. And ranch land with cows. And a bobcat. And the best looking dive bars ever that I totally would have stopped at if I hadn’t had so much driving to do.

Next time.