Sunday, March 1, 2009

Florida’s Friendliest Hometown

This past week we took a trip down to visit Dustin’s parents in The Villages, Florida. (turn your sound on…there is a theme song, and it’s catchy.) We first went about a year and a half ago, and we loved it. It’s a fifty-five and older community centered primarily around sunshine and golf- I argue “wine” earns a top spot as well…but I’m not judging! They have every activity you could want (seriously…name one, I dare you) and you can travel virtually everywhere by golf cart. The thing I love, is that everyone there (minus your token crotchety old men) is blissfully happy. When we asked people if they liked living in The Villages, not a single person said no- but no one said yes either. Instead, they looked at us with a glint in their eye, and say- “Are you kidding me? I love it!” (I swear we received about ten variations on this answer!) Dustin and I plan to purchase our golden-year getaway there in t-minus thirty years. These trips serve as excellent research!

So, needless to say, we had a wonderful time. Bob and Janet were excellent hosts. In fact, I think it’s high time we dig out the old “Bowdenisms Shout Out” award. Ta-da! You guys deserve it for your willingness to eat, drink, and dance the night away with us for a week straight. Thank you again for your hospitality.

For those of you dying for are the highlights of our itinerary. Condensed for those that have an afternoon tee-time to get to.

Day 1: de-icing the plane, change into flip flops, first (of many) mention of Arnie Palmer!, Winery visit- live music, dogs dogs DOGS!, leftovers al fresco, golf cart ride for pizza (two loves combined!), Oscar time.

Day 2: driving range domination, drinks and guacamole at “Cuban” country club, canceled karaoke due to cold (mid 60's, what?), steaks on the grill, deep talks, and The Bachelor.

Day 3: Girls' pool day, Mardi Gras- beads, drinks, costumes, and clogging?, life lessons from Joe, frozen toes.

Day 4: Sun-tan take 2, youngins’ get schooled in shuffleboard and Bocce, feast of “last meal” proportions at Carrabba's, almost breaking the open container law with a smuggled merlot, Idol wrecks (Adam Lambert=Joe Jonas + Criss Angel?) ,

Day 5: Pool is my home away from home, continued daily crossword (losing) streak, confronted by SnowBird road rage, ate all the wings we could eat (+ cheesecake!), serenaded by a songstress wielding an aqua electric guitar, Cupid Shuffled with Octogenarians, sunset photoshoot with friends, $1 bet WON!, polka dancing, lighthouse singing, Survivor nightcap.

Day 6: POOL-skip lunch in favor of sun! golfing first-timer- 8 holes + 1 in the dark, Lotto party, dancing from Funkytown to Bourbon Street.

Day 7: walk on the pier, seafood lunch by the water, shopping in the square, photo #151, change back into “real” shoes, flight back into the blustery north.

See you next year?


  1. what beautiful pictures!!!
    love your summary of the trip - sounds wonderful :)

    seriously, that is amazing about our double life!! haha!
    that made me smile (especially if this house falls through... i know there's a better one God has for us) :)

    have fun in San Francisco!!! you'll only be 45 min from me! maybe we'll run into each other :)

  2. It's 9:38 and we just read your blog....excellent description in 10words or less.....I should take lessons from YOU. Bob says I talk too much and too long. (No comments please!) We loved having you both and had a wonderful time as well. Sat here on Sunday and said "what now?". Missed you. Of course Bob snuck a few peeks at the NASCAR race. Look forward to our visit to Pittsburg end of April. Hopefully it will be warm up there by then. Love you both. YMIL