Dave and I are in Florida for 4 days- which leaves me with a vacation without my sewing machine. It took me a day to start to decompress- leave the craziness of DC behind me- but still with a touch of anxiety at leaving my quilting behind. I have some hand quilting left to do- which is always good when I travel- it makes the time pass and it keeps me feeling productive.The question that I of course have to ask myself is why I have to always feel productive.... the subject of many therapy sessions.

Florida leaves me with so many mixed emotions. I do not associate this state with good things- and have pretty vivid memories of spending a few weeks in Saratsota with my parents and brother- weeks that seemed never to end- weeks filled with the sadness of cancer and mental frailty. And now I look around- even here in Palm Beach, and most of the people are older, looking tan and healthy- but still older.

I think I am preoccupied with that right now since we had 5 close friends lose their parents last week. Five. That's a lot of death to contemplate. And it reminded me so much of a passage that I had read years and years ago by Saul Bellow in Herzog. It was about aging and death, and that as long as your parents were alive you did not have to worry about death since there was a natural barrier - your parents are supposed to die before you do- when all things go right. But once they are gone that barrier collapses and you are next in line. Florida feels a bit like a barrier island to me- which of course it is.

I can not imagine myself ever living here for any period of time although the weather is spectacular and it is so much nicer than DC right now. I love the pelicans flying over head and the cranes, and the lush vegetation. Mostly it's the people- all of them who are next in line and remind me of my own mortality.
While this talk of aging might sound depressing, I am not depressed at all. If anything I am feeling more relaxed here than I have felt in a good long while.  I chalk that up to good friends and a completely empty agenda. And four days away from my sewing machine may be just the ticket to get me energized when I return.