Saturday, March 23, 2019

Funny, how that happens!

Thomas Hardy
There was a time when I imagined the fortuity of coincidence was a mystical feature of life - mine in particular. It is a subject which was well documented by the English novelist and poet Thomas Hardy who wrote in the tradition of the "Victorian realist". Broadly defined it is realism which attempts to represent subject matter truthfully without artificiality and avoiding artistic conventions as well as implausible, exotic and supernatural elements. Realist authors chose to depict everyday and banal activities and experiences instead of using a romanticized and similarly stylized presentation.

Friday, March 22, 2019

The Town of Longboat Key


Though it is not uncommon to hear the most glowing things said about Longboat Key it is seldom that credit is giving where so much credit is due; namely, to the municipality itself - the Corporation of the Town of Longboat Key. It is arguable that the employees of the Corporation - like so many others in the private sector - are expected to work silently, unseen and unnoticed in the background. While this may hold true in larger urban centres where anonymity is preferred it nonetheless distracts the well earned accolades to which so many are fully entitled. I have neither the ability nor the intention of naming individuals, but I wish to register my heartfelt approval of the assiduous staff of the Town of Longboat Key. These functionaries sustain the sinews of the municipality in cooperation with the equally attentive commercial and retail conglomerate which likewise contributes to the public domaine.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

The North Wind


Not unexpectedly my introduction today to the noticeable north wind emerged when fulfilling my morning bicycle ride on Longboat Club Road. As smart as it was, the wind was bone dry yet strangely silken.  It heralded what proved to be a robust, clear day below a crystal deep-blue sky.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Sandbar Restaurant, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria Island


Whether it is a measure of our advancing age or preference for our own culinary mash-ups, we tend not to dine out often. Occasionally - such as this evening - we have a sudden urge for "restaurant quality" food. When submitting to the impulse the choice of venue is invariably seaside and casual. Tonight it was the Sandbar Restaurant on Anna Maria Island. Our drive there from our residence on Longboat Key took just over half an hour. We found ample additional parking reserved for restaurant patrons about a block past the site.

An account of life

Theodore Roosevelt

As part of my relentless search for free books on the internet my most recent discovery is the autobiography of Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th president of the United States from 1901 - 1909. The book was first published in 1913 (though the E-text was prepared from a 1920 edition published by Charles Scribner's Sons). In many ways the chronicle is anachronistic; but one marvels at its continued relevance.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

The Irksome Problem of Defining Things


I have always maintained that no matter where you are, if the sun is not shining, everything looks the same. Today was one of those monochromatic campaigns, an engagement more of necessity than anything else. It helped assuage the disadvantage that today was a Sunday, thus lending itself to introspection and uneventfulness. It was however a misguided fortune.  At the beach this afternoon as I lay prone on my chaise longue by the grey sea, casting my eyes heavenward into the equally mind-numbing sky, I caught myself wondering what in the end is the point of it all. Not exactly what you'd characterize as uplifting neither especially relieving.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

The Art of Living


Today for whatever reason I have been reflecting upon the events of last year at this time - when I was walking in a detached state about the uncommonly wide and sunlit hallways (complete with hanging art) of Halifax Hospital in Daytona Beach recovering from a severe bicycle fall at Ponce Inlet. Oddly I have a vivid - almost psychedelic - memory of the diverting medical episode. It was in the nature of a catharsis, a deliverance from a previously undisclosed encumbrance. I am here speaking of the pace maker which was installed to ensure my heart keeps ticking - the necessity of which I have always maintained was conveniently diagnosed after a fall from my bike on the beach rather than a collision in my car at 60 mph. Call me cheery! At the time I don't think the circumstance was viewed by those around me with equal vigour.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Going for a swim


For a minor diversion this morning I cycled to Lido Beach about 4 miles from Longboat Key. There is much more activity there. Nonetheless I hastened to conclude my exercise and get onto the beach on Longboat Key.  Today marks the end of five months here; and our looming departure in about three weeks.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Than this there is nothing finer!


Whenever I set off to bicycle in the accomplishment of my matutinal agenda it is not uncommon for me to sigh with restrained marvel (a well of near amazement and thankfulness) upon assimilating myself to the awakening day. Nor was this morning an exception. To my further enchantment the spectacle exceeded the pinnacle of sublimity. The sky was an unchanging dome of blue above the vast sea-level horizon. There was a smart, fresh breeze. The air was soft and dry. The sprinklers along the paths were spraying their nourishment (albeit laden with sulphur); the Municipality was industriously trimming the large shade trees. The invitation to overwhelming awe was toxic! Any accommodation of life's inevitable mortality was handily brushed aside in favour of limitless vaporization and contemplation.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Important Detail


A very long time ago in the full strength of pride and youth I was engaged to be married. It is a period of my life which I have largely ignored not because it was particularly undesirable or unsettling but because it happened and ended so precipitously. To remove all curiosity about the affair I can report that I and the lady to whom I was engaged continue to be on no less civil terms than we ever were - though admittedly now with a huge gap of time between us. And yes the reason for the dissolution of the engagement was that I am a member of the committee.  Otherwise it was an alliance of perfection - at least from my point of view. But as with so many other tales of romance it was not to be.