June 22, 2011

Florida Living as of Late

I didn't know Clarence Clemons nor am I a fan of Springsteen music, but that doesn't mean I don't feel bad for all those folks, Bruce in particular, that they lost a friend.

His death made our local news since he died in one of our local hospitals and his funeral was at one of our local chapels. It's the chapel on the premises where Bones had his first vocal recital. I've been to many a wedding and funeral there.

It's what I call the 6 degrees of northern Palm Beach county. I didn't know the man, but I know many who did, and they're all very sad. I'm sad for them.


We are parched here in FL as I suspect all of the South is. We're not getting rain, we didn't get rain this winter, and now the city of West Palm Beach is running out of water. They're scrambling to figure out from whom to purchase water, and I believe they have less than 20 days and there's nothing left for 100,000 people.

Meanwhile, the irresponsibility of the masses continues to confuse me. We're in drought, we're on 1 day water restrictions for watering, yet I see home after home that refuses to adhere. From where is this self entitlement coming? And I mean ALL generations are guilty... WWII, Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y... everyone.

"Don't you tell me how much water I can use! How dare you!"


The state is burning and we lost two fire fighters on Monday. Brush fires are popping out of nowhere and everywhere and the fire fighters are struggling to keep them at bay... let alone under control.

What makes me nervous about the fires is... we're on well... and the canals and lakes are about dried up, so where does the water come from if our land catches fire?

The last time it was this bad, where everything was burning and we were worried, was 12 years ago. I know a guy who actually lost his home to the last big set of big fires.

So Florida is burning, we have no water, the people don't care... and I'm at a loss.


During the small time I did sleep last night, I had a dream that we were suddenly in a Cat 3 hurricane and I'd not bought any water or supplies.

I think people in Idaho don't have those types of dreams...


There is a community north of me called The Villages. I'm sure most of you have heard of it. I know many people who live there.

It started as a retirement community, but grew in such size it has it's own zip code. It's crazy busy with stuff to do... crazy busy young people over age 55. Partying, lots of partying from what I understand, and as one girlfriend of mine told me, "It's so dang happy there, even the rocks look like they're smiling."

It's not for everyone. I had a friend, a big golfer, check it out with his wife, came back to work and said to me, 'No f*cking way could you get me to live there..." Then again, he's a grouch and all the happiness probably pushed his buttons. He was my grouch though, and I miss him. (He retired.)

The entire place can be traversed by golf cart and my gf said they spend BIG bucks on their golf carts. Her Mom goes to the bank in her golf cart, goes to dinner in it... all her business. Although I read you can get a DUI while drinking and carting, in the beginning it was not the case. My gf said there were open stands selling mixed drinks and folks would pull up on their carts, pay, get their drink, and drive away.

So my buddy sent me this clip on the golf carts and I thought it was funny.

Florida... at its retirement finest. I'm retiring in Alabama...

Opening segment... golf cart precision drill team. You can't make this stuff up. Only in FL... or Arizona.

Posted by Boudicca at June 22, 2011 01:20 PM

Now that's just funny...the carts, not the water.

Since you are on well, does that mean you are restricted, too?

Posted by: Rave at June 23, 2011 06:08 AM

Yaa, I never took my timer off my water. twice a week only. The canals are really low in my area as well.

Posted by: vwbug at June 23, 2011 06:12 AM

All of us are restricted. The aquifer I'm on could have problems too. The city pulls from Lake Okeechobee and the Lake is scary low. It's the lowest it's been since the 1930s I think they said, and they weren't getting water for 100,000 people then...

Bad stuff...

There are people watering EVERY DAY and in the middle of the day. Even if we were OK because we were on well, I'd be like, "really? In the middle of the day?"

Posted by: Bou at June 23, 2011 07:06 AM

We're in a drought and on one-day a week watering here in Lantana. If your lawn is green, you're cheating. It should be obvious to Code Enforcement or whoever enforces the rules.

My Mom considered buying in The Villages, but decided it was too much for her. The landowner was pretty smart, he sold land away from U.S. 27 to retirees, but leased out all the highway frontage to stores, restaurants and such. So he has guaranteed income one way or the other. I gather a lot of residents are conservatives, as Republican candidates and officeholders regularly make it a campaign stop. The Northeasterners retired to South Florida. Central Florida got the Midwestern folks.

On golf carts: A lot of retiree community homes up that way are sold with two-and-a-half car garages, with the half being used for a golf cart. The Villages even has a bridge over busy U.S 27 so cart drivers can cross without worry.

Posted by: George P at June 23, 2011 09:32 AM

My mom did the Villages thing, but then alienated all her friends and ended up moving back home.

Too bad they couldn't take all that flood water from the Northern States and transport it somehow to the South.

Our area even flooded this year we have so much rain. Matter of fact rain is the in the forcase everyday though next week. We are tired of the rain, please take it, it would do us a favor.

But I guarantee in Mid-September Florida will have rain fever because we are going to Disney this year for vacation. Either a monsoon or hurricane while we are there.

Posted by: Quality Weenie at June 23, 2011 11:15 AM

I really wish there were some practical way to transfer the excess from up here (MN/ND) to you...

Posted by: Versatek6 at June 23, 2011 12:26 PM

I would be happy to send you all some of our flood water. Seriously- it won't stop raining here...

All I can hear when you say The Villages is Joe Biden singing their theme song... Ack!

Posted by: Jody at June 23, 2011 02:51 PM

The neighbors on either side of me and quite a few others in the community have golf carts, but they can only use them to play golf.

Posted by: Jim - PRS at June 23, 2011 08:47 PM

We need some vast underground tubing railroad to transport all that water to areas that need it. No rain... again today.

Salt water intrusion into the wells is my biggest fear. How expensive it THAT to fix? My well is only down to 100 feet and the aquifer below that is 1000 feet... I can't imagine how much Kaching it takes to drill that deep.

And it's a $50 fine. Big deal. It should be a % of the value of your home. That would stop some people...

Posted by: bou at June 23, 2011 11:06 PM

I wrote about The Villages a few months ago after we spent an afternoon there with Eli (hizzownself) and Toni. I felt like Margaret Mead must've felt in Samoa.

And the carts! Each one, emblazoned with the names of the owners. Bob and Carol. Fred and Ginger. And after Bob croaks, Carol paints over his name with the name of her new squeeze. Really.

Posted by: Elisson at June 24, 2011 04:19 PM

Ellison, I recall that article. You had a picture of the carts parked next to one another.

Bou, your father and I don't see golf carts in our future.

Posted by: mom at June 24, 2011 04:58 PM

Come to Wisconsin! We've had 7" of rain so far this month. We had to mop up the basement yesterday, and the whole yard is spongy. Please... take some away!

Posted by: MonicaC at June 24, 2011 07:23 PM