Well, I’m back! “Where d’ja go?” you might ask….
On April 30th I began my trip to our District Rotary Conference being held in St. Croix (US Virgin Islands, not Wisconsin) from May 5 – 9. Since I was chosen to be our club’s secretary the training and conference were mandatory.
I left a little early in order to spend time in Florida with my relatives. It just so happened that my mom and dad were going to be there the same time for their annual timeshare vacation. I flew into Ft. Lauderdale on the 30th (Matthew’s birthday) and took the Tri-Rail from the airport up to West Palm Beach. My cousin, Leslie, picked me up and we picked up Aunt Lib to go see Aunt Vi. Since her stroke last September, she hasn’t been able to be back in her apartment. She is in a convalescent home and was dressed and looking forward to our visit. We had a good visit and then took Lib back to her place and we drove up to Leslie’s.
On Friday, I borrowed Leslie’s car and headed north. I had made contact with my xanga friend, Debra in Sanford, Fl and arranged to meet up with her before meeting my parents. It was fun to actually meet face-to-face after “knowing” each other through xanga. After a tour of the corps we went out to dinner at a nice restaurant. Thanks, Deb!
I reached New Smyrna Beach around 9 pm and got settled into my folks’ room. It was small…both beds were the kind that fold down from the wall! But the hotel was right on the beach with a lovely pool as well. We relaxed on Saturday and then went to the local UM church (actually they have 3 within a few miles of the hotel!) and enjoyed the service. The people were very friendly and accommodating. It was also “move” announcement Sunday and the pastor of 9 years announced that they were being transferred and that a woman (married) pastor would be coming to replace him. One of the lay members read the new pastor’s credentials, which was an interesting way to introduce the replacement. It was interesting to see how another chuch handles the transfer of pastors.
We ate dinner together and then I headed back to West Palm Beach to visit Aunt Vi another time. This time it was just me and her. We chatted, read scripture and sang together some “old favorites” from the SA songbook. I had fun chatting in Creole with some of the Haitian nursing staff. They were amazed that I could speak Creole and I was able to update them on things happening “back home”. Back at Leslie’s I repacked my suitcases, confirmed my luggage pick-up arrangements with the officers in Ft. Lauderdale, did laundry and got some sleep. The next day it was up at 5:30 am to catch the train back to Ft. Lauderdale to catch the plane to Puerto Rico to St. Croix.
The pool, our room was on the 4th floor, the window behind the top of the palm tree
Next installment….Rotary Conference….