My friend Trish and I had not seen each other for a several years and have been trying to make up for lost time so this week we had a new adventure. It started out as a simple quest. I was hungry for an egg salad sandwich and needed a new pair of tennis shoes as the old ones had worn all the way through the soles and toes. They were almost tennis sandals.
I had heard that you could get a good egg salad sandwich at the Villages. Trish had been there a long time ago and I had never been, so we started out. It didn’t look far, although we didn’t really check the mileage. On the iPhone it was just an inch. How far could that be? It was farther than we thought, but we enjoy talking about the past, present, and future and didn’t really care and with Siri at our side, we knew we wouldn’t get lost.
Siri took us the scenic route, which is a euphemism for the long way, and we followed her directions. It was a pretty route, no doubt about that. The Villages lie in the middle of the peninsula, near Ocala, which means backroads. We must have changed highways a dozen times, but eventually, two plus hours later, we made it. We also had the benefit of running into the Barberville Yard Art & Emporium, a two acre display of all kinds of yard art from metal flowers to a full-size buffalo. I could hardly resist buying my son-in-law a six-foot tall metal dragon for Christmas. Oh man, what fun that would be.
Back to the Villages, I didn’t know much about them but now I know more. It’s an upscale retirement center that houses nearly 160,000 people with about 30 golf courses and 2,000 golf carts, which all were buzzing around like high school sophomores headed to a bon fire. They were everywhere. Trish is a good driver, but it was like a dodgeball game. We finally found a shoe store where I snagged a new pair of shoes and, lo and behold, a little hole-in-the-wall café offered an egg salad sandwich on rye, which was delicious, especially when we added onion rings for a vegetable.
Everybody at the Villages was either playing golf or eating lunch, and although I bought a couple masks, no one else at the Villages seemed to care as most residents were maskless, riding around in their shiny personalized golf carts, free and easy. I tried to get some information from the rental office, but the concierge ignored us, probably because we didn’t quite look the part of Village people.
We completed our mission and Trish and I had a good time and got our sandwiches, and I bought my shoes. Driving a hundred plus miles for an egg salad sandwich probably seems foolish to some, but, dang, we had a good time.
The Village People don’t wear masks, but I do. Won’t you join me?
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