back in december of ’05, lise & i came to pensacola for a week of relaxing, vacation, shell hunting, and catching our collective breaths.
the average daytime temp in december is around 65° – water temp in the Gulf is pretty close to that, too.
now, when we pulled out of cincinnati, the temperature was 22° and snow was on the ground. we know cold, right? coming to pensacola was like driving into summer – incredible! 43° difference – we may as well have been on another planet!
shorts, sandals, t-shirts all around. sure, we packed pants and pullovers for evening, but during the day? psh!
half way through the week we’re in our swimtrunks, out in the water, hunting for shells, amazed that we’re the only ones on the beach a mile in either direction. we’re drenched and loving every minute of it. pure heaven!
a lone figure appeared, shuffling across the sand in our direction. we didn’t think anything of it until the figure came closer: it was an older woman, dressed in multiple pairs of pants, a pair of winter boots, and a long winter coat with a fur lined cap pulled tightly over her head. on her hands were a thick, warm pair of gloves. it was obvious that she was quite cold.
it’s like the Far Side cartoon with the dinosaur and the walnut-sized brain somehow able to walk through an open field and bonk its head against the only tree visible in any direction – she was heading right for us. to be polite, i got out of the water and lise and i were ready for whatever she might be asking.
she approached us, looked us up and down, and stated in no uncertain terms, “Y’all Yankees.”
well, what could we do? lise and i looked at each other and got the giggles – not the rude kind, but the oh-darn-we-been-caught kind.
she looked us over again, shook her head and said, “Ain’t nobody here in Pensacola that’d be caught in the water this time o’ year. Y’all Yankees.”
and i turned to the woman and said, “well, i reckon so.”