It all started the day after I drag my ass in from my all expenses-paid-by-friends-trip to Chicago, (lots of staying up late and bourbon to help ease the trauma of divorcing after 27 years of marriage…thanks to my fabulous PA Demetra Shelton and others).
My mother pops in downstairs and asks if I want to leave, (18 hrs after my arrival home) to head to Homestead to finish packing out her storage unit. “We can miss all the traffic if we drive all night.” She proclaimed at 5pm. I had just finished a 1800 mile road trip and wasn’t jazzed about another one. None the less mom prevailed and we were packed and out the door.
And this sunrise driving down the road made feel as if this trip would be promising…
After some morning traffic around Miami, we HAD to drive to my favorite Cuban Bakery and trust me, if you haven’t had real Cafe Cubano con Leche and Flan Cheesecake you haven’t lived.
I couldn’t afford one of everything but I did end up with the best breakfast in 50 states.
A quick ten mile drive from the bakery and we arrived at my mother’s friend’s Dolores
Little did I know I had arrived in Paradise. Dolores Fugina, has spent her life traveling the world collecting rare and tropical blooming plants and trees. She has a small nursery in the Redlands and I was completely honored to make a new friend, be hosted in her lovely home. Imagine every morning getting up and gazing up this view from the back patio with your coffee.
This was Paradise, and yes that is my morgue white foot, as Dolores called my skin color, this coming from a Canadian…sadly I’m one of those vampire writers, avoid the sun and find my Muse ready to sing about 2am. Now Dolores, she is brown as toast from cultivating her Tropical Blooms and decades of Florida living. I do look like a snowbird tourist and was off to explore her Garden of Eden.
The Orchids are amazing and no…I don’t know their latin names but Dolores does, she is a bonifided business and you can find her in the yellow pages and on facebook Bloomin’ Good Nursery
I walked the paths and was in wonder of the beauty…
All my cares and woes seemed forgotten while standing in the midst of heavenly blooms.
Then I happened upon the this flagstone and it seemed to say it all…
Our hostess was a charming as her pets. It seems it is a never ending adventure with four dogs, two parrots and the feral cats. Go Dog GO was the theme, from the tiny teacup Chihuahua to the elder Lab, who was used a personal sofa by the Teacup.
Every day we were there, it was a never ending discovery at Bloomin’ Good Acres. Orchids galore, Cup of Gold, Angle Trumpets (which bloom at night and smell amazing) and so many flowers and plants I can’t remember the names too. Something bloomed a new and tried to capture the beauty she has spent 20 years since Hurricane Andrew destroyed everything, to recreate.
Here’s Dolores, busy on the phone with another customer. She was also a woman after my own heart as every day at her house is “Wine Time”. Wine and all natural mosquito repellent are all I needed to enjoy the evening as I waited for night to fall.
Of course, I had to break away from the Tropical Paradise on occasion, there was still bits and pieces of a storage to go through (in 90F heat) but we soldiered onward and achieved our goal of getting the largest painting my mother has created to date in the back seat of my CRV…but before I show you the final result of our packing TOO many things into a TOO small of space, we went to visit friends…in Islamorada, another slice of heaven.
Catherine and Rob Fordyce filming for The SeaHunter
There is nothing better to soothe your soul than to see lifelong childhood friends. Kristen and Catherine…awesome sisters. It was a day of good food, cold drinks, a fabulous view and GREAT FRIENDS.
Of course this Pisces couldn’t stand it any longer…and I had to put my feet in the water, soak up the vibrations and just be for a few moments in time.
Eventually though, Mom and I had to take the stuffed to the gills CVR home. A feat that took us three days in the hot Florida sun to achieve. We said good bye to our hostesses Dolores but I couldn’t leave without taking a picture of this incredible blooming tree that towered over the yard and the tiny flowers it was showering all over everything.
Then there was this clicking noise…against the glass of the back window, which we had to leave open due to the fact the canvas painting barely fit in the car. Tink tink tink tink as I drove up I-95. It was driving me nuts. But the traffic was thick and the quickest way to remedy the Tink Tink Tink was to keep driving until we were out of the city. We finally stopped to adjust the items slinking out of the cracked window.
Yes, this is my mother Melody of Birdsong Publishing (check out the poetry contest) and my car…the Franklin Hillbillies were finally on their way home. I hope you enjoyed my working vacation, like and share, visit my friends. Leave comments.