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Christmas Day 2010


A MERRY CHRISTMAS ON WHITE SWAN (Note the Optometrist Santa)

Our morning ritual of lattes in bed (when we are home we have them in the hot tub), began our Christmas day. The morning greeted us with sunny, blue skies. The towering palm trees lining the residential shoreline swayed with the music of the breeze. If this sounds heavenly to you, it is experientially more so.
In no hurry to do anything, we lingered in bed with our morning ritual of lattes and devotions, and then read for a while before getting up to start our leisurely activities for the day. Presently, I’m reading a book about the “crackers” of Florida. The term crackers, derived from the cowboys who drove cattle across Florida, back in the day when cattle drives where commonplace. The cowboys cracked their whips in the process and thus inherited the name “crackers”. From what I’ve read thus far, I’m surmising the term evolved throughout the years to label any Floridian who settled in the more remote areas of the state, relying upon their own ingenuity to sustain their lives and livelihood. Since we now reside in Florida, as of this year, I wanted to see on a map where the places mentioned in the book are geographically; and because Gary and I lived in Indiana most of our lives, we had no idea the Swanee River was in Florida. It begins in lower Georgia and flows southwest through Florida to the Gulf of Mexico. Once while we were traveling through northern Florida by car, we crossed the Suwannee River and we wondered if Stephen Foster,the writer of the song making this a famous river, used poetic license to drop a syllable. Interestingly, my book informed me this is indeed the case. The Swanee River and the Suwannee River are one the same.
Before a late brunch, Gary took the dinghy to shore and I cleaned the inside of the boat and then decorated it for Christmas. We have a small artificial Christmas tree and a wreath as part of White Swan’s inventory. I’m not going to spend Christmas day anywhere, land or sea, without some decorations.
The afternoon was spent playing Parcheesi with ghost players Roberta and Kirby, who are friends who taught us how to play the game. I rolled the dice and moved Roberta and my pawns, and Gary played his and Kirby’s. During one play, I sent one of Roberta’s pawns back to her start position, and in good Roberta fashion I called myself a C.I.G.S. which is what she would have said had she been present. Gary and I roared with laughter and continued to beat the pants off Kirby and Roberta (proving the game is as much about the luck of the dice roll as it is skill). Board games are not as popular these days, with all of the present day technology; but the nostalgia that surfaces when getting out the box and setting up the board game is as much fun as playing the game.
Speaking of present day technology, our Christmas present to each other was a MiFi 2200 internet card. Rather than have to seek out marinas and restaurants offering internet, we treated ourselves to this gift; so now, internet is available to us any time we can get a signal (as long as we are in the states).
For dinner, Gary grilled portabella mushrooms and filet mignon while I prepared garlic mashed potatoes and broccoli. We drank champagne with our meal and finished with the delicate pastries purchased at the local French bakery.

Christmas Wreath on White Swan

Later, we found the cork, that flew off the bottle of champagne, imbedded in our Christmas wreath. We wondered where it went. It looked like it belonged on the wreath so I used a black felt marker to write 2010 on it and permanently attached it.
I’ve heard it said, “Life is what you make it.“ For us, Life is Fun. Our days are full of love, silliness and laughter. It’s the greatest gift we give to one another.



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