As I watched out the window of the car, I could feel the butterflies of excitement fluttering around in my stomach. I had always wanted to go to Florida; I wanted to see the ocean and the white beaches. I heard several stories about how fun and beautiful Florida was. In a few hours, I would finally find out for myself. My excitement was almost too great to handle the long car ride to my destination. I settled myself in to watch the scenery as we started our Journey.
Eventually, the trees of Arkansas turned Into the beautiful kudzu vines of Mississippi. The ivy-Like vines crawled and covered almost everything on the side of the road. There were massive kudzu sculptures that were once just trees and electric poles. Before I knew it, we were in Alabama. When we hit the busy interstate in Mobile I knew we were getting close. Shortly after driving through the long dark tunnel, I could see the water. Close to one of the bridges sat an old battleship. The ship looked old, yet majestic sitting in the water.
Shortly after that, we finally were across the Florida state line. The causeway we drove on was curved and tall enough for the sailboats below to pass under. As I looked down, I could see a group of beautiful condos on the shore. They contrasted brightly with the white sand around them, painted colors normally found in a box of crayons. I took In the sight of all the fancy high-rise condos and hotels, with a few beach huts sprinkled in between. We arrived at our hotel, and I quickly unloaded and unpacked my belongings. The beach was waiting for me.
I ran outside to find one of the most beautiful sights I had ever seen. The long stretch of sand was pure white and sparkled In the sun as If It had glitter mixed In with it. It almost looked like snow. The sand was hot on my feet as I walked down the each to the water. I could hear it squeak a little with every foot step. As I reached the water’s edge, I could see little jellyfish that had been washed on shore by the waves. The Jellyfish looked like little blobs of grape jelly that had been dropped up and down the shore line.
It was time to explore the town, but I would return to the beach before I had to go home. Our first stop was the outlet mall in Foley. It was a huge stretch of shops: it seemed to take hours to walk through all of them. At dinnertime we went to a restaurant called “The Oyster Bar”. As I took my seat on the deck, I could see boats ND Jet skis going up and down the water. For dinner, I had the restaurant’s well known crab claws. I wasn’t disappointed in my first ever bite of crab. The meat was delicious, and even though my belly was full, I almost wished I had more when my balcony.
As night fell, I could see the light from flash lights flicking around as a group of children ran around on the beach. They were searching diligently hoping to be rewarded by catching one of the cute little white crabs that scattered as the children ran after them. While I was happily relaxing on the balcony, I realized my trip would soon be ending and I would have to return home. In the morning I returned to the beach to say my farewells. I stood right at the water’s edge and stared out. The water before me seemed to stretch on forever, almost as if it were an endless ocean.
I could feel my feet sinking into the sand with each crashing wave on my legs. The contrast of the cool water around my legs and the heat from the glaring sun on my face felt comfortable. I closed my eyes, enjoying the wind whipping through my hair. The immense feeling of Joy and relaxation quickly faded as I suddenly remembered it was time to go. We packed up our belongings and began our long Journey home. The scenery on the way back was Just as beautiful as before, although not quite as enjoyable.
The trip back seemed different. I felt no butterflies, no sense of urgency, and no anticipation. Even though I didn’t really want to leave, I was going to be glad to get home after the long Journey back. In the end, I found out everything I had previously heard about Florida was true. My vacation was everything I had expected, but somehow more. The hours spent driving were very well worth it. I told myself that I would return again, as often as I could, to my own little piece of paradise that is Period Key, Florida.