Girls in Bikinis and Other Wild Life. posted 21 March 2009
We arrived at Clearwater where girls in bikinis crossed the road and stopped the traffic. We stopped for an ice cream but when four underdressed girls stood nearby as I licked and slurped, Mrs Monk decided that Clearwater was overcrowded and it was time to move on to a mum and pap kind of beach.
Due to the tennis shoe shopping and the ice cream and the girls in “underwear”, as Mrs. Monk characterised a bikini to make her point, our search for a room was unduly late in the day. We discovered that Florida was in high season, and that college students were on “spring break”, and also that we were also entering a weekend, all of which contributed to a doubling of hotel rates and a shortage of accommodation. We examined at least 30 hotels attempting to satisfy Mrs. Monk’s stringent criteria, until it was too late to be particular.
We paid through the nose for a huge suite with two bedrooms two TVs , free WiFi, and more than we needed, and more than we cared to pay for.
That first morning Mrs. Monk rose before dawn, waking me complaining at great length about the adjoining room who were “at it” all night and had kept her awake. I begged her to be quiet and pointed out that until she had sounded off about the couple that had kept her awake, I had slept soundly. She left me be, to wander off in the night and find the night desk clerk and bend his ear for half an hour until another hotel guest came out of her room in her pyjamas, rubbing her eyes. This guest with whom I have great sympathy complained about having heard every word Mrs. Monk had said for “half an hour” until she could stand it no more.
Mrs Monk got the message and took her camera out to the dock at the rear of the hotel where she photographed the scene on this page. She later claimed to have had a religious experience as the dawn broke.
And then she befriended an old man walking a dog who explained that the dog was a rescue dog from Hurricane Katrina, which found its way to Georgia from New Orleans and might have been put down. He and his wife who live in New York travelled a thousand miles to rescue this dog which they named, Peanut, after Georgia, the peanut state.
The commendable charity, “Eleventh Hour” and Pet Finders.com were on the case and rescued the beast.
Peanut is a well travelled jack russell, and is now still enjoying a winter vacation in our hotel, since he is there for a month.
Eventually I rose from my bed to discover for the first time that the hotel was occupied by a geriatric clientele.
Hanging around the pool is not my thing but I was asked to keep Mrs. Monk company around the pool where I saw no young girls in bikinis or underwear. I tried to escape the pool and the hot sun but Mrs. Monk begged me to stay, where I would be exposed to the hot sun and the view of elderly women immersing themselves delicately in the pool, including the woman who had the earlier altercation with Mrs Monk.
Mrs. Monk chatted to passers by and learnt that the hotel was “pet friendly”. We started to notice other owners walking other dogs. I watched two dogs with two separate owners emerge from the lift in the lobby, as another dog waited with it’s owner for the lift to arrive.
That evening it became clear that I had overdone the sun, I was a lobster and chilled and nauseous. I was a mess. We managed to get something to eat and Mrs Monk nursed me as best she could, but then I noticed that we were both scratching our legs about the ankles. Could it be the sunburn or was it the fleas in the condo carpet.
To be continued .........