Thursday, September 24, 2009
The skies in Florida are so dramatic. They're the first thing I notice when I arrive, with clouds piled up like mountains, sidelit and towering. I always forget how amazing they are, and how puny and flat our northern skies can seem by comparison.
Yesterday evening I went for a walk with my mom, and both of us kept marveling at the clouds. It was an especially dramatic evening, as you can see.
I feel like a New Yorker through and through, having lived there now for almost ten years. I have no intention of leaving, and no plans to permanently return to Florida, the land of my birth. Culturally, I don't fit in Florida at all -- at least, not in the area where I grew up, north of Tampa. But these clouds remind me how much I still love the natural environment of the Sunshine State.
Nature in Florida appeals to me. I love the excitement and deco glamor of Miami, and the languorous tropical lushness of Key West. But I grew up in a woodsy area, and more than either of those places, I love the birds and bugs and reptiles, the armadillos and gopher tortoises, the humidity and palmettos and pines. That's where Florida's true beauty lies, and it still speaks to me, even though my life is no longer here.