Tamiami Trail in north Sarasota -- which used to be the main north-south highway through the area before the Interstates were built -- is lined with old mid-century motels. I have long enjoyed driving this route and seeing the old signs. I got to do so again yesterday when I went to Sarasota to have lunch with two old friends, Charlie and Jay, who I used to work with when I was a reporter at the paper there.
We went to a little restaurant in downtown Sarasota and, man, has that area changed. (It's been 18 years since I left Sarasota and moved to New York City.) So much construction!
Anyway, it was good to catch up and see what the town looks like now. (Overall it's much swankier than North Tamiami Trail, which -- although lined with charming old signs -- has long been somewhat downtrodden. I think it looks better now than it did when I lived there.)
Before lunch, I spent the morning with Dave and his family. We had three more occurrences of the mysterious power outage at their house, which I think has something to do with a failing circuit breaker near the electric meter. We eventually learned to use just one major appliance at a time!
Last night we went for drinks at the Swordfish, a restaurant in Cortez, where we saw roseate spoonbills a few years ago. This year, none showed up. And then we went to the Sandbar on Anna Maria Island for dinner, and I wasn't driving so I got to have a martini. Woo hoo!
Now Dave and I are preparing to fly back to London. Our plane leaves tonight. It's been a good visit and we'll get in a bit more activity today, but I think both of us are ready to go home.