I’m not a baby hater, I just genuinely despise their owners (parents) who allow their non-leashed kids to have free reign in a place where they could easily be snatched up, knocked over or kicked out of the way. For instance, I was standing in line at the Starbucks at the airport, mind you it was just shy of 6 a.m., and right as I approached the short line of only two other customers, the most monstrous stroller you can imagine pulled out in front of me separating me from the caffeine I so craved. This was only the start of my annoyances as I realized that this stroller was not containing the children who were, of course, roaming freely in line and bumping into my legs and staring up at me with a finger in their mouth. Again, their mother ignored them as she went up to place her order, while the dad stood like a zombie off to the side, not concerned at all as to what his rug rats were up to. All I know is, when and if I ever have children, though I may not leash them, they will not serve as an annoyance to other people. This was the first thing I learned while on my way to Naples aka old people capital of the world.

While I brought the average age down a notch, the majority of folks in southwestern Florida were roughly 75-80. While many of them are sweet and funny, others are crabby and oblivious to their surroundings. As if a road full of old timers isn’t scary enough, imagine the snarling ones with canes. Yikes! My very first night in Old country, my sister and I decided that after a long day of traveling a dip in the hot tub would be nice and relaxing.

We walked a block down to the subdivision’s community pool and settled into the bubbling water. No harm done, right? Wrong. Within about a half hour of talking only loudly enough for me and my sister to hear each other over the jets, I was blinded by a flash light. The gate opened and the next thing I know I’m being asked to get out of the hot tub and to show my ID. What??? Apparently, some nosy neighbors decided that two unidentifiable females in the seniors’ hot tub was worth calling the police over. The cop rolled his eyes and put away his flash light as he realized that we weren’t doing anything disturbing, making it seem like the neighbors overreacted all the time.

The next day at the pool, my family and I got the stare down as we walked over to some glistening lawn chairs — feeling like criminals. I felt like I was part of the community that Jerry Seinfeld’s parents in the Seinfeld live in — a cutthroat retirement subdivision in which the patrons make something out of nothing.

Despite these few negative and slightly humorous encounters, I had a great spring break and was depressed to come back to a snowy Chicago. I’m not sure if Naples will be on my list of places to go for a long while, however…

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