Destination: Downton Stuart.
Maybe it was the small town feel of the historic district that made me forget all about the wonderful Florida humidity. I was literally shining from sweat as we walked around the quaint downtown. But it didn’t matter. We were out-of-towners in a local joint. The Riverwalk. The bubbly and cool boutique shops. The historical Lyric. The live music that filled the Saturday air with the sounds of summer. The smell of salt as the breeze brushed us with the ocean. Like I told Michael, the place was pretty darn romantic.
We walked by quite a few shops before deciding to visit one: Go Fish. It was a small store with a big heart. They sold beach lifestyle clothing and accessories, and I must admit that at first glance I wasn’t too impressed. However, I spotted a cute, handheld wicker fan from the shop window, and I was immediately drawn in. Upon walking in, I realized the quality of their products were topnotch and really, for the lack of better words, really cool! I grabbed my wicker fan, looked around a bit, and decided to hit the register. As I was in line, I noticed a random picture of some indigenous Malay-looking folks framed in a simple black wooden trim. It noted in the bottom that the store’s products were handmade by Indonesian people living in a co-op. Naturally, this stirred some curious interest in me, and as I waited in line longer, I finally understood the “Go Fish” jeu de mots. The company emblem includes the company name and a little “Christian” fish symbol in the middle. What? I didn’t ask if they were a Christian company. That was a given. I wanted to know what the company was about. Here is the short of it: Go Fish is basically an organization that provides income opportunities for the global poor by purchasing their handmade goods. What a beautiful projection of hope for our troublesome world! So check them out and see if they have a store near you: http://www.shopgofish.com. Now look at my cool new fan.
Another shop worth mentioning was Earthtones or as they refer to themselves, the Purveyors of Cool Stuff. No magical story here. They were just, for the lack of better words yet again, really cool!
So then we moved on. We decided to find Hutchinson Island since neither Michael or I have ever been. We drove on and on. We passed a double causeway, passed a number of beaches along the way, and drove for what seemed like ages–all following my phone navigation system. It turned out my phone was leading us to a power plant all along. Lesson learned: never put your complete trust in technology; use your noggin sometimes, and if you prefer not to, then follow your guts.
Yes. We did a 180 and turned into one of the beaches we saw: Walton Rocks beach. With our recent luck, of course this particular beach just happened to be the ONLY dog-friendly beach on the island! What gives?! I still managed to capture a couple of nice shots of the pro-canine shores and the unsuspecting sea.
The next stop was some random spot on the roadside. It was a relief for all of us having been on drive for so long. Daddy got to fish for some spotted sea trout. Little girl got to sink her toes in the sand. Mommy got to sit on the cooler to feed the baby boy. And baby boy…well…he got to enjoy his milk out in the Hutchinson wild.
The sand beneath our toes then wonderfully became the sand in between.
I’d have to say, I could not wait to get home today. It was a fun day, but all I wanted was just a relieving, warm shower. And that’s what I did. And so it is goodnight then as I again find myself racing against the moon while everyone else chase the sun. Sigh.