You have to be a lover of summer to live in Florida. Our summers along the Sun Coast are actually not as hot as many of the northern states, but it sure lasts much longer. Here it is late September and we're still having daytime highs of 88 and perfect beach weather. The Gulf water was a balmy 85 degrees Sunday.
I love this time of year because the summer tourists are gone and the snowbirds haven't yet arrived. We locals have a few months to really enjoy our little spot of paradise- traffic is sparse, no long waits to get into restaurants, and we have the beaches to ourselves.
Though the tropical storms did some serious damage to our beaches this summer (photos here), the sea oats and sea grape vines are putting out new growth on what remains of the sand dunes.
Even the shore birds were enjoying the absence of tourists and squealing children chasing them...
This is the time of year we find oodles of these tiny spiral shells. We used to find a lot of sand dollars in shallow water in September and October but they've been scarce the past few years. I have no idea why. Here are a few of the tiny shells we found Sunday.
Though we'll probably have 6 to 8 more weeks of summer temps, it was only 69 when I got up this morning. Isabella enjoyed this brief hint of fall by lounging on the lanai. But by this afternoon it will be well into the high 80s and she'll be back inside napping in the air conditioning.