Tuesday, November 30, 2010

St. Augustine, FL - Nov 30, 2010

Joy and I switched days as tomorrow her former work partner, Anna, is coming to visit for the day. Anna and Joy worked as lactation consultants at the Cleveland Clinic for almost 2 years. Anna was also working on her Master to become a Nurse Practioneer, which is the current position she has in Florida.

We arrived in St. Augustine this afternoon after a quite ride down the ICW. The ICW travel is a study in contrasts. On one hand you see these huge houses with boats worth a half a million dollars parked next to these expensive homes. On the other hand we walked over to a shopping center after parking at our boat. Half of the stores in the shopping center were empty.

Not sure if they were occupied once upon a time, but it shows how poorly the economy is doing. Somebody lost money in all these vacant stores, either the builders, or their bankers, or the renters who had to leave. This is the question that we have to deal with over the next two years.

As people have listened to the pundits talk about overspending, housing bubbles, etc. in my mind it all comes down to the simple fact that for a lot of people whose purchasing drove the economy, they just stopped buying the junk, the bling, and the klitz of STUFF that you really do not need. Now people are afraid to spend money, they want to pay down debt and hope their house equity does not disappear.

So time to get off the soapbox and share some photos of our first day in St. Augustine. This really is a great place to visit as its culture consists of Spanish and British influences. Last night I counted over 40 dinghies at the dinghy dock. The other pictures are of the City Hall and the University.


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