Horses, beaches and crustaceans

Yesterday we did something else I’ve wanted to do for years: went swimming on horseback, by which I mean the horses went swimming and we, er, sat on their backs. Or, in the case of Terry, the horse went swimming but dumped Terry in the water first, so he got to go swimming too. (He wasn’t hurt – one of the advantages of riding in the water, I guess…)

No photos of this, of course, because:

a) we were on horseback

b) in the water

c) as we rode along the beach prior to our swim, I noticed a little crab scuttling along the sand, and it took me most of the rest of the day to calm down after this sighting of one of my mortal enemies. Later that day I saw another small, crab-like creature ON A FENCE. Climbing. OH MY HOLY HELL THEY CAN FLY. On later reflection, I was persuaded by my parents and Terry that this was not actually a crab I’d seen, but, well, I will leave it to you to imagine how freaked out I was. GOD.

Anyway, after the horse riding, we went to Caladesi Island, which was voted the best beach in the US in 2008. Something else must’ve won this year, but we don’t talk about that. It’s the most perfect beach, though, with gorgeous warm, turquoise water and miles and miles of white sand, which you get to by boat even although it’s no longer technically an island:


Because it’s a state park, they only allow a limited number of people to be there at any given time, and there are miles of beach, so you feel like you have the place more or less to yourself. Which allows you to do stuff like this:


And then we came home and I slipped into something a little less comfortable to drink WINE:


(Yes, I am wearing a hoodie. Because the air con here is always absolutely freezing. It’s actually been a little better this year than on previous trips, but it’s still cold enough indoors to make me have to wrap up, especially in restaurants, where I’m convinced they make it freezing on purpose to get you in and out faster.)