Tracy and I have been back from our Florida beach vacation for a week now. For the past three Summers now, we have left to spend over a week in Florida as soon as my school is out for Summer break. Tracy's boss has a house in Fort Myers there that she lets us use for free, which is fantastic. Honestly, by then I am so in need of a relaxing beach vacation. The last month of school is so stressful. My students are ready to be done for the year and the beautiful weather outside has them longing to be outside having fun not in a classroom learning. Then there are so many meetings after school to discuss upcoming testing, to make plans for the next school year, and to complete all of the end of the year stuff. Then everything in your classroom needs to be stored in drawers or cabinets, because over the Summer everything will be moved out so that some major cleaning can be done. So by the time that bell rings to dismiss school on that last day, I am exhausted mentally and physically.
Our Florida vacations are the perfect way to recharge after that last day. We aren't rushing around trying to do and see everything like we are when we go to New York City. Instead, on these trips we are really taking it easy. We are spending the early morning hours until noon at the beach where we are kicking back and relaxing to the sound of the ocean waves. We are having fun in the water and then taking it easy on the beach to dry some before we head back to the house. Then back to the house for lunch and to clean up. After lunch we spent time enjoying some shopping, going to the movies, or just hanging out about town having fun. Evenings were spent lounging by the pool or going on a boat ride. This was truly the best way to unwind at the beginning of Summer break.
While going to Florida was not a first for me, I did have several new experiences on this trip. Every morning, not long after we made it to the beach this dolphin would show up and swim around the pier for about an hour. This would be early and only a handful of people would be at the beach yet. Sometimes he would come way closer to the beach than I thought a dolphin would. After several mornings of this I was like I am going to make a dolphin friend. That morning I went out into the water and swam with a dolphin! For about thirty minutes this dolphin swam around me and the few other people in the water. Sometimes he would swim so close that I could almost touch him. Dolphins are such beautiful creatures and they swim with such grace and spunk. In a playful mood sometimes dolphin would use his tail to splash water at us. UNBELIEVABLE! I was in awe with this dolphin that I named Bartholomew. I never realized how quick dolphins could swim. One second he would be really close to me and then dive down and the next second he would be quite a ways away from me. It was an unforgettable experience that I will always cherish. What's one of your unforgettable experiences?