Getting to know Jacksonville
The first 10 days has been all about getting to know my way around Jacksonville and gaining an understanding of how things tick. During this time I was staying at John’s place in Ponte Vedra. Topics of discussions were wide and varied, from (gulp) politics, the history of Jacksonville, differences in American and Australian cultures, and of course croquet.
The weather has been unseasonably warm. The usual winter maximum temperature is approximately 15C, however it has been a balmy 22 – 25C since my arrival. There have been a couple of mornings where the overnight temperature got to 0C, so I have now officially experienced a Florida winter!
Estates – among the golf courses
A number of the suburbs and retirement estates are built around the edges of golf course. Unlike Australia there are no fences on the perimeter of the course, simply natural barriers such as water courses tree lines and roads to provide some distance between the houses and wayward tee shots. The water hazards also attract a range of birds and wildlife.
Welcoming BBQ – Southern Style
On Sunday, self-proclaimed Southern Gal, Candy O’Gara hosted a dinner for members to officially welcome me to the Ponte Vedra Croquet Club.
Menu was an authentic “Carolina BBQ”. This involves preparing the “slaw”, salads and dessert locally, and having the main dish flown in from North Carolina (300 miles away).