We just got back from our annual Beach Weekend in Treasure Island, FL, which is on the Gulf Coast about halfway down Florida's peninsula. Because Treasure Island is part of the Tampa Bay metropolitan area that has been my home for most of my life, I feel a bit of an obligation to point out that we have not been touched by the BP oil spill and there is a good chance we never will be. This picture of me and Sarah shows how clean the water is:
And this one shows how beautiful Treasure Island is when the sun starts to go down:
I understand why tourists have been hesitant to make reservations for the Florida beaches, and since none of us can promise that they will still be clean months from now, I will not try to talk anyone into spending their money on plans to come here far in advance. But as of today, you would have to drive 420 miles from here to reach the nearest place that has seen even a tar ball from the spill. A trip to these parts is a very safe bet for the foreseeable near term, so if you are planning to take a vacation in the next few weeks and haven't decided where to go, come on down.
One benefit of the spill is that you may be able to get a good deal, because fewer people are making reservations this year. And maybe while you're in the water, you will have the good fortune to see a manatee swim right by, like happened to us on Saturday. Hopefully you will enjoy your trip as much as we enjoyed ours.