Tales From The Swamp – Part 2

Click here to read Tales From The Swamp – Part 1

We decided to cut through the University Of Florida. It was littered with those beautiful oak trees, but the new buildings on the campus were designed by some firm that probably built a thousand generic shopping malls. There were also those ridiculous blue light security stands every 500 feet that were supposed to make women feel safer about walking around the campus alone. I remembered having these precautionary stands at Florida State, but I never remember anyone using them except for drunk pranksters who pushed the button and ran. Was there really ever a problem of rapists lurking around the campus outside of frat parties? Or do these alarms just serve to make students unreasonably nervous that a bearded 33 year old guy is walking around their campus holding a pizza box?

We encountered a ridiculous twenty foot tall sculpture of a Southern couple ballroom dancing. A more impressive sculpture was the lifelike alligator parked outside the football stadium. It looked alive. I could swear its eyes were looking at me or at the very least at the pizza we were holding.

We made it back to the house with an appetite and wolfed down the pizza. The next day errands were to be run, gas accounts had to be opened, and other trivialities of moving had to be accomplished. Everything happened at a glacial pace, so that we did not eat until three in the afternoon. Regular readers know by now my tourism revolves around dining on vegan cuisine. I found a Jamaican place called The Reggae Shack which had a spicy and delicious jerk tofu sandwich.

I laid about as my brother and his roommate cleaned up their place. Before we knew it, it was time for our next meal. It was past ten, so our options were limited. We finally headed downtown to a Mexican place called  Boca Fiesta. The burrito was solid, if unspectacular, but they had a dessert which blew my socks off. They were called dessert nachos. With shreds of coconut impersonating cheese they actually looked like bona fide nachos until you dug into them. Instead of chips there were waffle cones underneath a pile of brownie goop, sorbet, and strawberry syrup. An amazing invention up there with the incandescent light bulb.

We drove back to his place as they had early mornings ahead of them. My only responsibility was to get back to Miami, so I walked around the neighborhood a bit. Those oak trees can be kind of spooky at night, so I thought I might run into a ghost or two. No luck. I woke up the next morning. I bid farewell to Gainesville and wrestled with the idea of circumnavigating Lake Okeechobee on the way back.


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