The collision of global markets and social mood

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Tarpon Springs

Visited Tarpon Springs today, another favorite little town of mine which feels as if it's stuck in time and from another world.  It has the highest percentage of Greek-Americans of any city in the country.  These wonderful people started coming here as far back as the 1880s when they came to work as divers in the burgeoning sponge diving business.  Each time I visit, it still feels as good as the small fishing villages I discovered while visiting the Greek islands years ago.  Today I spent the whole day there.

Even tried something new.  Found this spot for lunch.  How can you miss with jerk chicken!  They did a slamming job here.  It's great to see another cultural influence in town.  It was honest to goodness great food served with pride.  Just the way I like it.

Afterwards I went to the library and worked.  I was sooo tempted to have a Red Stripe with my lunch, but I was good.  (I do have a soft spot for Red Stripe because I worked at the ad agency that first launched it in the USA.  My writing colleague Eric wrote the reggae tune for the campaign and when they first played it for Mr. Desnoes and Mr. Geddes, the owners, they both got up and started dancing right in the meeting.)

After work, I stopped by Hellas Restaurant and Bakery for a very rare treat: homemade baklava, a Greek pastry made of layers of phyllo dough filled with honey, walnuts, and pistachios. I don't eat many sweets, but I always make an exception for this.  It's sinfully good.

I drove around for a while and explored some other nearby towns, but sort of wished I stayed put.  I did enjoy New Port Richey, but it felt like a ghost town.  I thought it was cute.  I wonder what the issue was?

Back in Tarpon Springs, I found Howard Park.  Oh man.  I wanted to see the sunset and not hurry this time.  I spent a few hours there.  Parked my car in the shady area and walked a half mile along a curved causway out to an island beach covered with palm trees.  So cool, and totally free.  Trust me, in New England, this place would be a private club.

I absolutely LOVE the way this shot came out.  All the angles and curves, and the cool bird that just happened to fly by as I heard the shutter click.  LOVE it.

I hardly ever take sunset pictures.  So I had to get them out of my system for a while.

There's this one.

And this one.

And this one.

And this one.

And then this one.

And then it got dark and I walked back to the car and went back to Hellas and had a really swell gyro and a beer.  What a great day.

If you can't make it to Greece, try Tarpon Springs.  You don't even need a passport.

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