Most people plan their vacations well in advance. They research airfares. They look into nearby attractions. They put months of investigation and effort into the rare getaway from carpool, work, and the daily grind of life.
Being a fatalist, I resist putting a lot of man hours into something I am convinced will be cancelled due to sickness or minivan breakdown. So when Joe suggested we go somewhere over Spring break, I hesitated doing any online research and instead waited for him to tell me he couldn't get the appropriate day trades from the guys at the firehouse.
Imagine my surprise when two weeks before break Joe announced he had negotiated the required trades. I frantically scrambled to find a place to stay. All of our affordable choices in St. Augustine and Orlando were booked. Condos and townhouses within our price range had been secured by savvy travelers months in advance. My choices were nil.
Until I discovered New Smyrna Beach.
For some odd reason, I had my pick of townhouses and condos for rental. They were minutes from the beach! I gladly sent in my deposit and announced to the family that I had performed my usual miracle for the week and locked in a place mere seconds from the tides.
That was when I got a call from Joe. He was out with the boys and had heard on the radio that there had been a shark attack at New Smyrna Beach that week. Two actually. A man and a woman had both been bitten by sharks within 15 minutes of each other in waist-deep water.
The news story reported that New Smyrna Beach was the Shark Bite Capital of the World.
As I processed this information and the implications for family safety, my husband had only one thing to add:
Whatever you do, just don't tell your mother.