On a Retiree

Florida beckons the retiree. Just ask anyone of them who flock to the sun-drenched place. Older people like warmth, they like not having to face yearly snows and freezes. And the state has done a great job of marketing itself to these superannuated folks.

One such Florida retiree came a few years ago after he quit his career. Like many others, retirement wasn’t so much a choice or option as it was forced on him. As a child, this man had yawned so much that his family called him Yawny. So, late in life, Yawny found himself, somewhat against his wishes, on the sunny coast of east Florida in St. Augustine.

That’s a great town to those who’ve never been. It’s an interesting blend of history and weather and culture that produces great food and draws many people there for a trip, seasonally, or, as in Yawny’s case, in retirement.

And the tourists! My God, the tourists! Yawny found that he couldn’t turn around without some tourist getting in his way. No body seemed to be a native, he thought. All of these people seemed to be from somewhere else.

The worst thing was the separation from his family. Change is hard to take, especially the older we get, and Yawny really never quite got used to being away from his kith and kin and the scenery that he’d lived in all his life.

At least the weather was warm. And he found a place on the water, so he breezes were nice. The government helped him with his groceries. He had meat every day, and that was something that he didn’t always have back where he was from. Yawny also found that others in his situation were there, people who were from his neck of the woods, people who, like him, sort of had Florida forced on them. That helped with his homesickness some. But he grew miserable, as did the others from back home.

You see, the place Yawny was from was also warm, but it was not coastal. It was Arizona. It was in Arizona that Yawny had made his way in life until the government—the United States government—stepped in and put a halt to his activities there. They stopped Yawny—and the other Apache natives–from fighting them, arrested him and others like him, and imprisoned them in the old Spanish fort in St. Augustine—the oldest European town in the United States.

They also forced him to endure viewing by all those tourists to Florida.

Yawny—his native name means that—is better known to you by a Spanish/Mexican appellation.

Geronimo.

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