The Sunshine City in the Sunshine State

Ok, I never heard Tampa called the Sunshine City, but the sunshine was certainly sunshining down that afternoon. So we headed for the boats and a leisurely journey around Hillsborough Bay.

The boat “host” was friendly and welcomed us all – however there weren’t a lot of people to welcome. Mostly us and a boy and his mom. We were on the boat because we liked boat rides and because taking a boat ride seemed to be a great way to see Tampa and a great way to spend a hot afternoon.

The boy was on the boat for one reason … to see Derick Jeter’s house. In fact, as soon as we pushed out from the dock he asked, “Will we see Derick Jeter’s house?” The friendly boat guy said that we would.

Being that the boy was at that age where talking is a great hobby, he started asking questions. “What did the house look like? How big was it? Was the friendly boat guy sure we would see it?” And being that the boat guy also liked to talk and we were content to just look at our surroundings, he concentrated on talking to the young boy …. mostly about Derek Jeter.

Obviously, this was the highlight.

Downtown Tampa is a group of big, shiny buildings reflecting off the shiny water … and downtown Tampa is hot. (Oh, wait, I think I said that.) The boat ride was enjoyable … though the scenery was mostly wealthy people’s houses.

“Is that Derick Jeter’s house?”

“No,” said the friendly boat guy. “You will know when you see it. Men like it. Women don’t.”

“Why don’t women like it?” the boy asked.

“Too … ,” said the boat guy. “I don’t know, they just don’t. Would you like to be captain of the boat for awhile?”

“Me?” said the kid.

“Yes, you,” said the friendly boat guy. So boy took his place behind the wheel and off he went on his own hunt for all things Jeter.

The boat guy pointed out houses of famous, wealthy people that Tampa people would know (but I didn’t.) And then our boat went around Davis Island.

“There,” said the boat guy. “There’s the house.”

“Whoa,” said the boy. “That’s big.”

No one could argue with that.

We were at the end of our ride and headed back through the channel to the Tampa Convention Center where the hunt for Derek Jeter’s house had all begun. And for a couple hours … we had been cool or at least cooler. Fun ride.

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