Beach Report, Part 2

by Paul Balogh.

The beach conditions have been improving since we've arrived. It's once again becoming the Gulf we remember...gentle breezes, calm waves, white sand.

We've been keeping pretty busy around here, alternating between days at the beach and pools, then a day of site-seeing and shopping. We've already taken in Zoo World and headed to Destin to shop at the Silver Sands Outlet Mall. We've also eaten out nearly every evening so far, getting together with Jeff, Michelle, and the kids. Already, we've been to several of our regular eateries like Sharky's, Scampy's, and Hooters as well as the new Tony Roma's.

Have I mentioned that service in the off-season typically sucks? Somehow, we always seem to forget this fact. At both stores and restaurants in the Panama City Beach area, people fall into a zombie-like demeanor. They almost seem bothered by your very presence...not to mention, some even seem to hold a grudge that the North won the Civil War. OK...I may be exaggerating somewhat, but I'm sure at least one person greeted us kindly with a southern accent, then lost their friendly smile as soon as the greeting was returned with a non-existant accent as if to say "I thought the Yankees were gone for the year."

Alot of the shops are closed for the season or manned by a single teenage girl from Alabama earning slightly over minimum-wage. I know I wouldn't want my daughters to work evenings at some store, having to close up at night and being the only person there. But...that's the off-season.

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