I was just shy of six years old when I visited the Florida Keys on a summer vacation in 1977 with my parents and a couple of friends of theirs, staying in Marathon, Florida to be precise.

I don’t think I-75 had been built all the way to the east coast of Florida by ’77 (which makes sense, because the Pinellas portion of I-275 wasn’t built all the way until the mid-1980’s) so my parents drove down to the Keys via Orlando and the Florida Turnpike all night one Saturday evening. Most of the time, I slept in this van which belonged to a friend of my dad’s, and I remember being awakened somewhere on the road to have breakfast early on a Sunday morning.

As we got closer and closer to our destination, I noticed that we crossed this town called Homestead that, of course, was south of Miami and was impacted heavily by Hurricane Andrew in 1992.

Somehow, I got Homestead and “home instead” mixed up. Hey, give me a break, I was five years old and was a proud graduate of kindergarten.

I asked, “You mean, we’re back home?”


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