Loving Tree

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic
During a period of long term caregiving, a community and ancient oak provide respite.

Submitted: November 03, 2018

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Submitted: November 03, 2018



Today, my thoughts are turned to my Florida days on the Gulf Coast.  A beautiful memory has floated into my awareness from early days visiting Safety Harbor, after my mother and I relocated to Pinellas County during her last years of life.

A wonderful, ancient live oak spreading its limbs over by the public library near Main Street, became a go to place as my mom's Alzheimer's condition progressed.  This coastal village became a lovely thread to my Florida Days weaving.

Called the Baranoff Oak, it's thought to be the oldest living oak in Pinellas County, between 300 to 500 years old.  Many times, I sat along with others enjoying its majesty and peace on benches placed nearby.  

During one such visit, I met and chatted with a local resident.  She invited me to meet a friend of her's who operated a small, charming curio shop up the way on Main Street.  I agreed; we strolled up to meet an older lady named Louise.  Visiting in her shop, she even served us cups of coffee.  All these years later, the experience seems heaven sent—a sort of divine respite to my heavy responsibilities at that time.  Perhaps this is why I named the oak tree, The Loving Tree.

Safety Harbor is adjacent to Clearwater.  Down by its pier located on Tampa Bay, one can see the skyline of Tampa.  A lovely, world renowned spa is located nearby as well.  One can walk about this little community very easily, visiting shops, restaurants, and strolling down streets of older, charming, small cottages.

With its forever place in my heart, I blow a kiss to my Loving Tree days.

(Do you have a special locale and set of experiences that supported you during a season of caregiving?)  

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