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May 9, 2007

{ pitching horseshoes & my brother's shirt }

My first memory of Horseshoe Beach was when I was still living at home outside of Atlanta, at least, still, during the summers. On one of those Christmases our family set out on vacation to southern Florida. We spent our first night in a little fishing village in a true fisherman's cabin. It belonged to the father of my brother's best friend and was built on stilts. You could look between the cracks in the floorboards to the ground below. I think Mother was worried about snakes and probably didn't sleep too well that night. It was already dark when we arrived. Dad went down to the marina to see if he could find a fisherman who might be willing to part with a mess of fish as all the grocery stores we had passed were closed on account of it being a holiday. I had never eaten mullet but to this day, I think it is some of the best fish I have ever eaten.

That was over forty years ago and until the last four or five years Horseshoe looked pretty much the same. My brother continued to return regularly with his friend Ralph. He spent more and more if his leisure time away from the hustle and bustle of the big city relaxing on the porch with friends or casting his lines for the elusive BIG ONE to the tune of a well oiled in-board's steady hum in accompaniment to Jimmy Buffett's lyrics floating lazily over the water. My brother and his wife are now retired and have completely modeled and remodeled one of those fishing cabins into a lovely home. They have moved lock, stock, two dogs, a cat, and three fourths of their Atlanta flower gardens to this sleepy fishing village where you can often find my brother, surrounded by several friends, sporting his Captain's hat, shucking oysters, shelling shrimp, and stirring a gigantic pot of gumbo. Now my family and I look forward to many more Horseshoe memories. My brother was the inspiration behind this colourful Lockhart stamped card.

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