Wow, what a beautiful day! It couldn't have been more pleasant... clear and dry and mid 70s, and my route took me along the gulf coast -- the real gulf, with waves -- on a paved bike path most of the way.
When I passed through Destin (suggested motto: "Why Settle for Destiny When You Can Have the Real Thing?"), the bike path was crowded with snowbirds on their morning walks, many of them clutching cups of coffee. I thought it was odd that they kept bidding me good morning when it felt like 2:00 to me, but it was still only 11... time seemed to stretch out forever.
I ended the day's ride around 3 PM at Grayton Beach State Park, which apparently was voted Florida's best beach a few years back. That surprises me because it doesn't have many of the features I would think people look for in a beach, but it does have impressive dunes (the brochure says, "What appear to be bushes growing out of the dunes are actually full size trees covered with sand"), and the sound of breaking waves makes a nice change from (or at least a nice addition to) the sound of highway traffic.
I waded in the surf for a while in the afternoon and returned after dark when I emerged from the shower house and discovered a clear, warm, moonless night. A gorgeous day like this can make up for an awful lot of bad weather and hostile traffic. It really makes the whole trip worthwhile.