The clock is ticking

Me at Gulf Shores in 1972

My biological clock is ticking. Ticking like a time bomb.

No, not that biological clock. I’ve had my baby and as absolutely wonderful in every way as he is, one is plenty, thank you very much.

I’m talking about a powerful hankering that comes over me about this time every year – about the time the weather starts getting warmer, the sun starts shining, and the days grow longer. A yen more powerful than the need for sleep. A hunger stronger than that for a meat and three plate with peach cobbler on the side.

I am powerless against it. Weak-willed. A veritable ninny.

You see, it is at this time of year I am compelled by forces of nature and heritage against which I cannot fight. I must, at any cost and as soon as everly I can, point my car south and drive until I run out of road and straight into the Gulf of Mexico.

And it’s not that I am just in need of a vacation.

To be fair, Husband and I just spent the loveliest of lovely weekends relaxing in a mountain cabin at DeSoto State Park. We exclaimed over the scenic vistas along Little River Canyon, toured historic Mentone, and shopped Collinsville’s Trade Days. We rested, relaxed, and returned to Birmingham refreshed.

But you see, Husband and I are fundamentally different in this one respect – he is from the mountains, North Georgia to be exact. His people clung to the craggy side of Sand Mountain and made their lives from the rock and hardwood tree.

While I think the mountains are perfectly nice and all that, I am not of the mountains. I am of the coast, a child of salt air, flat land, and piney woods. And no matter how long I have lived away from it, South Alabama is in my blood. It is who I am.

Even despite the high-rise condos and McMansions, hours long dinner waits, and every LSU fan in Christendom who feels compelled to put up a party tent in front of my puny umbrella, I still go back. There are still a few unmolested stretches of white sand beach to enjoy. Without waiting for two hours you can still find fried delicacies served in baskets along side of a beer that is colder than a mother-in-law’s love. And you can still watch the sun sink down past the edge of the earth, its sting still hot on your skin.

Yes, yes. The old clock is ticking. The time has come to head south.