Outside the Oasis

There are a plethora of gated communities here in Florida, man made villages of homes tucked behind lush landscaping and pastel colored stucco walls. Many of them are associated with golf courses, and the astronomical maintenance fees that go with all that. Our community is not such a one, but, in my estimation, the lack of golf greens is more than assuaged by the miles of inland lakes and arched bridges. Within easy walking distance are tennis courts, fitness center, and a large, sparkling pool. Also a cafe to grab lunch, and a salon for hair and nails. Add to that a bank, post office, gas station, and life is nearly complete within the confines of these five square miles. Real estate advertising often refers to Island Walk as "resort style living," and that isn't hyperbole. So we find ourselves rarely venturing outside this oasis. It's our personal paradise, quiet, calm, and lovely. The city of Naples is a continual bustle of beautiful people enjoying their very riche lifestyle, and I certainly don't fit into that mold. It's fun to watch (for a while) but it's not me. The outside world intruded on us yesterday morning when we awoke to find egg splattered on the screen of our lanai and on the slider door outside the master bedroom. This happens occasionally in our suburban Detroit neighborhood, and we shake out heads but aren't terribly surprised. We were surprised that it happened here, and aparently we've developed a false sense of security. Island Walk is obviously not as insulated from "the real world" as we liked to believe. And while an occasional egg tossing/toilet papering spree isn't the harbinger of doom, it serves to remind me that perfection is simply not possible-even in "paradise." So I'll adjust my expectations a bit. After living on planet earth for 50-plus years, I'm accustomed to doing that. We cleaned off the screens without too much fuss, and used the opportunity to hose down the lanai floor (which needed doing anyway). The dogs had great fun playing in the water, and now everything is clean and shiny once more. Except my image of our oasis, which is just slightly tarnished.