View Full Version : Florida

02-12-2008, 09:39 PM
I want to move there. Somewhere around Ocala I'm thinking.

I'm a computer fix-it guy / HVAC machanic / librarian for skills. My wife is a school guidance counselor, also certified to teach in MD / WV.

My girl is 7 and we want a decent school somewhere in the outskirts of Ocala, within 20 miles or so. We're driving down there early this summer to scope the area out, and aiming for next summer / whenever our house sells to move.

Any particular reasons not to move from this bum town in WV to that area?

Domesticated_Mr. Know It All
02-12-2008, 09:45 PM
My family is originally from Moundsville.
Spent alot of time near Camron when my grandparents had a cabin in the boonies.

It's beautiful state full of good people.
I'd rather live there than Florida but that's just me.

02-12-2008, 09:49 PM
Well, it's closer to big salty stuff than you are now but it's still 50 miles away. Can't ya get any closer than that?


High C
02-12-2008, 09:52 PM
Homeowner's insurance is VERY expensive throughout the state.

02-12-2008, 10:52 PM
And you must convince 6 snowbirds to leave before you are granted visa.
Depends on what you hope to find in exchange for where you are now. Insurance is high here and yet taxes are high in other states. Seems somehow it evens out. HVAC is usually a good living here if you happen to own your own business. I have never done any better or worse in any state I have lived in. To me, I have to be close to the ocean within reason and in that respect, growing up here on the Gulf coast had spoiled me. Old cracker once told me, "only a fool could starve in Florida" and in that respect he was right as far as something to eat is concerned being I have proven it to myself and family many times over. Eastern born regulations have somewhat hindered those notions but from my experience, adventurously poached food tastes better anyways. :D

02-12-2008, 10:55 PM
It's a good idea to go in the Summer. It's much hotter than the Caribbean, I'm not sure why.

02-12-2008, 11:13 PM
It's a good idea to go in the Summer. It's much hotter than the Caribbean, I'm not sure why.

It's not the heat, it's the humidity. Funny you should mention the heat. Last year, it was hotter up north than it was here. The Caribbean is more likely to be subject to the ocean breezes. Actually, it's the mutant insects that most starch soxers have trouble getting used to.

02-12-2008, 11:25 PM
I'm just dead sick of winter. I'm sick of the lousy school my kid goes to. I have to drive 40 miles one way to get to a town with a grocery store or a hardware store, or a decent job. I'm tired of driving hours and hours to see a bit of open water (grew up on the Chesapeake and miss it.)

I've had 20 years in this place, and can't wait to see something else out of my window.

02-13-2008, 06:19 AM
If I were you I would look around in my neck of the woods (southwest Alabama). As discussed in Forbes magazine this month the Mobile area is expected to show a lot of growth over the next five years. I believe that we already have a shortage of school teachers as it is now, and as far as your profession goes, for our plant expansions and new business growth the Mobile Chamber is already recruiting outside of the area since our unemployment rate is pretty low as it is.

About 12 years ago we built a new plant at my facility. I was involved in the selection and hiring process and we had over 4000 people apply for what turned out to be 50 positions in a hiring school (all 37 graduates got hired). The new Thyssen-Krupp steel plant being built in Mobile County is going to need to hire 2700-3000 full time employees. As of last week they had 4000 applicants for those jobs. I am not sure of the reasons why they got so few applications but one big reason is that I think that the majority of people interested in that kind of work already have decent jobs with seniority in other facilities.

I don't know exactly what Gainesville/Ocala and that part of Florida have to offer. I am sure it is nice, but most of what I know about it is that it's in the horse and farm country of Florida. If I were intent on moving to Florida I would look into the Port St.Joe area.

Mickey Lake

02-13-2008, 07:08 AM
I have a lot of fond memories of that region. I first went to FLA when my mother's sister lent us their condo for ten days in Lauderdale. I'd been back every other year or so, until recently. A dear friend and his family lives in Jacksonville.

It's a busy place, especially in the coastal cites. The last time I was there a girlfriend had a serious job prospect in Tampa and we flew in in August. I don't think I'd want to live there in the summertime! Man, it was hot! Steve and family basically run from AC to AC in the summer.

With all the development that's gone on, they've had the good sense to set aside quite a bit of wild space. There's the Everglades, and thirty years ago very nice camping on Florida Bay. Ocala is lovely, the big springs! I also enjoyed camping just north of Daytona at a small state park named after the railroad baron who first ran track down the state. What was his name? It'll come to me.

Um, like anyplace, it's got good things and bad things. I didn't much like the buzz of the cities the times I've been there. They seemed pretty voracious, ready to gobble up the remaining charm. But off the beaten path there's a lot of beauty still there.

P.S. Flagler was that guys name. It's a great little strip of undeveloped Atlantic coast, Flagler Beach State Park.

02-13-2008, 07:28 AM
It's a good idea to go in the Summer. It's much hotter than the Caribbean, I'm not sure why.

Because its not paradise, its blue hair hell.http://www.woodenboatvb.com/vbulletin/upload/images/icons/icon12.gif

I will never go back to fl except to visit and that will be a short stay.

02-13-2008, 08:38 AM
I don't think it is a real picture.


02-13-2008, 08:49 AM
I was at an abandoned airstrip out in the glades when I first arrived one day and my mechanic told me the only thing I needed to know about gators. "Zig zag cuz those bastards cannot turn but they can go like hell in a straight line."

02-13-2008, 09:24 AM
Gators and humans have had a few tiffs over the years. I think with the combination of development and wildlife preservation some of the tiffs have gotten more heated, but yeah, that photo is shopped. LOL.

When I was a freshman in college we had a break from classes that ran the whole of January. You had to do something reasonably productive for two of the four years you attended Denison, and freshman year I went rambling through Georgia and Florida on an organized trip called "Southeastern Safari." The two profs who ran that trip were great, sorta egghead, biology professors. We tromped and camped all over Florida, and there wasn't a published itinerary. Those guys had been there a bunch of times, and knew all the good spots.

They'd rise and shine us, and take us into places most tourists or residents don't see, often a complete surprise. One morning, "Okay, today we're going on a swamp tromp." Southern part of the state, and we were surrounded by mangrove forest. It must have been in the Everglades, because our guide was a NPS ranger. As we waded into the water, there was a six foot gator. The ranger, a woman, said "Don't worry, it won't come after you." Soon we were up to our waists in mangrove mud, looking at various flora and fauna. A very interesting wake up call! Wading literally up to your waist, in very stinky sticky organic mud, put a whole different perspective on breakfast.

Lord, thank you parents, and a bit of hard work on my part, for those experiences.

02-13-2008, 12:13 PM
Florida is not like what few here have described in negatives. For one, it has changed so much in the last 30 years that many of these stereotypes are obviously dated. I prefer it 30 years ago, not because I don't like change, but because the state was not meant to be developed into a model of what the 70% of our population of northern transplants made of it. Kind of like trying to give a cooperative pedicure to a grizzly. The slaves to the air conditioning are the same people that would get set up for the winter doldrums up north. Stuck in their homes, from warm house to warm car and on the inside looking out. I'm acclimated to the heat which is why I can work welding in a non climate controlled metal building in August without a whimper. I actually have to be doing something active to break a sweat on any given day when I am outdoors.
You can't go by the stereotypes. You have to try it and see what it is you can live with. If you are young and outdoorsy or at least adaptable, you can live anywhere. The stereotypes I read here about FL. are that of tourists. Never having ventured far from the mini Miamis and Lauderdales of the state.

02-13-2008, 12:26 PM
If ever I move back to Florida I want to go to St Augastine/Jacksonville area. Kinda of quaint quite and nice.

BTW I love the weather in Florida.


02-13-2008, 12:29 PM
I assume from your post that you will also be seeking employment there. If that is the case I would suggest that you don't discount Disney World. They hire an enormous number of people and the folks that I have talked with who do in fact work there sing the praises of working for the mouse.

02-13-2008, 12:55 PM
As for me, If I could afford to live their comfortably, I would never leave the Florida Keys (Islamorada).

02-13-2008, 07:05 PM
Being in construction, I'm glad I didn't relocate there during the boom. They were hit very hard in the bust and might not come back as hard as here when it rebounds.


02-13-2008, 08:35 PM
My comments, which perhaps you interpreted as 'stereotyping', are simply my observations of the area from Jupter to Miami, on the east coast... and they are quite current: I've gone there two or three times a year since the mid-eighties. I think my characterization also applies to the Tampa area, which I've been to a few times over the last few years....

Perhaps the rest of Florida isn't like that... and I'm told that the Jacksonville and St. Augustine areas are really nice.... so maybe Ocala isn't like the area I've known for many years, at all.

As for the temperature and humidity.... some like it, others don't. I positively cannot tolerate it... but, as they say, de gustibus non disputante....

Wasn't you in particular, Norman. It's the same things you hear and the stereotypes are antiquated. The tourist trap towns are really just an extension of what you will find Anywhere, USA. It's the market driven assemblage of what people from out of state flock to in which to keep with all the comforts of home. Tampa has a lot to offer but one has to get off the newly beaten path and not be afraid to get a little dirty. Tampa isn't my favorite place but if I want to earn a good living, above and beyond what I consider to be my Floridian realm and keeping within close proximity of such, I find it convenient to live here. Anything else is within 2 hrs in any direction accessible by both land and water. It takes a certain on the edge approach to find Florida's treasures but if the creature comforts have to be close at hand at all times, one might as well stay where they are. I'd rather be warm than cold but I have kicked my share of snow's arse.

Let's face it, the human body is mostly water, has a temperature of 98.6 and if we were meant to live up there in the dry/cold tundra land, we would have been born with fur. :D

02-13-2008, 09:17 PM
A very fine and fun film, which features the Florida coast as a distinct character, is "Wrestling Ernest Hemingway."

I can understand Norm's disgruntlement. It's been years since I've been down that way, but I saw the flogging of the charm, and its loss. Before Steve married he had a little apartment just three rows back from the sand at Neptune beach, an ocean place outside of Jacksonville. That ocean side was charming. You could walk one way to the beach and the other for a bun and some coffee. I rode up to Mayport one day, and ate lunch in a rickety wood-framed seafood house perched on the water, part of it on pilings.

All of that is mostly gone.

02-13-2008, 10:03 PM
I don't think it is a real picture.


Most likely real. The view out the back yard of my place in Deland.

The property taxes on my acre of heaven came to 1800 and change this year. 3 bed 2 bath single story wood frame. I paid a little more that 100k when I bought it 4 yrs ago.

02-14-2008, 06:52 AM
I was talking to the alligator control officer (yes, we do have one of those) and he told me that it is not uncommon for gators to climb short chainlink fences. I don't see why that picture wouldn't be real. A couple of years ago we had one walking through the middle of the plant out here and it had to be removed. It wouldn't do to have some sleepyhead making his rounds at 3am and trip over a 10' alligator.

Mickey Lake

02-14-2008, 11:46 AM
"I don't see why that picture wouldn't be real."

Oh, it could be real, but it looks shopped.

A favorite memory is swimming in the springs of the central part of FLA. Big, warm, limestone bowls you could swim in and look at the fish, Also fairly large streams running out of them we canoed on. Those two profs were great. Took us into wonderful places in both Georgia and Florida.

The gators. Yeah, I wouldn't want to tangle with a big one, but they are generally content to live off nestlings and turtles. Every once in a while you'll hear about a dog or a kid getting et, but they don't mess much with full grown humans. Just a part of the charm, like black bears are up here. Mind your Ps and Qs, teach your kids and your dog to do the same, and not much problem.

I'm kinda glad, well fascinated, the every once in awhile someone gets nabbed by a creature that lived with the dinosaurs.

02-14-2008, 12:24 PM