Tai Chi outside in February is huge treat for a Chicagoan. I indulged last week in Gulfport, Florida — sunshine, mid-70’s, palm trees, pelicans (and a few parrots). Gulfport, a small town bordering St. Petersburg and Boca Ciega Bay. displays signs and t-shirts saying, “Keep Gulfport Weird.” It’s an eclectic mixture of snowbirds, local entrepreneurs, fun restaurants, tye-dye, Beatles’ songs, a feeling of throw back to the late 1960’s. My sister is renting an waterfront apartment for a few weeks and I got to visit.
The energy is laid-back, a perfect place to walk, skateboard, watch gorgeous sunsets and play Tai Chi on the grass, by the water, or in a park. The Qi feels relaxed, with no particular agenda except to enjoy nature. So nice to dip into that for several days. Wanting to change pace a bit, we saw a fascinating exhibit at the Salvador Dali Museum in St. Petersburg, “Disney and Dali — Architects of the Imagination”, about the creative endeavors and friendship between W. Disney and S. Dali. We were totally entertained by “Kung Fu Panda 3” out now in theaters. Creating peace within, corralling the positive ‘power’ of Qi, finding personal identity build the foundation of the story. My favorite line from the wise turtle:”Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That’s why it’s called present.” Tai Chi students and fellow Tai Chi teachers, it’s a must see!
Eating lunch outside at Stella’s, we enjoyed delicious food and people-watching, tattoos, dreadlocks, Tommy Bahama shirts, Veterans caps, bright blue shorts and white tank tops, so many styles in one little block. And then a woman stopped on her bicycle to go into a local shop with a beautiful, multi-colored parrot on the bicycle handle. Just sat there and surveyed the crowd while she ran into the store. Great energy, great fun!
(photos by C. Senneff)