Florida dreams

Driving around Florida was perhaps the happiest I’ve been.

This was back in June when responsibilities were low and expectations were high

when the orange-clad Disney-donning streets always led us to Chick-fil-a or Moe’s at the height of hunger

stomachs beaten by pangs, the allure of burrito bowls and buttery milkshake broths awaiting.

We stopped in at all the parks and scaled iron-fisted fortresses and dropped

down vicious clanging paths

took oodles of pictures for the ‘gram and drank pint after pint of poisonous soda

to ward off the southern sun, bleeding onto our skin…

while fabric Mickeys and Minnies gasped for air

through the winter-laced fibres of their bulbous heads

probably paid a pittance

to stand in the sun and boil like broccoli

skin wretched and pasty at the end of the day; ours firetruck-red.

We went to Medieval Times because you said I ought to get a taste

of American pastimes

there we watched horses charge up and down with stout little fellows on their backs

wielding sticks and swords

jousting like they might have done back in the day

while we hunkered down over a medieval meal

turkey leg, garlic bread, tomato soup and enough Coke refills

to disintegrate a steak, and rot my molars.

Florida

As we rolled into Florida,

Pink, tasteless, gut-wrenching, blossom-coloured buildings

Adorn the sidewalks with big lettering

And lopsided decor.

Wide shopping strips full of Disney discounts

Arouse passers by with promises of cheap thrills

And bloated rollercoaster rides.

Applebees, Taco Bell, Red Lobster and Krispy Kreme kiosks

Make young mouths water and old wallets yawn open.

Guzzling Dr Pepper at a Chick-fil-a,

That famous southern hospitality surrounds me.

Please and thank you and door holding and excuse me’s ring through the air,

Orlando residents go about their busy days,

Ambling along highways practically co-owned by Disney,

Or at least it seems that way. Big, bulbous billboards featuring Mickey, Minnie and Pluto

Sit next to Florida orange juice deals

While Universal’s coasters perch idly in the background.