What’s in a Name?

For anyone who has travelled through the southeastern stretch of Florida, it’s hard to miss the vast number of retirement communities that make up the landscape down there. I can certainly understand the appeal for retirees: It never snows, there are lots of people your own age, and no one looks at you funny when you go for dinner at 4:30pm. My parents happen to be among those who decided to call the Sunshine State their home when they retired. However, they had a lot trouble trying to find a community where they could be happy. The problem wasn’t the other people, or the houses, or even the alligators on the golf courses. The problem was the names of the communities.

“We saw a place we really liked today,” said my mom when she called to give me an update. “But we can’t move there. The name is just too depressing.”

“What do you mean?” I asked. “What’s it called?”

“Journey’s End.”

I snorted. “Oh come on. That’s not true.”

“It is,” sighed my mom. “How can anyone retire to a place called Journey’s End? They might as well just call it Death’s Door.”

“I guess they are going for truth in advertising.” I laughed.

“I heard of another one called Heaven’s Gate,” she said.

“Great! You can move there afterwards.”

“Why would we do that?” she wondered.

“That way you know that after you make your Journey’s End, you will end up at Heaven’s Gate.”

“Ugh! “ she said. “I think we’ve had enough house hunting for one day. We’re going to go try a new German restaurant down here.”

“Cool!” I said. What’s it called?”

“The Wurst Haus.”

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5 responses to “What’s in a Name?

  1. Warren Melnick

    We refer to South Florida as “God’s Waiting Room”, much to the chagrin of my parents, and now my in-laws who are suddenly looking down there as well.

  2. Awesome!

    My first thought was God’s Waiting Room as well, which is what my father used to call Sarasota, Florida, when we visited my grandparents there when they were retired.

    Now 30 years later, my parents are retired in Coral Springs, and we go for dinner at 4.30, after spending all day talking about the next meal, and somehow his sense of humour about this seems to be gone…

  3. I guess it seems less funny when you are actually IN the waiting room!
    My folks are not far from Coral Springs. I might see you at dinner at 4:30 next time we are down there!