I was in Tampa this morning, at the port, waiting for my customers who were returning from a cruise.

The disembarkation system is well organized, if only for those onboard. One imagines that in the past they tried allowing folks to leave whenever they chose. Inevitably, everyone would have wanted to leave immediately after the ship docked, creating an unholy mess – imagine three thousand over-fed cruisers passing through a ten-foot gangway all at once. Lawsuit, here we come.

Each cabin has a specific time at which the occupants bid adieu to the Lido Deck, kiss the buffet table good-bye, and head back to terra firma. Unfortunately, we ground transport peons have no way of knowing what that time is for our customers until it’s too late, so there is no choice but to be there for the first wave.

Which is fine when they are in amongst the early leavers, but sucky if they’re the last. Guess which today’s were.

But that’s fine. It was a nice morning, getting hot and sticky (and – yay! – rainy) in Florida now, giving me plenty of time to find interesting photographic subjects.

The kvetch factor was pretty high there today, with wives carping at husbands, and parents snarking at their uncommunicative teens. I’m not sure why this day was worse than others, but there were some lighthouses of calm. Like the group above. They had clearly enjoyed their cruise, and let the afterglow of nice linger a while.