Naples Potpourri by Bill Barnett

Hopefully you have had a good Holiday Season and are ready for a wonderful 2022! Compared to the last two years it will be all up from here! It seems somewhat surreal to me that 2022 makes it 49 years that I have lived in the City of Naples! That’s a long time in anyone’s book. I have so many memories of the early days and I’m constantly asked to write a book about them but maybe I will start it in 2023. I’m always skeptical that if I did write one it would be a dud, or boring, you know what I mean. It does seem like yesterday that it was my first day in Naples and just the pure splendor of what it looked like. It’s hard to explain but I can only say it was pristine  and like something in my 33 years I had never seen nor imagined. My wife Chris always boasts that she got here before I did and it’s true by about 4 months. We both had prior marriages.

I have always been a people person and I thoroughly enjoy talking with newcomers that I meet. When they ask me how long I have been in Naples and I answer, they always say to me you must have seen a lot and my response is yes, that’s an understatement. One day in the near
future I’ll do a short segment in Life in Naples each month starting from 1973. If I do that then I won’t have to write a book!

Regardless of what goes on in other communities and whether the economy is weak or strong, Naples just keeps getting better and better. Although COVID of course slowed us down we are back on a roll. Our restaurants are booming, our hospitality industry is setting records, our tourist attractions are enjoying one of the best seasons ever and it just goes on and on, all good. In my 49 years of living in the City of Naples I have never seen a real estate market like ours. From my perspective it’s always been cyclical and maybe someday it will be again, but I don’t think it will be anytime soon. It’s not just the City of Naples, but it’s all of Collier County.

I have heard stories from my realtor friends about homes being listed and on the same day have three or four people bidding it up. The latest is a listing comes up on a Monday and what they do is simply say all bids must be in on Thursday by 5 pm, or a similar scenario. They can also be very particular and say cash offers only, no contingencies. However, the one factor that sometimes gets lost in the shuffle is for example if I sell my home tomorrow, where am I going to move, especially if I don’t want to leave Naples? That was a rhetorical question because I’m not looking to go anywhere.

I wonder does anyone make New Year’s Resolutions anymore? I gave up years ago because either they were meaningless but fun to do or they
were too serious, and I couldn’t live up to what I wrote. I will not say nor brag about my Buffalo Bills because they just lost 41-15 at home to the Colts today and my visions of them heading to the Super Bowl have gone up in smoke. But I’ll still be a fan no matter what. I have to share with you that when we are in Buffalo during the summer and no matter where we go, whether it’s the grocery store or a restaurant, when we leave and say have a nice day or some pleasantry the final spoken words are “Go Bills”! It is an automatic response, and everyone does it.

Enjoy all we have to offer in Naples and don’t complain about the traffic because there is nothing that can be done about it. Just allow an extra 10 or 15 minutes and be thankful it’s not the Long Island Expressway or the L.A. Freeway! Be safe!

Bill Barnett
Retired Mayor
I do respond to e-mails at:

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