NAPLES Potpourri by Bill Barnett Retired Mayor

It seems as if the Summer has just slipped away as I spent time in Upstate New York while making some back and forth trips to Naples. Last week after returning to New York from a quick trip to Naples I awoke and as always being the early bird that I am and having pet responsibility for first thing in the mornings, I opened the door to let the dog out and realized the temperature was somewhere in the 50s, and that there will be no more air conditioning until next Summer up here. It felt amazingly good! In Naples I always look forward to that first little hint of cool air usually around the last week in October and breathe a sigh of relief knowing that the next six months should be beautiful and that’s why we live here. Even after the many years we have been in Naples I’m fortunate to be able to say that we usually get to see and feel a little bit of Fall up North, there is nothing quite like watching the leaves change color and lighting that first fire on a chilly night. However, with that being said anything under 50 degrees does not work for me!

Speaking of travels, I’m sure many of you have had the experience that I recently had but nonetheless it was
a moment of sheer panic for me not knowing exactly what to do. I’m curious what would you have done in the same situation. I was flying out of Fort Myers and my son in law gave me a ride to the airport. I am extremely methodical when it comes to packing and I always have a list of necessities to check off before I leave, cellphone, computer, chargers, etc, you know the drill. We get to the airport and he drops me off and normally I don’t check a bag, but that day I did, and I just had my computer bag to carry. The airport was quiet and I walked up to the American Airlines counter and an agent greeted me and said “Bills Fan” with a smile on his face because I had my Bills face mask on. We chatted football for a few minutes and he sent me on my way to security. I cleared security and as I walked into the gate area, I had this very strange feeling in the pit of my stomach when I reached for my phone and it was nowhere to be found.

To make matters worse I couldn’t remember if I had it with me when we left the house and yet I was sure I did. The immediate problem was what do I do? I couldn’t call anyone because with modern technology as it is there is no such thing as a pay phone anymore!  There was a man and a lady sitting together at the first gate and I pleaded my case to them and asked the lady who had her cellphone out would she dial a local number for me? She said sure, and of course neither my daughter nor my son in law would answer because they didn’t recognize the number. I walk to my gate feeling more aggravated by the minute and take a seat. I then take my iPad out and text my daughter and told her in a few words my predicament. After the usual questions of where I could have left it, she said “Dad, use your iPad and go to the Find My iPhone app and you could see where you left it”. I thanked her and meanwhile boarding was due to start in about five minutes. At that moment a gate agent walked to the gate podium and said,” an iPhone and a glasses case had been left at the check in counter and did anyone here lose one?” I knew it was mine and joyfully stood up and said yes it was mine. He smiled and said can you tell me what is on the cover of your phone and I answered, “My Bulldog”, and he gave me back my phone and glasses case.

Seriously, we just don’t realize the amount of emotional value we on a daily basis put on our cellphones, and worse what our insides feel like when we misplace or lose it. I was stuck in two middle seats on my flights that day and I smiled the whole way, not having a care in the world, I had my phone!!

Since I am no longer involved in City politics that doesn’t mean I don’t follow them religiously and am looking forward with a lot of interest in the upcoming Council election in February 2022.

Have a great Thanksgiving and for those of you who have returned to Naples, welcome back!
Bill Barnett Retired Mayor 

I do respond to e-mails at:

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