Years ago Freddie Roy, a celebrated member of our weekday breakfast klatch, quipped, “There are two ways to travel, First Class and with kids!” Freddie and his alcoholic wife Jessie hadn’t any children. Freddie was conspicuously intolerant of novelty of any dimension. Children would have been for him an easy target. Freddie and Jessie routinely wintered in Florida.

At Buttonwood Bay on Key Largo the appearance of children is predominantly confined to second-generation parental visits with “the grandchildren”, normally infants but also lower school youngsters (and an occasional restrained stream of teenagers) during school vacations or national holidays.

Apart from a select few most children here are outstanding for their boisterousness and unprecedented noise. The younger they are, the more shrill are their squeals.  Buttonwood Bay, though frequented from time to time by parasitic junior family members, overall more resembles a retirement or nursing home environment.  Certainly the soprano voices of the youngsters are music to the grandparents who proudly and vicariously exhaust their legacy. Nonetheless I have yet to hear a grandparent bemoan the departure of the youthful interlopers. Today – Easter Sunday – may herald the advent of a dissimilar Arising and Coming Again. To my knowledge the most active season here is January – March; and they’re only a minority who linger beyond the end of April. The secondary visitors (that is, children and grandchildren) are I predict not likely to be seen much beyond the Easter weekend after which the focus shifts to northern climes and summertime vacations among the towering pines beside a lake.

Children are not part of everyone’s vernacular in spite of the rampant and inescapable theme of the All-American family. Happily for those who have an affection for the furry creatures called our pets, Buttonwood Bay is decidedly “pet friendly”. The variety of pets being routinely walked by their owners each day is astounding, from the smallest French bulldog to the largest Afghan hound. Because Buttonwood Bay is a gated community surrounding two diverging water inlets, the opportunity for immediate, uninterrupted perambulation is profound. The extensive growth of encircling vegetation ensures there is always a comfortable shade. And the bobby fishing boats and yachts afford ample diversion if the azure dome and the turquoise sea are insufficient.

For those of us who have forgotten what it is like to be a kid, there are endless absorptions available here to preoccupy even the most curmudgeonly temper. Among the options are a fitness centre, racquet ball and tennis courts, swimming pools; and, my favourites, photography and writing. Thanks to the Team Reach App exclusively for the Buttonwood Bay community there is a constantly expanding resource of artistic and athletic enterprises.