I’ve never been one to get nervous while flying. As such, my takeoff experience out of Tampa on Sunday was a first: clutching at the armrests, I was pressing my feet into the floor with my eyes closed and my mouth distorted into a grimace. As the plane bounced and wove its way through the storm clouds, I focused on thinking positively, but I was also playing the news footage in my mind.

A local woman returning from spring training in Southwest Florida was one of the passengers on board the plane. Security camera footage of the boarding process shows Victoria Welch preparing to pass through the gate. She is the woman visible in this footage wearing the Red Sox sweatshirt and…wait a minute…is that a Yankees book?

“The one time I buy a freakin’ book about the Yankees,” I muttered, making my seatmates laugh, “this happens.

(And how is the book? If you like baseball, you should read this book. I’m hooked. Great read.)

While it was touch and go for a bit, everything worked out fine, as flying tends to do. Of course it did. And now I’m back in Boston, where it’s cold, rainy…and lovely. I’ve missed home and it feels good to be back, drizzle and all.

It’s easy to endure the damp chill given the fact that I spent a big chunk of the day looking at photos of brilliant blue skies and palm trees. Photos are now available on flickr, including both Red Sox spring training games, my tour of City of Palms Park, Captiva Island and Lovers Key. Oh, and the quick walk up to Yankees territory during one day in the greater Tampa area.

Among my favorites I haven’t already included here:

ST-14

ST-69

ST-28

ST-39

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