We spent many weekends in the Lake Okeechobee vicinity in central Florida. When we asked the locals where we could get some good barbecue, they suggested two restaurants. So we proceeded to try each. Why were we the only whites in only one of them? South Florida may be like New York south, but the rest of the state, not so much.
I really must be naïve. I thought that my father’s lessons and attitudes were heard by more than just me. He was a real pioneer. He was the president of the local Brotherhood Council for years while I was growing up. I never knew who would appear at our dinner table: the local Catholic priest, the Methodist minister, a member of the NAACP, his doctor friend from India. I still doubt that my mother accepted my father’s friends without question, but she was smart enough to keep quiet.