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I had a meeting to attend in Sarasota, but I had an afternoon off, and I went up to Caliente.
This is an upscale resort just north of Tampa, in Pasco County, a naturist-friendly county with a number of clothing optional resorts. Click here to access the website.
I visited Caliente on a weekday last year, and it was very quiet. Last Saturday it was booming. You drive in past the gate - the clothed woman at the gate who, I had assumed, would check my TNS card (because I was a single male) just waved me on in, and told me to register at the gate. This was not what I expected, given the stern warning on the web that single men would not be admitted unless they had been AANR members for more than a year (I am not, but I was prepared to argue my legitimacy by showing my NetNude posts!)
I parked, disrobed, and carried my backpack and towel to the desk - the desk lady asked if I wanted a day pass, but didn't ask for credentials. My TNS card did give me a discount, so I showed it to her. She smiled. I walked through the clubroom to the pool/bar area. There was a gaggle of clothed twenty-somethings, and a reasonable amount of naked people of various sizes, shapes, and ages. There were a number of people selling clothes, art, and jewelry.
Caliente has four pools. The largest has a waterfall, is fairly cool (it was very hot out), and is built around a central island. You can swim a long distance. The next one is a somewhat warmer conversational pool. Lots of people standing around, soaking, and talking. There is a volleyball pool, and a smaller cool pool near the hot tub. The twentysomethings drank and laughed. One of them walked into the waterfall to cool off. No one took off their clothes.
I walked out of the pool area into the residential part. There is a huge amount of building, big MacMansions, splayed around a lake in which swimming is forbidden ('do not feed the alligators') but which is quite pretty. The number of big single family homes must have double since last year. No one is building little trailer casitas at Caliente any more.
I bought a beer at the bar and offered the barmaid a $10.00 bill - 'Sorry, we don't take cash, only credit cards.' This was also true in the store where I bought sunscreen. There is a full service spa - I asked for a massage but they were all booked. You can get massaged in the privacy of the spa, or out by the pool on a portable table - no one did the outside thing while I was there.
Saturday is Karaoke day. There were lots of regulars singing. All of the Karaokeers were nude. A rather high percentage of them were pubicly shaven. All were friendly.
There is a little beach at the lakeside. A party was having a wedding rehearsal. The bride was nude, the groom had a jacket on, and the bridesmaids were wearing fetching white shifts cut up to the waist on the side. I never got to see the real ceremony. I had dinner. Last year they had grouper - this year they only had tilapia, but it was well cooked. The waiter had been working there for four days, but he was comfortable with nudity. The waitstaff is clothed.
I don't know if I would make a special trip to Caliente as a vacation - it has an isolated feeling. It isn't like Desert Shadows where you can walk into downtown Palm Springs or take a short drive to Indian Canyon or Joshua Tree National Park. The only thing you can do at Caliente is hang out at Caliente. But it was certainly pleasant for a day's break.
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