The first beach signs you see on the part of Seagate Drive that snakes south of Naples Grande Resort (formerly the Registry) are the ones in the photo at right.
"Beach Access" sounds good, but "No Parking Any Time" makes one feel unwelcome.
Get closer to the beach and you see stronger "Private Property — No Parking" signs that threat en to tow away interlopers.
Only the well-informed locals know to ignore those go-away signs and keep going to the Gulf Shore Beach Access — featuring about 40 very public, metered parking spaces — at the end of Seagate Drive.
Time was, this relatively secluded public beach parking spot had some of the best, user-friendly signs in Naples and Collier County.
Now, since the arrival of The Seasons condo next to the public lot, we have this.
Now let's see how long the city and county, which run the lot and access as a joint venture, allow this impression of a private paradise to continue.
• Amid all the talk about affordable housing, one question: What does Naples Community Hospital, which complains applicants and workers cannot afford to live here, have to say now about selling about 100 apartments — now redeveloped into condos — that it used for employee housing in Old Naples?
CEO Ed Morton replies: "We sold the property some years ago prior to the acute shortage that we face today. The proceeds were reinvested in medical facilities and equipment. Subsequent to the sale, we leased a comparable number of units. The current crisis has resulted in numerous condo conversions that have made renting units at reasonable rates more challenging, as more and more units are removed from the market. As a result, we believe that we should re-evaluate a number of programs including ownership (vs. renting) of additional housing units and homeowners assistance for the staff.
"My own personal opinion is that density alone is not the answer to the question. I thought the piece (last Sunday) in the (Daily News) did a good job of conveying to folks that the answer to this challenge is complex and multifactorial."
• The mayor of Naples races across town from Comcast, where he did a national TV interview with the Fox network's Neil Cavuto, to volunteer as a target on the dunk tank at a Lake Park Elementary School festival.
Those who thought it was funny to see Bill Barnett plunge into the water, wearing a tie, included four of his grandchildren. I thought it was funny too. Naples City Councilwoman Penny Taylor, who lives in the Lake Park neighborhood, got dunked too. Ha ha.
They thought seeing me get dunked was even funnier.
Sheriff Don Hunter opted out of the lineup, saying his idea of fun isn't always the same as someone his agency may have arrested. He proposed a softball game instead.
He denies declining, as one festival organizer had understood, in order to protect festival-goers from collateral danger from someone who might be out to really get him while perched atop a dunk tank.
• Quote of the Year candidate comes from the executive director of the Sanibel and Captiva Chambers of Commerce. Amid discussion among tourism officials on whether Lee County should market more aggressively toward homosexuals, Steve Greenstein chirped: "I have always told people that if you rear ranged the letters of the word Sanibel, it spells lesbian."
Or do Quote of the Year honors go to Porter Goss? Only a day after quitting as director of the CIA, the former spy and Southwest Florida congressman told Tiffin University (Ohio) grads what he would tell new CIA agents: "Admit nothing, deny everything and make counter-accusations."
Goss went on to tell the grads that government is not the enemy.
• Let's see: Republican Goss running against Democrat U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson.
• How to solve all our growth and road problems: Just put developers in charge of widening U.S. 41 in Bonita Springs, and put the road builders in charge of development.