What it’s like to vacation in Florida right now

Florida, as usual, has been making headlines, as coronavirus cases across the state spike as angrily as the summer heat. But even in raging pandemic times, there’s still no putting a state this diverse in a box.On July 4, there were 11,458 new confirmed coronavirus cases in Florida — a new single-day high for the state. Some steps toward reopening are being rolled back and public health officials are sounding alarms about the increasing strain on health care systems.But during recent back-to-back weekend trips with my family (our first vacations since all this began) from my home in Tampa to nearby Clearwater Beach and south to the Florida Keys, I found travelers were out and about making the most of all the Sunshine State offers. Unsurprisingly, their coronavirus precautions varied widely, much in the patchwork fashion that’s defined the pandemic response both nationally and across the state.I set out — masked up with enough hand sanitizer to disinfect an elephant — to talk to as many travelers as possible about how their vacations were going. And to see if I could enjoy my own, too.