Ruby (Judd) is running from her mother's death and thankless chores in the family business in Tennessee. She arrives in Florida, the Sunshine State, at nightfall, seeking identity and love. Her first priority is work, however, and though it's off-season, perseverance pays off with a job in a tacky gift shop. She's warned not to mess with the owner's flashy son (Mitchum), but loneliness drives her to joyless sex. Then she meets Mike (Field), a sensitive intellectual, and it looks as though she might realise the 'dream of belonging'. You know there's truth in these drab small-town lives, but, regrettably, there's little drama or humour to sustain interest in Ruby's vague musings on her bleak search for paradise.