Sunday, December 18, 2011

Key West Bound!

I finally got packed and headed out to my sister's house for Thanksgiving.  Two days later I was headed for Key West.  My car was packed.  I had two bikes, my fishing gear, clothes, items from home, bead making supplies, books, and kitchen stuff that I wanted to bring.  Only the driver's seat was open.  Off for a 1600 mile trip or 24 hours of driving.  Leaving Michigan behind I made it just north of Atlanta the first day.  Then I stopped by the GA/FL border to visit with my cousin, Mary Jo.  Then the second night I detoured to
Englewood to visit with Gary & Carol, friends from the Traverse City area.

I was on the road early the third morning and headed down 41 towards Miami.  It is a nice drive over on the top edge of the Everglades.  Not much traffic and then I turned south on 997 to Highway 1.  I actually enjoy the drive down.  Starting down the Keys, the many bridges are always nice to view.

This picture is just as I started the Keys section.  I stopped in Marathon to get my FL fishing license and a few odds and ends (4 #s of squid).  Soon the A1A mile markers were in double digits and counting off as I headed south.  This is my 8th winter of heading out to Key West.
Stock Island and headed down Flager Avenue.  Just as I got close to Duval, "WHAM", I got hit on my right side of my car.  It was a loud thud and I got out to see the damage.  All I could see was a few feather on my antenna.  Some pigeon took off a little too slow and he got thunked by the antenna.  He survived and my car was undamaged.  The feathers are still on the antenna after 2 weeks!

Here the car is parked in front of our Duval and Catherine home, a 1928 "Shotgun" style Conch Cottage.  My daughter, Molly, & Joey rent the back and I have the front.  It is a small house but divided into two complete living areas.

You walk down the side of the house and you can see my doormat for my door.  No yard but it does have a patio in back with a grill, table/chairs, hot tub, and solar outside shower.

This is the view as you enter the side door. The downstairs has a large, red tile floor. The kitchen is small but fine for me. If you turn left, the bathroom and full title shower is there.

This is the view to you right as you enter the door.  The large, overstuffed couch against the front wall is where we like to read.  You can see the ladder going up to the loft bedroom.  Molly and Joey have a large downstairs bedroom in the back unit and a loft bedroom.

 This is the loft bedroom in my unit.  You have be careful of the low ceilings.  Note the air conditioner vent to the right of the bed.  Just remember to turn the AC down before going to sleep or you will feel a draft in the night.  Quaint, small, but "just the way I like it".

I unpacked my bike and put away my things so now for my first bike ride in Key West this year.  We didn't come down last year so this was going to take a little time to re-adjust.

I decided to head down to Mallory Square for the Sunset Celebration. 

There are usually two cruise ships that park for the day at least 4 days a week.  Every night, Sunset Celebration takes place with street performers and different booths selling wares.  You can always find the "Catman of Key West" (Google this guy!!) performing with his trained street cats.  He is a hoot.

Molly always tells me to do random acts of kindness every day.  I noticed this couple from the cruise ship and popped a picture.

I gave the couple my e-mail and just send them pictures of "getting engaged" in KW.  She was happy to get the memories of their unique Sunset Celebration.

So much for the start of my KW vacation.  If you have any requests of visits or photos, just let me know.  I plan to go fishing, sailing, snorkeling and "happy hour"ing Key West Style.