I decided to make a few quick notes ahead of our arrival in Key West, just because I'm unsure about our plans and the logistics of getting this stuff written and posted this evening with our planned time ashore in Florida.
Last night was nice, drank a few beers with Morris on the balcony while my lovely bride celebrated our one month anniversary by hitting the bed early, as is our custom back home. My little sloth slept her night away, Morris and I enjoyed a few beers, then went downstairs to check on the Mother In Law in the Casino, watched her get on a winning streak, and I finally decided to call it a night around midnight, went back to the room, drank a final beer and read a bit in my book before crashing out.
I'm beginning to think that the Ben Elton
book, clocking in at near 500 pages, might have been the wrong book to tackle on this trip. I originally bought it in the train station in London on the honeymoon, ostensibly to be read on the 9 hour plane ride back to the States, but I ended up watching a film instead, so I had this barely begun novel bumping around the house waiting for my attentions,and figured now was a good a time as any. Little did I know that Elton's prose would end up reminding me a bit of Douglas Adams
, in that it's a bit dense, but very rewarding, if you pay attention to it. I've been feeling a bit ADD on this trip, and thinking I should've perhaps tackled one of the David Sedaris
short story collections, or the self-contained Andrew Vachss
The sea is so amazing to look at, I have to marvel at the sheer enormity of it all. I'm humbled and amazed by it, even passing obvious signs of man's existance as we left the harbor Sunday, I can't imagine how sailors felt as they hopped on a crude wooden boat, and simply set off, not knowing what to expect nor what they would find. Sitting on this balcony watching the fishing boats and such slowly come into view as we enter the harbor areas is quite amazing, the color of the water changing as we get closer to land, the reefs becoming apparent.
Key west turned out to be a lot of fun, as I finish this post about seven hours later. We went into town, and Mother decided she would rent a little golf-cart-ish, doorless little covered thing for us to tool around in, as the silly island is only 3 miles long, but more than enough for Grandmother to be hoofing it. This plan immediately went to shit because they only had a four-seater rather than a six seater, and there was no way in hell K, Morris and myself wanted to wait around for the shuttle idea that her mom wanted to happen, so we left the three older members of our party to the cart and went off walking on our own, but only after encountering wild chickens running around in the bushes outside the little market that they rented the cart in. Add into this the fact that the Grandmother was really interested in eating supper, right damned now
, when we stepped off the ship, at 3:30 in the afternoon, and there's no way it could've really worked.
Left to our own devices, Morris and I soon found a bar and had a few drinks, while K sipped her soda, and we had a really nice time people-watching and just whiling away the time on Duval Street, which is the main thoroughfare in Key West. After a nice buzz, we walked many blocks down the street, kinda vaguely scanning for a gay bar for Morris to check out, as he was quite interested in checking in on Key West's homosexual culture, and neither K nor I really care where we have a drink as long as no one's being a dickhead to us. Alas, we never found anything interesting, so we made our way to an outdoor cafe and ordered a meal, I deciding to try a Mojito, which is rum and lime with mint, which I'd heard was very refreshing and so on, which turned out to taste a lot like cough syrup to me, probably due to the mint. I gave that shit to Morris and switched back to Guinness
, which has always served me well. The rest of our party was buzzing down the main drag and saw us, so they joined us for dessert, and then Terry ran the ladies back to the ship, and returned to take us to see the Southernmost point of the US.
On the Terry-Tour, as we came to call it, this is where things got really bizarre, because Terry was dead set on honking at any un-escorted young thing he thought was hot (darlins' as K has come to call them, coining his own pet name for women in general), which was a lot of them, and then you have any number of people on scooters, and in other little carts like ours bleating in response, and I began to wonder when the cops would eventually tire of all this shit and just pull us over. We did finally see all the gay folk finally coming out for the night-life as we made our way down Duval, and even a trio of drag-queens taller than me. Terry had also spent most of the evening speeding around while Mother and Grandmother did a little shopping, so he ran us by a few local landmarks, some relating to Hemingway
, which makes me feel as if I'm inadvertantly becoming something of a fan of his, having recently visited so many of his stomping grounds. I may have to read his books one day. The cart we had was missing a head-light, and had expired tags, which the attendant assured Terry was okay, since you could get away with breaking two laws in Key West, but no more, which I guess is good to know. On the main drag, with a car honking behind us that sounded suspiciously like a duck call, our little cart croaked out on us, and was barely able to limp it's ass around a corner off the main strip. We call their number telling them that car 51 is down, only to then have it start right back up after a few minutes, but the guy wanted to come and pick it up anyways, so we just followed him back to their lot, and then caught a ride back in a different cart, this one that barely had headlights at all, they kept going out because of a loose wire, and the cart that I mentioned earlier, the duck-call honking cart? They were dropping it off as we got back with ours, and the horn was due to low battery, as well as their lights that didn't work at all.
Basically, I'm lucky to be writing this tonight after the series of death-traps I've been riding around in this evening.
Terry also had people trying to ask him for a ride to Alphonse's(?) when he dropped the gals off at the ship, so I really think he'd be a good candidate for a tour company if he should ever decide to retire and move somewhere.
A great day, I'm off to grab a few more Guinness
and call it a night.
Be seeing you.
Labels: Ben Elton, Casino, Cruise, Guinness, Hemingway, Key West, Stark, Travel