Friday, February 25, 2011

Friday, February 25, 2011 in Key West

Every Friday here in Trumbo NAS, we gather for donuts and coffee - nice time to talk to your fellow campers.  Today at noon, Dan and I, plus Chris (with Kaley) and our new friend, Wayne, went kayaking.  We had to deflate ours, put it in the truck, then re-inflate it at the put in place, Hurricane Hole.  Chris (with Kaley on the front of his kayak) and Wayne were in single kayaks.  Dan and I were in our new two-person kayak with foot pedals.  We traveled out from Hurricane Hole (on Cow Key) about one hour, then back for an hour.  Dan and I were pooped - not sure about Chris and Wayne.  Fun, though - we pedaled, they paddled, through and around some mangrove islands.  One chanel was very narrow, and went by a really old boat where some people actually live - that boat, guaranteed, never moves - I assume they have some kind of skif or something to go out and get supplies, water, etc.
Dan and I thought we would just sail by the regular kayaks with our new-fangled pedals - not so much.  We had to work had and still could not keep up with the lighter-weight single kayaks.  We found that our kayak's rudder works well in open water, and not so well in the narrow channels.

After our trip in the kayaks, we stopped at the restaurant at Hurricane Hole for lunch.  Nice time!

self portrait while on my walk on Fleming Key

these are the pines by the road on Fleming Key - lovely!

my feet in the pedals on our kayak

heading for an opening in the mangroves

Dan, taken over the back of my head!

going along in the kayak

leaving Hurricane Hole, by US-1 (bridge)

leaving US-1, towards the Gulf

Wayne, working hard...

Kaley, on Chris' kayak - cutes thing I've seen in a while!

notice the handle on her back - comes in handy later!

man-o-wars (men-o-wars?) all over the place

another man-o-war

 Chris and Kaley, up ahead

Wayne, moving along

channel through the mangroves

whoops - someone needing to pass us!

more man-o-war

open water - the gulf- up ahead

out in the Gulf, lots of jet skis messing around...

personal portrait - having a blast!

following Chris through the mangroves

'hippy' boat - people live there, in the mangroves
home to someone - radio was playing as we went by...

Thursday, February 24, 2011

loving life in Key West, Feb. 2011

The last 2 days, I have gone for a 5 mile walk on Fleming Key before breakfast - get back, all sweaty, have a shower and breakfast - feel all righteous!  Dan's been working on the kayak, doing some gluing that was needed.  We're going on a couple of kayak trips in the next two days.  Last night, neighbors here had gotten some tuna right off the fisherman's boat.  We cooked some shrimp we got on Stock Island - what a feast!  One of my walks, I was accompanied by our friend's Welsh terrier, Kaley.  Pictures below of the Green Parrot, Blue Heaven, view from my walk, and Kaley.

my favorite sign on the island, in the Green Parrot

and waiting...

friend, Chris, and Kaley

Dan's getting us coffee

ping pong at Blue Heaven...

lucky people eating their breakfast...

another scene at Blue Heaven

hula hoop just waiting for someone....

cutie Kaley

view off Fleming Key, on my walk

more water - lovely!

down by the water...resting from the walk

turns out, Kaley likes the water!

she doesn't want to swim, just wade...

Monday, February 21, 2011

Sunday and Monday, Key West, Feb 2011

Sunday morning, we went to church (on our bikes), the rode towards a restaurant that lots of people had recommended (El Siboney).  Beautiful day, as all the days have been here.  On the way, we were riding in the bike lane on a city street, when a lady opened her car door at a very inopportune time for me!  Since God watches over babies and fools, I came off really light - just a couple of bruises, small abrasions, and a lump on my head (because I wasn't wearing my helmet - dork!).  Someone called the police, because they observed the accident and saw I wasn't moving right away - I was just shaken and had a couple of hurts, not knowing if there was anything badly hurt.  I feel so blessed - after gathering myself, we just rode on over to the restaurant for lunch - obviously not very hurt!
The rest of the day was great.  Monday, we went to the coffee/donut gathering in the campground, visited, made new acquaintences...did some laundry, ran some errands.  We've extended our stay here until March 3.
Life is wonderful.  Love to all.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Saturday in Key West, Feb 19, 2011

Another day in paradise!  Lovely, sunny skies, nice breeze blowing - we did more exploring in the town on our bikes.  Went up in the lighthouse for a great view of the whole island.  Passed on Ernest Hemingway's house for now - maybe another day.  Stopped for a libation at the Green Parrot.  Stopped at the sandal place to exchange some and buy another pair. 
Went to the Post Office - there are roosters all over the place, just strutting around like they own the place.  We never saw any hens until today - at the P.O., we saw 4 or 5 hens, each with their little chicks (all who have survived the hawks so far). 
The thing is, since we're here for 3 weeks or more, we just enjoy putzing around, people watching, enjoying looking at the homes and business establishments, all surrounded by the beautiful ocean.  One cool thing (among many many cool things) about Key West, is that the homes and buildings are mostly no more than 2 to 3 floors high.  No high rises, no snooty-looking people like you find in some areas in south Florida.  Lots of tourists, of course (like us!).  But, life is pretty easy, slow, lots of smiles.  Lots of traffic downtown, but people are pretty patient - many bikes, little motor scooters, and cars.
Heard of a new restaurant from the guy selling tickets to the lighthouse - Sweet Tea, open for only a week.  So, we went there for a great lunch.  Now, we'll be spreading the word, too.
Met a young couple on the snorkel trip the other day - from Rochester!  They were so happy to be here, and so envious that we're able to stay for so long.  We are blessed, for sure, and will likely be back next year for a longer stay.  Now that we're seen and experienced the Everglades, we can skip that next year.  The people here at Trumbo are so friendly and inclusive to us newcomers. By the way, Trumbo is a Navy base, not Coast Guard, as I said in the blog yesterday - there is a Coast Guard presence here, but my favorite Navy guy corrected me!  Everytime we come into the base, we have to both show ID - I'm only admitted with Dan.
Here are some pictures from today:

some little chicks

Daddy thought about getting upset with me for getting too close to his 'women and children'


Daddy protecting his turf..

another Momma

old lens for the lighthouse

banyan tree outside the lighthouse

from inside the lighthouse grounds

another view from inside the lighthouse grounds

the next few are shots from the lighthouse tower

Hemingway's house from the lighthouse tower

amazing banyan tree.

sign inside the Green Parrot