Monday, August 9, 2010

Sandra's Key West

In my ongoing effort to live up to the title of Ironic Humanitarian my wife and I had an early evening get together at my wife's current favorite spot, Salute on the beach. Sandra has been reading this blog and commenting almost from the very beginning. She really likes Key West as her preferred vacation spot.We took patio seating enjoying the sea breeze and Cheyenne joined us, served with her own bowl of iced water.Happy hour invovled half priced wines among others so we talked properly lubricated. It seems the great State of Virginia has an adherent in this native daughter. She described a land of four seasopns, which are apparently very important , even the cold and snowy ones, for proper human happiness.And such is the desire to see Virginia's modest snowfalls in Roanoke, Sandra apparently prefers to spend vacations in Key West in the summer. Or perhaps it is the uncrowded pace in the Southernmost City at this time of year.We split an appetizer tray which was a crafty move on my wife's part as Sandra doesn't eat dead pig. So we got the prosciutto and salami and only had to share the cheese and vegetables. After an extended bout of eating and drinking and talking we got up and stretched our legs and camera lenses. Results to be found here: We took Cheyenne for a walk on Truman Waterfront and dropped Sandra off at her guest house. The next day, mysteriously, Sandra showed up ready for a boat outing with a bundle of noodles under her arm. It was mysterious because noodles are just what Chuck and Wayne need for their boat.
"You're the noodle," my wife told me later, after she had given the matter some thought. "Sandra reads your blog!" And indeed I had mentioned on a previous entry how we planned to get them some noodles, and presto! here was Sandra fully equipped.Chuck, known to his intimate friends as Captain Crabmore (nice and supportive of you, Wayne) got us off the seawall with no drama and we put out to sea again. A few days ago we went to American Shoal lighthouse; this time we were going to check out Looe Key, a famed snorkelling spot south of Big Pine Key.On our journey through ther mangroves we spotted a strategically located table, which had not been there on pur previous trip, a few days earlier. Chuck and Wayne were preparing for their own road trip in a few days and they were determined to get some quality boating time in, before they headed North to New England and it's frigid waters.The day had been looking a bit iffy with a fair bit of cloudiness and a threat of rain. To my surprise the mooring buoys were remarkably busy on the reef. A fact attributable I suppose to the schools being out until August 23rd, more's the pity...The only portion of Looe Key that rises above water is a rock or two, awash at low tide, so this place really is just a reef and not an island at all.
The Sanctuary has installed mooring buoys to protect the coral from stray anchors so one frequently gets to enjoy the spectacle of inept boaters struggling to grasp the pennants as they drift helplessly by.Not this sailboat- they got it in one.They were anoisy lot in the water shouting out their finds to anyone within remotest hearing range. I think they were a bunch of youth on a field trip and I dare say it was a rip roaring success judging by their happy cries.We swam and ate sandwiches and chips and drank (mineral water) and dipped and snorkeled and swam and ate (home made brownies) and napped and swam. Wayne:
Chuck, aka Captain Crabmore (thank you Wayne):A crowded reef:
It was a happy afternoon on the water. We dropped the mooring and made our way home after a few hours and as we turned north across from American Shoal ( the lighthouse visible in the distance):We saw dark clouds on the horizon. Blog reader Sandra spacing out:Wayne looking butch below, in reality anxious to get home to his dogs, Zuzu and Tootie, who were guarding their home with an anxious Cheyenne, abandoned to their collective fate in the air conditioning.We're going to get rained on, was Chuck's prediction.
Sunny here, rainy there. The idea of getting wet sounded refreshing...
The closer we got to home the darker it got, and I was glad we were bopping along at close to 30 miles per hour than these slow pokes.
We got rained on all right, just before we reached the dock. I love the drama of thick clouds and summer rain on the water. Especially when I'm not driving the boat.The rain came down, the camera got put away. My wife made noises once again about buying a waterproof submersible camera for our boat trips. I took Sandra back to her guest house. She had been looking for a different adventure for her last day in Key West. I think this qualified.