Thursday, August 4, 2011

Clouds On Fire

I was riding home from work a passenger for a change, in a coma of exhaustion after a night of training. I find training wears me out more than usual, and I was quite glad we were car pooling back to the same island.

"I prefer sunrises to sunsets," the trainee said, proving she has good taste similar to mine.

The rains and thunder heads have produced clouds that are more spectacular than usual during the sunrises.

Cheyenne was content, mercifully, with a shorter than usual walk and hurried back up into the house after a sturdy twenty minute stump down the street.

She knew what was important, and it wasn't the state of the sunrise.

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Enterprise On Big Pine

My dog likes a mixture of walks which suits me so I hunt out urban type walks for variety. Big Pine Key really is quite big and there are a number of walks to be had in quiet suburban neighborhoods.

Sometimes they seem to be casting are d for names, any name to give to the anonymous streets. On Cudjoe Key the planners were casting around for names and they managed to come up with a bunch of ridiculous pirate names, Bucket o' Blood, Pieces of Eight, Spanish Main and so forth. Ship's Way is the main drag at the south end of Big Pine off Highway One and for a side street they came up with this unimaginative gem.

The homes in these subdivisions are standard stilt homes for the most part.

But as usual tropical foliage and a few dramatic clouds make the most mundane side streets look good.

Most of these streets with large homes are built on canals that were dug out of the rock at a time when tearing up the environment was okay. Not al the homes are on stilts.

Cute mailboxes are in evidence and this one I liked because it is a copy of the house itself.

Bigger and more liveable.

Usually when I walk these streets I carry a magazine or the newspaper and I catch up on latest motorcycle trends or localness as Cheyenne checks out the smells.

Summer time is good too because there are far fewer cars and people and wandering the street is a lovely lonely prospect. Just what a misanthrope needs before going to work.

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Keys Still Life

One of the reasons I like to keep a relatively small pocket camera in my ...pocket is because I never know where I am going to see what.

A cactus in an olive oil can.

I don't know why but I seem to notice birds on wires a lot more in the Keys than elsewhere.

An Italianate fountain reminded me of...Italy.

Boat carcases, alive dead or somewhere in-between abound in the Keys. Fiberglass never rots.

This has to be the oddest fire hydrant I have ever see. Out of service? Wrapped in an old plastic bag?

I want my yard to look like this, a profusion of painful cactus.

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Alvin Frazier Pocket Park

The city of Key West has had a program of converting small plots of land around the town into places of rest and recreation and against the odds it seems to work quite well.

This one is on Flagler Avenue most of the way towards South Roosevelt Boulevard. It used to have a steel rooster strutting on the plinth but the artist wanted it back as I recall and off it went. The sculptures come from the annual art display held across the city.

The park was created from land formerly used by the local utility as a power substation. Apparently Alvin Frazier's widow prevailed upon the utility to name the park in memory of their long time employee.

There are other pocket parks in the city and I wrote about several of them here.

I like Key West's pocket parks, small spaces yet fine places to sit for a while.

Markers for who knows whose emotions and memories.

Alvin Frazier III is more than a name tag to his family. We should all be so lucky.

Somehow the park lives on undesecrated by the universal scourges of graffiti and trash and that makes a point all it's own.

Real live chickens live outside the wire fencing and my dog found plenty to keep her amused.

But inside the park the it was as it should be, clean and quiet and ready for visitors.

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