Saturday, August 6, 2011

Cell Phone Parking

My wife spent a few days, the last of her summer break, with relatives Up North and throughly enjoyed herself. I was rather jealous as she got proper Mexican food while she was away. It was my duty to go and pick her up.

It turns out they have a weird new place to stage so you can wait for the passengers to get their luggage without cluttering up the arrivals area which is the place where one is constantly being moved along. This staging area seemed to me to be a great idea.

And I was not alone in my approval. You are not allowed to abandon your car here but I did get Cheyenne out for a quick sniff.

And discovered we were not the only ones waiting.

Flyers all, I wondered why the birds found this odd place such a splendid hang out.

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Surprise Crocs

Our supervisor at work has been on vacation so there hasn't been much in the way of paperwork in my box lately. Still I check it from force of habit when I show up at work. "No bumpf," I remarked casually to Keith as I came on duty. "That box is yours, the one on the floor," he said.
"No no," I replied "My box is the second from the top, nowhere near the floor."
"No," he countermanded me patiently "The cardboard box on the floor is for you. It arrived just after you left on vacation."
"I never ordered anything," I was completely confused.
"Well if it's a bomb don't open it anywhere near me," Keith said looking a bit old fashioned at the box from Chippewa Falls of all unknown to me places. We haven't had a bomb scare in ages so I went ahead and opened the package. The plot simply thickened.

Well bugger me, I thought after the package failed to ignite and instead out popped a pair of exactly correct size 12 pink Crocs.
"What's this then? Pink Crocs? They match your iPad holder." Keith was more mystified than I was. Then the penny dropped when I figured out the name of the sender. All I had to figure out was how to explain this extraordinary chain of events to Keith who was staring at me quizzically.
"A blog wife..."
"I don't need to know," Keith muttered looking away hurriedly. Too much pink scares this manly man. Luckily he supervises my opposite shift so I only work with him when I'm doing overtime.

All I have left to say is thank you Amanda in the BVI ( check my web list for her blog) for this very pleasant surprise and I am sorry it took me so long to connect with the package. Blame my vacation followed by my boss's vacation and only a chance remark from Keith got it in my hand. I shall think of you each time I wear them.

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Key West Pix 1

I am very glad to be home from my long annual vacation and being home I get to see odd little things around town that catch my eye. Like this: what a great spot to be waiting for the bus.

Here we see drive-through banking Key West style. I love seeing the practical daily use of bicycles. This is the main reason I wish I lived in the city, cycle riding, despite all the daily annoyances that keep me happy living in the suburbs.

More cycle riding. Look closely and you'll see Jack Riepe leering from behind a very wide lamp post. These cyclists, visitors, were actually an enormous pain, riding two wide, wobbling and cutting across traffic no matter who was coming up behind. Typical bad cyclists from out of town. As long as they spend money we love them. No cyclists were hurt in the taking of this picture (I was stationary waiting for their next bad move).

Dumb parking. I drive a relatively small sedan, a Ford Fusion but I couldn't fit in the truncated space.

Key West is a small town. Do you know your letter carrier's name? I don't but I am a misanthrope. Unusual among Americans, I appreciate the work of the US postal service.

These are the views you miss when you are away from the Keys.

The paper had an article recently talking about the reduced income for commercial fishermen owing to fish stocks being ...fished out. Major bummer, folks.

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Working Key West

You don't think of the Key West harbor as a working harbor but it is, in-between cruise ship visits and yachts and stuff. I'm not sure what this ship is but I'm guessing it's some kind of research vessel, which I figured counted as a 'working' boat for the purposes of this essay.

This is my colleague Officer Lipinski, doing her rounds on her bicycle, being helpful to tourists and moving along those that don't belong.

My buddy Curt was working his shift at the Conch Fritter stand by Mallory Square. He still lives on his boat at anchor out in the far reaches of the harbor. We used to be neighbors years ago in St Petersburg and later in Key West before I moved ashore.

He told me a story about a conversation he had with his brother who lives in Manhattan and works as an IT tech for a college. Curt mentioned to his brother he'd forgotten to take his shoes when he was going to his other job, tying up cruise ships. Curt said his brother didn't speak to him for a while after asking "Who forgets his shoes before going to work?" someone who lives in Key West was Curt's reply and it didn't go over well. Curt really does live the laid back lifestyle often talked about down here.

Some people have to stand in the heat of the the day to keep Key West functioning. This one below I know from are a previous life but Ann didn't remember me.

She's the woman who decorates Fast Buck Freddie's window displays and her work is widely admired. Her melancholy task yesterday was to paint the going out of business signs on the windows of the discount Half Buck's on Caroline Street. It's the former PT's sports bar building opposite Conch Harbor.

We talked about the economy, hoping it will bounce back. Ann is more optimistic than am I. This next guy works for the luggage carriers on Caroline Street and he had a treat for my girl.

City Commissioner Mark Rossi is a familiar figure buzzing around town on his Zuma. He supported the recent pay raise city commissioners awarded themselves, but in an abstract kind of way, as he owns Ricks and doesn't take his salary.

I thought a raise from eight to twenty thousand for the nominally part time work seems reasonable if we are to have anyone elected who isn't a millionaire however I thought the commissioners might have done better to make the raise active only after each sitting commissioner goes through an election. Caesar's wife needs to be seen to be above suspicion. However the Key West city commission felt no need to imitate Calpurnia. which is okay; they voted all us city workers a raise at the same time. And the tax rate remains the same. Must drive the Objectivist nutters even more crazy. A city commission that knows how to run a city effectively and efficiently. Fancy that.

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