Thursday, August 18, 2011

Duval Beyond Reach

Louisa Street almost dead ends into Duval Street but at the last minute changes it's mind, says "Screw that!" and pulls up short.

Beyond the impromptu parking lot one can see the green and yellow trim of the Banana Café on Duval, out of reach behind fencing. Which is not a problem were you a pigeon.

Louisa Street dead ends and turns left into an unmarked alley. Which was where I thought I had been teleported to Los Angeles, California. This was where I found a big blue apartment building with dusty palms and a brilliant adaptation of an outdoor deck.

And there alongside was another fascinating glimpse of Duval, in the distance through the romantic arch...

I love these old louvers, to look at though living with them might be an issue.

I wondered if this might have been the last resting place of a favored pet (I hope).

I was pretty sure was not road kill:

So to refresh ,y brain I looked up and saw the sky looking pretty again.

And back on Earth silly signs caught my eye. A lovely house with a silly sign in front. Who would parking in the flowering bush, were the ugly sign not there?

Sunrise on Catherine, a bland wall made beautiful.

And finally I made it to Duval Street, my just reward.

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Whitehead And Truman

I love the old parking by permit only signs. They mean nothing as the permit an was binned years ago and the only parking one needs to watch out for is (handicapped obviously) residential spots. These signs are good for a laugh if you know they are rubbish.

I found this place to be utterly charming from the street. A treehouse guest house. Too bad I live down here already or I'd book a room.

Old fashioned shutters with their lovely curves. I wish modern design incorporated beauty as a requirement for our streets.

The Methodist Church on Truman near Duval has a classic profile seen with the sun rising behind it.

I guess these identical Conch cottages all in a row must have been some sort of planned housing. Cigar worker housing is generally the explanation for these kinds of things, though I have no clue. I just think they look lovely every time I ride past.

Had I been your average 9-1-1 caller I'd have called this guy in as dead, so deep was his repose and so uncomfortable his angle. We always send police and ambulance when they call them in as dead on the sidewalk. Very rarely are they, usually it's just a case of the demon drink getting the better of them. This guy just looked overworked, but sleeping.

Key West sunrise offers so many perfect angles and shadows.

A lot of people who want to see the sun come up head to Smathers Beach or White Street Pier. I just like to be in town and observe what transpires.

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The Stuffed Pig

It's early morning and you've left your Key West home to head north on an empty stomach. There you are over the hump on the Seven Mile Bridge and the warm and inviting lights of Marathon are twinkling in the distance. The dog walked Veterans Park and now it's time for a human breakfast. What to do?

Have yourself a stuffed pig perhaps?

It's conveniently located especially if like me you don't know your way around the mid Keys city. The Stuffed Pig is at the south end of Marathon's ten mile length, and it's on the Gulf side (north side) of Highway One. My wife had sausage and biscuit while I had grunts and grits, which was a depression era cheap meal, a fish called a grunt and ground meal. Now it's a full breakfast with fish, grits, potatoes, bread, eggs and coffee.

The Stuffed Pig is an unpretentious diner with all the accoutrements of a local's joint, lots of souvenir pictures and dust catchers on the walls.

I'd have liked my fish less dry but my breakfast hit the spot with no surprises, and e waitress brought me mall the coffee I could drink which is a service I appreciate very much at breakfast. I like lots of hot American coffee, hopefully not bitter and sweet enough I need no milk. This meal hit that spot for me.

I'm not sure I love Marathon, a city that doesn't seem to love itself, but I like the café.

It was a nice interlude on the drive.

It's been a while since I had a full American breakfast and I enjoyed the treat.

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Veterans Park Dawn

Summer dawn is an exciting time of day in the Florida Keys. Brady tells me it is the same or similar on the Great Plains and I could see why even though I am not too familiar with those land locked wide open spaces.

Wide open horizons whether plains or seascapes, heavy clouds and the promise of thunder and lightning and heavy rain. Exciting stuff.

For Cheyenne, Veterans Park at the south end of the Seven Mile Bridge is just one more place to get her nose working.

Get past the mosquitoes this time of year and you have a lovely seaside picnic area to sit and watch the sky.

Marathon is a string of lights in the east, the far end of the bridge, perhaps the most famous structure in the Keys.

The beach is modest but the waters are shallow and non threatening so in summer and winter you'll see people wading and snorkeling here.

It is, deservedly, a popular spot. The view toward Cuba is always fascinating.

Back in the car we have spent twenty minutes here, a nice pause in our journey north, and we have been and are, alone.

August is a great time to be in the Keys.

Yes, there are mosquitoes, and humidity and rain and thunder clouds. But it's all mine and I love it.

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