Saturday, October 22, 2011

A Day Out

One part of going to Miami is to try something we don't usually eat on the Rock. The Asian place my wife was craving was closed, Vietno-Nipponese-Korean fusion I think it was but as usual she had a back up. I don't how she does it but she knew there was a French Café nearby.

The bread was crisp and the contents excellent. A Mediterranean Croque Monsieur with smoked ham and cheese warmed and half melted put us in France. I ordered a Salade Niçoise which came on lettuce which surprised me. I expected boiled eggs, asparagus and mayo. Luckily I'm always up for an adventure.

The pastries looked superb but my American wife wanted a peanut butter cookie from next door...I yielded with good grace and got a white chocolate cookie to assuage my battered Euro sensibilities.

No Babas and no Napoleons for me. Target was the usual. My wife and her friends are hoping Target comes to Rockland Key's planned new development. I could do without the blank stares and television worship these places induce.

It was cold yesterday. I soldiered on in shorts and sandals but some people found 75 degrees hard to take without protection.

We were a long way from the end of Highway One but we were connected somehow to home away from the chaos of the real world.

Besides, when you go to the Big City you never know what weird shit you may get stuck behind. This guy may know how to drive helicopters, but he was terrible at getting the truck round a corner.

"...and more!" I love that advertising slogan. So vague and all encompassing as to mean nothing. "Aerial support and kosher dogs!"

The drive home sucked oddly enough. There was tons of traffic in all directions. Half of them drove ten under the limit and drove the other half mad such that I got passed on any and all sides by some very angry people. One van took the biscuit, with a personalized tag AMANDA P which passed me on the median at Bahia Honda such that the car which was mad at Amanda tailgated me wildly until I found a spot to pull over and they went head to tail all through Big Pine. You almost wish the economy would keep getting worse (it will) just to see how crazy your neighbors will eventually get (they will-brrr!).

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Walk A Mile In Miami

With a temperature well below eighty degrees and no humidity it was easy walking even for my hairy yellow Labrador. I'm not sure what Cheyenne thinks of the big city, if she thinks of it at all, but she lumbers along much as she does in a Big Pine neighborhood or in Old Town's local intimacy.

I keep a tight leash, relatively, on her here as cars come from all directions and if I have to ponder how to cross the street I'm not sure how she would cope alone.

I was talking with a colleague last week, about his girlfriend's business aspirations which she thinks can only be satisfied by a move to a Big City. I can see the draw for young people if they have any ambition at all. Key West is not a town that can satisfy the needs of the ambitious. I frequently field questions about moving to Key West and my standard answer is to leave your ambition at home. The good jobs are taken, the ones that pay real money. Even doctors have to work like dogs to make it in Key West, unless they have a private income.

Despite the Republican mantra that "if you're poor blame yourself," I am glad I was at the back of then line when desire and ambition were being handed out. It let's me live where I want, as I want, a form of Consumer-Zen self abnegation. Not Miami, never Miami for anything more than a shopping expedition or two, consumer style.

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Mile Marker 87.9

Were you to find yourself out and about on what appeared to be a beautiful Spring morning, fresh crisp air, sunshine and white puffy clouds scudding overhead you might forget you were in the Fabulous Florida Keys.

However checking the address on the imposing and severe gate facing the old Overseas Highway you might be reminded of your actual surroundings. The street number is the giveaway.

89701 is how Mile Markers are expressed as addresses in the Keys. MM Zero is of course at Whitehead and Fleming Streets in front of the County Courthouse, which is one end of the Keys. Mile Marker 112 is in the Eighteen Mile Stretch and marks the boundary between Monroe and Dade Counties. These things are quite punctilious it turns out, as is the renter of this magnificent property, duly noted as licensed, no doubt a sensible way to keep mosey neighbors quiet.

Anyway this is Mile Marker 89.7 with each mile subdivide into hundredths. Thus the Summerland Key post office at overseas Highway 25,100 is at mile marker twenty five and so forth. It is a brilliantly simple and easy way to find one's destination along the Highway.

And having made that point, as an aside I was quite surprised to see how many trash cans of yard waste it takes to keep a McMansion looking tidy around here.

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