Friday, December 2, 2011

Bric A Brac

I got a bit of a start when I spotted the face starting cheerfully at me across the yard.

So I reassured myself by checking just one more piece of remarkable Key West architecture. Another lovely Key West house.

Cheyenne loves walking the city even though she doesn't seem to pay much attention to the architecture.

This house on White Street is still being repaired after it was featured in an article in the paper outlining a dispute unfortunate owner was having with the builders.

The song referring to it as construction site looks awfully permanent. I couldn't cope as I get fretting at the chaos when we do something as simple as paint a room.

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Sunset Boats

I wasn't sure if it was apocalyptic or just gorgeous. So I took some pictures of the effect of the golden setting sun on the waters to the west of the Southernmost City.

Sail does look better on the water...

The Western Union making tracks.

And don't forget the pirate theme me hearties!

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Hibiscus Lane

How Hibiscus Lane has escaped the attention of my camera for the past four years and 2300 essays I'm not sure but this is in the "better late than never" category.

It's one more alley on an afternoon jaunt through Old Town.

Off street more-or-less covered parking with style.

I love how people feel comfortable painting their homes wild colors.

And how they leave their hats hanging in the palms (?).

I have no idea how or why it got there but it's probably better than the underwear I have seen adorning bushes around town.

Cheyenne had to be convinced the little lane had simply run out when we got to the end.

Modern angular homes set against the sky.

A close up of another eponymous flower on Hibiscus Lane.

And this is not hibiscus.

Louvered windows- long may they stay in fashion in at least a few homes in this town.

And so we called it a day.

Key West: unending source of small mysterious lanes and alleys.

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Cheyenne On Elgin

Elgin Lane runs parallel with Eaton Street for a couple of blocks, so some of the addresses on the lane are in fact the back of buildings that face the larger street.

Cheyenne can't read so she didn't know the gate was supposed to be closed. She didn't even have to push.

They don't like speeding in the lane so they put down rubber sleeping policemen. I had no idea but it turns out the city of Chatham in New Jersey first used them in 1906 to slow cars down from the heady heights of 30 miles per hour, a common high speed in that city in those days.

Cheyenne was fascinated by the quality of the recycling put out in the lane.

I enjoyed the architecture.

This curious little clock face gave not the time, but the street address of the residence. That's a first for me.

A nice place Elgin Lane and we enjoyed it thoroughly.

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Sunset At Mallory Square

Grumble all you like about the switch to standard time in winter, but even this irritation has its good points. One good thing is that the sunset celebration at Mallory Square now takes place well before six in the evening, which means a working stiff like me can show up for the fun.

Jeep (and performing dog Cleo) was there singing bluegrass with a lissome female and they were grinning hard at each other. He still seems to enjoy the evening celebration even though it is said he first started in distant 1987. That's far longer than any straight job I've ever held!

Music is everywhere competing more with the sea breeze than with each other.

Will Soto is another of those longstanding entertainers who has made a career out of standing on a wire above the crowds.

Flags for the audience assures participation in the madness.

The patter is as important as the act and getting the punters to smile is what produces the income. And these performers earn good money for a solid act.

Facebook here he comes!

They don't do this kind of stuff back home.

The bugger juggles with actual flames and has the gall to warn kids in the front row he sometimes loses track...with 30 years under his belt as an acrobat and juggler he knows very well how to wow a crowd, not burn them up.

And off he goes.

They loved him.

Up next, Dale the sword swallower, a dying breed of entertainer he says. It seems there are only three dozen left in the world and he is then oldest among them all, 64 on the 19th. And he really does have it all as he slyly remarked to the crowd that sat tight in the palm of his very entertaining hand.

He swallows a mean sword but not without it leaving some marks apparently.

25 inches of the old cold steel. It looked real enough to me and he swallowed it as we shall see.

The crowd kept a close eye on him through the pre-show blather.

The children seemed enthralled.

I used to ride around like this but I never got to see a man swallow a sword.

There it is, one last look.

All eyes on the sword.

Down the hatch.

Regurgitated with a flourish. He earned the dollar I dropped in the bucket.

Now all I have to do is go home and practice with my machete. Or learn to read a tarot card, which seems less real but much safer.

The gold dude was still there as I headed out of the square.

Jeep was blathering something about the bayou...

...and sunset was far from over even as I left to go to work. Now why is it I sit up all night talking to distressed people when I could be swallowing a quick sword and be home in time for supper?

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