Thursday, December 11, 2014

Renewing Key West

It is said by some residents of the city of Key West that from time to time they need to get off "the Rock." I live in the county but I enjoy making the trip to the mainland, better by motorcycle,but even by car I like taking advantage of the road that connects, otherwise one might as well live in Hawaii and enjoy a real island lifestyle. 
So after a week driving around in mainstream America one comes home to a fresh appreciation for the architecture of island life. Old Town, for all its lack of polish, retains a certain verve with its gingerbread decorations and relative solidity and permanence of its 19th century wooden structures.
The plainest of facades gets a lift from the old style Florida louvers on the windows.
The contrast is stark between the norm of suburban Florida where cookie cutter homes line the roads and this:
Or this:
Or this:
I was chatting with my boss earlier this week about why we enjoy living here. Jessica, a native Floridian half my age refuses to live elsewhere. That her boyfriend makes his living extracting oil from the frozen tundra is his problem. She, the Florida native, can't leave the Keys.
Odd that; I'm not a native anywhere much and I feel the same way. It just takes a week among the cold leafless trees Up North to remind me of that same sentiment and put it uppermost in my mind.