We are now approaching our final destination. If you've lasted this long, thank you. If you are longing for the travel drivel to be over, this will be the final installation of our trip to the islands.
Key West. What can I say? It was warm and beautiful and reminded me alot of Miami 30 years ago. We ended up going 2 days instead of the one originally planned. The first day was just the 4 of us so we did some touristy things. First up the southern most tip.
We found a parking spot right down the street from this area AND we got it for FREE!!! Somebody was pulling out when we were pulling in. Not an easy thing to do in the KW area.
Do you know there was a line you had to wait in to pose in front of this buoy?!! I can understand why, but when we first walked up, there were 20 people ahead of us!! That's just nuts.
Next up, the Butterfly Conservatory. We love butterflies. The Insane One wants to make a butterfly garden on the side of the house. When Epcot has their FLower and Garden show, they usually include a butterfly sanctuary that we always visit. Here are what grown ups look like at the Conservatory.
See the grown ups. They are still. They have butterflies on them. (I LOVE the look on Baby Girl's face! True emotion.)
Here are what the rugrats look like at the Conservatory.
See the rugrats. They *try* to be still. They have no butterflies on them.
They were SO disappointed that no butterflies landed on them. Whenever any would get close they would try to *help* them land on them and the butterfly would leave. Baby Girl was appeased when she met Mr Turtle.
#1 Son was appeased when we went into the gift shop and he got a rubber salamander that stretches more than Gumby.
FOR ADULTS ONLY!
The conservatory had great plants and flowers in it. I got a GREAT shot of an orchid, but I'm thinking of turning it into notecards. It came out that good. But the rest of them came out blurry except for this.
After we stop for drinks (it was HOT) we went to Ernest Hemingway's house. It was a bit pricier than we wanted to spend, but Baby Girl ended up being free and we got a discount for another local museum, so in we went. I think we spent 20 mins on the grounds alone before we actually got into the house. Hemingway had a cat, Snowball, that was a polydactyl and he is the Grandpa of all the cats there. We were hoping they sold the kittens, but they stopped doing that. Now they let the females have one litter and then fix them. They have abt 45 cats on the property. We had such a fun time petting the cats. Some were VERY social and others kept to themselves. And others were used to the public and just ignored everybody. You know, a typical cat!!
I took a ton of pictures, but will only post this one. You can see the extra toes on this guy. He was a funny one, too. He was very friendly at first and when I would try to take a picture, he would run. I chased after him but he ran into some bushes. So I went to search for other more willing kitties. Wouldnt you know it? As soon as I stopped chasing him, he came back! I still ignored him, and then he would plop down in front of any cat that we were paying attention to!! I liked him!!
He looks like he has thumbs.
We were all wiped out, but we wanted to still see Mallory Square so to take a bit of a break, I found the only LYS in Key West. Its called Knit Wits. I'd give you the link to their web site but it goes to a boating site. Not sure what's up with that. Anyway it was a neat shop. Good sized shop with lots of cottons, linens and silks. I had no project in mind and so I do what I always do, search for sock yarn. I couldnt find any but when I asked, one of the owners pointed me into the right direction. Apparently they organize yarn by color, not size or fiber, so I couldnt find the sock yarn immediately. I left with some sock yarn, a sheep measuring tape and a sock pattern. That pattern was a mistake, she was showing me what the sock would look like once knit up and she included it in my sale. I didnt realize it until it was all added up and included in the sale so I didnt say anything. I could have said that I didnt need it (its not even a patterned sock, its a basic vanilla), but I'm willing to donate for the well being of a LYS! Here's a pic of the stash.
I can't wait to start my Key West socks!
While there, I asked them how they were doing and she said that as long as the cruise ships keep coming in, they are doing FINE! If you are ever in the Key West area, stop by and see them. They are right next door to the Mel Fisher Museum and just blocks away from Mallory Square.
At this point, the kids had fallen asleep and we were both wiped out so Mallory Square never happened.
The next day in the Keys we were with family for most of it. We ate at The Conch Republic Seafood Restaurant. Again I'm not a seafood fan, but the food was AMAZING!! You can tell that the food was freshly caught that morning. I got chicken that was very nicely flavored. BAby Girl got Chicken Fingers and I even finished hers off!! Here we all are after we ate.
As you can tell there are quite a few of us. This group included 5 of the 7 kids (the IO is the 3rd oldest) their spouses and kids.
Afterward we walked a bit more and got icecream. Can you imagine all of us storming a Ben & Jerry's?!?! This is where we parted. Baby Girl was VERY upset that she had to leave everybody. She HATES goodbyes.
We still had those tickets to the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum so we stop there before we head home. It was interesting, though the museum wasnt as big as I expected. Of course I found this of most interest.
Mel Fisher was a treasure hunter and found sunken treasure in an old ship. The gold bars were cool and so was the pottery, but the scissors and needles and thimble were really interesting to me. Some things never change with time.
Key West definitely has a quirky side to it. Not as *weird* as I was expecting. But quirky just the same. Here is a montage of quirkyness.......
A tree stump with art burned into it
Roosters were EVERYWHERE!! but they usually ran away from us. This one actually posed!
Nothing says class like going to your final resting place in a powder blue hearse!
Mile Marker 0 with the obligatory bum on the grass.......
Gas prices on SAturday the 6th
One of the interesting vehicles on the road
Now THIS is a Saturday sky!!
That concludes the adventures in the Florida Keys. Thank you for joining us during this pictoral journey. Stay tuned for regularly scheduled crafting and general craziness (because that's just the way life is).