Thursday, December 24, 2009

Going Native...

Well we are starting to adapt to living in Key West (and loving it as we knew we would!!) - in fact it's pretty much been a whirlwind since we got here which is why I'm unforgivably tardy with the blog! We also haven't taken many pictures but I promise to do better going forward (it's just that a camera is such a tourist giveaway and we are trying to blend in like locals!) So what exactly have we been doing?

We have gotten to meet most of our dockmates here at the Key West Harbor Yacht Club - all of whom are lots of fun and many of whom are planning on being here for the winter so looks like we will have a great little boaters community here!
Our New Home at Key West Harbor Yacht Club
In fact we are all having a merry ho ho dock party on Coconuts, a great looking tug type boat, tonight!
M/V Coconuts
We needed to solve the issue of transportation (we can't always borrow Brett and Jill's van....and KW is a long walk or even bike ride especially if we're going to be working downtown) so we decided to rent a scooter one day to see how we liked them. Now just about everyone down here rides scooters - they are an inexpensive option since you don't need insurance, plus they get great gas mileage, you can park them anywhere (unlike parking for cars which is next to impossible to find downtown) and the speed limit all around KW is 30 or less so it's not like you hold up traffic (besides Gypsies only goes 7-8 knots so going 25 mph on a scooter feels like we're flying!!!) We thought the scooter place was on Stock Island a mere 8/10 of a mile from us but when we got to where the place was supposed to be, guess what - no scooter store - upon calling them, we learned it had moved to KW (like three years ago!) Well we're tough and given that we didn't have many options, we hoofed it over to Key West (we figured the exercise would do us good!!)

Along the way we passed the KW Golf Course which was sporting some of the ugliest looking ducks we've ever seen - they were as fascinated by us as we were by them and they were not camera shy at al!!

The ibis were also feasting on something along the roadside so we chatted briefly
and then headed across the bridge into KW - yes we are really here!!!!
We rented a double scooter and took off to explore the island - in all the time we've spent down here in KW over the years, we never took the time to rent scooters or see much of the island other than downtown (we were usually on a binge mission for those 3 or 4 stolen days out of the snow!) so we had a great time bombing around the island. Of course all roads lead to the Schooner Wharf bar (at least for us) because we're not really in KW until we have the Wharf's caribbean spiced wings and a bucket of Kalik - mission accomplished!!!
Doug Sits at the Bar at Schooners
We even got to hear Michael McCloud play which is always fun - right away he played one of my favorite songs (about a former waitress there who no one liked called "She's got a butt" - trust me it is not a flattering song and rumor has it was the reason the above said waitress packed her bags and left the island!) so we knew we were home!
Michael McCloud and His Band

On the way home we stopped in at Hogfish to check out our local watering hole on Stock Island - it's always good to know the local joint close to the boat for last call!
Tammy at the Bar at Hogfish
Turns out Hogfish has a hopping happy hour each evening during the week with 2 for 1 drinks, cheap (but really good) food and lots of truly interesting characters - honey, we're home!!! We quickly realized that I don't do well riding on the back of a scooter and that I'd probably need one of my own - can you say control issues! So the next day we rented another, different type of scooter for me - and we both were much happier (the blood has returned to my fingers that had been lost while gripping the hand holds so tightly and Doug doesn't have to listen to my instructions on how to drive in his ear anymore!!!) The little things in life that keep marriages happy!! My scooter turned out to be much better than Doug's so we returned his and rented him one like mine - we are experimenting with them trying to decide what we want to buy! So we are a two Honda Metropolitan scooter family at least for this week - we have talked to the rental place and they are going to give us a quote on two used ones after the new year!!!!

So meanwhile we have had a scrumptious brunch on Muircu with Brett and Jill and fellow dockmates Bob and Nancy (who have a beautiful catamaran Sun Luver), have been hanging out at the Green Parrot with our friends Brett and Jill to see Ben Prestage, an amazing blues/southern rock musician who plays some of the most outrageous guitar we've heard in awhile (often on a guitar made out of an old cigar box - his rendition of "Devil Went Down to Georgia" blew us away!!!!),
Ben Prestage Paying His Cigar Box Guitar
have had cocktails at any number of KW drinking establishments including Pepe's where we ran into our musician friend Scott Kirby, his wife Michelle and friend Brook (whose house we stayed at in KW last Xmas!!) and I can tell you that after just a week here, we LOVE it!!! While it will be hard not cruising on Gypsies for awhile, if we have to be land based to start working again (UGH the dreaded w word!), then this just isn't a bad place to do it!

Last night we had a cocktail party on Gypsies with Brett and Jill, Scott and Michelle (who despite Scott's numerous cocktail laden evenings on Gypsies had never before seen the boat) and their friend JL who we had met before at Louie's and other fine KW drinking establishments (he works with Buffett so that was pretty cool). Tonight the party is on Coconuts and then we plan on heading in to KW to see Scott play at the sunset pier!!! Life could be oh so much worse!! Tomorrow is Xmas on Gypsies with Brett and Jill - we plan on eating and drinking ourselves silly toasting all our friends and family scattered around the world! To all of you, the Gypsies (including Puss and Boots) wish you a very happy holiday and a safe, prosperous and wonderful 2010! Our best wishes to all!!

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