Saturday, May 1, 2010

Too Much Fun, So Little Time!

Well the dirty deed is done - no get your mind out of the gutter - Doug went and got his hair cut!!! It was a pretty traumatic day for both of us - it had been over two and a half years since his last haircut and we both hated to see his ponytail go - after all, who else am I going to share my scrunchies with????
The Haircut in Progress
But neither of us was sure if the corporate world was ready for a long-haired, ear pierced, tattooed pirate so the hair at least was one thing he could change - the rest they'll just have to deal with!!! So here are the "after pictures" - refer to our last blog for the "before" pictures!!!
Doug did save the majority of the ponytail which he can attach to random baseball hats whenever he is in the mood to relive his pirate years!!!
The Ponytail
Doesn't he look cute!!

We made a quick trip up to Fort Lauderdale where Doug had an interview for a "real job" (see the picture of Doug in a suit - yikes!!!)
- of course we had to make it an adventure so we stayed overnight at the Bahia Mar marina which all you John MacDonald fans will understand is the home of the Busted Flush, Travis McGee's houseboat that he won in a poker game (for any of you that have not discovered these books, you are in for a treat - they are truly one of the greatest series of books ever written and were the first in a subsequently long line of zany, slightly off-based Florida characters although in my humble opinion none has ever come close to the charming, devil may care, dangerous yet oddly philosophical Travis!!!
Bahia Mar in Ft. Lauderdale
Unfortunately some mega-yacht has taken over slip F-18 - not sure exactly what Travis would think of Bahia Mar now with all its oversized luxury crewed yachts, although I'm thinking he wouldn't have thought the changes are for the better!!
Slip F-18 at Bahia Mar
We had a great evening strolling along the beachfront and the people watching is surely worth it's weight in gold!!
Having at Beer on the Boardwalk in Ft. Lauderdale
The Waterfront in Ft. Lauderdale

Upon returning to KW, the independence celebration was still in full gear so we watched the bloody battle (a re-enactment of the Conch Republic navy and US Navy going at it during KW's secession) from the sunset pier - the pleasure boats and schooners armed with super soakers thought they would carry the day until the Coast Guard boats turned their water cannons on them - game over!!! After meeting up with our dockmates Brett and Jill, we had an "early" evening celebratory dinner at Mangia Mangia - who needs a reason to celebrate - we're in Key West after all!!!

No sooner had we returned to the SIG, when our long time friend Mary Ouellette and her boyfriend Jim came into town - just in time for the end of the KW independence celebration too!! We wasted no time getting them settled in before we headed into town for the bed races - yes you read that correctly.
The Gang Waiting for the Start of the Bed Races
As part of the independence festivities Duval Street is closed down and various bars deck out beds on wheels and race them down the street. Words alone can not do this justice so I'll let the pictures do the talking - welcome to KW guys!!!
From the bed races, it was on to Guy Harveys,
Having a Beer at Guy Harvey's
Flying Monkeys where Mary got a "good size" sippy cup full of some frozen concoction,
Mary and Her Sippy Cup of Adult Beverage
El Alamo where Mary met a new friend and learned the cornhole game,
Mary and Her New Friend Geo
and then over to the pirates ball at Schooner Wharf for more music, cigars, adult beverages and Jim's imitation of a Macy's Day parade float (go Jim!!!)
Pirate Band at Schooner Wharf
Jim Imitates a Macy's Blimp
Jim and Tammy Have a Cigar at Schooner Wharf
Seemed like everyone was at Schooners that night as we ran into Jay and Nancy from Serendipity who were down from Marathon and Bob and Nancy from our dock!!
Jay and Nancy with the Gang at Schooner Wharf
A very late dinner at Salsa Loca was just what the doctor ordered after more refills of the sippy cup - you can't just gradually introduce someone to KW, we believe the best way is total immersion or nothing at all. Mary and Jim saw more than they bargained for that day I would guess and we had the whole rest of the week to go!!!!

Sunday after more fun and games (and some recovery time), we wound up at the Green Parrot for soundcheck where our friend Bill Blue was playing - awesome blues, popcorn and good friends!!
The Gang at the Green Parrot to See Bill Blue
Bill Blue at the Green Parrot
Scott and Michelle Kirby showed up after an afternoon of sailing so they were raring to go (or at least Scott was but Michelle was very happy!)
Scott and Michelle at the Green Parrot
The Parrot is great for people watching and some of the dancing is more than entertaining - we laughed for hours!! This coozie took the cake though!!!
Following the great music at the Parrot no one was ready to go home (except Michelle), so we headed over to Louie's Backyard where we were joined by Bill Blue, his wife Bev and the band!!! There is no better place on a warm KW evening to enjoy a few cocktails with friends while watching the stars and being lulled by the rhythmic sound of the waves lapping gently against the shore!! Late night Chinese food was a perfect way to end a great day (yes I've finally found a good Chinese place down here although I had to kiss a lot of frogs first!!!)

Our dockmates Paula and Dave snuck off and got married the other day so it was time to celebrate with them on their boat Bellissimo on Monday - it was also somewhat of a good-bye party as our friends Greg and Karen were leaving the next morning to head back to Michigan via Stuart and the Chesapeake Bay and our friends Terry and Loie on Coconuts who had hosted so many of our Wednesday night sunset parties all winter were heading out the next day for their summer home back in Islesboro, ME!!
Cocktails on Bellissimo
Jill is Surrounded by Dave and Paula, the Newlyweds
Dinner at Hogfish in beautiful downtown Stock Island seemed to be the thing to do - Mary and Jim are now addicted to Key West pink shrimp and hogfish!!!

Gypsies actually headed out the next morning for a couple days - we went out for some fishing (unfortunately not catching) and headed up to Boca Grande for the night, a gorgeous little island next to the Marquesas and further south on the way to the Dry Tortugas. What a beautiful steam we had with unbelievably clear turquoise water and lots of dolphin, turtles and flying fish to keep us company!!
A Sea Turtle Watches Gypsies Pass By
Although we had a bit of a rockin' and rollin' anchorage, the water was great and the sunset to die for!! It was great to be back out cruising again and Mary and Jim got to see a small slice of the life we've been living for the past couple years - they didn't want to come back!!!
Jim and Mary Enjoy Being at Sea on Gypsies
Mary and Jim Try Out the Water at the Anchorage
Sunset off Boca Grande
Sunset off Boca Grande
The next day was a bit rougher than was predicted but we still went outside the reef to fish - Doug and Jim both caught fish (unfortunately they were bonito which aren't good eating fish but at least we were catching and not just fishing!!!) Lots of fun!!!

Plus after a couple days away from the insanity of KW, we were ready to head back into town and hit the Raw Bar for some happy hour oysters, KW pinks and pitchers of ShockTop!!! We headed back for another soundcheck at the Parrot to see the Red Elvises who truly rocked out the house (think cross between the B-52s and the Talking Heads!!!!) Talk about a great show - we had to have their greatest hits cd for the ipod - I'll be working out to their music (sometime when I get my butt back to the gym!!!)
The Red Elvises at the Green Parrot
After a great dinner at Fogarty's, we were treated to some street music from spiderman (I keep saying this but you just can't make this stuff up!!)
Spiderman Plays on the Street in KW
before heading up to Margaritaville where our friends Scott and Dave were playing!! Brett and Jill had the same idea so we made a party of it!!
Scott and Dave Play at Margaritaville

We started out Thursday at the Southernmost Beach Cafe (guess where that was located?) for some music from the Songwriter's Festival - we learned the hard way that the best performers definitely don't play that early in the day although we did get our toes in the sand!! After struggling to listen to songs like "I like cowgirls butts" and such other stimulating lyrics, we headed off in search of alternative fun (I can watch just about any live music but even I struggled with that!) Soon enough it was time for Mary's tattoo at Paradise Tattoo that she had picked out the other day - a blue and black gecko on her ankle!!
Mary Getting Her Tattoo at Paradise Tattoo
Contrary to popular opinion, we do not encourage tattoos, it's just that everyone who comes to visit wants one and we just tell them where to go - so to speak! Well Mary's came out great but clearly she was in need of some sustenance and something to dull the pain, so off we went for an afternoon of Schooner Wharf wings while listening to the "dulcet" tones of Michael McCloud!
Michael McCloud at Schooner Wharf
Two platters of caribbean spiced wings later (we all agree they are the best wings ever!!!), Jim needed the complete set of Michael's recordings!! If there is any better place to spend an afternoon, I'm not sure where it is!!
Beer and Wings at Schooner Wharf
But once Michael stopped playing, we had to find somewhere to go so crawling up Duval we stumbled into Durty Harry's lured by a sign that Freebo (Bonnie Rait's former guitarist and former performer on Gypsies) was playing as part of the Songwriters Festival. Very cool - we watched more great music as he was joined by songwriters who have written for Keith Urban, Willie Nelson, Kenny Chesney, etc - you get the picture, these guys are really, really good!!!

But the evening was not over as El Alamo lay in our path back to the car and pork sliders and $1 drafts called our name!
Doug, Jim and Mary at El Alamo
Finally after walking back to the car up by Louie's at the southernmost part of the island (which is a hike although we would have had to walk to Miami and back to burn off all we had eaten and drunk the past week!!), we decided on an early night with some take-out Chinese!

Unfortunately Mary and Jim had to leave Friday morning for the drive back up the Keys and a flight out of Miami - we were so sad to see them leave!! Too much fun was had by all - but we'll see you guys soon!! Love ya!! Their leaving also meant Doug and I could no longer put off boat chores - we are leaving KW this coming Tuesday so we have lots of stuff to get done before then! However all work and no fun (I know, not our problem!!) makes us dull, so we hit Hogfish for happy hour to see Freebo play again!
Freebo (in Yellow Tie Dye) and Gang Play at Hogfish
He was joined by a bunch of other songwriters, one of whom had written a great song (especially for KW) called Hair of the Dog!!
Songwriter Who Wrote "Hair of the Dog"
The songwriter's festival is really cool since you get to hear very talented musicians that you mostly don't know but whose songs you do because they were recorded by other more "famous" musicians. Yes some musicians write many of their own songs but it has been amazing to hear how many songs are in fact written by someone else and just recorded by the artist you associate with the song. More songwriters festival for us this afternoon and evening - we've decided to do boat chores all day and music all night - we have to take advantage of KW while we're still here after all!!!
Weather Humor at Hogfish


  1. OMG, OMG. Doug in his suit looks like he is ready for the Mortician.
    In the Exumas and loving it. The only thing missing is you guys.

  2. Uh - that was Bob's comment, not mine! I think Doug looks cute - I'd hire him in an Exuma second!
    Love you guys, and miss you!