Cruisers become experts at multi-modal transportation. During our working years as transportation professionals, that term usually referred to a person who “drove their car to a park-and-ride lot, rode the bus or train to a downtown area, then walked to their office building”, thereby using multiple modes of transportation to get from home to work. For a boat cruiser, such a trip only rarely involves a car. Our trips now often begin with a ride in our dinghy from “Next To Me” to shore, then we go somewhere by bicycle or on foot. At times over the next year we will rent a car, take a train, or use a “courtesy car” offered by a marina. But we won’t have our own car for the entire 10 months or so it will take us to complete the Loop.
Yesterday we took the dinghy to shore, walked to a bus-stop 1/4 mile away, then took a 2-hour bus ride from Marathon to Key West. We’ve been to Key West previously with all of our now-grown children at one time or another, and found it still to be an extremely beautiful and very touristy spot.
We started with lunch at “Garbo’s Grill”, which Travel Advisor listed as the top-ranked restaurant in Key West, an outdoor street vendor not unlike some we’ve seen in Mexico during previous winters. Heidi Garbo and her husband served up THE best jerk chicken quesadillas and mahi-mahi fish burrito we think we’ve ever had. The place was jam-packed, so the wait was pretty long, but it was worth it.
Besides walking Duvall Street and surrounding areas to ogle the beautiful Keys architecture, trees and lush yards, and the zillions of roosters roaming freely everywhere, we also toured Hemingway’s home and President Truman’s Little White House.
Hemingway lived in this home with his second wife for almost 10 years, beginning in 1931. There are still dozens of cats roaming the grounds, descendants of those there during his years. They each have six toes. Many of his furniture and personal touches still abound, and it was interesting to see what life was like in those days, as repairs have been made, but no remodeling.
The Harry S. Truman Little White House was the winter White House for President Truman, much in the same manner as Camp David is used these days. The house was originally built in 1890 as the first officer's quarters on the submarine base naval station.
Thomas Edison resided in the house while donating his service to the war effort. He perfected 41 weapons during his six month stay. None of the signage said what these weapons were.
We finished off our Key West day with margaritas and crab cakes at the Sunset Pier Bar, just off Mallory Square, then took our long bus ride back to Marathon. Let’s just say that some folks on the bus had obviously spent more of their time at the bar than being tourists, and we were glad when they got off well before us. Riding the bus can be interesting.