Monday, October 9, 2017 : From Florida City to Key West

 

This morning, after breakfast, we take the road to Key West, the famous Florida Keys Highway, which hops from island to island on a series of more or less scenic bridges, down to Key West.

 

We arrive in Key West around lunchtime. We stay in a lovely little hotel in the historic district of downtown Key West. Rooms are actually small shaded cottages in a luxurious garden. Recent storm Irma seems not to have had any other consequences than a few broken branches. However, on our way, we saw piles of unspecified rubble, shedding light on as many diffficult situations. So I extend all my compassion to the families who lost everything but life.

 

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Ernest Hemingway's typewriter

 

We begin our visit of Key West by a guided tram tour passing by all the points of interest of the city center. We promise ourselves to come back to all the places that got our attention for a more in-depth visit.

 

Of course, Ernest Hemingway's house tops our list. For various reasons linked to the writer's personality as well as the epic inspiration that underpins his works, I am a great admirer of the author of "For Whom The Bell Tolls". What I did not know, however, but which only mildly surprises me, was that Hemingway was a great friend of cats. The decendants of his still occupy the house, and there are cats all over the place, even on his bed !

 

A few blocks up the street, we stop for a moment at the southernmost point of the 48 contiguous States of the United States. Signs underline the fact that here, we are only 90 miles from Havana and 157 miles from Miami. There is no point in looking any further to explain the very important Cuban presence in the city, which by the way dates from long before Fidel Castro's grab of power in 1959.

 

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Sunset in Key West

 

We walk down to the seashore, next to Mallory Square, seemingly crowded by all the tourists of Key West. The sky has become obscured, and for a minute a few drops of rain dare fall, but not enough to deter Marie from attempting to take a series of sunset pictures.

 

We walk further, have dinner in a barely average restaurant and then walk back to our hotel.

 

Tomorrow, we take Florida Keys Highway the other way, to Miami.