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Day off in Key West
Written By: O.C.fotoguy
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Day off in Key West
Day off in Key West
Day off in Key West
Day off in Key West
Day off in Key West
Day off in Key West

    A day off in Key West! (What do mean? The only place you’re off is in the head, you may say!) John LaMere is playing somewhere and so is Kevin Poole, but I don’t know where. I was on the water in the kayak paddling into a stiff wind for a while, way too much effort; then I got some delicious shrimp steamed in beer, a bunch of mussels in Diablo sauce, after a bowl of conch chowder. All 1/2$ @ HH at Alonzo’s Oyster Bar, the best deal I’ve found here. After HH I walked up Duval Street, stopped at Sloppy Joe’s and listened to a band made up of mostly teenagers, who were very good; three less than 8-year-old kids joined them and took the mics for a round of “teacher leave those kids alone.” What a Hoot! On up Duval Street is Matthessan’s Fudge, where there’s always a tray of free samples. I picked up a piece and palmed another at the same time. I think one is the limit, but it’s really too good for only one!  
    I wanted to kayak to a good snorkeling spot off Fleming Key, on the other side of the island from where the Army’s Special Forces train, where I can see a bunch of bottom critters while sitting in the kayak, but the wind was too challenging, so I settled for a much shorter distance and enjoyed sitting and bobbing up and down on the swells. Plus, I had to epoxy two little holes that developed in the kayak’s bottom a couple days ago and then duct tape over the hardened glue, so I can readily see the wear. A short distance to assure the fix took was a good idea. I floated fine, the kayak was light when I pulled it out of the water indicating it didn’t leak water at 8 lbs./ga. that makes it hard to lift. The marine epoxy is miracle stuff. It’s so good when something works the way it should!
    My digital cell phone has turned into the pain in the a_ _ of my trip.  The battery won’t hold a charge more than 8 hours and now it has decided not to shut off, which assures it will run the battery down. I fixed it. Once it was charged up, I took the battery out and I’ll keep the battery separate from the phone and unite the two only if I need the phone. No one wants to hear me on the other end of a phone anyhow.
    Here in Key West on January 13th it’s a quiet time between the holidays and when people financially recover from them, then it gets busy again. I like it when it’s nonbusy and le’id back in Key West and Ocean City, too. It’ll get busy here about the last week of January and I’ll be leaving then for several days of kayaking in Islamorada, looking at gorgeous sunrises and sunsets, and good live music (as opposed to dead, as BatMan would say) and HHs at the Lor E Lei.
    This is seventh heaven and lots people call it paradise. This morning I photographed a herd of skimmers at sunrise off Sun Set Pier here in America’s warmest place in the winter. It’s a little chilly and the temperature has dropped to 70 degrees at 6:30pm this January 15th; good night to catch up on my writing. I was HH feasting on a shrimp (just out of the water) quesadilla, hog fish dip, and talking to the guy on the next bar stool at the Hog Fish Grill in Stock Island, which is right across the bridge from Key West. I asked him if he could read the numbers on my check.  Nines, eights and sixes all look alike anymore to me. He said, he sure could since he has fighter pilot eyes. We had been talking about photography; I showed him my books of photos that I carry, and told my panther stories. Later, I asked if he was a fighter pilot, since there are many planes at the Naval Air Stations nearby. He said, yes, he was in charge of the Navy’s pilot training facility near Reno, Nev. That’s the “Top Gun School.” He was drinking draft beer! Makes me feel good, an important person, who is a down-to-earth regular guy! He also said, he grew up in St. Mary’s County, another naturally beautiful part of Maryland, which is another plus. I never know who I might be sitting next to!
Bob R  o.c.FotoGuy
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