"Not all those who wander are lost" J.R.R. Tolkien

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day in Key West

No idea what type of tree this is but it is huge!
We spent yesterday in Key West and enjoyed soaking up the local culture, wildlife, seafood and sunset.  One of the interesting aspects of Key West wildlife are the wild iguanas and the Gypsy chickens that have been roaming the island for the past 150 years.  They apparently came from Cuba and cause no small debate among the island residents.  Many folks are fond of the beautiful birds and want to keep them free but others think they are noisy and messy.  Of course, the animal rights folks won't actually let anyone eat them which I think is utterly ridiculous.  Eggs and meat all over the island makes for a cheap Sunday brunch!  Donald kept joking that the chickens are part of Key West's "feed the homeless" program.  Not a bad idea!

We visited the Mel Fisher Treasure Museum which was so fascinating.  He spent 16 years finding and bringing up the wrecks of two Spanish galleons that sunk, full of gold and silver, just off of Key West in the 1600's.  We saw real doubloons and pieces of eight, huge silver bars and ingots of gold stamped with their governmental taxation stamps.  We also saw many artifacts rescued from the bottom that survived amazingly well, like plates and silverware, daggers, rapiers, cannons and shot.  

After the museum we had an outdoor supper of snapper (me), mahi mahi (the boys) and my Montana man had a steak!  Of course, we had Key Lime Pie for dessert and my youngest son had fried banana cheesecake.  I'm not sure I liked it but it was definitely different.  Then we walked to the southernmost point in the United States and watched the sunset which was very beautiful.
Going. . . 

Going. . . 


The boys played in the water for quite awhile after sunset, even though the water was quite cold.  They didn't seem to mind!  

Since I was in a "color" frame of mind after yesterday's blog I took a lot of photos trying to capture local colors.  I don't know what these blooms are except that I believe the last one is a type of orchid someone grafted into the branch of a tree.  It was gorgeous, just glowing in the dark in someone's yard.  Feel free to let me know what the rest of them might be; also, they are actually tree blooms, not flower blooms.


  1. I believe the second photo is bougainvillea. One of my favorites!
    I think the top one is a Phalaenopsis Orchid.
    The bottom one kind of has me stumped. The tree behind it looks like a magnolia or mangrove. But I would expect to see more foliage near the flowers...
    You should come in late Spring/early summer. Becky has tons of flowers in our back yard! - Doug

  2. Doug- I had no idea of your horticultural background!! Way to go! The bottom one was literally grafted into a tree branch. You could see that someone had wrapped the long stem around the branch and this thing was surviving. No others like it in the tree. Very intriguing. And I should have known bougainvillea because we had it in WA and VA. I'm just not good at remembering flowers. I can pick out the roses and the tulips okay though!