Good morning or afternoon everyone. : ) I like Key West. There are a plethora of scooters everywhere. If my Bintelli were ever to feel at home it is here. I am not being pushed by cars or having to dance on the shoulder letting others pass. Mopeds galore. Key West is best explored by scooters. It is very hard to find parking for cars and you always have to pay. NOT so with a scooter. People park them like bicycles; pulling them onto sidewalks, into the many designated moped parking areas, or taking them over a curb to an open area under some trees. It is great being able to zip over to the beach or to the other side where everyone gathers for the sunset.
I finally found a spot where I can take a picture of my moped right against the water too. Still looking great as ever.
The downtown strip of Key West consists mostly of Duval Street. After speaking with some locals, the south side has the gay bars while the north side is for the straight people. In between the party spots are filled with nice places to eat, ice cream stores, booths for key west activities, and more.
I met Pete at the seashell hostel who works here after the summer is over and he gave me a list of all the best places to go and top must do activities on Key West. One of the ones I was the most excited about was the snorkeling. I bought my ticket and went out on this massive catamaran.
Do you see how blue the water is!!! : D. Family, friends, and whoever else is reading this, I wish you could have done this with me. They give you snorkels, masks, and fins to explore and see the beautiful life just under the water.
Forgive me everyone! I didn’t grab any pictures with my gopro to catch the vivid colors on the fish swimming around the coral reefs. I am hoping to go once more before I leave and will make sure the gopro is fully charged. It was truly amazing to me the beauty in these fish. The coral was better in my memory from when I was in the Philippines but the fish were jaw dropping. The colors left me awestruck. The richest blues, deep greens, and vibrant spectrum on these stunning fish, as they glistened while swimming around, are something I hope everyone can experience in person. I can’t say if a picture will do it any justice.
I met some really amazing people on the boat ride who were on vacation from Maryland. I later ran into them on one of the beaches and we got a nice picture. They each had really cool stories of their current adventures with their kids, different jobs, and they even were so kind to invite me to go paddle boarding with them! So good to meet you guys. Thanks for sharing the food with me. I am so thankful for getting to talk and hang out with you.
There is a really cool spot in Key West that everyone goes to see the sunset almost every night. It is a big plaza with all types of performers, people selling food and other drinks.
I love coconuts and the guy selling them was quite a character. The coconut man would give coconuts to people passing in an effort to share the deliciousness; reminding them to bring them back after drinking all the liquid inside so they could eat the coconut meat too! He told me not to let the other guys trick me into buying one of their coconuts with the artificial straws and other alcohol contaminating the delicious natural coconut. Definitely going the all natural route for me. : ) In the best fashion, part of the outside of the coconut was cut off to scoop out the young coconut meat inside… Just like in the Philippines.
I had been booking the Seashell hostel nightly and Saturday night they told me that everything was full. I was in quite the spot. I didn’t want to dish out over 150 dollars for one night and searched around to see if there would be a good spots for a hammock. The small beaches here and everywhere else I looked were very ill fitting. I could not find a place for the life of me without trespassing or disobeying a sign. It wasn’t looking good. Sometimes the care free attitude of not worrying can really get you in a tough spot. Most of the other places I checked into about getting a room had no vacancy unless I wanted to spend serious money.
Key West does have a lot of drinking that goes on, and on the first night I had noticed a lady that crashed on one of sidewalks next to a building just off a main road. She was well dressed and definitely not homeless. I could only assume that she had too much to drink and couldn’t make it all the way home. I wondered if I would be sleeping in a similar spot for one night. I am not about paying 200 dollars to sleep. The hostel had a room for Sunday, but not Saturday. Seeing this woman sleeping on the sidewalk made me wish I could help her somehow by walking her back to her place or something. I don’t know how safe it is around here for a woman. Whether it was the right decision or not, I kept going, being unsure if waking her up would be the best.
I walked around the strip talking to a few people and one of the local security guys kindly offered his floor for the night. When he got off, I headed back with him and slept well on the floor. Thank you Denis. He had no ulterior motive besides doing for someone what he would want done for him. In the morning, I learned more about his life on the island and how he was hoping to retire soon. He offered to let him know if I am ever in a tough spot again, and I thanked him.
This whole trip has really got me thinking and shaping my view of what I would like to be doing. I think there should be better options for just sleeping. Hostels are great example of this and alternative sleeping solutions (like hammocking) should be more acceptable and affordable. I would like to open a hostel for people to be able to sleep in safety and for really cheap. I have been shown such incredible kindness. Instead of just being a business man working to make money, I want to really help people with very real needs.
I have to give a shoutout to “Not Your Average Hotel” for everything they are doing right. If you make it to Key West make sure to stay with them if you are on any kind of a budget. They have very well priced dorm style rooms along with some delicious cheese and crackers set out around check in time. Their included breakfast generously goes till 10:30 with quite the spread of food, and the facilities are incredible. From the bottom picture there is another pool past it with a hot tub next to it. You can climb all the way up to this amazing lookout spot above as well.
And last but not least. I met, not one, not two, but THREE of my friends from when I was in Miami! I bumped into Robert from Holland in his brand new rented Mercedes right outside of “Not Your Average Hotel,” and ran into Alexander and Chris from Norway on Duval. : )
Until the next adventure.
P.S. I will try and make a note about the citation conclusion for those curious, and if I sail to Puerto Rico for a job there, or explore some other exotic breathtaking places, this site is where the dazzling pictures and stories will be told. I am going to stay near Key West till I have some answers about the citation. Who knows what other people I will meet at the beach like the girl from Russia named Alex or what other opportunities may arise in the meantime.