Now we are getting somewhere, Key West, where we were last October is a place we are always glad to get back to – it is so vibrant and laid back and so far we haven’t been short of new experiences every time we go but still haven’t had a drink at Sloppy Joe’s.
The city was even more crowded with some racing yachts in the city which at one time were all lined up nearby.
The tours offered by P&O that are available but we do our own thing, first of all getting a taxi to the Key West Tropical Forest and Botanical Gardens which is situated on the adjacent island of Stock Island.
We are the first private visitors here today, there being a small tour from the other cruise ship in port ahead of us but they didn’t stay long as their ship sailed well before ours.
The gardens are designed to show how Florida was 200 years ago, especially around Desbien’s Pond Loop where we locate a few turtles and geese but lots of vegetation.
One of the most intriguing trees is an autograph tree which, somewhat understandably, people had written on, despite a warning notice.
As you would expect, lots of trees and foliage including a very rare Cuban Palm, a few butterflies who refused to settle for photographs, dragon flies and some birds of prey.
An interesting place and not overrun with tourists and a bargain at only $5 each to get in.
Ask at Visitor’s centre about taxi or bus to get back and strike up a conversation with Bill Hach, a musician, who offers a lift back to town dropping us at the end of Duval Street.
Bill is spending a few months in Key West singing and playing to whoever he can muster to listen to him. His songs on the CD player in the car were pretty good.
Lunch back on the ship and we then Skype Sarah sitting outside in town ( there is town wide free internet access ) – Harry has been moved up a group for his reading – and then off for a tour around Harry Truman’s Little White House, what ostensibly is a summer retreat for American Presidents, Senators and their families.
No photographs allowed inside but Anne, our tour guide makes it very interesting, including telling us about the unique poker table and the Chicago newspaper headline that predicted the wrong result for Truman’s election victory, publishing an incorrect headline showing him in defeat.
Back to the ship via a stop for an interesting variant on Key Lime Pie to do some washing as because of American Marine requirements, the launderette is out of bounds for washing from the following day until after we leave New Orleans.
Back out to land to get a hat and a wonderful sunset on our sail away on our way to New Orleans.
John & Deirdre break open the bottle of champers to celebrate John’s 70th and their daughter, Jill’s good news today of a promotion.
Tonight’s entertainment is by a ventriloquist, not something I would have really enthused about but he was good, especially with using someone from the audience to sit and say nothing, as well as his echo sounds and delayed action voices. (hallo)