2018-06-22 Key West Day 3

Just when you thought it couldn’t get better, it does. Here I am again on my newest favorite elliptical machine facing the ocean thinking about my day yesterday.

We’ve had a steady set of planned activities but it hasn’t felt like we ha e been rushed at all. Waking up in the AM feeling good (perhaps a little hung over), but not needing to jump out of bed right away for any reason. It’s been a great balance of excursions and R and R.

Yesterday was the piece de resistance thus far. A sea-plane ride out to the Dry Tortuga National Park. Arguably one of the most difficult to get to and therefore least visited National Park in the US. If you ever looked at a map of southern Florida, you would think that Key West was as far as one could go, but in fact it is not. It’s just where the highway ends.

About 9:45 AM we boarded a plane with 8 passenger seats (plus two more in the cockpit) and took off from Key West International Airport and glided a cool 500 feet above the water and tiny uninhabited islands until we arrived at our destination, Fort Jefferson. We landed on the water. That’s what makes a sea plane a sea plane, it can take off and land from water or a runway. It was super cool, and surprisingly a really smooth ride from start to finish. We landed near a beach at the north side of the island and departed into sand.

At the island there’s two main attractions, good snorkeling around the outside of the fort and touring the fort itself. The structure is massive. They said it was the largest brick structure in the Westen Hemisphere and can be seen from space like the Great Wall Of China. Three stories high and circular in totality. The interior of the structure was large enough for rooms and hallways and of course the inside a wide expanse of land. Built for strategic Naval positioning but most often used to house prisoners. Such interesting history.

Our first order of business after arrival however was to get to the snorkeling. I could do a whole post about that and since we are going again today (somewhere else of course), I think I’ll save that for later. Needless to say, with my fear of drowning, it was quite the experience for me.

The whole excursion, plane ride included took about 4 hours. It was just enough because the Florida heat and sun is unforgiving. On the way back, the pilot asked us if one of us wanted to sit in the cockpit. My answer.. “Hellz yes!!”. It was icing on a delicious cake.

I saw so many sea turtles out in the ocean. JS saw more than that, dolphins and Rays, but that’s probably because I don’t j ow what I’m looking at. Or what to look for.

When we arrived back at the condo we were wiped out and laid around napping for a few hours. Just enough of a rest to recharge and eat bedore heading out to find drinks and watch the sunset from “sunset pier”. There were literally thousands of people gathered there to also witness it. The pier is hopping with bars and shops and restaurants. After sunset we stopped to watch a steer performer… ridiculous Reece. Then we wandered around more and eventually decided to call it a night.

It was another amazing day and like I said, hard to top. We have a more chill day planned for today with no absolute scheduled activities. More snorkeling, visiting a few Key West sites, and whatever else we can find…

Live from Paradise,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-06-21 Key West Day 2

We’ve already done so much here I can hardly believe we’re only in the middle of day 2. Yesterday we went on a glass bottom boat tour around the see and it was about 45 minutes out, 30 tooling around out on the aqua water and 45 back. What can I say about Florida so far?… it’s hot and the sun is brutal.

When we arrived back at port we walked around that very touristy part of town and stopped in a few places to have a drink. One of those places was Captain Tony’s which had live music and hundreds of dollar bills stapled to the walls and ceiling (it also had a bunch of bras hanging from the ceiling too). We sat for a bit and talked and then moved on down the street. I’m not much for shopping so just walking around and talking was nice. We It’s a very interesting area with lots of rich history. In the evening we had dinner reservations for a really nice place.

We had crab cakes and oysters for apps and I had rated my crab cake at lunch the day before at a six out of 10. This one was a solid 8. It’s about the crab and the way it is prepared, but also about the sauce. A good sauce can elevate any dish a few points and is absolutely necessary to hit the top. Cheeseburgers might be my main jam, but crab cakes are on my top three list. If I go somewhere they have these things, I’m commanded internally to order them. The third thing on that list is a Reuben sandwich. If I ever go somewhere and they have all three, then I know I am in trouble.

The name of this place was Prime – and I knew JS would be getting the surf and turf and I didn’t really feel the need to have a steak also so I elected to have order the pork chop with mashed potatoes instead. Again it was the sauce that made it what it was. At dinner we had more great conversation and I ended getting a little teary confessing my feelings. Not that the alcohol had anything to do with that but I had had a few more drinks with dinner and they were not made for a lightweight like me. I know he feels the same as me because I can see it in his eyes. He reciprocated my affections and we finished our meal and walked hand in hand around the docks. It was wonderful. Everything with him has been wonderful. He has gone above and beyond to make this trip really special and has done a great job planning everything.

When we got back to our condo, I was still really tipsy and insisted that we get in our swim suits and head out to the pool. We grabbed another cold drink from the fridge and did just that. By this time, the sun was long set and it was dark save for the lights around the pool area. We were the only ones around and swam back and forth for a little bit. I suppose I was just trying to get the most out of the day as I could, because that’s just who I am. I didn’t want the day to end. I know I will never have an opportunity to re-live the day, so I didn’t want to waste a minute.

I don’t even know what time it was when we decided to head back inside, but it eventually seemed like the right thing to do. Of course we had a little bit of sexy time and then both fell fast asleep for the night after that. A very full day indeed.

Today has already topped yesterday which is tough to imagine. I definitely intend to write all about it because I never want to forget all the things, but we are soon to be headed out to explore a different area of town soon.

Loving Every Minute,
~Miss SugarCookie

2018-06-20 Sunrise in Key West

Today I am waking up in Key West Florida. Yesterday at this time, I still didn’t know where I was traveling and so far it’s been an incredible adventure. You know you are on to something when even the longest travel day turns out to be an amazing experience. JS has spared no expense to make sure of it. Just being together through the “fun” that is air travel made it not as bad.

First thing in the morning we had a three hour flight to Miami which was delayed by about 45 minutes due to a thunderstorm in the area. When we arrived in Miami it feels like we walked like 5 miles to get our bags and get to the rental car. After that, we drove for 3.5 hours to get to our final destination with just a few stops along the way.

We drove through all the Keys to get to the very last one.. Key West. I had heard of the Keys but never researched much. Some of the drive was across bridges that connect the islands and on the map, it looks like you are just driving out on the ocean. We got out of the car a couple of times to check out different things. The first time it was to see a monument to a hurricane that hit the area in 1937. The second time it was just to get out of the car and take some pics of the vanishing horizon. At one point, you could look out at the ocean and the sky and not tell when one ended and the other began. I’d never seen anything like that before in my life. While we were stopped we also climbed down to the water on some giant rocks and saw the biggest iguana I have ever seen in my life (including at the zoo). There he was, just basking on the rocks. He ran away when we got close to take a pic of course, but it was neat.

When we arrived we got settled in and had a quick rest to recover from our travels. Our condo is just a few blocks from the southern most point in the US and it is absolutely spectacular here. After that, we got back in the car to head to a fish market in town for drinks and a late lunch. I had a crab cake sandwich and a tiny little bottle of Rose. The town itself is very quaint and all the houses and businesses are nice. The buildings have a sort of Caribbean feel (lots of white) and of course there is a ton of lush vegetation and it’s quite tropical.

We went to the grocery and got supplies for the condo and then drove around at sunset looking for a good vantage point.

When we arrived back at our home away from home we had a few more drinks on the patio overlooking the water (which is when we realized we forgot bug spray). JS cooked a late dinner and we settled into the couch for a relaxin evening. It was truly a full day and a great start to what I can now call our Florida getaway.

It’s 7AM here now and the sun is up. He’s planned a fun day for us today which includes a glass bottom boat ride. I can’t even describe how lucky I feel to have met him. We’re going to have such amazing adventures together. First thing is first though – back to bed! 😉❤️

Loving Life,
~Miss SugarCookie