Key Wested

After nearly 31 years of (sporadically) living in Florida, it's always astounded me that I have never been to the Keys. Until last week that is, when Ronny and I headed down to Fantasy Fest for our belated honeymoon. Ronny's been numerous times, and he booked us at the Eden House, one of his favorite reasons for returning to Key West time and again.

Our small television-less room (various sized rooms and suites fit a myriad of budgets) was not just a comfy place to lay our heads, but also gave this do-gooder comfort because of its Green Lodging designation. It's nice to know that one doesn't have to leave their environmentalism at home when they head away for vacation.

Almost every morning we sat on the front porch or poolside to read The Citizen, a flourishing little paper that uses first names in some of its headlines and carries Nicholas Kristof's column.

We ate A LOT (mm, and drank even more), mostly at Pepe's, but we also loved The Cafe, which was darling, vegetarian, and unfortunately for them, mostly uncrowded. I kick myself for not getting a photo of the key lime pie at Blue Heaven, with what must have been five inches of meringue on top. But life is short and dessert must be consumed as soon as possible.

Eventually though, I was tired of not cooking for us so I hit Fausto's for fresh baked ciabatta, goat cheese, and hummus - a quick meal for two under $15. The cheapest of the trip, but one of the yummiest.

On our first day there we rode the touristy Conch train, and got around for the rest of the week by foot and bicycle. I couldn't get enough of the neighborhoods and the houses large and small.
Hemingway's was pretty quintessential, but we liked his cats (43 in all, each descended from Hemingway's six-toed kitty Snowball) even more than the fancy digs.

Fantasy Fest itself reminded me of a cross between Seattle's Solstice Parade and Pinocchio's Pleasure Island. I have a lot more photos of the outrageous costumes, but enough debauchery already. (Not that there's any shortage of pics around the web.)

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