Thursday, February 5, 2015

Key West vacation, day 3 -- touched and fed sharks!

One of my meteorologist friends who worked in Miami for a while used to tell me, "The sun always shines in Key West!" But it was a blessing in disguise that it was raining today. I needed to catch up on some serious work, and I got a lot done while I was in my room. It really helped me to focus!

Still, it was obvious that I was on vacation, because I kept the balcony door open to the fresh, balmy breezes wafting through the palm trees. My background soundtrack was the gentle lapping of the waves on the shore! HEAVEN ON EARTH.

I barely ventured out of the hotel today, but I did take myself to Mallory Square. I passed by the Little White House.

 Made it to downtown Key West.
 Saw the trolley.
 I think this is the Arts Museum? I took photos of the titles of things, but of course forgot that (I'm typing all this at midnight) so can't remember the names of stuff.  :)  My bad, yo.
Love the view from the top of the Shipwreck Museum, my husband and I went there a couple of years ago.
 I was disappointed this little shack was closed. It makes such yummy conch fritters! It's right beside the Key West Aquarium.
The rain quit around 4:30 p.m. and I was bound and determined to get a sunset photo. 
The sunset was disappointing from the cloud cover, but the Key West Aquarium more than made up for that.
 Horseshoe crabs. Freakin' prehistoric.
 Moray eel.
 I've never seen sea horses while snorkeling... maybe one day!
 Saw this fish out in the ocean yesterday.
 Cool anemone.
 Really wish I could remember the name of this cool fish...
 Eel and lion fish.
 I LOVE YELLOW TANGS! They look so bright and cheerful!
 Well, hello there, Mr. Lobster!
 Blue-striped grunt, I think.
I believe this one is a scrawled cowfish.
 So the sunset wasn't the spectacular phenomenon that Key West typically boasts, but it was still an attractive gray sky.
 Conch pride!
 This is a tomato clown fish! Unique coloring, right? I had never seen one before.
 Grouper. I think it's a red grouper?
 Even the baby gators were snuggled up in the chilly air.
 I've seen these huge manta rays at the Atlantis aquarium in the Bahamas... their size is truly impressive. And slightly terrifying, although they are gentle giants.
 Just some of the marine life you can pick up.
 You can touch all the stuff in the aptly-named Touch Tank!
 The guide shows off a sea cucumber and a horseshoe crab.
 We got to touch a nurse shark! The skin was rough...
This large sea turtle is named Spike. She was rescued in 1998, when she was just the size of your hand! Now she weighs 200 pounds.
 So after my aquarium adventures, I made my way around Duval Street again. It's like a magnet to me, although I'm not really a partier. I just like to look!
 It's so pretty! So much like New Orleans, but less stinky!!!
 Yay. :)
 I had amazing pizza again from Duetto's, and this time ended the meal with mint chocolate chip gelato. Happy ending to a great day!
 Bye, Hemingway!

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