Day 13: Miami, Key West, Miami Beach

As you can see from the title, I didn’t make it very far today — though I sure drove a bunch of miles.  I’m going to have to trim this trip.  Most likely the states on the way home, as well as maybe the FL panhandle & some west coast destinations, will have to wait til next year.  I should’ve known that two weeks would not be enough from the size of my stack of maps before I left home.

I managed to drive about halfway through the Keys towards Key West before I needed a nap last night.  Pulled over at a quiet spot and fell immediately asleep for a few hours. Then back on the road.  It rained a little bit in the morning but then mostly sun for the rest of the day.  The drive back from Key West seemed to take forever — slow drivers and construction.  Then once in Miami, tons of traffic.  So I’m feeling rather frustrated that we’re here another day.  Although there’s so much good stuff in Miami, I could easily spend another week just exploring.

The dogs got a little beach time and two dog parks.  Both smallish but plenty adequate.  The one in Key West, Higgs Beach Dog Park, was not on the beach but very close by.  In fact, Grem almost found her own way to the water by slipping through a gate.  I called her before she made it through the second gate (freedom!) and she came running back (knowing I had cheddar cheese today).  A good thing as she would’ve been in traffic — sheesh! The second dog park was at the end of the day in Miami Beach. The Flamingo Bark Park had better fencing and lots of fun downsized agility equipment.  That was a bonus for all my dogs as none of them have seen equipment for more than a year.

Nik and I have developed our own style of agility over the years with natural and manmade obstacles. I can pretty much send him over, around, and through anything. Here he’s “hup hup”-ing a low fork in a tree.

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And here he is chilling in the communal drinking bowl with his blue dinosaur (he’s favorite toy at the moment).  He knows most of these dog parks have a hose and water set-up.  So when he really starts panting after running for maybe 20 minutes, he goes to look for relief.  If they don’t have a kiddie pool, he makes his own.

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I had about 10 stops to make in Key West before turning back around.  There was interesting architecture but just not the style I need for the website (deco/streamline and mid-century).  There were way too many people, gift shops, etc. — not my kind of place.  Here’s a detail from one building that caught my eye:

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There were about 10 other stops in the Keys.  This sign is probably not enough for the website but still merits inclusion here.  Note the bubbling martini glass between the U and O of “Liquors”.  This was in Marathon:

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My camera doesn’t quite capture the beauty of the emerald green water in the Keys.  I tweaked with Photoshop but it’s still not quite right.

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The Overseas Highway is loaded with restaurants and gift shops.  These figures are pretty tacky but still cute.  I’ve seen a number of these manatee mailboxes in use on this trip.

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I’d love to spend a few days around Miami Beach just shooting windows.  These photos taken from the van while stuck in traffic.

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The Miami Beach Art Deco hotels on Collins and Washington have all gotten their due with restoration and landmarking.  There are probably hundreds of photos of each of them at Flickr already.  I’d like to come back sometime and focus on the overlooked side streets.  Here’s a gem of a house that I doubt has gotten much attention.  I love all the little details.

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8 Responses to “Day 13: Miami, Key West, Miami Beach”

  1. I think you and Gremlin should make a living as Dog Park Security Experts. She can find the flaw in any park every built!

    • I don’t know what the deal is. Are most tiny dogs “clingy” so their owners don’t have this problem? Or do the owners just get fed up? Or are all the tiny dogs lost/dead from escaping?

  2. Miami is such a Deco Dream. The keys have always been touristy, but I had a lot of fun in Key West back in the day. I once saw a banker set his mustache on fire downing a Flaming Sambuca at the Chart Room of the Pier House. Another night I met deep-sea treasure hunter Mel Fisher at the same bar; he let me try on an enormous gold chain he had recovered from the wreck of the Nuestra Señora de Atocha. It was so heavy I couldn’t believe it.

    That’s a beautiful ocean turquoise in the Keys. I never take the beach for granted… after so many land-locked years, I walk on the beach almost every day.

    Safe journey home, my friend!

  3. Interesting Read! Very detailed blog.
    Thanks for sharing

  4. neonguy528 Says:

    A really great blog here. I do Florida travel blogs, but your photo’s are a lot better than mine. All the best.

    • Thanks! We’ll be heading back to FL in March or April to finish up the Panhandle stuff that we didn’t get to on this trip. Also, lots of other Southern stops. You might want to come back to visit then.

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