Saturday, August 31, 2019

NAMING HURRICANES

Do you know how hurricanes are named? Six lists of hurricane names have been created for the major ocean basins around the world, and they rotate one each year. Up until 1978, this was a list that contained only female names. Since then, they alternate male and female. Names of hurricanes that are particularly damaging are retired, and replaced. Harvey was replaced with Harold, Irma with Idalia and Maria with Margot.
If you would like to see the list of names, click here.


Unless Dorian turns southward, Key West will not see much weather from the hurricane. We could get some scattered rain and wind, but nothing that will keep me from going to work on Monday. What that means is, I do not get a three day weekend! If anything changes, I will let you know.

Thursday, August 29, 2019

WATCHING DORIAN

AUGUST 29, 2019
As many of you know, I live on an island and work at a hardware store. With the threat of a hurricane, comes the panic to prepare for it. It's not known exactly where Hurricane Dorian will go, but it's possible that we will get some weather. The memory of Hurricane IRMA is fresh in our minds, with many vacant lots and a few blue tarps still on roofs.

Today was the day everyone decided it was time to start preparing, just in case. First it was the gas cans flying off the shelf. We have only a handful of one gallon cans left. Generators were very popular this afternoon, with only 3 or 4 left. I'm guessing the hurricane shutters will be the topic of tomorrow.

What are my plans? How have I prepared for a possible hurricane? I treat it like camping, and prepare accordingly. My pantry is full of canned food. I have plenty of water. I have a Luci light which does not need batteries, and I have a combination flashlight/radio/charger that is powered by crank. Again not needing batteries. The only thing I didn't acquire since IRMA is a battery operated fan. I just didn't want to spend the money. Next time the power is out for an extended period of time, I will probably regret that decision.

So, the watch continues, and the murmurs of "Will you evacuate?" are heard. And the answer is NO.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

DORIAN

It's storm watching season again. Dorian is out there, and everyone is guessing which way she will go. Will she fizzle or grow into a hurricane? Time will tell.


My gas tank is almost empty, so I will be heading to the gas station to fill up on my way home after work. My pantry is full of canned food, I have my crank radio/flashlight/charger handy, and no I will not leave for a hurricane. So all you people that got mad at me for not leaving for IRMA, I don't want to hear it again. Hopefully, we will not experience a hurricane this year, but in case we do, I will be prepared, and keep everyone updated.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

GREEN IGUANA

Dale holding Gomez.
Back in 2010, I traveled to Belize and was introduced to the Iguana. I even visited an iguana hatchery that was established because the population was dwindling due to the use as a food source. They were a very cool looking animal and I enjoyed learning about them, even got to hold one.

Fast forward three years. I relocated to Key West, Florida. Green Iguanas live here too. When you live with them in your backyard, your attitude toward them changes drastically. They are messy and destructive. All they do is eat and poop. They eat all your beautiful flower and poop them back out on your porch. Disgusting. 

They have become so bad, the FWC and the state of Florida has waged war on them. They now encourage homeowner to humanely kill green iguanas on their property. Iguanas have no natural enemy, so the population is exploding.

Yes, you can eat them, but after watching a YouTube video on how to clean one, it just seemed like a lot of work for very little meat. Someone even wrote a cookbook for preparing a meal with iguana meat. I think I will pass. However, if someone else caught, killed, dressed and cooked one, I would eat it! 

There might be a market for the skin... wallets, belts, boots? That might be an interesting new venture!


Sunday, July 21, 2019

WAKEFIELD

"Who hasn't had the impulse to put their life on hold for a moment. Just vanish completely."


I watch a lot of movies. I really enjoyed this one, probably because I have been there. A few months before my split with my husband, late one night, I walked out my front door, across the street to an empty house... and sat on the front steps staring at my house. It was as if I had exited my life and for a moment was at peace, watching from the outside. Eventually I had to re-enter my stressful world, was asked those uninvited questions, "where have you been"... as if he actually cared. But I took a few needed moments of relief.

If you have ever lived a life you want to escape ... you should watch this movie.

Monday, June 24, 2019

State Rd 4a

Once upon a time, it was not an easy trip to Key West. Henry Flagler had a vision of building a railroad extension from the mainland to Key West. In 1912, Henry Flagler saw his dream become a reality. The train ran daily until the hurricane of 1935 tore up a lot of the track. There wasn't money to rebuild, so the right of way was sold to the state, and US 1 travels that route now.

3.59 miles to the end of the road.

But, before there was a US1 Highway, there was State Road 4a. It was in service from 1928 to 1938. A lot of State Rd 4a is still in used, but there are sections in the Lower Keys that are not. This last Sunday, I took my bike and explored one of those abandoned sections. Most of it is just a trail, but there is still asphalt all along the path. And I found a few interesting things.  

The beginning of my afternoon adventure.


This boat looks like it has seen a few drug runs... or something defiantly illegal. All of the windows are covered, and the whole boat painted green. I wanted to get a closer look, but not able to safely get close enough to see inside. The mangroves have closed off any way in or out for that boat, so it makes me wonder... how long, and why it made it's way there.


Here was another puzzle. An old bench, under an old tree, in the middle of nowhere. 


This is the end of the road, at the edge of the water, where a bridge used to carry cars to Geiger Key. 

It was a wonderful afternoon, exploring a rarely traveled road.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

LYCHEE

Didn't know there was such a thing, until my neighbor brought me a bag of them. The meat is the texture of a grape, but the skin is hard and rough. It's not really sweet, but they are good.

After devouring them, I had all these seeds. Like I always do, I look online to learn more about them. The tree can be grown from seed. So I did. I planted 5 seeds ten days ago. Two have sprouted. They only grow in Hardiness Zone 10 and 11. I live in Zone 10.








The meat slides right off the seed.



I put them in water for about a week until the skin split.


The little tree is fragile.
It will be kept in a protected area.