YouCruise 2008 – Key West

On Monday we made our first port of call at Key West around 7:00 AM. I had breakfast at the Wheelhouse Bar on the Lido deck as usual. By the time I got there we were already docked at Key West so I could look out over the buildings. I saw Pipistrello and his friends at another table but I figured they wanted to be alone. You definitely don’t want to invade Pipistrello’s space! Anyway, I wanted to shoot some video of Key West and the tropical islands. I filmed some close ups of the cruise ship docked behind our ship which had a helicopter pad. I also got some close ups of an island resort off the port side and the numerous ships in the aqua blue Caribbean sea.

About an hour or so before my Old Town Trolley Tour, I disembarked from the ship. I had to swipe my sail and sign card and stop to have a photo taken at the gangplank. The crew were always taking photos of the passengers with someone dressed as a pirate or island girl in order to sell you those photos in the onboard photo gallery. I’m not that attractive so I was uninterested in these photo opportunities. I shot some video of the cruise ship once I was on the Mallory Square. I’m surprised the other YouTube vloggers did not shoot more video. You would think they would want to vlog at exotic locations to gain subscribers. You would think they would want to get a lot of video so they’d have something to edit. It was a valuable opportunity to get stock footage and really fantastic video but everyone seemed to be entirely in vacation mode. I just appreciated the immense beauty of the tropical islands and I wanted to capture it on video. I have a calendar with gorgeous photos of tropical islands that you can dream about so I was not about to waste this opportunity to capture the experience of actually being there.

The trolley tour was a great way to absorb the essence of Old Town Key West. I got to see a lot of the buildings and sites this way. I recorded the entire tour! Key West is slightly surreal because it is like a quaint, tropical suburbia. It has many little cottages and it seems very intimate and unassuming except for the lush vegetation and occasional signs of great wealth. You would almost think you were in a small town with a flare for the tropical. I wish I could live there but even the most ramshackle shack would cost a small fortune. The town is rich in literary history. I saw Ernest’s Hemingway’s house and a hotel where Tennessee Williams wrote "A Streetcar Named Desire".  Apparently even Robert Frost lived in Key West.

This was very special for me because I am a bookworm and I’ve read a lot of literature. I’m not that into Ernest Hemingway who has become an icon of how a writer should live and write. However, I do admire Tennessee Williams. I’ve read a lot of drama (not YouTube drama, real drama) and plays are my favorite form of literature. I’ve even seen "A Streetcar Named Desire" performed live at our local community theater. After the cruise, I learned that there is a Tennessee Williams Theater and Performing Arts Center in Key West. Unfortunately I did not know that such a place existed and I don’t think I have any video of it. My favorite Tennessee Williams play is "Glass Menagerie" and I have the film version that we were shown in high school on DVD. I can relate to the painfully shy girl who lived in her own fantasy world. That is a great play, really very moving. The cruise ship should have performed that play on their stage to give the passengers an appreciation of Key West’s cultural significance.

After the trolley tour I had to be back aboard by 2:30 PM or be left behind so I only stopped to buy a large counch shell and a Key West t-shirt. I had to go through security to get back aboard. My shopping bags had to be x-rayed and I used my passport as photo id.

It was at this point that a very amusing incident occurred. I met this very drunk female passenger outside the elevators and she aggressively hit on me! She kept asking me if I could see her Key West t-shirt and then she asked me if I was alone, if I was single, and she asked for my room number. She was really wasted! I was smiling broadly out of nervousness and because drunks are funny to me. Women never come onto me like that! I thought I had entered the twilight zone. Anyway, she asked me to take her dancing at 11:00 but she did not know where the only dance club was located and I guess she sobered up before then. It would have a major score if I was the only person to get lucky on the cruise.

I shot some video of the ship leaving Key West although I was a little distracted by the prior incident. At dinner that night there was a conga line which VioletKitty enthusiastically joined. She can really get into the spirit of things. However she got very sunburnt on Key West. I had a lot of seafood. After dinner we went to Pipistrello’s stateroom and talked a while. It was very messy but there were three of them jammed into a little cabin. Pipistrello treated us to some of his rum cake which was very good. Not enough to get anyone drunk. Later we met Onemon22 and Max Smith at the comedy show which featured Dean Gains and Tia Thompson at the Astoria Lounge. After that I went to bed. I did not have any trouble sleeping because the gentle rocking of the ship tended to make me drowsy.

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