Hemingway was a playa. And I don’t mean a beach.

We dedicated an entire day of vacation to Key West, with the sole intent being to tour Hemingway’s house and find some polydactyl cats.

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The thing is, Key West is unlike any of the other islands. If I had to pick a favorite, Key West would win, hands down. The architecture, food, swimming, heat…yep, favorite.

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About halfway along in the near three-hour drive, we had to let the small fries out for a little breather and a gallop along the edge of the Gulf of Mexico.

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He was saying, “Momma? I love you.” 

Kinda impersonating Elvis the Pelvis. Without the Pelvis part, whew.

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There was a big crab (REALLY BIG) under the tree where his brother tried to, er, well, he had to potty. Scared the ever lovin’ snot out of those kids. I nearly peed MY pants, it was so funny.

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When we finally arrived (it always sounds better when the kids say it – ARE WE THERE YET?!), it was, of course, time to try some more Key Lime Pie. 

And also have some lunch.

We picked Cuban.

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Have I mentioned the gypsy chickens?!

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Yep. Feral chickens running around everywhere. 

My niece wanted to sing the yelling song.

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Turns out, it’s Adele’s Rolling in the Deep. 

And also turns out, girlfriend can belt out a tune or two. Feel it sista.

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Gosh I should really hurry this along, because I took more pics on this day than any other. But before we move on, while the KLP was yummy (was the runner up of the whole trip), I’m not so sure the boys enjoyed their lunch so much. 

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It’s too bad that they’re so solemn and don’t understand the more dramatic side of life. Sheesh.

Off we went.

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There was a lot of info about Mr. Hemingway, whose heart led him to try many marriages, but I couldn’t help but noticing the cats.

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Seriously. This guy followed us around like a dog, waiting patiently for his treats. And also? Our tour guide was Mark Twain. Swear.

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Just an observation, but I wonder if the world seemed small to Hemingway? Dude traveled a lot. Drank a lot. Suffered from bipolar. Loved his women. 

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He wrote here, every morning.

You know what I also wonder? If we’re medicating the crazy out of today’s great artists. No more insane visions and explicit writing in ecstasy possibly caused by brain tumors; no more ears caught off in fits of syphilis rage; no more crazy dirty bedbug stories from France in the 30’s. Just something to ponder.

Would you like to know what Hank and I asked the guys who cut these bananas out of the tree on the grounds?

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We asked, “Oh…what do you do with the bananas after you cut them down?”

Know what they said?

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“We eat them.”

That stoic, yet shocking to us, answer was of course accompanied by an “are you guys the dumbest people on the planet Earth?” look. 

We are well traveled and fantastically smart.

So we left them because our boys were melting…

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And we went to the beach. But this time, it was a super sneaky beach because my clever bro-in-law got us onto the Naval beach with his handy military ID. 

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We were officially at the Southernmost Point in the United States.

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And while my sister and niece played and frolicked, 

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My Hank was the ever vigilant and watchful ex-lifeguard. He just can’t help it.

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This is where I’ll bid you adieu. The rest of our evening was gloriously lazy as we ate and watched the sun descend. Take a look.

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Yep. Favorite.

Now I know why Hemingway was always falling in love.