16 YEAR OLD UMBRELLA DEAD IN THE POOL

I bought and furnished my Key West home 16 years ago. Deck furniture was among the items purchased. Included was a round table with a blue shade umbrella. The umbrella survived all 16 years till yesterday. Let me say first that the enemy of anything on the ocean is sun and salt. Neither bothered the umbrella. I was impressed. It took strong winds to bring about its demise.

Yesterday was sunny and lovely. In the afternoon, a storm came upon us that quick. In a matter of minutes, it gets dark, the temperature drops 10-20 degrees and it begins raining like hell.

I worked for a while. Kept the glass sliding doors behind me shut. The rain would have gushed in. After a while, I was tired. Took a nap. Two hours later, I woke. Still raining, but not as bad. I went downstairs and opened the glass sliding doors.

The first thing that hit my eyes was the pool. The wind was was still strong. There were ripples on top of the pool which clouded the water. I saw what I thought was a body in the deep end. I hurried out to investigate. It was the umbrella. The metal parts I could see where broke. Lying on top of the umbrella was a large ceramic vase. It was the vase that gave the initial impression of a body.

The vase was purchased 16 years ago, also. I have two sitting at the shallow end of the pool by the steps for decorative purposes. The vases are heavy. Three feet tall, 1.5 feet wide and thick. It takes all I have to lift one one inch.

The metal umbrella post must have snapped.Then it hit one of the chairs at the table. The chair is destroyed. The umbrella must have then hurled sideways of the chair and picked up the ceramic vase on its way into the pool.

There is a 30 foot distance between the table and where the umbrella landed in the pool. Had to be a hell of a wind!

I already called Keith. Told him to come over saturday with Jennifer. Wear their bathing suits. Get the stuff out of the pool!

It is not going to be easy. It is about seven feet down. The vase has to be full of water. The umbrella will hold water in its pocket as it rises. Not a job for Louis. It would be heart attack time.

The loss of the umbrella is my fault. I know better than to leave it open during a storm.

ABC and Good Morning America did themselves proud this morning. Key West was featured on the show. ABC has been doing this show in Key West for several years. I always thought the show sucked. They did not show Key West as it truly is. From what I saw this morning, this year they did.

ABC’s Ginger was broadcasting. The first shot was of her and a crowd of shorts and tee shirted people at Mallory Square. Yes, the rain and wind are gone. It is sunny and warm once more.

The next segment showed two Key West favorites. Key Lime Pie and Stone crabs. A great last meal! The following segment were walkers at Smathers Beach. Then came the Westin Dock with a huge cruise ship in the background.

Ginger kept referring to Key West as Paradise. She was correct.

I could give the show no more time. I have a big morning. I believe my friend Howard Livingston is going to do a guest appearance at some point. The best of the best.

The only negative in the show was that I saw no locals during the time I watched. They were all tourists. I recognized no one.

Bocce obviously rained out last night. I did not have to call in and beg off due to my back.

Two Ukraine observations.

First, what is going on is not unlike our Civil War. The South seceded. They had no right to do so under the Constitution. Crimea is in effect seceding from the Ukraine. This matte can only be handled properly and honorably if there is an Abraham Lincoln in the Ukraine of today.

The other observation involves the pipelines. Russia’s income comes from its oil and gas exports. Seventy five per cent. The pipelines go through Ukraine. One of the reasons Ukraine is important to Putin. I think Ukrainian leaders should slowly start sabotaging some of those pipelines. With the added threat that if Russia interferes in any way, all the pipelines will immediately be blown up. Putin has to back off immediately. The opposition for once would have the upper hand. The problem will then be possible of immediate resolution. Fire must be met with fire. When dealing with a bully, you must hit harder back than he hit you.

So thinks Louis.

Enjoy your day!

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