I have returned! I am back home in Key West!
I missed Key West and my friends. Badly. The place and people have finally become irrevocably ingrained in me.
I was up 22 straight hours. From the time I got out of bed in Novara, Italy till the time I went to bed in Key West. Surprisingly, it did not bother me. Probably because the long flight over the Atlantic took place on European day time. My time clock for the past two months.
The night before I left, it was Hemingway and Key West again. I had dinner on Lake Maggiore. The Italian portion.
Lake Maggiore figured in Ernest Hemingway’s personal life. He was wounded as an Italian ambulance driver in World War I. Much of the fighting he was involved in took place in northern Italy. He was hospitalized near Lake Maggiore. He spent some time at Lake Maggiore itself recovering. At the same time, he fell in love with one of his nurses.
Speed forward to Hemingway’s time in Key West. He started writing A Farewell to Arms while living in Key West. Basically rough drafted the novel here.
A Farewell to Arms is the story of an American serving as an Italian ambulance driver who is wounded in World War I. He is hospitalized near Lake Maggiore. Falls in love with a nurse. For reasons not important here, the hero had to get the nurse to the other side of Lake Maggiore. The Switzerland side. They row boated across the lake in a storm. She died.
I had dinner on the north end of Lake Maggiore near Switzerland one of my first nights in Italy. Then did it again my final evening, except this time at its southern shore.
Flew Delta into Atlanta. Then Delta to Key West. Had a three hour lay over. Met some very interesting people. All of whom had a Key West connection.
First came Snow. A beauty! I would enjoy getting to know her better. Unfortunately, we had never met before. She has probably been in Key West longer than me. She was on her way back to Key West from a trip to Maine.
She said I looked familiar. She had read some of my KONK Life columns.
On the plane, I was seated next to Paul and Caytlin. Father and daughter. He is military reserves and also a civilian firefighter at the Key West Naval Base. He has been deployed more than once. Most recently, Oman. He was engaged in combat in Iraq.
Intelligent. Understood world events and impacts. He and his wife plan on settling in Key West when he retires. Which is soon.
Daughter Caytlin was 16 years old. Going into her junior year. A personality! Smart. Thus far has a 4.3. She is concerned it is not high enough!
Paul introduced me to his wife Tracy who was at the airport waiting for her family to return. Lovely and pleasant.
I would like to know Paul better.
While the plane was loading, a couple walked by my seat. Hello, Key West Lou! We had met last year at the Chart Room. I am embarrassed. I cannot recall their names. Old age. In the brief moment we had, we agreed we would probably meet at the Chart Room during their stay here.
Recognition night was not over.
I was standing outside waiting for my ride which was late. A lady was standing next to me in the same predicament. We started talking. She said, I know you. You’re Key West Lou! I read your blog every day. We are friends on Facebook, also.
Liked Beth. Hopefully will run in to her again, also.
I also decided I better be a good boy all the time. Too many people have come to know me.
Lisa, Corey and Jake picked me up. Loved seeing them again. Jake appeared a bit subdued. Lisa told me that in addition to not liking the water, he definitely does not like riding in the car. It is a project to get him in. Jake is one very fussy dog.
The house was in pretty good shape. Except. There is always an except. My downstairs air conditioning was blowing warm. Hopefully, it will get repaired today.
Glad to be back! Look forward to running into many of you in the next few days.
The Key West Lou Legal hour television show airs on Friday mornings at 10. While I have been away, reruns have been shown. There will be a rerun tomorrow morning also. I am fearful of doing the show while suffering from jet lag. I probably would end up with a blank look on my face not remembering what I was supposed to say next. The show goes live next Friday!
Enjoy your day!