I WAS WRONG…..

I was wrong.

I have been in Key West during Fantasy Fest some 30 years. Initially, I did them all. One year after another. After a while it became you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. So I stopped attending.

Toga Party was my favorite event. Thursday night at Sloppy Joe’s and in the street in front of Sloppy’s. I wrote in detail yesterday what it was like. My last Toga Party (always as an observer) was at least a dozen years ago.

A voyeur’s dream!

I decided to go last night.

I stopped at the Chart Room first. Friend Ted from Cazenovia, NY was there, with friend Terri. Ted is a former attorney. A terrific guy. Visits Key West two times a year. He came specifically for Fantasy Fest. His first. Terri’s, also. Terri a 20 year veteran of corporate finance.

Being a helpful soul, I advised Ted and Terri a good event to see last night. My admonition: Don’t miss Toga Party. Explained what and where it was.

My good deed for the evening.

Around 8 o’clock, I walked over to Sloppy Joe’s. Excited!

In the past, Duval in front of Sloppy Joe’s was cordoned off. A block on either side also. No cars. Pedestrian walk. Totally crowded with party revelers. Last night, cars as usual.

Strange, I thought. It came to mind there was little traffic when I drove down US 1 and along Truman Avenue. Normally took extra long to get into town. It also dawned on me I had no problem finding a parking spot. Open places all over.

Something amiss.

I got in front of Sloppy’s. About 3/4’s filled inside. Less people than when a cruise ship comes in. The sidewalks crowded, but walkable.

Few bare assed women wearing togas! I saw a total of 4. Walking down the sidewalk with their husbands or boy friends who were similarly attired.

Things had changed in the last 12 years. Wow! Big time! The “adult party” appeared no more. Subdued considerably.

The same local company had run Fantasy Fest for years. Three years ago, some felt the event had become too risqué. A new company was hired. One that promised a more subdued event. Subdued? Killed!

I wonder how long the merchants will put up with a quieter, cleaner Fantasy Fest. The sole purpose for Fantasy Fest was to give merchants an opportunity to make money during Key West’s slow time.

I apologize to my readers for yesterday’s total erroneous representation of Toga Party. I also apologize to Ted and Terri. My only interest was to make their evening more enjoyable.

While in the Chart Room, met another attorney. Scott from Poughkeepsie. He has been visiting Key West since 1992. A Simon Court regular.

Scott has had a distinguished career. Cases litigated from Puerto Rico to Key West to New York.

We exchanged lawyer war stories.

Disappointed with a Toga Party that sucked, I drove over to Blue Macaw. Ran into Mary. We enjoyed dinner and a couple of drinks together. Mary works at The Little White House. A Harry Truman expert.

The parking meters have changed. Cost to park in Key West has increased. From $3 an hour to $4. Disgraceful! A gouging!

These attempted bombings scary. The 11th discovered this morning. Directed to New Jersey Democratic Senator Corey Booker.

What is occurring is domestic terrorism. Can you imagine how we would feel if the attempted bombings had been successful? Two former Presidents, a Vice-President, a former Presidential candidate, Congressional members, and a movie star not afraid to speak out on political issues, dead or injured. The country would be in mourning. Republicans, included.

We are in a cold war. A Democrat/Republican one. Tempers are boiling. The cold war could easily tun into a hot one. Bullets and molotov cocktails flying. Citizens killed and injured.

The last time the U.S. was confronted with such anger and ill will between political parties was in the 1850 years leading up to the Civil War. It took a Civil War to settle the issues.

Trump proudly said on TV the other night he was a nationalist. “There I said it,” he said.

Does the man know that of which he speaks? Nationalists is a  fancy cover up word for neo-Nazis and members of the Klu Klux Klan.

Bravery in war not uncommon. For God and country commonplace. We do not hear of the many acts or events of bravery. One became immortalized by the famous poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson.

The Charge of the Light Brigade.

The battle fought on yesterday’s date in 1854. Known as the Battle of Balaclava. Part of the Crimean War. British Light Forces and  Russians on opposite sides.

The British task an impossible one. They had to take a Russian position at the top of a hill. Russian guns on three sides as they rode up the hill. To the left, right and in front of them. The Brits suffered a high number of casualties.

Tennyson’s poem portrayed the battle and bravery of the men: “Into the Valley of Death / Rode the six hundred. / Theirs not to reason why, / Theirs but to do and die…..Cannon to the right of them, / Cannon to the left off them, / Cannon in front of them…..Into the jaws of Death, / Into the mouth of Hell / Rode the six hundred…..When can their glory fade? / O the wild charge they made! / All the world wondered. / Honor the charge they made! / Honor the Light Brigade, / Noble six hundred!”

Enjoy your day!

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