Hemingway’s personal experiences are just as interesting as his novels.
Hemingway was a lover. A ladies man. Enjoyed his sexual adventures.
He was into his second marriage. Pauline Pfeiffer, the wife. They were married 13 years. Ten of those years spent in Key West.
The marriage proved healthy for Hemingway’s writings. Most of his best works were written during his marriage to Pauline.
Pauline’s father wealthy. Pauline enjoyed inherited wealth. Provided Hemingway with a comfortable life style.
The home on Whitehead was bought during the marriage. Primarily with Pauline’s dollars. The home stands to this day. Now, a museum. The Hemingway House.
The gardens were to the front of the house. Hemingway had constructed a boxing ring. He was a boxing enthusiast.
Hemingway was off to Spain as a war correspondent during the Spanish Civil War. He met and fell in love with Martha Gellhorn there, she also a war journalist.
Word got back to Pauline in Key West that husband Ernest was seriously screwing around. Pissed her off big time!
Pauline had the boxing ring torn down and replaced it with a $20,000 swimming pool. A lot of money for a pool in those days. Had Hemingway billed for it. The pool was lovely. Its setting in the gardens perfect. The sunlight equally perfect. The water glistened.
When Hemingway returned home, he became angered when he found out how much the pool cost. He and Pauline had words. Hemingway took a penny out of his pocket and flung it on the ground saying, “Pauline, you’ve spent all but my last penny, so might as well have that.”
The penny has become part of Hemingway House folklore. There is a 1934 penny imbedded in the concrete at the foot of the pool. Whether the same penny, I do not know.
Pauline and Hemingway in due course divorced. Martha became wife number three.
Hemingway drew on life experiences for his books. He and Pauline had two sons. Pauline’s labor was extremely difficult for one. Legend has it Hemingway used Pauline’s suffering as the basis for Catherine’s death in A Farewell To Arms.
My podcast show last night. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. A mix of Trump and local Key West stories. The show did not include the Hemingway one just shared. Key West has a slew of tales to be told.
The United States is getting better in dealing with natural disasters. Better not enough, however. More time and money must be spent planning how to react before a disaster even occurs.
New Orleans’ Katrina should have taught us a lot. Turns out, not enough.
Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico. FEMA immediately saw the need for food. FEMA contracted with an Atlanta firm for 30 million meals, clearly spelling out time was of the essence. Delivery had to be as soon as possible. Only 50,000 were delivered.
The Atlanta firm was Tribate Contracting LLC. A one employee firm. The sole employee the owner Tiffany Brown. Brown had no experience in large scale disaster relief.
The contract was for $156 million.
It was Brown’s responsibility to find and contract with vendors to prepare and get the food to Puerto Rico. She was only intended as a run through. A conduit. She would be paid handsomely for her company’s services in that regard.
Brown hired a wedding caterer with a staff of 11 to prepare and freeze dry meals.
FEMA cancelled its contract with Brown’s company.
In the meantime, many in Puerto Rico were going without food.
Italy’s former Prime Minister and political force Silvio Berlusconi is back in the news. He has not been heard from in recent years after being convicted of tax fraud and sexual involvement with a 17 year old girl.
Due to the convictions, Berlusconi can no longer hold public office. Nothing bars him from being a political leader/force, however.
A national election is scheduled for March 4.
Berlusconi now 81 years old.
Immigration the issue. Everywhere!
In the past few years, African Muslims seeking a way to Sweden have moved through Italy. Many remained in Italy. Six hundred thousand.
In my several trips to northern Italy in recent years, I have become familiar with the problem. Seen it first hand. Novara where my friend Anna lives appears to be a black community rather than a white one. Anna and her friends are not happy about it.
The homeless are not well taken care of at all. They sit on formerly prosperous streets, their backs against the walls, day and night. They are everywhere. Black prostitutes openly working the neighborhoods day and night.
Berlusconi says he will immediately deport the 600,000 immigrants.
Sounds like Trump.
My travels took me to Portofino. Expensive! I was paying $20 for a glass of gin.
Two places have impressed me beauty wise in my travels. Santorini and the bay at Portofino.
Berlusconi has a home in Portofino. On the water, of course. Huge. Magnificent. The shrubbery and flower beds alone have to cost a ton of money to keep up.
Berlusconi and Putin are, if you will excuse the description, asshole buddies. Putin had a summer home built in Portofino right next to Berlusconi’s.
Evidence the relationship is close one. Several years ago and prior to Putin constructing his Portofino home, Putin allowed his teenage daughter to spend the summer at Berlusconi’s Portofino home.
What a world!
Enjoy your day!