Remember the badly injured turtle I wrote about a couple of weeks ago? The one that was all wrapped up in fishing line, had lost one flipper and was close to losing the other. Well, he is alive and thriving at the Turtle Hospital in Marathon. His condition is reported as guarded but improving.

Hospital staff have named him Yertle.

Yertle found the Turtle Hospital, the hospital did not find him. He showed up one day in the boat basin outside the hospital.

Now comes Mack. First time I am discussing Mack. Mack showed up later the same day in the boat basin. Mack is a baby green turtle. Wrapped in fishing line, also. He was spotted with binoculars. It took two weeks to capture him.

Mack’s problem is he has tumors over his eyes. He is not responding well. He is scheduled to be seen by a veterinary ophthalmologist.

Only three patients have ever found their way into the Turtle Hospital via the boat basin. Yertle and Mack on the same day. The boat basin has become the waiting room for those seeking admission.

Slept late this morning. Till 7:30. Why, I do not know. However happy to get the extra sleep time. Woke to a beautiful sun shiny gold morning. Sparkling blue waters and sky. The slightest trace of a breeze. You can’t beat it!

I walked yesterday morning. Only a half hour. A little bit at a time.

Screwed off in the afternoon. Had no ambition. Laid around and watched TV. I am already one day late in submiting next week’s KONK Life column. Guy de Boer will be on my ass. I have to get it out this afternoon.

Last night at the Chart Room was special. Met Gary Sadler for the first time. The meeting was prearranged by us.

Gary reads this blog! Already on my hit parade list! He also reads the blogs of several other Key Westers. He is enamoured with Key West.

Gary hails from Nashville, Tennessee. He is an anesthesia assistant. Married to Barbara. He and Barbara are parents to two daughters. All are here for a three week stay at the Galleon. Gary bought his time shares way back when the Galleon first opened.

He and his wife love Key West. I can see them settling here when the time comes.

I enjoyed out discussion. Gary appeared to be especially interested in local politics. We talked of restaurants and bars and a multitude of other things. We hit it off! We liked each other and plan to have dinner together before his three weeks run out.

Emily was bartending. Per her usual custom, she was quick to correct me if I misspoke even the slightest when talking with Gary. My conscience! How did I get along before Emily?

Sheila came in and sat with us for a while. Her cheery self.

I walked over to Kelley’s for dinner. Wings. The best in Key West. On the walk back passed the Bull. The place only a third full. Decided to stop in for a drink.

The same blond woman who has sung there for years was entertaining. Some people dancing.

You have to have visit the Bull to appreciate it. It is from another time. Probably during and after World War II when the Navy was stationed in Key West. A bit dark inside. Poor lighting. I always get the feeling that some part of it, perhaps the upstairs, had been a house of ill repute back then.

Enjoy your day!



I had a desire to walk by the ocean yesterday morning. Not necessarily for exercise. Rather to enjoy the solitude of the activity.

Mid morning, the sidewalk along Smathers Beach is not crowded. The serious walkers are out before or at the crack of dawn. To beat the heat and humidity of the later day. I walked around 10. It was not yet bad. Whatever humidity existed was negated by the breeze coming in off the Atlantic.

I walked from 1800 where I parked my car to the airport and back. Just me and my mind. The walk encourages the thought process. My mind takes me many places.

The afternoon  was spent researching material for next week’s KONK Life column. The column will concern itself with modern day crucifixions. The kind Jesus experienced 2,000 years ago. Crucifixions are back in vogue.

Last night, the Chart Room. I stayed quite a while.

If I wanted to see Don and Chris, Don e mailed me I had to be there by 6:30. They had dinner reservations. I e mailed back…..Too early! I got there at 6:10.

Don and Chris looked good! They were under some stress the last time in Key West. Obviously gone. Both happy and smiling.

Emily bartending. Sheila, Joe and Jean at the bar. I chatted with all three for quite a while. Sheila just returned from New Orleans. Vacation time. Joe returns home today. Jean here another week. Jean and I are scheduled to have dinner during the week.

Joe read my recent blog re Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He had an interest in the topic and Truman’s involvement. We agreed to spend some time together the next time he returns to discuss what occurred on two different days in 1945 which altered the course of history.

Where to eat? I opted for Kelley’s and wings. Grabbed a free newspaper from the Pier House lobby and was on my way. The wings were excellent, as usual.

Key West is quiet. Very quiet. Has been that way for almost two weeks. It will change beginning friday. It is Memorial Day weekend. Visitors will be back for the long weekend in droves.

Russia and China signed a $400 billion  30 year gas deal yesterday. Sort of solidifies their relationship. I find it interesting that in the developed world, dollars have become the bullets of today.

I have a haircut appointment with Lori later in the morning. She will be shocked when she sees I shaved the beard off. In a sense, it was partially hers. She trimmed it every two weeks for two years.

Enjoy your day!


It never fails! Once again, the Conch Republic defeated the forces of the United States in a great sea and air battle!

The Conch Republic never loses!

I watched the battle from the porch of the Hot Tin Roof. I was worried the first time I saw the Coast Guard vessel. A big one! Powerful water guns. The best yet. I feared the U.S. might overcome the Conch Republic with the new guns. The Conch Republic Navy hung in there. Conch pirate ships showed no mercy. It was the same with the Conch Air Force. The toilet paper bombs did a number on the Coast guard vessels.

An exciting event! As usual!

I was at the Hot Tin Roof bar prior to the battle. A couple dining at the other end of the bar. The gentleman asked if I was Louis. Louis Petrone?

His name H.B. Barrett. Call me H.B., he said. His lovely wife, Grace. H.B. said he reads this blog. Though that is not why he recognized me. He and Grace are long time friends of Lisa. From when she was at the Custom House. A small world.

H.B. and Grace own a home off Duncan near Lisa. Rent it out. Their real home is in Islamorada. They were in Key West for the battle.

The battle. The battle was terrific! One of the hardest fought yet. There did not seem to be as many people watching , however.

The Ocean Key Dock is a popular place to watch from. Only about half full. With a canopy. Unusual. I discovered later there was a private party on the dock.

I walked over to the Pier House Deck. I could not gain entrance. Another private party.

I was looking for Jean and Stephanie. Could not locate them.

I ended up in the Chart Room for a drink. A new bartender covering for Emily who is on her way to the Kentucky Derby. Dave. John Lukas and a couple of his staff came in. John is one of the nicest people in Key West. The Big Ten Sports Pub is his operation. We chatted briefly about college basketball. His Wisconsin and my Syracuse. He has great expectations for Wisconsin next year. Four of the starting five are returning.

David showed up. I have not seen David in a couple of months. He was at Aqua prior to the Chart Room. I like David. A great guy! A good friend!

I walked Duval on my way to Kelley’s. Duval was packed. The reason twofold. The battle brings people in. Additionally, the season is over. Accommodation and restaurant prices are down.

Kelley’s overwhelmed me! I have never seen the place so busy. Chris was getting slammed. He said the night before there was nobody.

On the way back to my car, I ran into Sean and Katherine on their bikes. Not literally.

I worry about the Russia/Ukraine situation. Putin is on a roll. Russia just made its first oil shipment ever from the Arctic. No country owns any significant part of the Arctic. Putin is making claim for Russia. He just moved ten warships and four nuclear powered ice breakers into the area.

Obama has to do something. Otherwise history will view this era as another Munich.

Enjoy your day!



Today’s blog going out very late! Sorry! I had a big morning. I had to tidy the house up. Realtor showing it this morning. Then had to get out early because the first group was arriving. Walked around Duval for an hour before my hair appointment. Then walked Duval some more. People watching. By the time I returned home, it was after noon and I was tired!

Began last night at the Chart Room. Glad I did. Met a couple I met sometime last year. Raylene and Gary from  Kansas. Dorothy country. They were staying for four days at the Pier House with their two young adult children. Good looking kids!

Raylene and Gary return to Key West early every October for two weeks. To celebrate their anniversary.

Nice people. I hope I get to see them before they leave this trip and definitely in

Raylene is extra special. She she told me bought my book and read it! Also mentioned she was looking forward to my next book, Growing Up Italian.

The season is in full bloom. I walked the first 3 blocks of Duval. Jam packed! Walking impossible. Everyone moving at a snail’s pace.

Ended up at Kelly’s. Jennifer and Amy working the bar. Two lovely ladies. I enjoyed an order of wings and read the newspapers.

Two fellows sat near me at the bar. They appeared to be Europeans. Speaking English. Jennifer asked if they were from Holland. Yes, they responded. She could tell from their accents. Jennifer’s grandmother was from Holland, also.

The new Netflix TV series I mentioned earlier this week  will start shoting in the next few days in Islamorada. As previously mentioned, Academy Award winner Sissy Spacek stars. I discovered her co-star last night. Sam Shephard. What a combination!

This has been a spectacular lobster season! Not the most lobsters caught in a season. But the most dollar wise. Prices per pound wholesale are up. The Asian market has opened big time. Daily flights take the lobsters live packed in ice to Asian markets.

I find it amazing how the Florida lobster trade has grown world wide.

Frankly, I do not enjoy Florida lobsters. I am a Maine lobster snob. I rarely eat a Florida lobster. They are good. However, once you have tasted Maine lobster, it is  difficult to enjoy local ones.

An American tragedy occurred yesterday. The NLRB announced that scholarship college athletic students are employees and accordingly have the right to unionize. I disapprove of the ruling. The fallout is going to be fantastic. It will in effect be similar to 9/11. Change will take place in college athletics. Big time!

Northwestern was the university involved.

President Obama has been in Italy the past two days. Surprisingly, my Italian friends wish he had not come. They are not happy with him. Much of Europe is not.

Bocce tonight. I am going to cheer my team on. With a glass of gin in my hand, of course. I will not be playing. My back. Besides the pain,  I fear that one of the times I bend over, I will not be able to return to a standing position.

Enjoy your day!







Late with the blog today. Sorry.

I was driving down Duval on my way to the Chart Room last night. All of a sudden I heard…..Louis! It was Cheryl sitting at the outside Tree Bar. She and Roger were together. Looked like they were having a good time.

As soon as I entered the Chart Room, Emily told me I had missed Cheryl and Roger. No, I said. Just waved at them at the Tree Bar.

Fairvilla and NORML happened while I was at the Chart Room.

Alicia is her name. She came in with Sheila. I had met her earlier in the week. She is in Key West visiting. Her father owns Fairvilla. A huge adult toy emporium.

Fairvilla is a respected business in Key West. In other communities, you don’t want to be seen entering an adult book store. Here, no problem. About ten years ago, the Key West Symphony held a fund raiser. Where? You got it! Fairvilla. The city even closed off the street for the event. The place and area were packed. The Symphony raised a ton of money.

Occasionally, I visit Fairvilla. Like every two years. When I have a visiting guest and want to share a bit of Key West’s risque reputation with them.

Bob was sitting at the bar. We talked. He is a visiting attorney from Atlanta. Sixty one. We had much to talk about, including our hearts. Bob was visiting Key West to attend the NORML conference.

NORML is an advocacy group for the legalization of marijuana. Not just for medical purposes. Sounds good! The conference group are attorneys from all over the United States that support NORML’s goal.

Bob’s son is an attorney, also. He is scheduled to speak at the conference. Dad was in town to hear him. His son did not know he would be there.

Bob spent some time in upstate New York. Buffalo State. Undergrad and law school. Graduated cum laude in 1977. He specializes in Federal drug cases and death cases. An interesting practice.

Bob’s son and wife appeared. A good looking young man. His wife lovely.

Such was my adult sex toys and pot evening. Fooled you, didn’t I? You first might have assumed I was purchasing sex toys and smoking marijuana. Would have made for an interesting evening. However, I was not.

Took a walk over to the Tree Bar looking for Cheryl and Roger. They had left. I walked across the street to Irish Kevin’s. I love the place! I rarely go in however because of my age. Everyone is significantly younger. What I specifically like about Irish Kevin’s is that the young ladies are frequently induced by the guitar player to come on stage and show their breasts. I am a dirty old man at heart.

I had to eat. Decided on Kelley’s. Wings at the outside bar. The best wings in Key West!

I mentioned Bob Perlow the other evening. He was a waiter at Square One. I mentioned that once in his other life he wrote for Jay Leno. I learned last night that he also was a warm up comic for the Tonight Show, Cheers, Friends, and Two and a Half Men.

Tomorrow morning at 10 my TV/internet show. The Key West Lou Legal hour. Please join me for what I guarantee will be an interesting and revealing hour. The show can be seen on television from Key West through Boca Raton on Comcast Channel 87 and U-Verse Channel 19. It is also available world wide via the internet.

Enjoy your day!


I was up and at ’em early yesterday. Did my blog promptly. Then walked.

It was a big time walk. From Duval Square to Mallory Square and back. Criss crossed some of the side streets. The humidity was heavy. Too heavy. I had to take a break three times. Each time found a business with air conditioning with a place for me to sit for a few minutes.

Spent the afternoon researching and writing. Spent the evening working on friday’s internet show. I have two glass sliding doors in my kitchen. Open onto the deck and pool. The ocean about 50 feet away. There is a counter next to the sliding doors. It is where I work when I work inside.

Last night was exceptionally pleasant to work from the counter. The humidity was gone. There was a breeze coming in off the water.

I was researching a small South American air line that got started in 1920. I found it. But I found something even more important. A part of Key west history.

Pan Am World Airways. Commonly known as Pan Am.

Pan Am became one of the world’s largest international carriers. Then hard times hit. It filed for bankruptcy in 1991.

Pan Am was born in 1927 in Key West. Its first headquarters.

There was sentiment at the time that the United States needed a central American airline. To protect its economic Panama Canal interests. Ergo, Pan Am got started. The new airline provioded air mail and passenger service Key West to Havana, Cuba. The United States government provided the air mail contract thereby making the dream possible.

A problem developed. Pan Am had no aircraft landing rights in Cuba. It was obvious some heavy hitters were required to convice Cuba to grant the landing rights.

Threee of the primary founders of Pan Am were Majors at the time in the United States Army Air Force. Majors Hap Arnold, Carl Spaatz, and John Jouett. Arnold and Spaatz went on to become two of the most important U.S. generals of World War II.

Money and influence were required. Cornelius Vanderbilt Whitney and Averell Harriman were the backers. Harriman went on to become an important part of the administrations of several U.S. Presidents. He also served as Governor of New York.

The aforementioned individuals worked out the Cuban landing problem.

The new airline required a headquaters. In Key West. It was located in a white two story building on a corner on Whitehead Street. That building today is the home of the famous Kelly’s Restaurant.

Pan Am began business with one airlplane. An eight seater.

Some 25 odd years ago, Kelly Mc Gillis and Fred Tilman, then married, opened Kelly’s Restaurant in the former Pan Am headquarters. The restaurant is still there today doing a flourishing business.

Kelly Mc Gillis was of movie fame. Movies like Top gun, Witness, and The Accused.

I knew Kelly and Fred back when. Primarily from social gatherings. After Kelly and Fred divorced, Fred kept the restaurant. He also became my neighbior in Key Haven. Lisa and Fred are friends. Fred catered Lisa’s wedding. Did a great job!

That other airline I was searching for turned out to be a German airline out of Columbia which started in 1920. The German airline and the Panama Canal were the influences which gave birth to Pan Am.

Such is the story of Pan Am and Key West. Interesting.

Enjoy your day!