THERE WAS A TIME…..BOWLING BALL THROWN DOWN DUVAL HIT NO ONE

Key West in the summer is almost as busy as Key West in the winter. It was not always so.

When Steve arrived in 1973, Duval was deserted. The streets dirt. The heat horrendous. July always very hot. August began getting humid. September difficult to breath. The humidity that heavy.

Many restaurants and bars closed in August. Most in September. No business. No one came to Key West because of the heat.

When I began coming in the late 1980’s, it was the same. Duval was deserted. The August and September humidity a killer.

Around the turn of the century, business began picking up in the summer. Each busier than the previous.

Duval was paved. Sharper stores. Some chains.

As the flavor of Key West was dissipating, it was replaced as a summer vacation spot. Visitors included families.

There was a saying when Steve arrived in 1973 which I heard many times when I began arriving in the late 1980’s: You could throw a bowling ball down Duval and not hit anyone!

A different story today!

I don’t particular like it. The special attractiveness that went with a desolate summer had a flavor unto itself. I miss the calmness and tranquility.

I mention Duval beginning in the early 1970’s because Steve was here at the time and makes mention of it in today’s TACOS paragraph 19 after dealing with con leche in paragraph 18. TACOS has it all!

I got up early every morning and stood out there in line / With the same bunch of Cubans at exactly the same time / I saw how all of us were addicted to caffeine / So I decided to invest in an espresso machine / Looking back now, it’s really kind of funny / There was no way we could have made any money / Just fifty cents for con leche was really not enough / Now Starbuck’s gets four dollars for the same stuff.

In the off-season there were no cars on the street / There was no business because of the heat / So in the summertime we would all play football / In the 200 block of Duval / When we looked up we couldn’t believe our eyes / What was rolling towards us was a big surprise / They had dropped all the electric wires / For a two-story conch house on a dozen tires / For moving it Emile got it for free / It used to be next to the Library / It fit next to Howie’s Bar quite well / He added porches and called it Bagatelle.

The saga of William Healy continues.

Two interesting items in his journal bearing today’s date July 31, 1856.

He refers to his wife as “the woman.” Writes “the woman is better this morning.”

Don’t know how referring to the wife as “the women” today would fly today.

The other is Healy’s dental bill. He paid it the same date. The bill was for pulling one tooth and filling two others with gold. Grand total: $7.00.

Trump has a dirty mouth. He referred to the 4 police officers who testified re January 6 as “Pussies.”

He should look in the mirror. Might be surprised.

COVID-19 continues to surge.

Things are so bad in New Orleans that the EMS can’t keep up with the calls. The combination of unvaccinated persons and the Delta variant the cause.

New Orleans’ Mayor La Toye Cantwell has taken the bull by the horns. Not even waiting for Washington to speak directly to the issue. The mayor restored New Orleans’ mask mandate. The resurgence of COVID-19 cases left him no alternative.

New Orleans’ difficulty goes a step further. The Mayor says the community does not have the capacity to handle the number of cases arising.

Florida’s Governor DeSantis continues to do the contrary when it comes to fighting COVID-19. He is either plain stupid or does not have the capacity to grasp what is happening. Keep in mind, Florida has the fourth worse numbers in the country.

Whatever, his recent decision re masks could lead to large death numbers. He refuses to mandate mask wearing and will prohibit any city or school board that does so. He is the man! The final word on the issue! Not the doctors.

Florida schools will be opening soon. School boards are afraid of the Governor and wrath of those they represent. Many parents are opposed to their children being mandated to wear masks.

Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber is standing tall. He disagrees with DeSantis. He will oppose any decision the Governor makes on the issue. Miami Beach will wear masks!

Enjoy your day!

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