While we’ve been wending our way south, we have been listening to Carl Hiaasen’s “Bad Monkey”. This story is one of his Andrew Yancy detective novels, which are set in the Florida keys. Yancy is a rather hard luck gumshoe, who in this telling has been busted down to health inspector or as he calls it, roach patrol and that’s the rub, because like Yancy, I’ve becoming a little squeamish about eating out now.
I got up early and photographed the sunrise. When I got back to the room, I made coffee and we enjoyed a leisurely cup together, followed by an excellent breakfast at Lester’s Diner. This was a steer from Daren, one of the co-owners at the Seahorse Motel. Eventually, we launched from Pompano Beach and with a minimum of road rage made it around Miami and to Key Largo.
First there, we hiked Key Largo Hammock Botanical State Park. A hammock is a keys term for a stand of trees, usually hardwood, that form an ecological island in a contrasting ecosystem. This particular hammock was on reclaimed land from a failed subdivision. Anne was reminded by it of another failed subdivision near her cabin on Lake Superior. Scarred as the land may be, it was still very fascinating in its strangeness, at least to us. Our hike was interrupted and we had to turn back, because part of the trail becomes inundated at high tide. It is now officially shorts and t-shirt weather.
We found our new motel and after checking it out, headed over to the Laura Quinn wild bird sanctuary. This sanctuary tends to rescue birds. The birds being cared for are all caged, but many of the species attract hanger-on birds. These beggars are just after the free food, but can’t seem to realize that the food is also caged. The sanctuary also had a nice coastline trail, on which, we saw plenty of other species of birds, but so far no alligators.
We had dinner at Snapper’s. We didn’t realize it at first, but this restaurant was devastated a few months ago by Hurricane Irma. All that was left open was the Tiki bar and their food truck. We ate outside on food prepared in the food truck. Many of the subdivisions have signs that read, no debris dumping, area cleared.