Category Archives: Life

No Name Key Birthday Weekend

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Last weekend, G and I headed down to the Keys on the motorcycles for a birthday celebration. On G’s 50th birthday we spent the weekend in Key West and visited the No Name Pub on Big Pine Key about 30 miles north of Key West, just south of the Seven Mile Bridge. Every time I cross that bridge on my motorcycle, my heart soars. The expanse of blue and green water and blue sky, the salty air clearing my breathing, the sea spray in the wind – it’s just heaven for me. And every time it pulls me to find a way to live in the Keys. But for now, we’ll just keep visiting.

For his 55th, G wanted to go back to the simple and quiet area near No Name Key. No Name Key is a residential island just a short bridge span across the Bogie Channel from Big Pine Key. Big Pine is famous for the Key Deer that live there – miniature versions of their northern brethren who roam the yards and quiet streets like neighborhood dogs.

We stayed at a no frills fish camp type of place that had little studio cottages. It was right on the water and we could kayak or just sit and watch the birds and people fishing off the bridge.

We went out for a walk in the late afternoon and saw several deer grazing in a residential area. One of the deer came right up to me and I snapped her photo. On the way home the next day we saw a young 4 point buck cross the street.

No Name Pub has pretty good bar food and a nice namesake amber ale on tap. But it’s most unique feature is the thousands of dollar bills stapled to the ceiling, beams and every wall. The dollar we signed and stapled 5 years ago was buried under a layer so deep we couldn’t find it. And so a new one went up for this visit.

After dinner at the No Name Pub, we were walking back to our cottage and noticed something amazing that we didn’t realize we had missed so much. Stars! Millions of them. Clearly visible in this rural area without all of the light pollution that masks them in the city. Since there was literally no car traffic, we went out to the bridge where there were no street lights and lay on the bridge to stargaze. I felt the joy and awe of such a simple pleasure and the months and months of job related stress melted right away.

It was a wonderful weekend of play and the simple pleasure of being together doing something we enjoy in a calm and quiet place. We came back both refreshed and longing for more of that simple lifestyle. One day we’ll get there.