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  • Writer's pictureSteven Hopkinson

Turkey Day in Key West

It feels completely surreal to be in Key West on Thanksgiving day, possibly because as someone from the frigid northeast United States, I’m used to Thanksgiving day being cold, overcast, rainy, maybe even snowy. Roaring fires ending the night aren’t uncommon because it’s cold outside in late November.

Early this morning, I went snorkeling in the see through water of the Garrison Bight mooring field looking for the American flag that blew off our boat a couple nights ago in a big storm. The water was cool, refreshing and crystal clear, I could see the bottom ten to twelve feet below. I saw a baby stingray, a big tarpon, and a nurse shark, but it was Andrea who spotted the flag down below from the dinghy. A quick dive and I pulled it up with minimal effort. Great success!

The flag was only a few feet from where I’d been searching, but I’m not sure I would have seen it without Andrea’s help. It was a great team win for City Dogs. A few more days and we might not ever have found it as there was already life beginning to form all over it.

We’ve only been here for a few days but we’re already settling into something of a rhythm, getting a feel for the strange cultural brew that makes up Key West, equal parts boat folks, military and tourists with generous sprinklings of hustlers, bullshitters and the broken. It’s a weird place where million dollar homes are adjacent to shanty houseboats.

No one seems to walk down here -- everyone’s either zipping around on a scooter or bike or they’re sealed up inside expensive air-conditioned vehicles. We don’t exactly get strange looks walking around with Fozzie and Mischa, we’re just pigeonholed as dog people, but we don’t see a lot of other foot traffic, at least in this section of the island.

Down in the downtown touristy area there are a bunch of people walking on the boardwalk but here at the City Marina mooring field --- there’s not a lot of pedestrian action. We’re New Yorkers so walking a couple of miles is nothing to us, we both did it routinely back in the city, but when we tell people that we’re going to say, walk to Starbucks for the free Wifi, or to Publix for supplies, we get really quizzical looks, like why on earth would we want to walk that far?

Which brings us back to home, which we’re both missing a lot today when we normally circle up with our families and spend some good old-fashioned quality time together. Neither one of us has ever really been away for thanksgiving, I mean sure I’ve spent the past couple years in Connecticut with Andrea and her family rather than in New Jersey with my Mom or Dad or in Brooklyn with my sister -- but the concept has always been the same -- eating loads of good food with the people that matter the most to us.

We’re both going to miss our families a lot this year, but it's not like we're not doing thanksgiving at all, we’re just doing it on a boat with our dogs.

Plan is for me to do the bird (turkey breast) on the propane grill and for me to do the garlic butter mashed potatoes in the pressure cooker while Andrea takes care of everything else (cranberries, stuffing, brussel sprouts, gravy, etc.). Is it going to be the same? Decidedly not but it’s going to be ours.

I know we’re both going to miss the delicious turkey on the spit that momma Radoff does so well and we’re going to miss seeing the kids most of all. We’re going to miss the twins, the fox and Sir Simon. Seeing them on the phone is great -- but we’re going to miss being with them, giving

hugs and laughing together.

Make sure to check out our instagram page for some pics of the feast and hit us up in the comments section below with any thoughts or feedback!

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