On A Whim

Last week Cindy was in New Orleans visiting family. I stayed here in Cedar Key to help Amber hold down the fort. You know what they say….”Absence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder

We would sit and talk to one another all night on the phone after the kids had gone to bed and I’d closed the tiki bar down. One of those conversations was about how we seldom travel anymore. Sure we take little side trips here and there, but nothing long or extended like the life we used to live. I miss those days tremendously! As we said Goodnight to one another, Cindy’s last words were “Lets go on a trip somewhere as soon as we can. We owe it to ourselves for how hard we work!

I agreed and said I’d try and find somewhere for us to escape to. I hung up the phone and fell fast asleep with dreams of Wanderlust filling my brain.

Next thing I know I heard my phone buzzing, telling me I had a text message coming in. As I scratched the sleep out of my eyes, I realized it was morning and it was time to go back to work.

I reached over to the nightstand and grabbed my phone to see who was calling me this early? It was Jessie, from Katie & Jessie On A Boat. Her text simply said “Going to Key West Today if Ya’ll are feeling WILD

Was this some sort of sign?

I called Cindy and asked “How does Key West Sound?” I explained that Katie and Jessie are down there and we’ve been putting off a trip to go out with Mellow Ventures Tour Company for months now! We also have good friends who have a house down there that are always asking when we’re coming to visit, so I figured we’d be able to crash at their place as long as it was open.

Cindy simply said “Let me call you back in a few minutes.

30 minutes went by as I showered, made some coffee and attended to the dogs morning rituals.

I heard my phone ringing and Cindy said “Ok, I have our flights booked for Monday morning. I’ll be home late Sunday night. Get your underwater camera gear ready and be packed when I get home.

Key West, Aerial Photography, Bonish Photography, Tropical Water24 hours later, we were taxing out of Gainesville Airport on a Twin Prop with Katie and Jessie meeting us at the Key West Airport. Calls had been made to secure our play date with Mellow Ventures and Don and Mary Ann had opened up the house for us to stay in. You’ve gotta love it when a quickly made plan comes together so smoothly.

Soon enough, we were wandering around Downtown Key West trying to find a place to eat some breakfast. It was only 9:30am at this point and Cindy and I had been up since 3am so we could get to the airport on time. Food and drinks were much needed!

Deuces Off the Hook, Key West, Breakfast Toast, Bonish PhotographyWe found an inviting little place and plopped ourselves down and before long, a toast was being made as we all joked that only a week ago we were saying sad “Goodbye’s” to one another.

Breakfast, Deuces Off The Hook, Key West, Bonish PhotographyBreakfast was Chicken Strips over Waffles with a side of Duck Bacon! All washed down with Yuengling’s, Mimosa’s and Bloody Mary’s.

Life lived on a whim is the best life to live!

Farting, Jessie on a Boat, Bonish Photography, Key West

Jessie expressing her love

Katie Smith, Katie on a Boat, Bonish Photography, Key West

We wandered Duval Street laughing at the various t-shirt shops, the wandering chickens and roosters and loving the people watching. Downtown Key West has great architecture much like New Orleans, only cleaner…. with the addition of Chickens!

Rooster on Duval Street, Key West, Bonish PhotographyDuval Street ends at the Southernmost Beach Cafe that has nice tables overlooking the beach and the Atlantic Ocean. More toasts were made while we sat around people watching and enjoying the warm ocean breezes. We joked that all our families were covered in snow back up in Michigan and here we are fighting over who can get out of the sun and sit in the shade so we wouldn’t overheat with the upper 70 degree temperatures we were lounging in.

Southernmost Beach Bar, Key West, Toasting, Bonish PhotographyAfter a few more toasts, we headed back to Don and Mary Ann’s so we could settle in and get some food. Tomorrow would be a big day with Mellow Ventures where we’d spend the entire day on the water. So today was just a chill day.

Don and Mary Ann’s is perfect and so cozy. What amazing friends we have that open their house to us while they’re away on business. The rest of the afternoon was spent on the Lanai sipping on drinks and laughing till we were crying. My wife is hysterical and can keep me in stitches almost every day of the week. Mix her with these two girls and I just sit back and hold my gut laughing the entire time.

Laughing, Katie and Jessie on a boat, Bonish PhotographyDon had recommended a restaurant within walking distance called “Square Grouper” and what a recommendation it was. I can honestly say that this was some of the best food I’ve eaten in a long time. The food was utterly mouth watering and it didn’t matter what you ordered since everyone of us ordered something different and each of us argued it was the best item on the menu.

Katie Smith, Cindy Bonish, Jessie, Bonish Photography, Square Grouper

Pretty much Sums It Up

Katie Smith, Cindy Bonish, Square Grouper, Bonish Photography

I have no idea how we didn’t get kicked out of this place!

By the time we got back to Don and Mary Ann’s, they had arrived in from their business trip and we spent the rest of the evening introducing the girls to them, sharing crazy travel stories and all getting to know one another better. It was another awesome day and we were all looking forward to tomorrow with Mellow Ventures

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5 Responses to “On A Whim”

  1. Adam PorterJanuary 31, 2014 at 6:51 pm #

    Now you have me jonesin’ to go down island. Great story, Pat!

    • Pat BonishJanuary 31, 2014 at 7:03 pm #

      Thanks Adam! Wait till you see the next blog post Adam. The Mellow Ventures guys have me jonesing to pack up my underwater stuff and work for them. The water was too beautiful, especially since the rest of the country was in a Deep Freeze while we were snorkeling and enjoying the water

  2. Patrice HartnettJanuary 31, 2014 at 7:09 pm #

    As Julie Andrews sang….”These are a few of my favorite things”
    Key West: Holds a beautiful place in our hearts. It is where John and I got married 7 years ago.
    Pat and Cindy: Two of the most genuine people we have ever met. Their love for life, what they do, and passion for others is evident and contagious.

    Thanks for bringing Key West to life from your eyes and blog for us.

    • Pat BonishJanuary 31, 2014 at 7:12 pm #

      Patrice, I think the 4 of us would have too much fun in Key West! Let’s plan a trip!

  3. Natalie L.February 1, 2014 at 12:48 am #

    Cool story, Pat 🙂 These girls seem like a hoot to hang out with.

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