For those who didn’t receive the memo, I’m in Key West for a few days. Being a great lover of Hemingway, I thought it only appropriate that I check out this place once before I die. I do not care for Florida, humidity or cats, so as I write this, I’m wondering what the hell I’m doing here… then I remember: Hemingway.
The weather has been a bust. I’m not sure I can remember what the sun looks like, but I think it’s yellow. Maybe? Either way, I have my bathing suit in my bag at all times in case the chance to hurl myself into the ocean arises. Actually, again, as I write this, I’m thinking I hear rain. WHY?
After I dropped off my things at my cottage the first day, I made a beeline to Duval Street which, having done my research, is both touristy and loaded with bars and food. I hadn’t eaten, been up since 430am and after two separate flights that were inundated with screaming babies, I needed a drink. Badly.
I always thought that I could fit in no matter where I go — style wise — but that’s not the case in Key West. I am pretty much the only one on the island who isn’t in shorts and flip-flops, so it probably shouldn’t have come as that much of a surprise when my bartender asked me from where I had come.
Conversation was successfully started.
As I was finishing my lunch, he was finishing he shift, so he agreed to be my tour guide. Our tour, one in which I realized that drinking is the number one past time down here (you can drink on the streets!), lasted for several hours. In fact it didn’t end until the following morning. But when in Key West, do as the locals do, right? Drink and have sex, and apparently, drink some more.
As Matthew was getting ready to leave, and I was getting ready to kick him out, he asked me for my number. I asked him why, because if I’m not making things difficult, I’m not me. He said he’d like to hang out again while I’m here, and if he ever made it up to New York City… yadda yadda yadda… I think we’ve all heard it all before and know what it means.
Under duress, I gave him number; my actual correct number, but only because I felt it rude to not do so. Would he feel like a piece of meat, if I hadn’t? Would I feel like I had done something wrong, if I marched him out the door and blew him a kiss from several feet away? He was so adorable and so sweet, that I wasn’t sure how to handle it. I know I won’t see him again, so there really is no point. But after you’ve had sex with someone, are you somehow obligated to play the manners card? I don’t think so, but I did anyway.