I have a friend who is a self-proclaimed Shoe Whore, owning over ninety pairs of shoes. She loves the feel of trying on a new pair, the excitement of wearing them for the first time, and seeing them all lined up in her closet. Her husband just rolls his eyes when she talks about Marshall’s footwear selection.
He just doesn’t get it.
My daughter is a Harry Potter fanatic. She has read each book at least fifteen times, owns much of the merchandise, including the collectible trading cards, board games, and collectible pins. Of course, she has dressed as Harry, Hermione, and Ginny on multiple Halloweens. She played Quidditch in college, was a guest on a Mugglenet.com’s podcast this past fall, and is an avid HP fan fiction reader and writer. When her father threw out her collectible popcorn bucket from the first movie a few years ago, he couldn’t understand why she was so upset.
He just doesn’t get it.
I love Key West. I’ve vacationed there eight memorable times in the past decade, have read dozens of fiction and non-fiction books about the island, seek out #keywest tweeps and travel bloggers, and listen to “Dancing in My Flip Flops” music on Pandora while writing Margarita Moments posts and a romantic suspense set in Old Town. Many people agree with my obsession for the southernmost city, while others I talk to who haven’t yet traveled there express curiosity. No one had ever struck me as not “getting” Key West.
As part of my Sunday morning routine, I was surfing the net for interesting articles and photos about the Florida Keys when I came across an editorial in a travel and sports magazine. Excited to read another person’s perspective on my home-away-from-home, I dove right in. After the first paragraph, I was stunned. By the end of the page, I was horrified. In spite of the article’s title inferring the writer knew the key to Key West, I was left with the feeling…she just doesn’t get it.
First, the woman wrote that she stepped onto Duval Street and felt “morally superior” to practically everyone else there, including the locals. Only when she realized she could drink alcohol on the street did she say she grasped Old Town’s appeal: Being able to do things she can’t do in her hometown.
Okay, so the writer has a point about the feeling of freedom one may get in Key West. It is a laid-back, casual island. But to think the island I dream about, the island I can’t wait to return to again and again, and the place I someday hope to reside (even if only in winter) is merely special because it’s a place where people can carry an open container, is nonsense to me. (By the way, Key West has had an open container law since the 80’s. Law enforcement tends to look the other way, as long as people are behaving themselves and carrying a go-cup instead of a glass.)
I was speechless. Then I was angry. When I finally calmed down I thought, “Do I really want a person with that attitude in my tropical paradise?” I reflected some more. Perhaps the person was in Key West during Fantasy Fest or another crazy time (which I’ve yet to experience myself). Maybe she was on a cruise docked at Key West for a half-day and she didn’t have the opportunity to venture beyond the tourist traps on Duval. Whatever the case, I respectfully disagree with the article’s assessment the Conch Republic lacks in elegance, beauty, and charm aside from its architecture, or that the majority of its tourists and locals are loco for wanting to stay at the southernmost key.
But then, that’s just my opinion.
Tell us about your passion, and a time when you realized others just don’t “get it.” How did you react?
REALITY can be rewarding…
espcially if it’s the REALITY blogger award. One of my new cyberspace writer friends, Jill Weatherholt, recently nominated me, and I gratefully accept and thank her.
Seven Facts about Me:
1. I write every day, if at all possible. When I don’t, I become a crankapotamus.
2. I’m a leftie. That’s one reason I got to know my now-husband, a fellow southpaw. He was always lending me his baseball mitt during college for intramurals.
3. I’m a homebody. As much as I love traveling, when we’re at home, I much prefer to be in my cozy den by the fireplace in the winter or poolside in my backyard in the summer than anywhere else in the world.
4. I love skinny jeans, as long as they have spandex in them and I can be comfortable.
5. I am a worrier. But I’m working on that.
6. I’ve been gluten- and dairy-free for one year this month. At times it seems like the worst diet in the world (especially when faced with cheese dishes or homemade bread), but I am healthier than I’ve ever been.
7. I still don’t have a phone connected to email. I know. I’m a relic from the past, but I don’t see the need for one when I have a laptop at home, a desktop at work, and a Kindle Fire with internet. Besides, I’m frugal.
The five lovely bloggers I nominate with the REALITY award:
Until next Monday, may you be busy doing what you love!