a key adventure
I’m a bit of a bore when it comes to summer vacations. And by that I mean that we have taken the same trip to the beach every summer for the past six years. We stay in the same place, we eat at the same restaurants, we hit the same beach and we play at the same arcade. And after a few years, I am a pro at doing Destin. I know what time the parks open, where to find ice cream after midnight, why you should not cross the middle of the bay on a wave runner and that the purple flag means you will most likely be stung by a pea-sized jellyfish.
But having summer vacation down to the science only appeals to me, apparently, because this year Jackson staged a little rebellion. He’s picked up a new interest in marine biology lately and really wanted to vacation in a place with good snorkeling. So we drove a whole lot further south and visited the Florida Keys.
I learned a little something about jumping out of your comfort zone and trying something new. Snorkeling isn’t my favorite pastime, and I much prefer sandy beaches to coral reefs, but I went along with this vacation because it’s so stinking hard to say no to Jackson when he is passionate about something. In the end I found Key Largo to be completely charming and inspiring.
As if the crystal blue water, pet pelicans and 500 places to rent a colorful paddleboard weren’t enough, it only took one manatee rising to the surface beneath the dock and my dangling feet to send me right over the edge into best-day-ever territory. I was a little freaked and a whole lot smitten with island life. (Manatee not pictured because, dude, they can really scoot).