Monday, December 20, 2010

Key West Changes

A pleasant surprise to boaters after Hurricane Wilma was the creation of a new little island with sugar white beaches off of Boca Grand that apply become know as Wilma Key. Four years later after currents, winds and the shifting of sand Wilma is almost gone
As we approach the end of the year it is always interesting to remember the changes that have occurred on shore as well. Living in Key West you probably have experienced shopping at Ross Dress for Less. The clothing and house wares store comes close to creating the atmosphere of a scavenger hunt. High energy shoppers are compulsed to go several times a week just to check their luck on new arrivals. A few have secret knowledge about what day the truck is coming in. The check out line is always long. Why don’t they get some more checkers anyway? I have some times brought a book to read, but like many people, I often see the line, turn around and walk out. That has got to cost them money, but the prices are great and there is a lot of name brand quality merchandise mixed in which keeps Key West shoppers coming back line or no line. It is hard to remember the more stately JC Penney’s in that location when the Overseas Market opened in 1990.
Continuing down North Roosevelt Blvd to Key Plaza is Kmart, that was previously Zayers and WT Grants. Remember how Kmart filled up with flood water in Wilma until the doors burst open and all the merchandise flowed out to the parking lot? Albertsons used to be J Byron’s. I always loved that clothes store for some reason. The Florida based retailer closed 17 locations including Key West in 1996. The remaining stores were converted to Uptons. Hyde Park Grocery was where the Dollar Tree and Office Max are.
If you came back to Key West after being gone for 20 years and wanted to go out for some fun you would be surprised to see the Home Land Security where the Hukilau was, the Boca Chica Lounge now R and R Diesel, Martha’s and Perry’s boarded up and Memory Lane now only a memory.

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