Key Largo

Driving to Key Largo from the Miami airport is a bit of a gut-wrenching experience for mermaid—especially one from the Midwest. The drive takes around 90 minutes, which is no big deal, but you wind through the Everglades and for someone who’s never seen an alligator … well, let’s just say my mermaid-self was a little on edge. Literally.

I stayed at The Ocean Reef Club, a private community with real estate and luxury hotel-like accommodations situated a few feet from the ocean. The resort has world-class golf, an amazing spa, beautiful grounds … and offers everything from tennis and fishing expeditions to yoga on the beach—which I did do and wrote about the rather odd experience on my other blog, The Flavored Word. (Not to toot my own horn, but if you’re in the mood to laugh a little, you really should click on that link and read about my experience … I still think Ashton Kutcher had something to do with it.)

The pools at The Ocean Reef Club are, literally, on the edge of the world and you can sit for hours watching yachts and sailboats come in and out of the harbor—one of the most relaxing afternoons I’ve had, and one of the more enjoyable ones at that, was the day I spent on a lounge chair imagining who may or may not be on those aforementioned yachts. Sometimes, a couple of magazines, a good book and my imagination is all I need to be happy … well, and a piña colada. Duh.

Running … there’s plenty of room within the resort to get a solid five-mile run in, but I suggest leaving and meandering the side streets—note, many dead end, but if you don’t mind turning around, it makes for a nice run with plenty of lovely homes and pretty scenery.

Food … like most luxury resorts, the Ocean Reef Club has plenty of top-notch restaurants but my personal favorites are the Raw Bar (no explanation needed) and the Islander for sushi. Just note, that many of the restaurants do have a dress code so be sure to double check before making plans … and gentlemen, just to be safe, I suggest packing that traditional navy-blue blazer; you might need it : )

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Hey there. I’m Shauna—a West Coast transplant in the landlocked state of Indiana … when I moved here I missed the beaches, the mountains, the desert, the rivers … and it took me a while to find places nearby that paralleled my old stomping grounds. BUT. Now that I’ve lived here for over 15 years, I’ve had time to explore the region and you know what? It’s amazing. There’s so much to do—from skiing in northern Michigan to relaxing lakeside in southern Kentucky to rocking the nightlife in one of the many metropolitan areas. And I love it here. I really do. BUT. I do miss the sea … and the sand and the rush of the waves … the smell of seawater … even the sting of too much sun after a day spent lollygagging at the beach. And I miss the constant supply of seafood and shellfish and riverfish? About that … since I’ve moved to the Midwest I’ve noticed that a lot of people here don’t consider fish that come from the river seafood … I’m not sure I agree, but hence the new word I’ve created, “riverfish” … time will tell if Webster picks it up ; ) So this little blog is my way of bringing a little bit of sea life (or is it sealife?) to the Midwest. Here you’ll find all kinds of information … some that you might find more useful than others—like where to find the best seafood (and riverfish) in the Midwest. And some, you might just find amusing … or not. Either way, and if nothing else, I hope you leave my little space here on the world wide web a little refreshed and maybe even a little inspired to bring a little bit of the ocean home with you. (Yes, I did use the word “little” four times in one sentence … it’s OK … mermaids like to repeat themselves.) Cheers! The Midwest Mermaid Oh, and if your curious, yes, I do actually write for a living … if you want to know about the organizations I work with and the publications where you can find my land legs, swim on over to the “Portfolio” tab … and thanks for visiting.

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