January 3, 2007 - I was working in Orlando, otherwise known as "Borelando" down in Key West. I was doing an event at Disney for a client for two days. When the event was over they asked if I could drive the truck to South Beach for an event there that weekend. They told me that all they needed me to do was drop the truck off and go to the airport where my ticket home would be waiting.
So, be the ever vigilante and opportunistic contractor, I dropped the truck off, went to the airport and turned in the tickets, took the cash, rented a car and drove to the Keys.
After driving on the speedway called the "Florida Turnpike", I was relieved to hit Florida City, and the end of the mainland. I knew I wasn't in Kansas anymore when the first sign I saw on the Overseas Highway was this.
Driving through the mangrove swamps I was looking for crocs the entire way, alas, I never saw one. However, the closer I got to Key West the more excited I got.
I was mesmerized by the color of the water and sounding like a hillbilly I kept saying "Gollllly". "GooOOooooLLLLLLLllllllyyyyy". I grew up on the Gulf of Mexico and we just don't see water like this. I was amazed, and stunned, and awed, all at the same time.
By the time I got to Marathon, the sun was going down.
And when I hit the 7 Mile Bridge the sunset was amazing.
But, when I hit the end of A!A, I came to a "crossroads", literally, the end of the line. I could turn left, I could turn right. I had no idea what I was going to do, where the road was going to lead me and how much this one decision would change my life. When I saw this sign, I had an epiphany...
I had to turn right, thus leading me the 'right' way. As soon as I did, I saw a sign (and I am a firm believer that "Signs are everywhere", and that I had made the correct decision...
WAFFLE HOUSE!!!!!!! You see, I LOVE WAFFLE HOUSE! We don't have them back where I come from. I once drove from San Antonio, Texas to Atlanta, Georgia (999 miles) and counted 138 Waffle Houses on the way. I have Waffle House mug I drink my latte from every day. I even stole a Waffle House menu that is hung in my kitchen.
Now, for most Southerners, Waffle House is no big deal. But, I saw it as a sign from God. If I could live on an island that was so small that I could walk to Waffle House everyday, I knew I was in the right place.
So, I'm on the island, like 500 yards and I pick up my cell phone and I called my mom and I say "Mom, I'm coming back to San Antonio. I'm selling all my stuff and I'm moving to Key West". And that is how this journey began.