JUNE 24, 2002
Ramblings from the Eden House & Key West

Diana & Gary Betzold (Sterling Heights, MI) made Pizza for 'happy hour' at the end of March, it was beyond words. She used her secret recipe and we've all tried to get it from her, no luck. It is purported that she can play the piano behind her back and using only the black keys - she plays poorly, she says.

Bob (front desk manager) is going on vacation and when he returns he'll be working part time. The Part time, is taking reservations from the deck of his houseboat. Scott (from somewhere in the Carolinas) is already trying to schedule his vacations to the Eden House around Bob's new work schedule, that will be a tough one. Wait until he finds out that Bob will only be making guest appearances at 'Happy Hour'. Is there something wrong with this picture or what? Bob is an institution at the Eden House & in Key West. Bob & Mary will be somewhere between Georgia, Louisiana, New Hampshire and maybe Las Vegas, he's not telling.. So look twice before you cross the street in these states, Bob has been on his scooter in Key West for quiet some time. David Whitehouse, of Minnesota fame, suggested that Bob take our Kevin with him on his vacation. Still no reply. Our lovely Sarah will take over as front desk manager. She is so sweet and young, so go easy on her.

We have a new piece of art overlooking the pool, a giant Lizard. Heather Clark (formerly of Kentucky) is responsible for this beautiful piece. We have some smaller pieces of Heather's work in the gift shop (all money goes to Heather). She is a great artist and like most artists, a poor marketer. I'm trying to get her to make some smaller pieces, handbag size. Heather's web page.

If you didn't get this e-mail, let us know.

The "Wall of Fame" is finally up. For years I have been taking pictures of the 'regulars' and the 'not-so-regulars'. Not that they are irregular, you know what I mean. Sherry & Jim Lotaz (Frame Game in Jacksonville, NC) framed up a ton of these pictures and they are on the 2 nd floor walls of the main building. It was recently brought to my attention that one of the guest's picture was from ten years ago , their identity is being withheld. I like to think that WE are getting better with age. Also framed and hung are a montage of pictures of the ongoing construction at the Eden House since 1975 and from the movie crisscross.. (filmed at E.H. in 1990 staring Goldie Hawn & a cast of thousands). Wander around and check out the new stuff.

Café Med at Eden House had a small fire in mid February and demolition has just been completed and construction is underway. Aziz and Deb were doing so well and were the buzz on the island. Our guests loved the food, often going back a second and third time during their stay. The café should re-open in a couple months and Aziz is working on the breakfast and lunch menu. He is also working on the Eden House Meal Plans and working on the menu for the Sun N' Fun and Romance packages. We'll keep you posted. I can't wait for a dish of his homemade sorbet.

Bruce & Lynn Hildbrand, up around Chicago ways, brought us down five compilation CDs. Bruce labeled them 'poolside at the Eden House' & 'Friday Music', they are awesome. Bruce said that this was a 'rebuilding' year for his high school basketball team. Hang in there Bruce.

Norman has just completed painting the lobby and it looks great. For years we had neglected one of the most important parts of the Eden House, first impressions and all. Most of the big stuff (construction) is complete and now we can work on the DETAILS. Norm painted the wicker furniture in the lobby 'Eden House Green' and Colleen made new curtains for the windows. We're stylin'.

Key West Magazine recently picked the Eden House as one of the three 'Best Accommodations- Moderate Price Range' in KeY West. Check out some of their other Bests. Key West Magazine plan to start publication in August.

Our first annual Eden House Calendar came out March 1 st, it runs for 12 months starting with March. Don't ask why. It has pictures (of Key West & the Eden House) by the world famous Dan Francis and printing by the renowned Jim Cherco, both of Indianapolis. If you don't plan to get back to the Eden House and Key West in the next couple of months, drop us an e-mail with your snail mail address and we'll send you one.

Sue & Roy Kortz (cheese heads) once again brought the infamous cooler of mixed cheeses for 'happy hour'. The variety runs from smoked to onion and everything in between and we never know what flavor Roy will pull from his cooler of tricks. Great cheese! Go Packers!

To celebrate our 28 th year in the biz, we have created an Eden House magnet, which is a duplicate of our business card. More junk for the refrigerator or the forehead of our guests with a steel plate in their head. The Detroit Tiger's players can put them on their hands.

April and May is a very special time in Key West, it is spring. People often ask if I miss the changing of the seasons and the answer is no. The seasons change in Key West and is measured by the flowers that are blooming. Here is a picture Bill took of some of what's in bloom now: Devil Trumpet Plant, Frangipani (fran-gee-pani) & Bougainvillea (bü-g&n-'vil-ya). The Frangipani is the flower often used to make leis in Hawaii. June and July will bring one of my favorites, the Royal Poinciana. The trees look like they are exploding. They are a solid mass of orange and reddish peddles. If you fly into Key West at this time of year be sure and look down for the Royal Poinciana Trees. They are breathtaking. Drop in every so often and check out the new vegetation.

Dave (dave-baada- pool) LeFort & Geoff Mendall were down recently on a catching trip. Sheila Carlson (Milwaukee) says, "if you are catching them, it is called 'catching' and if you aren't catching them, it is called 'fishing'. Dave & Geoff were definitely CATCHING. Check out this article from the Key West, some fish story, huh?

Whether you are a regular or first time with us me; Bill, Sarah or any of us will fill you in, if there is any new that you 'should or shouldn't know about'.

Conch Republic Day is April 23 rd and this year is the 20 th anniversary. In 1982 Key West seceded from the United States, declared war, surrendered and asked for Federal aid in the same memo. It is often said in Key West, "we seceded where others have failed". I have some commemorative Coke bottles from 1997 (15 th anniversary) and have been giving them to the guests. Ask for one next time you're down, if you dont't already have one, I have several cases left. They're on the house, while they last. Something to collect a little dust.

Derrick (front desk) is leaving late July for law school, Ohio Northern University. We sure are going to miss him. He just got a new yellow scooter and look so cute on it. He's practicing chasing ambulances.

We are adding a couple new pages to our web site. One will be called 'The way I see it.or the way it has been told to me'. It will be ramblings about Key West, the Eden House and on occasion, the universe. It will be a work/debacle in progress. I also have a couple 'brainfarts in the works' but it too early to discuss them.

When 9/11 occurred several guests were stranded at the Eden House for about a week. Here is a picture of the GANG. Everyone was in shock but what a great bunch of people for a support group.

Years ago people would tell me they came to Key West to lose them selves. Others would tell me they came to find them selves. Key West must have been the 'lost & found' of the universe.

I'll have a drink for you at Happy Hour.

-- Mike & Eden House Staff

Stay tuned for updates. On another note. Don't forget that tofu and ginger in your diet. Stay in touch, we will. -- Mike Eden and the gang