Lounging on the dock of the Cabbage Patch Cottage on Cabbage Key is what a Florida getaway is all about. Luxury yachts and weathered flats boats cruise by, osprey perch on rustic pylons, and breezes riff off of the water. Mullet jump, box turtles get amorous, and the houses of exclusive Useppa Island across the water conjure Lottery win dreams.
Ah, time to breathe deeply.
In the evening, I walk a dusty lane to the Cabbage Key Island Inn Restaurant & Bar. Cuban laurels laced with twinkle lights mark the place where I sip a Cabbage Creeper cocktail, a pina colada with a coffee liqueur float. I order a plank of smoked salmon with housemade dill sauce. And then a pile of cold, peel-and-eat shrimp billed as an appetizer but plenty filling for a meal. I vow to have a cheeseburger in paradise before I start the journey home.