(Our Christmas Card of life)

Editor’s Note:

After the Thanksgiving holiday, the beautiful Leigh Ann and I took off for a much-needed vacation and a little time off before the crazy days and nights that are sure to come in the next few weeks and months ahead.

We didn’t adhere to Gov. Andy Beshear’s and Chicken Little’s warnings that life, as we know it, is coming to an end. But, then again, we don’t adhere to most government edicts that are based more on theory and conjecture than fact and science.

Oh, we wore our masks. We practiced social distancing, as much as possible. We washed our hands so much that the skin puckered up as if I was stuck in a bubble bath. And, we doused regularly with our hand sanitizer.

We do what we need to do. We do what makes sense. After all, I am one of those “older” persons who has pre-exisiting lung issues.

But instead of crawling under the bed and pulling the blankets over our heads, as some want us to do, we stepped outside and we lived our lives. Safely, yes. But fun-filled, too.

We jumped on a jet plane — which, by the way, are not shut down. And, we took flight for a week of fun and sun.

We spent a wonderful night on the water in Stuart, FL. with our great friends Rob Murphy and Michelle Blanco. Went to dinner and walked the little streets that were full of speciality shops, merchandize, and guess what else? Yep. People. People wearing masks. People being people.

We spent a most wonderful day at Hialeah Park, touring the old racetrack and remembering some of our best days from years ago. We didn’t miss a step and we didn’t miss a spot. We visited the paddock and the saddling area. We toured the Jockey’s quarters and the paddock tote board. We went to the Turf Club and the Director’s Room. We took a stroll on the main track and galloped — slowly, mind you — down the turf course. We saw the Flamingos still perched on the turf course along the backstretch. We stepped on the antique scales in the winner’s circle.

Still, despite the loss of Thoroughbred racing dates and lack of love, the masterpiece of all racetracks still held her beauty.

Then, we loaded up the car and set sail for the Florida Keys. Final destination: Key West.

For the past week, we strolled the brick streets of this country’s southern most city. We walked the planks of the marina and stepped foot on some of the greatest sail boats ever made. We ate sea food. We drank everything you could see. We sang songs made for Margaritaville. We gave toast to Ernest Hemmingway. We even drank some rum distilled by Pilar, named after Hemmingway’s own boat.

And?

We celebrated life, and living. We ate at restaurants. We drank at bars. We slept at beautiful hotels.

We did it safely, mind you.

But we did it alright.

While in Key West, we couldn’t help but notice that the city’s police force was actively working Duval Street. There was a duo of the city’s finest on each and every block. The task was simple. To remind people to wear their face masks. And, that they did. Religiously.

In two months, I will reach the age of 65. Each day, I am reminded that life is very short. Too short to give up a day. Too short to give up, period.

Just too short to give in.

A look at our holiday that became exactly that: