Although a week could have easily been spent in Key West, it was time to move on towards the north and meet some wildlife. A few hours drive led to the Everglades and with some trepidation, Hattivatti and friends boarded an airboat at Gator Park. The following forty minutes contained some sightings of turtles, fish, heron chicks, and naturally alligators as well as some hair-raising sideways speeding in the marshes. All in all a very interesting ride, after which a demonstration of traditional alligator wrestling and the opportunity to hold a 3-year old alligator completed the package. Hattivatti, however, found the whole experience slightly intimidating.
Then it was time to get acquainted with Miami Beach. A compact but nicely furnished room in an art deco style hotel two blocks from South Beach was just the right setting for the night. After the day’s excitement, the loudness of all the sights and sounds of evening on Ocean Drive were a bit overwhelming, so it was time to call it an early night to prepare for the long night ahead.