With day passes in hand, we boarded the Suncoast Beach Trolley just steps from our door, rode down to St. Pete Beach where we transferred immediately to the Central Avenue Trolley (CAT) which took us to the heart of downtown St. Petersburg. What used to be called The City of the Newly Wed and Nearly Dead has transformed itself into a vibrant mecca of food and entertainment.
Instead of seeing drunks and bums pissing on car bumpers (Morgan Street, Tampa), we found ourselves in the midst of happy revelers, entertaining sidewalk musicians, and the delightful aromas of tasty foods emanating from a myriad of Central Avenue restaurants. We even discovered a solution for life's many trials and tribulations.
(Click on any picture to enlarge)
We were amazed upon spying a beautiful, yet wild, chandelier. I have to assume it was wild and uncontrollable since it had to be caged.
While enjoying the solutions to our woes and miseries, out of nowhere, up springs a protest demonstration. The Belle was simply a-twitter, since she had never been this close to anything resembling a protest march or demonstration.
Fifty or so people marched to spread a message about race. The marchers paused near us and for 4 1/2 minutes they lay down in the street to represent the 4 1/2 hours Michael Brown lay in the street after being shot in Ferguson, Missouri.
It is my sincere hope that demonstrations such as this and others around the country have a positive impact on race relations. Contrary to the U.S. Supreme Court, racial bigotry is alive and well in these United States. It is long past time for a change ... for the better.
To wrap up our most exciting day in downtown St. Pete, my bride and I hopped aboard a convenient CAT bus for our return trip to the paradise that is Indian Shores.