Monday, March 14, 2011

Hemingway House

Papa Hemingway's wife Pauline had a very rich uncle who liked to spoil the couple when Hemingway was still a struggling beginning writer. He bought them a house and a car in Key West and it was in this house that Hemingway wrote many of his best novels. He added a writing loft over the garage that separated him from the day to day activities of the family and allowed him to concentrate on his work.

Here is 1) the house, 2) our tour going upstairs, 3) our guide Steve who was very interested in our trip to Cuba and Hemingway’s preserved hotel room there, 4) Hemingway’s bed complete with a six-toed cat and 5) the pool.

The pool has an interesting story. When Hemingway was away in Africa his kids told Pauline that their dad always wanted a swimming pool. Pauline, thinking she was going to surprise him, had the pool built at great expense as the house was built on solid rock and the hole had to be drilled and blasted! The pool cost $20,000, a fortune in it’s time, while the house cost only $11,000. Hemingway arrived home just as the project was being completed and when he saw the pool he took a penny out of his pocket and said, “Pauline, you have spent my last penny!” and threw the penny into the still wet concrete of the pool deck where it remains visible to this day! As you have guessed, it was the kids and not Papa who wanted the pool.


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