Gilligan's Lane, Key West

Real Estate Agent with Preferred Properties Key West

This is a true story.


A couple of months ago I got a phone call from an unidentified phone number. I hesitated to answer fearing the worst - my car warranty had expired or that Microsoft was calling to warn me something was wrong with my computer. I did what I never do - I answered the phone.

To my surprise the woman caller stated her name and said she was calling to discuss a house I wrote about several years ago. I get a lot of phone calls about specific houses, usually houses that are offered for nightly rental on Craig's list. This was not that. 

The woman said her aging grandmother grew up in the house located at the dead end of Gilligan's Lane (fake name). I immediately knew the house and even remember the listing agent. I loved the place. It is one of those magical houses hidden on one of our slow lanes. Many locals don't even know these lanes exist let alone how to find them. She said her grandmother's brother was in the old photo I posted.

The lady said her granny was going to make one last trip to Key West before she died. Granny told her many stories about the challenges of living in Key West back in the day. Everything had to be brought in by truck. Things were scarce and life was rough. I learned that as a girl and later as a teen granny had to wear a helmet every time she went into the backyard to protect herself from falling coconuts.


I managed to make it out of my childhood without wearing a helmet while riding a bike. I think I could have avoided walking under a coconut tree to spare the indignity of wearing protection.



I was also told granny was afflicted with some rare childhood ailment that, if it went untreated, could have led to her demise. When the family learned the nearby grocery was closing forever, they bought every last bottle of the elixir to fix her - cod liver oil. It must have worked. She is still alive - but not for long!


Fearing I might start a crying jig I summoned the courage to ask the age of nearly departed grandma. 

"She is 70!" I literally screamed at the woman. I am four years older. I had no idea that death was at my door. I quickly searched the old MLS, found the name and phone number of the selling agent, and gave the woman the info. I hope granny made it here before she croaked.


 There is not Gilligan's Lane. But the story is true.





Comments (4)

Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Gary - good story.  Life in real estate creates a boatload of memories.  More than what one could ever imagine on a relatively simple three hour tour!

Feb 22, 2021 04:07 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Gary. Since I am also older than 70 are you hinting I should be concerned? I have never had cod liver oil. Maybe that is lucky for me! Avoid it Gary! Enjoy your day.

Feb 22, 2021 05:16 AM
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667,, Broker, eXp Realty - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

Haha, great story. 70  is no longer old. 90 is sort of old. 

As Wayne Martin indicated, I have never had cod liver oil either but now take fish oil capsules so I suspect it's the same thing.

Thanks for a fun story.

Feb 22, 2021 05:48 AM
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Hi Gary- Oh my gosh you had me laughing so hard at the end. I am 71 and I cringe when I read in the news "70 year old elderly woman mugged."   I'm going with what my grandmother always said...a little alcohol every day is good for you. 

Feb 22, 2021 06:38 PM

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