The Pier in downtown St. Petersburg juts out into Tampa Bay. It forms a natural backdrop for many images taken along the waterfront.
It’s closed now, as they bicker over choosing a new design to replace it. But back in the day The Pier was quite an exciting venue with tourist shops, restaurants, bars, dolphins playing in the water and crusty old fishermen reeling their lines in over the seawall.
The irony of this anonymous figure peering into the water has only just occurred to me, and that is that a former acquaintance of mine is actually down there: Thomas Street.
Thomas was a well-known artist who painted a large mural inside The Pier. He was equally famous for his hard livin’, and I accompanied him on his rounds a few nights, the two of us always stumbling into the Yacht Club out on Pass-a-Grille for ‘last call’.
In 1999 after having suffered a couple of minor strokes that left him unable to paint Thom stuffed his pockets with stones and waded out past his beloved Pier and drowned himself.
His mural along with The Pier is slated to be demolished soon.
😦 😦 😦