Silas Dent, since 1900, has lived his life alone along the keys and coasts of west Florida. The gulf is his workshop, his source of supply, his highway, his friend and enemy and from it he has wrested a living such as fills all his primary needs...and such needs as he has are primary. For Silas wants no electric lights. He wants no gas or power to pump his water or propel his boat. He wants no radio and he wants no fancy foods. For him daylight will do, and possibly a little old kerosene light in case of emergency at night. His own strong back and a pair of hickory oars are powerful enough for his boat, his strong arms enough for the pitcher pump that brings brackish water up from a few feet below the surface of Cabbage Key, which lies a mile or so off Pass-a-Grille, where Boca Ciega bay and the Gulf of Mexico merge. Radio? Not for Silas. He has his banjo and a now somewhat tremulous voice. Music enough in the evening after the mockingbirds have ceased their songs. Food? He gets it from the sea, from a little garden of his own, from birds and beasts, fish and fowl, with now and then a few pounds of flour or grits, a can or two of milk. Yet not a dour man is Silas but one who welcomes the rare visitors to his lonely key or greets them cheerily as he meets them at Pass-a-Grille, when he goes twice weekly, come wind, come weather, come hell and high-water, rowing his boat in his own peculiar fashion from key to mainland and back to key, a journey often difficult, many times dangerous. And this has been his life for more than 40 years. Man needs a roof over his head to ward off the tropical sun and torrential rains. Silas Dent is no exception. He has a house. It shelters him and has withstood wind and weather a dozen years.