Thursday, June 11, 2009

Did you think we got lost?

After leaving Fort Pierce we spent a couple of nights on the hook, then traveled to St. Augustine, the oldest city in the US. We rented a car and traveled to our mail forwarding location to pick up our mail and see Doug and Tammy's condo on the 7th floor in the same building we are in. (see the picture of their beautifully furnished condo below) We have a much better view on the 9th floor. (We can see the fish tank at the front door) We are going to be here a couple of days as Gypsies in the Palace are having a shaft saver coupling replaced that went out just as they were turning into the channel to the Marina at Camachee Cove. The channel is narrow and the current is swift at the entrance. It took some real maneuvering on one engine along with the bow thruster to make a 180 and go back out before they grounded. They put out the anchor after getting out of the channel, changed their shorts, then waited for Towboat US to help them into the harbor. (WHEW!)
St. Augustine is a great place to be stuck for a couple days, so we will sit back, take in the sights, hit the pool in the heat of the afternoon and enjoy it.

September Song (We weren't lost) out

Cassie talking to the dolphins

Cassie's buddies

Just hanging out on old 39

Clamming along the ICW
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Reminded me of when I was growing up on the water with my first boat and motor. The name of his boat is "Sir Stink alot"

The Bridge of Lions in St. Augustine under re-construction. They built a temporary bridge to use until the old one is done, then they will tear down the temp.

Doug and Tammy at their condo (mail forwarding location) in Green Cove Springs. They are on the 7th floor and we are on the ninth floor. We have a much better view!

Happy hour at the Kingfish Grill
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Sunday, June 7, 2009

Sunday on the ICW

Today we left Fort Pierce City Marina at 07:30 for a day of travel on the ICW (Intra Coastal Waterway) referred by cruisers as the "ditch". We decided to take the ICW because of the afternoon thunderstorms that were predicted. It's no fun on the outside (Atlantic Ocean) in storms when you are off shore. The morning was calm and the weather was perfect. As we traveled, I noticed the large number of families enjoying the water and the beautiful day. It has been so wonderful being connected to the water all my life. I couldn't imagine, many years ago, that I would be doing what I am doing today, with someone who loves it as much as I do. I love Stephanie so much and I'm thankful she shares the same dreams I do. As Forest Gump Said, "like two peas in a pod" (a 55 foot pod on the water) We have been cruising full time for over a year now and we haven't killed each other yet. I wonder how many of those kids will grow to love the water as much as we do, and be able to fulfill their dreams some day.
Now to the afternoon thunderstorms. About 14:30 the clouds started to look ugly. We managed to stay ahead of one of the large thunderstorms. When you look at the picture I took of Gypsies in the Palace, you will see a wall of water following us up the ICW. As we traveled farther North, another storm was on the radar to our port. It looked like we were going to make it past before it reached the ICW - NOT. As it approached it grew.
From the radar I could see it had formed what we call a donut. (a defined hole in the middle of the storm) A donut is nothing to mess with. The lightening began to flash and the thunder rumbled. At that point we did a 180 and headed back to the South, away from the storm. After getting far enough away, we pulled into an anchorage and settled in for the rest of the day. Bad weather is one thing you don't want to mess around with on the water. Not to worry, the storms have passed, we had steak on the grill , and we are enjoying a calm evening.

September Song (living our dream) out

Sunday morning fisherman

Kayaking the ICW

A young family beaching it for the day

Cool sculpture of the Girl and the Dolphin
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Someone had a weekend, camped on the beach

Families spending Sunday on a beach along the ICW

Gypsies in the Palace behind us with a curtain of rain chasing us up the ICW

The little black boat in the middle of the radar screen is us. All the red are thunderstorms. The bad one that grew and turned us around is on the left (port side)
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Don't tempt me

Seen in Ft. Pierce
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Fish anyone (BIG FISH!)

Fort Pierce also had a fishing tournament going on while we were there. What great fun watching the fisherman come in with their catch of the day. I don't know if we would have won anything, but we wished we knew it was going on so we could have joined. It was a 200.00 fee and all the proceeds went to charity. Most of the fishing boats were in the range of 25 to 30 foot. I would have liked to have pulled in with September Song and Gypsies in the Palace and showed them how we fish in comfort. I don't know what we would have done if we had hooked a 47 pound dolphin like the one in the picture, but it would have been fun trying. I guess we would fill the freezer and then some. The end of the tournament was rained out, so we headed for the Tiki Bar for happy hour and appetizers. (NO, that's not all we did was eat and drink)

September Song (wish I could catch a 47 pound dolphin) out

46.5 pound bull dolphin

Lots of grouper sandwiches on that one

Stephanie, Tammy, and Doug watching the fisherman come in with their prize catch

She won the lady angler prize with this 45.8 pound kingfish (and largest kingfish overall)
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Fort Pierce, FL.

Fort Pierce was a great place to stop for an extra day, especially because they have a Farmers Market on Saturday Mornings. (I love Farmers Markets) The Market was one of the largest and best Farmers Markets I have been to yet. We didn't eat breakfast before going to the Farmers market because we just knew there would be lots of goodies there. We weren't disappointed. The only problem was deciding what to eat first. After a multi stage breakfast and buying enough stuff that Doug had to make a trip back to the boats to drop off the first load, we hit the craft festival. Wait till you see me in my Reggae beads. After the craft festival we headed downtown, where I found a new hat (Panama Jack hat) that was way cool. My hat from the Bahamas was getting a little worn. (it's still good for the beach and trips in Half Note) That hat has many memories and will be my favorite for a long, long time to come.
Fort Pierce was a good stop to help with the "missing the Bahamas".

September Song (I've stopped the whining, well, most of it) out

You get alot of rainbows this time of the year

Reggae Band at the Tiki Bar

Dinner at the Tiki Bar
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looks like about two pounds to me mister farmer

Love those bakery goods

Beautiful produce everywhere at the Farmers Market. In the Bahamas they don't grow much in the way of produce. You have to wait to see what comes in on the supply boat on Wednesdays, or maybe Thursday, Mon

Our breakfast cook
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Breakfast on the waterfront at the Fort Pierce Farmers Market

The Breakfast was killer. A giant buttered and grilled croissant with eggs, sausage, bacon and cheese. After that we had to have something from the baker. Piggy heaven!

Do you think this dog is spoiled?

A real cool cat in his shades
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Music at the Farmers Market. They were very good!

Local crafts festival next to the Farmers market

Organic farmers selling their produce. They look like a couple from the early 70's. They fit the part
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