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Adventures with Mariah and Dave
Sleepless in Miami
12/28/2008, Miami, FL

Well we didnt leave Christmas Day like we were thinking. The weather was terrible. Who knows what the forecasters were thinking. So we hung out and spent Christmas Day dinner with James's family. It was a great Christmas even though we were far from our families.

We've spent the past days doing boat projects and catching up on some reading with the beautiful weather. The winds just arent the way we want them even though it's nice out. Today James and his daughter Alex, his brother Jeff and their parents Craig and Pricilla came out sailing with us today. James was really excited to get Alex out sailing...he wants her to be one of those little rugrats out in the harbor shredding it up on a Laser. I dont blame him.

Of course the engine overheated again while we were out there. So we had to sail back to our anchorage. We are hoping to get it fixed again and hopefully take off tomorrow. We are getting really anxious to get to the Bahamas! Its been almost a month since we left Charleston.

12/29/2008 | Jeff and Tracy
Thanks for keeping up your website, we're wishing we were with you. Hope your crossing is smooth sailing, stay in touch!
12/29/2008 | mom m
sleepless in Buffalo!
12/29/2008 | Donny B
Things are cold and snowy here in Montana... Steph & I are heading out for another snowmobile adventure, Mom & Devan up to Big Sky for a day on the slopes. Have a great sail south...
12/30/2008 | Dave Benjamin
I'm excited for you two. Don't rush. Have fun until you get the right weather window. To paraphrase an old flying expression it's better to be in the anchorage wishing you were out on passage than on the passage wishing you were in the anchorage. No sense beating yourself, the boat, or the dogs up with a snotty gulfstream crossing. I would leave at night to set up for a morning arrival if possible.
Merry Christmas from Pegasus!
12/24/2008, Miami, FL

My new guitar!

12/24/2008 | Gary McC
You guys a so lucky starting out on an adventure at this time. For me, one of my most memorable Christmas times was a couple of years ago when your sister Meghan and I were in Tromsø, Norway on Christmas Eve. Times like that are unforgettable.

Take care and have a wonderful holiday and a continued adventure
12/24/2008 | Sadler
Looks like you guys are having a great time. I hope Dave will make a celebratory video of Mariah playing her new guitar and singing after you arrive in Bimini! Nice surfing Dave :))
12/26/2008 | Lorin and Leslie
Hey Feliz Navidad y Ano Nuevo!
Sounds like Pegasus has been mostly a reliable steed on the journey. Glad you are stopping to smell the roses occasionally.
Are the beer making canines faring well? If you need supplies for them, let me know.
So , you guys have a life raft, smoke flares, night flares, a storm sail, and four days of potable water for the passage to the Greater Antilles?
I am trying to set up a bareboat cruise either in St Thomas or Tortola next year. If it happens, I will come visit.
Fair Winds & Following Seas to ya ....
12/27/2008 | jim kelly
looking forward to seeing you safe in saint thomas...i cant imagine the expierence that you are looking forward to,,,,i look at your blog almost every day,,,,,happy sailing and we will see you in st. thommy......
12/27/2008 | Aunty KIM
And away you go. We were thinking about you up in Curlew at -6 degrees, thinking the tropics sound pretty damn good about now. How about a 1 year wedding reunion! Getting lots of snow in the mountains.
Enjoy for all of us here in the wet cold!
Merry Christmas from Pegasus!
Mariah, Windy
12/24/2008, Miami, FL

We did Christmas morning on Christmas Eve morning. We had to get all the boxes out of the boat before heading over to the Bahamas. So we hung out this morning in our PJ's and drank Holiday Chai. The puppies got puppy treats from Grandma McCausland (my mom) and dramamine from Auntie Leanne (we might borrow some if the seas get too rough). Mom and Dad Muirhead did Christmas for us before we left Charleston and helped stock the boat up with safety gear. Mom and Dad McCausland sent us all kinds of goodies, DVD's, tea and chocolate, salami, and my favorite, smoked oysters from Washington! Also a great LED lantern that is much needed for the cockpit. The sun sets around 5pm so it will be nice to see our food while dining al fresco! The Griswolds sent us a great package with lots of useful boat stuff, croakies for our sunglasses and biodegradable soap for bathing in the water! I forgot my Dr. Bronners before we left so I was excited. Mom and Dad McC also sent us a cool wine label saver book so you can write about all the wines you try and remember them, but I think we might change it into a beer label book and write about all of our favorite local beers in the islands! Dave got me a very exciting gift, very much a surprise. He got me a little travel guitar! Im always singing and he thinks I have a great voice, so he bought me a guitar so I can have some music for my singing. Then he is going to send me out to the beach bars and try and make some money. Haha. Well at least a fun hobby for the anchorages.

We are hoping to get out of here early tomorrow morning and check into Bimini by mid-afternoon. Im a little nervous, but more excited than anything. It's finally here! After 4 years of talking about it. We finally talked it into existance!

Bienvinedos a Miami!
12/22/2008, Dinner Key, Miami, FL

We made it to Miami! We arrived on Saturday afternoon with a warm welcome from Captain James Sauers. He was on duty for TowBoatUS and came and met us about 15 miles away from our final anchorage in the ICW and escorted us the remainder of the way.

We had about 5 more bridges to go through...out of the 53 we had on our list for the trip! And with James tied up next to us, he was able to use his great benefits and just call the bridges and have them open up for us on demand. It was a great way to arrive after having to scurry though the past two days of 17 bridges a day, trying to time them just right and to make them on time.

When we got in and anchored up, James took us for a little joy ride on the boat and Dave tested his skills on the surfboard on a much faster boat. James got going to 25 knots before Dave gave up and let go. Pretty damn good for not having your feet strapped in.

Pegasus has been anchored up at Dinner Key so we can run our errands and do our final provisioning. James took us out on the boat again on Sunday and showed us what route we would take out of No Name Harbor into the Gulf Stream. We accompanied him on a tow of a boat that broke down in the Gulf Stream so we were able get the feeling for what it was like. Definately a little rougher waters than the harbor, but the water went from crystalline blue/green just outside the harbor, where we could see our shadows on the bottom of 20 ft to the deep deep blue of the Stream that dropped off to about 200 ft. I can only imagine what the Bahamian waters will look like.

I have been watching a weather window for Thursday of SE winds and 2-4 ft seas in the gulf. Looks like a pretty good window so we may be pulling up the anchor and heading out on Christmas Day. Yesterday and today have been pretty bad weather, 20-25 knot winds from the NE (not a good time to cross the gulf with contrasting current and winds). And it has been pretty uncomfortable to sleep at night with the boat bobbing around.

We got our wireless internet up and running so it should be working when we get to the Bahamas so Dave and I can both be connected to the real world. Hope everyone is doing well and enjoying the holidays!

12/30/2008 | Dave Benjamin
Hey Mariah,

You said "We got our wireless internet up and running so it should be working when we get to the Bahamas so Dave and I can both be connected to the real world."

I think you have it backwards. Being out on the boat is the real world. This stuff back here is a bit of nonsense to endure to go cruising.
A Great Day For Sailing
12/21/2008, Somewhere, ICW, FL

We had a favorable tide and an East wind. We spent the day in a wide spot of the ICW with the headsail up and making some great time. Here is a picture of us about to pass another boat. Endeavour's are called "a wolf in sheep's clothing" because of their roomy space down below you wouldnt think they are very speedy. But Pegasus certainly gets moving when she wants to!

A Trip To The Beach
12/20/2008, Peck Lake, FL

We found a great anchorage in the mangroves that was walking distance to the ocean! We dinghy-ied ashore with the pups and let them run and run to their little heart's content. It was so refreshing to see the ocean after weeks of Intercoastal Waterway. It made me really start to think about our crossing over the Gulf Stream into the Bahamas. A little nerve-racking but I am excited to get to the islands.

Barley got all excited on the beach and started rolling in the sand. I caught a picture of her looking like "Two-Face".

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Who: Mariah, Dave, Barley & Hops
Port: Charleston, SC
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