01/09/2013, Port Canaveral, FL
I have heard for years that the two greatest days in a boater's life are the day he buys his boat and the day he sells his boat. That sounds a little trite and cynical to me but I guess I'm about to find out if its true. Yes, I'm ready to move on to the next phase of my life and that includes selling the Norma Fay. Its been a great five years of cruising but I feel like its the right move for me right now.
If you know of anyone who's looking for a comfortable, seaworthy, and cruise-ready boat contact me via the comment section.
11/13/2012, Key West, FL
Well, its been a fun and productive stay here in Key West. I got to play lots of music, see some old friends and make some new ones. Now, I'm beginning to make preparations for heading back to the mainland.
Yesterday, I rented an air tank and dove on the hull. My bottom paint is getting a little "tired" so there was plenty of sea life to scrape off. I also cleaned the prop, replaced my prop zinc, topped off my fresh water and refilled the battery water.
I plan to leave here in about a week and head back to the Cocoa Beach area. As always, my exact route and schedule depend on the weather and sea conditions. Even though I don't place very much stock in long range weather predictions, I have already started watching the weather forcast.
My preference would be to go "outside" from Boot Key to Palm Beach in one long 24+ hour run. That would put me two days from Cocoa Beach after that. Again, thats my preference but I always give the weather the last word.
In the mean time, here's a picture of me and my buddies at Captain Tony's.
10/26/2012, Key West, FL
Even though I was not scheduled to begin my stay in Key West until the 24th, I decided to check with my new marina about coming down sooner. The travel weather for Sunday looked pretty good and it was forcast to deteriorate over the next couple of days
They said that coming down sooner was not a problem so I sailed down on Sunday the 21st. The winds were brisk and just off my stern which made for a quick trip down. I got here in about six hours and made it safely into my slip.
In the days since my arrival, we have been getting hit with the outter rain bands and wind from Sandy. Off-shore seas have been estimated at 16 feet.... I have been busy congratulating myself for coming down early and avoiding that mess. :O) **whew**
10/16/2012, Boot Key Harbor, Marathon, FL
Yesterday morning, I was rowing my dinghy ashore with the intent of getting the supplies that I thought I would need to fix my outboard when SNAP, I broke the left-side oar lock on my dinghy. I finally made it ashore and, with a renewed sense of purpose, set out on my quest.
First, I discovered that West Marine had the replaceement oar lock. Now, bear in mind we're talking about a plastic collar on a pivoting shaft with a screw down the middle. For this little item, West Marine wanted 42.00!!!! Instead, I bought a new screw and some super glue and decided to try a temporary fix. After all, I was going to fix my motor anyway, right?
Well, I bought new fuel and carbuerator cleaner and then rowed back to the boat on my newly glued oar lock. So far so good. Well, after draining the old fuel, replacing it, taking the carbuerator off,cleaning it and putting it back on, I still could not keep the engine running.
I finally gave up and rowed ashore to shower and call it a day. At least I could row again. On the way back to the boat SNAP went the oar lock again. CRAP! Needless to say, I went to bed last night feeling a little discouraged.
This morning, I prepared to hold my nose and pay West Marine 42.00 for a new oar lock. At least I'd have one reliable way of getting to shore. After dog-paddling my way to the dinghy dock, I spoke to one of ladies at the marina who suggested that I check with Eric at Coastline Dinghy Repair. She said that he might have a replacement oar lock. Sure enough, he did! For ten bucks. YAY! Take that, West Marine!
Since I was on a roll, I assked Eric about my engine problem,. He told me that knew exactly what was wrong and explained how to remove and clean the two jets that were clogged. I walked back to the marina and rowed back to my boat, took the carbuerator off, removed the jets, cleaned them as instructed and v'room!
As of this writing, I now have working oars and a working motor! Tonight, I motored ashore for my shower.. Ahhhh.....
10/13/2012, Boot Key Harbor, Marathon, FL
OK, so technically I'm not going anywhere for a bit but I'll still do some posting whilst I hang out here. Its not quite as good but its still an excuse to stop working and read for a bit eh?
This morning I was up at sunrise and made breakfast before rowing ashore. I'll have to say that I made one good decision already today. I decided to close the hatches since I planned to be gone for a few hours. Sure enough, I had no more than gotten ashore when a squall arrived and drenched the mooring field. **whew**
Anyway, I plan to get some errands done today and take advantage of staying put by getting in a good long walk. Talk soon!
10/12/2012, Boot Key Harbor, Marathon, FL
Since I have a good signal here. Here's a bonus pic of the sunrise this morning from my spot in mooring field.