In Florida where they drive to the water
05/16/2010, St. Augustine, Florida
May 9th, 2010 St. Augustine, Florida
We were up early having promised to meet "Savage Son" for breakfast around 8am. I loaded up the empty jerry cans and a bag of trash and headed unto the marina. After checking in the dinghy and paying our $10 fee. We were off. Bob and Bev and Brian had a loaner car and knew of a good breakfast spot over the bridge.
Our meal was excellent but the car had to go back so we didn't do much provisioning. Kathy and Bev were dropped off down town for a walk and some shopping while I hauled fuel, and ran over to talk to "Journey" who had picked some fabric treatment for us at West Marine yesterday. Bob and Brian returned to "Savage Son" to do some engine work.
After noon we all met in town for dinner, walking and shopping. We spent most of the afternoon sampling sangria from a number of establishments. It was a fine, relaxing Mother's Day.
We were in bed early for a 7 a.m. departure in the morning
Back in the USA-this is Savage Son on the way back.
05/11/2010, St. Augustine, Florida
May 6th....Crossing back to the States
05/11/2010, Manjack Cay
Our plan all along had been to take the next weather window... usually but not always a week away. But after listening to the weather in the morning it sounded like the trade winds were going to insert themselves next week to their fullest extent, which means about 25 knots. Sailors in the Caribbean have learned to be OK with these winds but we aren't quite there yet.
The current window was closing as a cold front approached Florida on Saturday evening. The question is always ... should we stay a few days or go? We first made the decision to stay put for the day and stage tomorrow. But the combination of a forest fire directly opposite us.... sending smoke and ash, along with "Madcap's" decision to head up to
Great Sale Cay to stage during the afternoon, got us off our buts and on the road.
At first our goal was a cay about 20 miles north called Allen's Pensacola, but after enjoying a good sail and being passed by "Savage Son" flying their A-Sym Spinnaker, decided to continue on to Great Sale Cay, even though we'd be arriving after dark.
We all talked about the possibility of continuing on to Florida during the afternoon and in the evening as we passed Great Sale, made the decision to keep going.
There was an amazing line of thunder storms to our north all night filling the sky with constant lightening flashes. But to our good fortune, they all stayed there in a line heading east as we sailed west.
By morning we were in the Gulf stream with north winds on the nose... .but still going 9 knots. I wonder what we could have done not pounding into waves and wind. In the evening, with Cape Canaveral still on our port beam we worked our way out of the Stream and set a course for Fernandina.
The mornings weather still called for a front sweeping through southern Florida around supper time so we backed off and changed course to St. Augustine arriving around noon.
After checking in by phone, (we love the local boaters option) Kathy fired up the computer and we were back on line. We'll stay here for a couple of days and then head a little north.
May 5th, 2010 Green Turtle to Manjack Cay
After coffee, I changed our primary fuel filters and checked out the engine. Everything looked fine. I did add a little coolant to the radiator.
At 10 this morning we dinghied over to "Solitaire" for Nancy's birthday brunch. She made Huevos Rancheros for everyone along with a corn salad and cinnamon rolls. Kathy brought a fruit salad and Beth made a chocolate cake. We had a great meal and lots of good conversation.
After the party we sailed up to Manjack arriving around 1:30. We read for a while, then got in the dinghy to lead Bob, Bev, and Brian out to the reef for some snorkeling/hunting. No one was seeing much, so we drove over to Crab Cay to check out the beach we named Sea Biscuit Beach last year. This year, Sea Urchin Beach would have been more appropriate. We had a nice walk and decided to head up the creek into the mangroves to look for conch. We met Jim and Nancy up there and they had found one. We searched for a very long time to find two mature conch, then went back to the boat to clean them. Jim and Nancy came by on their way in and gave us their conch, so that got cleaned also.
There is something burning across the way on Abaco. The air is quite smoky and we have ashes on the boat. Not so delightful.
We all got together on Savage Son later for sun downers-typical boat stuff.