time with good friends in the USA
10 May 2018 | Vero Beach/Ft Pierce –road trip to Jacksonville.
waiting for weather to head to Bermuda.
IMAGE – images
Saturday 14th April - It was sad to leave Miami, knowing that this will be our last visit. We have now had 3 great stops here and enjoyed each one very much indeed. The anchorage spot we have here is very safe, close to shore, a secure dingy dock and all the food shopping and internet facilities are just a short walk away. The weather has been lovely every time we have been here.
Saturday mid-morning we upped anchor and motored out back through the ‘water roads’ of Miami to leave on the outgoing current through the inlet for an overnight sail to Ft Pierce.
It was a great sail – just love the gulf stream! We stayed at anchor off Harbourtown Marina till Sunday 22nd. Thankfully during this time we were able to arrange and complete the arch welding job at a nearby Mom & Pop boatyard – hopefully the final major job completed before our departure across the Atlantic.
On Monday 23rd we motored north along the IWC to Vero Beach City Marina to take up one of their mooring balls. We last visited this council run facility for Christmas 2016 and enjoyed the area facilities and convenience very much indeed. In southern Florida this is the only place we can safely and affordably leave the boat for a few days whilst we meet up with Sue, Abrie, Annette and Kenny in Jacksonville.
Thursday 26th we collected our hire car, and enjoyable a coastal drive to Jacksonville. Arrived at Annette & Kennys home as arranged about 6pm. It was great to be with Sue, Abrie, Annette & Kenny again– lots of chat, the odd Cruzan and BBQ pizza around the firepit. Sue and Abrie had been at a car rally to show off Abries pride and joy – his …… truck. They were in Pigeon Forge Tennessee with Harry & Betsy – but unfortunately we just couldn’t make it happen for us to join them.
Annette and Kenny had taken holiday leave whilst us gang were in town so we could hang out together. After a slow morning start I wonder why) on Friday 27th, and very enjoyable brunch at home we all headed to the local Jacksonville indoor Karting Autobarn for a racing event. Wow what great fun. Sue aka Mama Andretti had the best racing time from our group – James is still in denial. It was off to Hurricanes for a few ‘afterwork’ drinks and then home for an excellent evening BBQ. What a great day.
Sadly Saturday 28th came around too quickly. Annette prepared a southern style brunch– mince, gravy and biscuits (interesting) then we all went our separate ways – not goodbye but making plans of when we came meet again. A great few days with good friends. For us it was back to Ft Pierce for our bulk food and final odds and ends shopping – and then we had to load it all on the boat.
More bulk food shopping and making use of the hire car for off jobs on Sunday 29th. We enjoyed a late night Chinese meal in Vero Beach village.
Monday 30th, after some final fresh food shopping we needed to return the hire car and consider when we might be ready to leave Vero Beach City Marina – they call it Velcro for a reason.
Tuesday 1 to Thursday 3rd on the mooring Vero Beach – morning boat jobs then afternoon internet and sport (European football) on TV for James
We have paid a subscription to Chris Parker to provide us with weather info and routing for our big return to UK passage. So on Friday 4th James commenced speaking and planning with him– all looks good for us to leave from Ft Pierce to Bermuda on Sunday.
I did a passage menu plan, and we did a final fresh food shopping trip, all very easy with the free local bus which stops at the Marina and right at the Supermarket. We had a final afternoon on the internet, got a Skype call into Mum and spent a lot of time getting out Sat Phone working ready for our Atlantic passage.
Saturday 5th midday we checked out from Vero. Filled with fuel and water and motored went back along the ICW to Ft Pierce to get ready for our departure. At 5pm with made contact with Chris Parker with the assistance of the various afternoon nets and relays. The forecast for our passage has changed!! Serious thunderstorms for tomorrow afternoon are now forecast, then north winds as we would be crossing the gulf stream, and then possibly no wind for the rest of the passage!! and therefore far too much motoring towards Bermuda. We are both very disappointed as we are SO ready to get going, but will sit here in Ft Pierce at anchor and wait for a better forecast for sailing safely to Bermuda.
As our Sunday 6th departure has been delayed, we moved around to the protection of Faber Cove to sit out the thunderstorms and north winds. Faber Cove is very sheltered, but also very shallow – thankfully we can lift the keel and tuckup somewhere safe for the next few days.
In Faber Cove we were able to go ashore for a last long shore walk for at least a week or more. We found a local 24hour Diner with WiFi for the final checking of the weather forecast, final emails off and a top up of our fresh fruit and veg.
Thursday 10th – La Aventura finally departed for Bermuda.