Familiar Friends and Towns
14 April 2017 | St Simons Island
Beth / warm and sunny
The main dock at Fernandina Municipal Marina was badly damaged by Hurricane Matthew, the fuel dock is closed and the marina office has moved to the boaters lounge. The old dinghy dock is high and dry at low tide due to increased silting, and many of the slips are unusable. But there are still 12 good mooring balls available (and they take same day reservations), and the bathrooms/showers are still among the best around. The big ugly mills still dominate the skyline on the east side, and the gentle marshes filled with bird life provide a welcome contrast on the west.
Centre Street is still lovely, Bright Mornings on 3rd Street is still the very best place to enjoy coffee and delicious food and cheerful servers. Felix Jones, in his colourful shirts and perky straw hat, still pedals his bicycle through town, selling bananas and pineapples and boiled peanuts.
We gave our legs a good stretch as we walked to Publix on 14th, and, laden with more groceries than we had thought we'd buy, took a cab back to the marina. Our evening at the Salty Pelican on Front Street with Tina and Dick was the crowning glory of the day. What a wonderful time we always have with these friends, and how odd it feels to know that this is most likely the last time Madcap will be moored out front when we come to visit.
With a satisfying and relaxing day behind us, and a north wind blowing on the sea, we set off up the ICW once more. This time we kept Jim's iPad with the Navionics Boating App right beside the chartplotter. When we once again ran into skinny water near Jekyll Island, he zoomed in close and said, "It's better to starboard." I think that app will be well worth the price as we continue on. And thank goodness for cellular data plans!
We joined 3 other boats anchored near Morningstar/Golden Isles Marina on Lanier Island just off St Simons Sound and called our friends Sandi and Steve. By the time we got settled, and dinghied to the marina, they arrived to pick us up. We made a stop at Harris Teeter to pick up wine (how could we pass up a 15% off sale?) and drove to their home on St Simons for a lovely evening and delicious meal of asparagus risotto and BBQ'd pork tenderloin.
These two days of peace and friendship remind us of the joys of our cruising life, and distract us very nicely from the increased stress we seem to be feeling about plotting our northern journey.
Onward and upward!