Saturday, February 13, 2016

Daily Life Onboard

Nothing major to report for the last few weeks. We shared cocktails with the crews of Fruitcakes, Short Vacation, and Shell Bell several evenings. We have enjoyed visits from several Iowa friends- John and Becky from Muscatine; Bryan and Letty from Sheldon; and cousins Maureen and Reiney from Ames. None of them seemed overly sad about missing out on sub-zero temps back in the Hawkeye state!

Becky and Becky

Robert, Mark and Kay

Kay, Becky, Patsy and Pam

Our view of sunset

Cribbage and cocktails on the bridge with Caitie

Pam and John are our next-door neighbors on their new boat, Short Vacation, a DeFever. They are Mississippi River boaters from Illinois who we met through mutual friends several years ago. It's such a happy coincidence that we ended up in adjoining slips! They hosted a Super Bowl party for us, Andy and Julie from Fruitcakes, and Werner and Kathy from It's About Time. Great food and fun, but no pictures.

Cousins Maureen and Reiny and their good friend Sally. Jerry snapped the photo.

Mark is an expert at sautéing scallops

Our home

Meanwhile we (and by we I mean mostly Mark) works on the boat nearly every day. He actually finds purpose and satisfaction in these tasks. Some of the jobs he has tackled recently:

  • replaced impellers
  • changed oil- 2 engines, the generator, the dinghy motor
  • reworked the dinghy motor
  • removed the auto pilot and sent it in for repairs
  • arranged to have the bridge cushions recovered
  • replaced the galley faucet head
  • obtained the necessary parts by bicycle or borrowed car
  • found a gauge for the holding tank, which he will replace
  • arranged for the exterior of the boat to be detailed next week
Mark had to drive the dinghy about 1/2 mile to have it pulled out of the water so a mechanic could work on the lower unit right there near the boat ramp. As luck would have it, that was a day with gale-force winds. Once he got to the boat ramp, the mechanic discovered he had the wrong impeller and had to send back to the shop for the correct one. During that hour of waiting, the winds increased. Once the repairs were complete the dinghy went back in the water and Mark headed for Mara Beel. After a very short time, the motor died and Mark was forced to row the dinghy into significant waves and wind. It was quite an experience! He did manage to a) miss the huge luxury yacht tied to the face dock, and b) restart the engine after several minutes. The wind was unbelievable, but he made it back and John helped get him and the dinghy back on board. I couldn't even get off our boat to help because the wind kept it too far from the pier for me to jump, and I wasn't strong enough to pull the boat closer. Good thing John could hop off his boat! Mark is not anxious to repeat this rowing in a gale experience!

This is a storm flag, denoting winds 55-73 mph.

Needing a break from the boat, we borrowed our friends' car and went to Pine Island to pick up a part Mark needed. Since we were in the area we went to Galt Nature Preserve, anticipating a nice nature walk. Sadly, most of the trails looked like this:

Flooded trail=no hiking

Great Grouper lunch in Bokeelia, Pine Island

Our next stop was a visit with long-time friends Dick and Susie in Cape Coral.
(again no photo- I must be losing my touch)

Our normal activities include filling our water tanks every 5 days or so, pumping out our waste tank on the same schedule, pulling our folding wagon to Publix for groceries (2.2 miles round trip), walking, biking, playing Mexican Train dominoes or Cribbage at night, socializing, meeting new friends, and planning the next adventure.

Every now and then a Sax player plays under the bridge near us.

Mark and John from Serenity headed to the Miami International Boat Show yesterday while I hung out with Pam and John, and got acquainted with Art and Pam who, over the course of 10 years, completely rebuilt their 59 foot boat, Tinacious.

John, Art, Pam, Pam and Becky at Marinatown.

And this brings us up to date!

1 comment:

  1. Glad to see you're posting again, I especially enjoy your photos of sun, sea and warm weather this time of year. We are going to Chicago and on to Lake Michigan in July and maybe up to Mackinac island. Say hi to Mark and I hope you both enjoy another season of cruising.