Blue Heron and Jackets II did make the crossing on Sunday and pulled into the marina. They have a bit of speed in their guts and made a successful daytime crossing. Craig and Barb and Steve and Charlotte were naturally happy to be on dry ground and they invited us to join them for margaritas by the boats. (highlight phrase - "Its a nate gration! No, wait. I said that wrong. I meant to say "its a nate gration.") But like all crossing crews they passed out on their boats for a well deserved night’s sleep.
Got to add a side note here – On Sunday we boarded one of the trolley busses that run around the area on the weekends and made our way down to Clearwater. They're called a Jolley Trolley. It was a lovely tour except for one thing. The trolley broke down along the way. I think the transmission imploded. We were sitting pretty much on top of it and it made a god-awful racket. They sent a replacement trolley in short order and the rest of the trip was otherwise pleasant, except the benches on the darn things were uncommonly uncomfortable.
|There's nothing jolly about a broken down Jolley Trolley|
The next day (That would be Monday, I guess) around noon we heard some more engines approaching the docks. It was El Sea V with Larry and Linda after pulling an all-nighter to make the crossing. They aren’t loopers but they are such a nice couple of folks we have bestowed the privileges of said title upon them as well. And one of those privileges was to join us for dinner at, where else, Hellas Greek restaurant. OPAAs for all.
On Wednesday Ross and Laura, now fully matrimonialized, returned and we all headed over to Mama’s Restaurant for even more Greek food. (I have to admit I am getting tired of Greek food.) But it was fun to celebrate with Ross and Laura.
(Side note: Remember how we've complained about most restaurant food? Ross, Bill and I had to go to West Marine earlier in the week using Ross's rent-a-car. We ate at Wendy's. Omigod, did that taste GOOD!)
|The Zone with a few add ons|
|Steve and Charlotte Jensen of Jackets II and the new Laura Perone|
|Ross and Laura back on board|
Ok, I’m trying to keep everything in order here.
Jackets II and Blue Herron both pulled out about 10 am on Thursday. Around 4:00 Lisa and I were sitting on the dock talking to Ross and Laura where we spied the bow of a boat coming into the marina. It was Bob and Ivy of Karma followed by Krazy Kru. They both had just come from one of the small ports along the bend. They did not do a straight crossing but hop-scotched along the coast line. Krazy Kru are not loopers either but have been a part of this bunch of loopers that we consider them part of the club.
So let’s take a tally of all of the boats we have been travelling with since Mobile, Ala.
Memsahib and Catmandu – did the crossing near our central flotilla. They came to Tarpon Springs and left for some unknown points south.
Sea Dog – did the crossing with the flotilla but peeled away before entering Tarpon Springs to go to Dunedin, Fla. And presumably on further south.
Proud Lady, Sea N Red, Limelight, Sareanna, Next to Me , The Zone and us came into Turtle Cove Marina as the remainder of the main flotilla and have all departed for points south, except for The Zone which is still here, and us.
Jackets II and Blue Heron did the crossing together, arrived at Turtle Cove and have departed.
El Sea V did an overnight crossing and is tied up next to us here at Turtle Cove.
Karma and Krazy Kru arrived together after doing a daytime leg from the bend and are still here.
The Zone is tied up a larger dock on the other side of the marina.
And we, that is, Why Knot are still at our slip unmoved since our crossing two weeks ago.
|"So wadaya lookn' at? I'm a seabird: what the hell you expect?!"|
But for us things are going to change tomorrow, Saturday. Our time on this particular leg is short as we must head home for a while - seven to eight weeks. We will be pulling out around 9 am and head on down to Regatta Point Marina in Palmetto, Fla. on the Manatee River which is right on the south side of the opening of Tampa Bay. Its about 51 nautical miles away. This is where we will be leaving Why Knot. Our boat broker buddy Charlie Pendergrass is going to make a way to get up here and do the cruise with us. Charlie holds a special place in our hearts as he was the very first person we shared this experience with. He helped us to buy Why Knot. We are looking forward to the reunion.
One thing about this shore leave that kind of sucks is that we are such a short distance from completing our loop - two weeks max. It would have been fun to go back to St. Louis with our gold looper burgee in hand. But it ain't working out that way. It is said that the one thing that you cannot have on a long range cruise like this is a schedule and delays along the way down the rivers and in Carrabelle have sabotaged the best of intentions.
But I'll tell you this. When the end of March comes around we will be ready and raring to go!!!!!! We'll be back in Florida with much warmer and sunnier weather. We will be putting away the fleece and jackets in favor of shorts and tee shirts.
We'll be ready. Just try to stop us.