December 3, 2022
Our trip to Southern Florida is almost complete. The journey has been without incident, and we are now sitting at anchor in Lake Worth waiting for some work to be completed on Home Free. We will head back North after that work is done and shortly head home for Christmas. We do look forward to seeing family and friends for the holidays.
My last post was just a few photos of birds. We have a new, much more powerful lens and I am attempting to bring the world a little closer to me with it. Jinhee isn’t such a fan of birds, but she did take the photo of the little sailboat with the geese on the back.
After my post from Hilton Head regarding people who are on boats but at the end of their ropes, this picture was appropriate. A gentleman showed up at the Jacksonville free dock, who seemed a little tipsy at 7 am, on a boat that looked to barely float with geese aboard, in what looked like a mini hatchery . . . it was both discomforting and sad at the same time. It is worth noting that the boat had well tied lines, navigation lights and the master aboard appeared to be navigating. (He arrived during the middle of the night.) Perhaps judgement should be limited. We chose to be amazed by the geese aboard.
After spending a night on the free dock (yay!), we arrived in St. Augustine for three nights and took in some of the town. St. Augustine has an amazing Christmas light show. We were there over Thanksgiving weekend too, and the town was so packed you could barely walk. With Jinhee’s ankle injury, we found it easier to (mostly) eat on the boat.
For those who know me well, you know that I am not much for hanging out and drinking, but Jinhee did a lot of work to find interesting live music in St. Augustine and on Saturday night we sampled three different bands at three different bars. Good news, I am starting to act like a teenager.
One of the acts she found was Jolie who I found to be so easy to listen to. She’s a young singer/songwriter (she only played cover songs while we listened) and had a nice voice and was a solo pianist without any of the modern accoutrements that musicians use to boost their sound. Just a digital piano and her voice. Awesome.
We did hang out with Craig and Teri on Cala II for a bit, and went to Harry’s for dinner with them. Jinhee wasn’t nearly as impressed with the food as I suggested she should be, but I still thought their Crab Crusted Redfish Royale was good. (Still not life changing though).
On Monday morning we dropped the mooring ball and headed South with the intention of getting to North Palm Beach in one go. We had very good weather (and it got warmer as we went south!), and went through the night to Fort Pierce where we ducked in to do the last 50 miles inside.
Since we are here to visit YachtTech and get some work done on the boat, we ponied up and took a slip at Old Port Cove marina for a few days. We have engaged the team at YT to recover our headliners (ceiling panels). The humidity causes the glue in the panels to give up and then the warm air turns them into irregular puffy balloons. It’s totally cosmetic and it isn’t pretty. Before we get too far away from the East Coast, we thought we would get this item taken care of. We will also use this stop to get new anchor chain, the flaking is making a mess constantly now, and having taken off 100′ last year we need to refresh that item before we head to anchorages unknown as well.
Having been at anchor for most of the last four weeks, we also took the time to wash the boat down. It’s much cleaner now, and there is much left to do, but it makes a difference.
Being tied to a dock and staying in one place make it easier for me to ride a bike as well. I have put in a few rides, rather short, but riding just the same and it makes me happy. I am ridiculously out of shape however, so I will hopefully get more riding time in the next week or so before we head back to Canada.
The last few days has also been a great opportunity to do some other boat work. The oil in the main engine and generator was refreshed, along with the main transmission. The cleaning is just getting started as is the cataloging of spares, and reorganizing many parts and pieces to prepare for the trip to the Caribbean.
As usual there were new friends being made. I met Bob and Anita on Isla Bonita a couple of years ago in Fort Pierce, just after they acquired their boat. We ended up being tied to the same finger/slip at Old Port Cove and have enjoyed some laughs with them over the past few days.
The team at Yacht Tech continues to take good care of us, and James even took us out to see an N60 and an N62 that are for sale. We keep thinking about a bigger boat and this was a great opportunity to see a couple of vessels that could offer some nice benefits for a Pacific crossing. The downside is that we would have to sell this boat, and we (Don, at least) know this boat inside, out and top to bottom, and that takes time. Our confidence in the boat is absolute, and so we have to start that process all over again with another boat if we were to change.
After we get the headliners updated, we will provide another post with a photo or two. Hopefully things look awesome when we are done.