Saturday, November 24, 2012

Trekking down the ICW to Vero and Thanksgiving

We have reached our first important destination, Vero Beach in Florida, after a two week journey. Early mornings, lots of wind, shallow water, early nights, drizzle and fog. Sound like fun?

We usually go offshore, which means we exit the intercoastal waterway through an inlet into the Atlantic Ocean and sail for hours and usually days without worrying about running aground or big sportfishers and assorted powerboats throwing big wakes as they pass you. But the weather wouldn't let us outSo we ran down the ICW being constantly vigilant. A few times I strayed and the ever aware captain became Ahab-like. I obviously wasn't paying close enough heed to the spoken word so he texted me "this is what happens when you don't pay attention":

We have never proceeded past St. Augustine on the ICW, but despite constant dreary skies and drizzle, it was quite pleasant. The vast majority of the bridges open upon on request and we found lots of water with a few exceptions. Lots of anchorages, and few power boats.

Vero Beach is mecca for boaters. Moorings at $20 a night are very protected and there is a great swap library, weekly pot lucks, a free bus that takes you everywhere (West Marine, Sams Club, Publix, ritzy shopping, consignment stores, Target, Home Goods, you name it). Tons of cruisers come here for Thanksgiving put on by the Power Squadron. We have never attended, being lucky to have friends who became CLODS here (cruisers living on dirt). We always run into lots of folks we know, this year Chris and Karen on Synergy, Marilyn and Carl on Discovery, Kitty and Scott on Tamare, and we are rafted with Corbett and Robin on Cookie Monster. There's another Hylas 44 here, and we dropped by to say heh to Prue and Burt on Exuberant who are also headed to the Bahamas.

This year we stayed a few nights with Bob and Bev Schneider from Savage Son, who live down the road from Jay and Di formerly of Far Niente and now land cruisers. We met Megan, Bev's son Brian's new fiancee and heartily agree she will be a great addition to the family and our circle of friends. We moved down the road and extended our land stay at the Howells. Lots of water! Lots of wine! Lots of great company, and Tinkerbelle the princess puppy.

Thanksgiving was held at the Howells with Bev making the big bird and all of us providing the sides. We missed the company of the Temples and Barlowes but commemorated our last Thanksgiving together with the traditional gravy moth. This year we met Robin and Michael from Sea Biscuit who accompanied the Savages while we supported the Northern Neck construction trade during our year off. And we were introduced to The Milk of Life, a locally retailed eggnog.

We have been providing moral support to the the Schneiders and their engine overheat issue, determined to wait out their discovery of the cause and repair before we move South without them. They are nearly out of possible solutions despite the significant talent available to them. We continue to cross our fingers, and my newly pedicured toes, complete with glitter.

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