After a year and a half of always seeming to have a goal – get here, finish this, get there – we sit on a mooring in St Augustine Fl and read books, and walk the town and the dog.
Maybe visit a cell or two…
In some ways, sitting is a difficult thing to do! I even find it challenging to write a blog post!
The mooring field here in St Augustine is very busy, very crowded and fairly uncomfortable as there a many moving boats to churn the waters all day, combined with a few windy days, and fast moving large tidal currents all conspiring to rock us from morning to night.
We passed through here last week on the way to Jacksonville to pick up Ryan from his trip to Atlanta… So let me catch up on that.
When last we were together, we were in Miami Beach with Ian, and calling a cab to take him to the airport and back to Air Force Combat Control School in San Antonio. We had a great short visit with him. It is so cool to see your little boy all grown up (and paying for the drinks and dinner!)
Then there was Shelly and I all alone again, for one of the few times in the last 23 years… What in the world do we do? (Besides walk Goose twice a day!)
We were supposed to head to West Palm Beach and pick up Ryan but the word came down via text that he was extending his stay for a week and we should pick him up in Jacksonville instead. We had 10 days!
Nice! We headed north, moving very slowly, and getting used to stopping after only 20 or 30 miles a day.
From Miami we only made it to Ft Lauderdale. This is not our favorite place unless we need something fixed. They do not like sailboats here at all…
We jumped outside the next morning for the short hop up to Palm Beach and the visit with Shelly’s buddies from when we lived here in Naiad and Ian was two! While Shelly was out with Kathy, I dug out the hookah (not what you are thinking. It is a small electric air compressor, 40 foot hose and a mouthpiece for diving!) and cleaned the whole bottom of Yume from the growth that comes from sitting for two months in Marathon. The water in Palm Beach around Peanut Island is crystal clear to 25 feet and a nice strong current washes the stuff away as you clean.
West Palm to Hobe Sound was a half day sail up the waterway with a nice wind at our backs. We had not been anchored long when another Irwin 41 pulls in right next to us and anchors! Since only 45 were built ( we are hull #44) it was exciting stuff. The owners were from Jacksonville and had the bought built for then (#2) 32 years previously and had taken extremely good care of her. It’s fascinating to go aboard a boat just like yours and see the differences owning for that long can make!
The beach here was stunning and we had it much to ourselves – and took full advantage.
Hobe Sound to Vero Beach was another lovely short sail. We begin to get into a slower mode, walking for miles with Goose to see things we have sailed by before. Out to the little beach village and back to the anchorage is quite a hike, but the weather is perfect and the neighborhood is super peaceful and pretty.
The strong SW breeze continues in our favor the next day as we head towards Cape Canaveral. We don’t go there as it is out on the coast and the waterway swings inland following the Indian River. (This used to be where all the oranges came from but now it is mostly houses!)
We have to stop at 430 and wait until 530 for the bridge at Addisons Point. They hold up boat traffic for 1 1/2 hours for the Canaveral workers to get across the bridge and go home. Jerks.
As we waited we watched huge thunderstorms north of us building and building with huge bolts of lightning in the distance. That is always fun when you remember we have a 54 foot high metal pole stuck up in the air!
No worries though as we get through the bridge, hoist sail and haul butt the 5 miles to Titusvile where we grab a mooring just before the 30 knot cold rain filled wind howls down on the slower boats who came straggling in behind us. It’s nice to be one of the fastest (cruising) sailboats out there!
The next night it is Rockhouse Creek at Ponce De Leon Inlet. This is really cool place, with a very old lighthouse, (not needed any more as the inlet is all silted up) and one of the best places to run Goose ever as the big tidal range leaves a great big sandbar at low tide with really nice sand and lots of tidal pools where he can run his heart out (and no wild hogs anywhere).
There is price for everything though, and here it is noseemums at first light. The anchor was up and we were gone without even getting Goose off at first light! Man those things can bite!
In St Augustine we stayed a day or two, then moved on to
Jacksonville to figure out how to get Ryan from the airport to the boat. We also had talked Deka Battery into warrantying all the batteries bought last May and that had to be done there as well.
We ended up at the free dock just inside a Sisters Creek, renting a car for a day and getting everything done, including a much needed grocery run.
With new batteries, a restored son in the foreberth, and plenty of food, the question was what to do?
If you remember, Shannon, Ryan’s girl friend from Marathon was going to be in St Augustine for the summer starting May 1, so we decided there was time for a last week together before we headed towards DC.
But first, we turned north to visit Fernadina Beach and Cumberland Island. Both places were very cool, with many more miles walked on beautiful beaches and forests on Cumberland, and more spent peeking in and around the old town of Fernadina.
I did not know that Nathaniel Greene from Revolutionary War fame had been given land on Cumberland and had built a house there in the early 1800’s. Then the Carnegies came, bought it all up and built mansions. Too cool.
Walking around Cumberland was awesome…
Goose could care less how long ago the Indians lived here!
We visited another old fort on Amelia Island, Ft Clinch, that guarded the mouth of the St Mary’s River. Now the old fort just watches nuclear submarines go in and out from the sub base up the river.
Which brings us back South to St Augustine, reading books, and taking strolls around the old town watching tourists and glad we aren’t one. Hehe
We will hang around for two weeks, try not to go crazy, then start making our way up the coast again. Next extended stop is Beaufort SC to do our best to set up a fundraising golf tournament for spring 2016.
See you soon!
The Legends GC at Parris Island conducts over 100 annual outings and I can honestly say that, throughout my 11 years here as the Head Professional, I have never seen anyone work as hard or as passionately for their event like the two of you do. It is hard enough for a local Beaufortonian to generate the people and sponsors needed for a successful event…much less someone from out of the area. And yet you’ve done it for two straight years!! As a golf professional, I know how hard it is to run outings, but I’m confident that either one of you could take my place if needed. In fact, if I ever have someone ask me what it takes to conduct a successful fundraiser, I am going to give them your email address. - Andy Henson, Head Pro Legend's Of Parris Island Golf Course.