After three months of sitting on a mooring in Boot Key Harbor in Marathon we finally took off for Memorial Day Weekend.

The Universe responded with the most perfect weather in three months.

Our good friend Kyle brought Ryan's buddy Sam down for a few days and the boys have getting to see what cruising is about.

Speaking of Memorial Day, please, please recognize this day is for those living in the free world to remember we owe that amazing ability to those that died serving in our armed forces to keep us that way. No matter your beliefs about war, and the military, think about this: In my adult lifetime, American forces have helped (or tried to help) in Vietnam (I was there), Haiti, Panama, Kosovo, Somolia, Kuwait, Iraq, Afghanistan and all the places special operation soldiers go that we never hear about. And men and women die doing it. Never forget. And always honor them for their sacrifice.

Ok – back to sailing. 😉

Last we left you, the port fuel tank was still leaking and had been repaired a second time and I was a bit depressed.

Turns out that the tank was not really leaking, only that so much fuel had leaked out previously that it had soaked the foam underneath the tank and was coming out where I had cleaned all the fiberglass away. Whew!

So now the other fuel tank got cut into, and it has been epoxied. I only need to drill and tap the new cover and bolt it up to fill it with fuel for our northbound trip that starts next week!

We are excited.

The really cool part is that it will be just the two of us, since Ryan and Sam are flying to Atlanta and we do not pick Ryan up until June 9 in Ft Lauderdale. This will be the first time Shelly and I have spent 9 days together since Ian was born in 1991. Whatever will we do with ourselves?

Another huge project completed since we last spoke is the refrigeration. This has been a want to get done since we bought the boat. The old unit was top of the line – in 1984! It costs about $6,000 at that time and worked incredibly well if you ran your engine twice a day for two hours.

For the compressor, all the copper tubing, and the two stainless steel cold plates, the recycler gave me $19.55 in cold hard cash.

The new box is just an evaporator plate bent to fit in the box, with a very small compressor mounted in a cabinet close by. It is awesome and frees us for having to run the generator to get things cold. We actually have a freezer now with ice for the rum!

Our next update will show new floors. They are going to be very cool – and much different than most…

So back to today. It is Sunday morning, the sun is coming up and we are about to get underway for Sombrero Reef to do some snorkeling and see if we can spear some fresh fish for dinner.

The bottom of the boat has been scraped of three months of marine growth, and the engine and generator are all running well. We hope for a breeze today so we can put up some sail.


Oops. I almost forget to show the renovated bow pulpit that was Ryan's project. It looks awesome!

Until we meet again!