Sunday, May 21, 2017

BACK IN HOME PORT

Arrived back to Hilton Head May 19th. Our trip North was uneventful after Ft. Pierce, but we were always feeling a bit gun shy after what happened in Vero Beach. We have been gone 5 months and put 2500 miles on the boat. We are ready to be home for a while. We need a few adventure free weeks :-)

We will go come back to the boat in the Fall for a week or two, just to check on things and enjoy Hilton Head. 

Saturday, May 13, 2017

18 DAYS ON THE HARD

Not the most fun thing to do, but hey, it's boating ! This is part of the adventure. We have heard many fellow boaters tell their tales of woe, and this was our turn. We returned to the boat on May 8. There was still more welding, powder coating , sandblasting and assembly to be done. We decided to rent a motel room for the few days ahead. We pretty much know Ft. Pierce very well by now and have eaten at many of the restaurants, including Chucks, On the Edge, Harbour Cove, Cobbs Landing and McDonalds. Finally, after a lot of chasing down parts for the contractor and orchestrating the repairs, we were able to be splashed yesterday, Friday. We stayed across the creek last night at Harbourtowne Marina. It was fantastic to be floating once again. Really liked this marina, too. 

THE THRILL OF BEING SPLASHED WAS BEING ABOARD KNOTUGAL WHILE IN THE SLING AS THE LIFT MOVED US TO THE WATER. SCARY !!!!!!!!!!!!

Today we finally left Ft. Pierce and had a great ride to Eau Gallie Yacht Basin. Everthing worked and nothing leaked.....a good day.....sigh of relief :-))

Sunday, April 30, 2017

THE SAGA CONTINUES :-(((((

After several days living on the hard with no AC, we decided to take the damaged prop over to Bradenton (3 hours away) ourselves, hoping to get it done faster. They will try to fix the bent prop, but this will take a few days.  Fortunately, they had a new replacement prop that we were able to buy, and  we drove it back to Cracker Boy Boat Works the next day.

The  bright side of spending the night in Bradenton is that we stayed in a gorgeous Hampton Inn in the historic district. It was one of the nicest hotels we have ever stayed in. That includes 5 star diamond rated hotels. Because we are Hilton Honors members, they even upgraded us to a corner suite with a view. That evening we walked to O Bricks, a very pleasant bistro, and enjoyed a nice dinner.....a good reprieve from being on the hot boat in the boatyard.

OUR SPANKING NEW PROP

Upon returning to Ft. Pierce, the contractor working on the prop had us take another look at the running gear. Turns out we now have to not only replace the prop, but need to weld the rudder shoe, the rudder, the drive shaft and replace the dripless. Since I am the one writing this, I probably am not explaining this very well, but bottom line is that all of this will take much more time and $$$$$$.

The weather has been hitting the low 90's during the day and our holding tank is filling up. This means we need to find a place to stay during all the repairs. So....we jumped on a plane in Orlando and flew back to Texas yesterday ! We will enjoy the comforts of home for a few days .

We have had a couple of chuckles. Not only is the boat yard called Cracker Boy, but we traveled the Cracker Trail to cross Florida to Bradenton. I googled Cracker, and it is a derogatory word for white people.....HMMM....doesn't seem right to me that that word is still being widely used....just sayin'.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

BOATS US SAVES THE DAY

It finally happened. We were happily cruising north on the ICW headed for our marina (Loggerhead Vero Beach). We had had a wonderful sunny day with little boat traffic. We entered the marina's entrance channel about 5PM all set for a relaxing evening onboard. As we were approaching the marina, a rowing team consisting of 3 boats crossed in front of us . We had to slow way down to avoid collision. The winds were very strong coming from the NW and pushed us out of the channel a bit. Unbeknownst to us, there was a submerged concrete day mark (belonging to the marina) which we hit. We were hard aground and heard some screeching noises. We called Boats US, and wonderful Eric arrived in about 45 minutes. He was a master at pulling us out and back to the ICW channel. We were unable to use the rudder, and it was determined that we would have to tow KNOTUGAL back to Ft. Pierce, a 3 and a half hour trip in the dark. We arrived at the Harbourtowne Marina about 10 PM. We are TOTALLY impressed with the very capable Eric!

ERIC THE RED....A  MASTER !!!!!!
WE WILL BE ON THE HARD FOR WHO KNOWS HOW LONG. WE ARE STAYING ONBOARD . EVERYTHING WORKS EXCEPT THE AC

A COUPLE OF THE BLADES ARE RUMPLED. IT TOOK 2 HOURS TO GET THE PROP OFF. THEY ARE SENDING IT OUT TO POUND OUT THE RUMPLES.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

BACK TO THE USA !

After 15 days on Great Harbour Cay, we finally got a weather window and crossed the NW Providence Channel to Port Lucaya on Great Bahama Island on April 18. We did it alone and it turned out to be just fine. Seas were from behind. On the 21st we got another fairly good window and crossed the Gulf Stream back to the good ole USA !!! We entered the Lake Worth Inlet, and were docked by 4PM. Yes, I had a martini that evening at the restaurant in Old Port Cove marina. We had hoped to head North on the 23rd, but we woke up to severe storms and heavy rain. We will delay until tomorrow.

While on Great Harbour we enjoyed the company of Barb, Jim, Ellen and Jim. Did happy hours, bike rides and dinners out at the Carrieearl. They are headed to the Exumas.


OUR GREAT BOAT NEIGHBORS, LOUEY AND KIM , WITH THEIR CATCH

TANKER IN THE NARROW ENTRANCE TO GREAT HARBOUR DELIVERING FUEL TO THE ISLAND



SUCH A BEAUTIFUL VIEW

STAYED AT THE GRAND BAHAMA YACHT CLUB IN PORT LUCAYA....VERY NICE, BUT THE WHOLE ISLAND WAS STILL RECOVERING FROM HURRICANE MATTHEW. WE ENJOYED HAVING THE MANY RESTAURANT CHOICES THERE, ESPECIALLY AFTER GREAT HARBOUR CAY. 

ON OUR ATLANTIC CROSSING, IT WAS JUST US AND THE DISNEY SHIP OUT THERE
Much to our surprise, Bill and Ginny Pettinati were in Jupiter, FL on their motor home. We spent the afternoon with them sightseeing and catching up.


ADDITIONAL NOTES AND OBSERVATIONS:
Great Harbour Cay had gorgeous beaches
Very small Island (350 residents)
GHC people were very friendly
Probably should not have drunk the water....we both had diarrhea issues for a few days
Flies and Gnats were plentiful
Internet worked fairly well
We are proud of ourselves and our boat. We lost a lot of sleep along the way, said a few prayers, did lots of planning and boat maintenance, and this trip exceeded our expectations. We learned so much.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

TRIP TO GREAT HARBOUR CAY

Our boat buddies intend to go to the Exumas. Since there was some weather coming in, it was decided to leave Bimini for Great Harbour Cay on April 3. We all watched the forecast and decided we could handle the upcoming 10 hour trip over the Bahama Banks. Well, wouldn't you know, the wind and waves were worse than predicted , so it turned into a 12 hour trip with 4-6' waves about 4 seconds apart. We bounced all day long. All three boats handled the condition very well. It was just very tedious for the people on board. We arrived tired but safe to a really fantastic island. For more information, google Great Harbour Cay.
BOAT BUDDIES, JOHN AND SUZIE



 Met some friends of our boat buddies on the dock at GHC. They invited us all over for a pot luck on top of their Tollycraft yacht. Fun evening with lots of stories exchanged.



BAHAMAS BOUND!!!!!

Yup. It finally happened. We dropped the lines at 7AM and headed for the Bahamas on April 1. We found 2 "buddy boats" on our dock a couple of days ago. We were blessed with 2 lovely, congenial couples with vast experience. We have been smiling since April 1. Our crossing the Gulf Stream was uneventful and just great. We landed in Bimini about 2PM. That evening we got together at the Big Game Club Resort for dinner.
BYE BYE MIAMI


HELLO, BIMINI

The next day we spent exploring Alicetown and the beautiful beach. Our boat buddies, Lynne and Earl, delivered a loaf of the world famous Bahama Bread to our boat. This will become a daily staple of our diet....yum!

STOPPED ALONG THE WAY FOR A COUPLE OF SHERRIE'S PINA COLADAS. WENT BACK TO THE BOAT AND HAD A DELIGHTFUL NAP TO THE SOUNDS OF WATER LAPPING ON THE HULL....AHHHHH :-)