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Thursday, July 23, 2009

TERRORIZED BY TRAFFIC


Finally it was time to set sail for FLORIDA, when nothing could be done to fix any of our electronics that had been "fried" by the lightning strike. Arriving and departing are always emotional times and leaving Green Turtle Cay, where we had spent a lot of our time, and said our 'good-byes' to everyone including the 'Rasta' dockmaster. Even the three houses on the beachfront seemed brighter in the fading light. At least we will be back within a couple of weeks, to pick up SVEA and sail her back to Florida as well. So early in the morning of 17th July, we motored through to Spanish Cay to anchor for the night and watched the sinking sun. The evening dip in the water was out. The sea was filled with thousands of Jelly-fish. By late the next day, we again anchored, this time at Mangrove Cay, far out on the Bahama bank, slept for four hours, and took off again to cross the edge of the bank and into the Gulf Stream, at first light. The Queen of Florida had filled the whole cabin with memorable Island fragrance and the cup 'overfloweth' with frangipanis........................



Gone was the turquoise and the aqua water colours. Gone too, were the pastels of water-colour green, now to be replaced with the deep indigo blue of 1200 ft of Gulf Stream. When the wind died, we motored on a mirror sea, with only flying fish breaking the surface. Our destination port was Ft. Pierce and we pushed to be in by nightfall, and in late afternoon, it became a race to beat the inevitable thunderstorm that had built up after a cloudless day. It was hand steering all the way without the auto-pilot, or in the case of 'Queen' Laurie, it was foot-steering. Apples, water and shade..................... and she steered a good course too.



We had heard that in order to clear in at Customs, you need to go to the airport. Kind of hard to do to take the yacht to the airport, so we caught a taxi. Before sunrise we were on our way up the Intracoastal once more to Vero Beach. Pelicans in the morning sunrise, and high rise condos on the Oceanfront. We went about ten miles past Vero to look for "Jones's Fruit Dock", a place to leave ARITA for the hurricane season. Met the 90 yr-old Mr Jones after docking, but he was not allowed to have live-aboards, nor had he the electrical power available for the A/C, which is a must-have, so we departed for the Municipal Vero Beach Marina. Picked up a mooring at Vero, and into town to rent an AVIS. Then the terror began. Not my terror, oh no, it was the Queen who became terrorized. Way too much traffic, going way too fast on the highway, and it seemed, she said, I was driving way too fast..............At least I was driving on the same side as them...................... Here's Mr Jones's Fruit dock below. It really is wonderful being back in Florida where the supermarket is overflowing with healthy goodness, where everything is fat, fast and furious, and where you can definitely get a good laugh most of the time...........



We made it safely to Jacksonville, where the electronics and alternators are being repaired and Queen Laurie and little Laurie are happily re-united and engrossed in talking wedding plans for March 2010.



And it surely will be quite some time before we get back to anything like this picture, considering SVEA that has to brought back to FLORIDA, the electronics and wiring on ARITA that has to be replaced, a new propellor shaft put in and hurricane season and.......................................................whatever......
Yes, you can double click on it........................

7 comments:

Orpailleur said...

Back to the real world. I'll call from Orlando on the 31st to see where you are.
Gerry

sir tommy lipton said...

I would like to know about the car launch at the boat ramp. Thanks for the wonderful lunch Rob. I always enjoy your company and thanks about the business advice. sir tommy

Rem, Jane and Kids said...

nice to see you back safe and sound - pass on the congrats to Tony and Anne.

sir tommy said...

I need more information. Photos of recent projects. State of mind is already been determined by the lack of rum.
Had a great visit with the captain and his queen, many thanks for the lunch and the business advice. back to what I need now....More info and pictures of the repairs and bla bla bla.

diane said...

What an adventurous couple. Loved reading your blog. Your life is so different. The photos are great and the colours magnificent. I found your blog via Keith's comments. I used to teach in PNG years ago.

Anonymous said...

Any one know how to get this blog going again...maybe if you hit the starter with a wrench we can get on the road again.

IslandMeri said...

Best travel book (e-book) in the business! Gudi, Rob and Lauren you are certainly the envy of all armchair tourists around the globe! Yah man! I wanted to spend time reading your blog so today is the day. Beautiful pics of places, events etc and what a drop-dead-gorgeous boat! My, it is ship shape and inviting for all full and half landlubbers (like yours truly). What is the name of your boat? Wonderful pictures and a great log of your adventures in the Caribbean. I feel as though I'm there - your photos tell a million stories. You don't look a day old! 1 kauri tree for the boat - hmm awesome. I am now following you and shall be looking forward to reading about your next adventure and next stop. Funny about the icecream in Florida - Yesterday, I had 2 scoops - 1 of pistacchio and the other peach and pineapple but the difference! it was raining cats and dogs, carried my icecream cup under an umbrella back to my car...icecream is icecream no matter what the weather - what a coincidence. See you anon...Captain Ron and Captainness Laurie.