Saturday, February 03, 2007

January 25 – Feb 4, 2007

Palm Coast, FL, South of St. Augustine

We know we’ve been derelict in blogging, but we’ve actually been quite busy (for retired guys). We ran from St. Augustine down to Palm Coast on Thursday, Jan 25th to attend the DeFever (…our make of boat…) rendezvous. There were about 18 DeFever boats there and about 150 people. It was really fun to see them again and meet some new friends.

Our friends, Vicki and Norm, stayed with us on the boat for the event. They’ve just purchased a DeFever, but weren’t able to bring their boat. It was great having them stay with us, and of course lots of laughing and story telling.

The rendezvous was full of activities including seminars, boat visits and social gatherings, so we pretty much went at it from 7:00 in the morning to about 10:00PM. The culmination of the event was a great Monday night dinner party, with dancing, and lots of laughs. Here you see the four of us dressed somewhat above the usual boat attire of sweats and 't' shirts. The cool boas were compliments of Vicki.

The rendezvous alone was busy enough. Added to that, our aft (…read master stateroom…) head flat stopped working in St. Augustine, the morning before our guests arrived. This was not a good thing. Rick started to try to deal with it at anchor but quickly concluded a professional was needed. We called ahead to Palm Coast and got a recommendation for a marine services company. Short story, after about a day of problem determination, is that the vacuum pressure tank died … hence no mo’ workie. However, the marine services company waged wonders. A brand new tank was hand delivered to the boat by 2:00PM Friday, and our technician, Mike Radwansky from Half-Hitch Marine Services, shortly had it working. These guys really bent over backwards to help us, and it was good to have guests who understood boats.

Here are 5 DeFevers at the marina. You can just see Rickshaw's blue canopy beyond the others at the far end.

Yes, that IS a hot tub on that DeFever! (can you believe it?)

Daytona's bridges.

Titusville , FL across the water from the Kennedy Space Center.

We have been anchored out for a few days to catch up and plan the next part of trip. We originally thought that we would go to the west coast of Florida via Lake Okeechobee, and then down to the Keys. However, in studying the charts and with our timetable in mind, we decided to forgo that route and go south down the east coast of Florida and the keys. There are plenty of cool places to stop along the way, and either way we get to Key West to hang out for a while. We always have the Okeechobee as an option, before heading to the Bahamas, if there is time. We still plan to leave for the Abacos mid-March so we’ll see how it all works out.

It’s been rainy and windy since we got here … there were tornados north and south of us yesterday, but we just got more rain. We were running out of Doritos chips, so we made the command decision to go into town. We put the dingy in the water and ran over to the Municipal Docks and then walked to the local Save-a-Ton grocery store. They didn’t have Doritos, nor much of anything else, but we did get some more chocolate cookies.

These guys swam with us for a bit on the way.

New sign for us!
Below, in the background, is the Kennedy Space Center vehicle assembly building for the space shuttles before they take off.

When we pulled into the Titusville anchorage we picked a spot adjacent to a very serious looking work boat which had three giant steel pilings essentially on the bottom, with the rest of the boat suspended over the water. We thought it was some sort of dredging operation. Then yesterday, we saw a matronly lady in her red house coat, and white hard hat, helping deploy the dingy with a huge crane … this seemed a bit odd for a “dredge.” Later that day, the guy who took the dingy ashore swung by our boat on his way back and welcomed us to the neighborhood. I took the opportunity to ask him what he and his boat were doing. Surprisingly, he said they were “…hunting for Spanish Galleons …” and had put into Titusville to wait out the weather. So we are anchored next to genuine treasure hunters … what a life.

So, it’s Saturday afternoon as we write this, and it’s still blowing about 20 mph with occasional rain. We’ve been looking at each other wondering when the sun will come back out.

Tomorrow, Sunday Feb 4th is Lynnie’s birthday, so we’ll chill out and do some more trip planning. We’ll be leaving here on Monday morning…gotta watch the Super Bowl!!