Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Underway Once More

On the northern border of Florida is the charming town of Fernandina Beach. These little pocket parks were scattered
throughout the community.
The faded signs from yesteryear add a lot of charm to this small community
The view at night was made dramatic by the Power Station
just south of our berth at the Fernandina Harbor
Jeanette "mans" the wheel as we head
down the ICW. Alan took this picture
from the banks of the river.
As I result of my operation in early January (see later blog entry) we didn't get back to Scott Free until 2/3 (a month late) and our plans for this year had changed. Instead of Mexico, Belize and Guatemala it was Florida and the Bahamas. All sunny and warm destinations - but not yet! It was cold and wet in Brunswick, Georgia and our rebuilt transmission was still not installed. But in only 3 days we were on our way again and everything appeared to be working. But it was cold and blustery in the cockpit. Both of us needed to be focused and watching the markers and charts, both electronic and paper. Our strip map of the inter coastal waterway was covered with notes on shallow sections and iffy bridges. We looked like we were about to hit the ski slopes with down jackets, hats, and gloves. In the rain these got covered with rain jackets. We did long days trying to get south to that promised Florida sunshine.
We anchored for one night at Cumberland Island, a lovely spot we'd stayed at before. Really bad rainy weather was predicted for the next day so we decided to pull in just over the Florida border in Fernandina Beach at the Marina. This is an historic well preserved town and we were delighted to make it's acquaintance!
As it was not far from Cumberland we were able to take a long walk when we arrived. It was several miles over to the ocean and just as long coming back but a pretty trip. And it was sunny and almost warm! That night we had a big treat. It was the Superbowl and the marina lounge had a big screen TV. We had a great night cheering both teams and a fabulous game in the company of several other cruisers (and lots of munchies & drinks).
The next morning brought pouring rain and gusty winds. For a while we were nervously fussing with our mooring lines as the building waves pushed us against the dock, but the storm didn't last long.
Jeanette and Alan Feuer with their dueling computers
at our dinette. Scott and I had ours at the table in the salon.
Lots of room for guests!
We had a great piece of news however! Our friends Alan and Jeanette Feuer had just returned from a cruise through the Panama Canal and were in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. They gave us a call and a few minutes later we had guests arriving that afternoon. Joy! They were a great tonic to me and my aches and pains were eased away.
Alan and Jeanette bought the beautiful 4 suite Anne's Point Inn located on a peninsula overlooking Bass Harbor near Arcadia National Park. Check out TripAdvisor.com for details - they get incredible reviews. They were neighbors of ours in Brookline and good friends for years. Unfortunately they had their car with them but we worked out a fun arrangement. On the first day Jeanette came with Scott and I (and Alan drove) to Jacksonville Beach, FL and the next day Jeanette and I took the car and Alan went with Scott to Daytona Beach.
Jeanette and I had a long trip ahead. Our great friend and crew a year ago for two weeks off Venezuela, Russ Wolf, was flying in to Orlando for two more weeks with us. After doing a lot of laundry we managed to get to the airport on time. And we got to the Daytona City Marina just as Scott Free pulled in. Our crew change was accomplished quickly as the Feuers needed to get up to St. Simon's Island that evening. Great visit!

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