Getting up Wednesday morning, it felt like this was the real start to our vacation. Weather was perfect, wind was normal, and we had miles of white beach to ourselves. And, all my current boat issues have been resolved! Let me tell you, there is nothing like sipping coffee, with the smell of bacon and eggs cooking, listening to the wave on the beach, and knowing you don't have to be in the engine room today! :)
After breakfast we decided to take Duke to the beach. While he has learned to do his business on the mat on the bow, we felt it would be good for him to know the beach was an option, too. The last time we took him to the beach, it was quite rough, and he did not like the ride. So when we tried to get him in the dinghy he zipped inside and got on his bed in the pilothouse. Paula picked up and carried him to the boarding gate, where I grabbed him and more or less pulled him out on the swim platform. At that point he continued on into the boat. Not a very graceful entry.
|Microship as seen from the beach|
Once ashore he was thrilled to have grass under his feet again. He loves to romp in the grass and flush the birds out. Unlike Max, he does not give a fig for digging in the sand. It is just something he has to lick out from between his toes later. We walked along the beach and, much to my surprise, he actually let the water touch his feet! When we first took him to the beach, not long after getting him from the pound, he actually ran from the little wavelets lapping on the shore. Now, here he was actually walking through it, although only about an inch or two deep. But, it is progress.
On our way in Tuesday night, after dark, we saw target on the radar. Obviously a boat, in the narrow channel that is the entrance to the anchorage we are in now. As we got closer, I still could not find the boat in front of me. I continued to watch the radar as we approached the target. We were just about on top of it when I finally saw it. A small sailboat, with no lights on. The boat did not have a white hull, and was almost impossible to see in the dark. After our beach run this morning, Duke and I went to look at the sailboat. It was obvious no one was aboard; the mast was lashed to the top of the boat with a cushion blocking access to the cabin. It looked as though it had been abandoned here.
Paula won't drink the water out of our water tanks (don't ask) and prefers to bring bottled water for drinking and cooking. Water in our main tank is used for washing dishes and showers. Anyway, we were down to our last 5 gallons of drinking water so I loaded up four of the empty gallon jugs in the dinghy and headed east to Navarre Pavilions. It was only 15 minutes, but was bumpy. Once there I proceeded to the water fountain only to find the water was off. No other faucets around, I headed to the restrooms. Locked. Off to the side of the restroom building, there was a pedestal with shower heads. Success! It was a little messy, but I got all four jugs filled, with the added bonus of getting my feet washed.
When I returned to the boat, I noticed a small catamaran fishing boat circling our boat. By the time I got there he had made a couple of circles around the boat, and I noticed he was taking pictures, or video, with his phone. I got to the stern and started handing up the jugs, and Paula told me she was getting very nervous about the guy, and was glad I had returned. About this time he approached us and explained that he and his wife had owned a DeFever 49 Pilothouse, just like ours. They had owned her for nine years, and he had completely refurbished the boat himself. Took him two years. They sold her last year, so when he saw ours it brought back fond memories. He asked if we would mind if he returned later with his wife, as she would want to see the boat, too. Of course, we said that would be fine with us.
An hour or so later, here they were. They pulled alongside and we had a nice chat. Found out that their boat was even the same year as ours. Their boat, Spring Tide, was hull #26, and ours is #30. We invited them aboard, but the wife declined, saying she would not do that to us. They did offer to either take us ashore for provisions, or to pick up anything we needed and bring it back. Paula asked for milk and sour cream. As it was quite late, we figured we would see them tomorrow. In fact, we made it a point to mention that we would not be leaving for the next day or so. However, around an hour later, almost sunset, we heard someone outside calling us. There they were, with the stuff Paula had asked for. They refused payment for the items, and would not let me cover their fuel expense, either. Very nice people, indeed! They left us with their phone number should we need anything else. Wow!
Just after sunset, two sailboats joined us in the anchorage. They anchored a little closer to me than necessary, and certainly closer than I liked. We were the only three boats here, in an anchorage that could easily hold 6-8 boats. They had plenty of room to spread out a bit. So, Thursday morning I was getting the itch to move on, and get away from the crowd. We waited for a while to see if they were going to continue on, and one did. But the other, the closest of course, did not. I could have just pulled up the anchor and moved further away. But, if I am going through that trouble, I may as well keep going. Besides, Paula has now decided she needs more "provisions".