As the title suggests, we are still in Vero Beach. Our daily ficus has been on getting the boat ready for our next adventure on the water. This translates into cleaning, waxing the hull, repainting the anchor for added rust protection and addressing several annual maintenance projects on the boat, on the dinghy and the outboard. The bikes required repairs as well. Since we are currently at a slip, these tasks are a bit easier to manage.
But our next adventure isn’t on the water. Were preparing to leave the boat here for two months while we drive north to visit family and friends and also do some tent camping. (I defined the type of camping, since a few of you may consider our life on the boat to “camping.”)
All that said, as written in the last post, we have also enjoyed time with cruising friends who have stopped by during our stay here. We have been out walking and biking as well. We all like the biking – even Maddie. Some of the neighborhoods are quite stunning with vegetation we never see up north. The live oak trees are everywhere, sometimes creating a canopy over the street.
I’ve also gotten a little sailing in while we’ve been here. Those unfamiliar with the travel up and down the ICW may not realize that, even though we are on a sailboat, we don’t get to sail much. So I get my sailing in using our dinghy. It’s really lots of fun and more challenging than sailing the bigger boat. Continue reading Enjoying Vero While We Prepare to Leave→
As I have mentioned in earlier posts, we have some difficulty answering the question about where home is for us. Our standard answer these days is usually “the east coast.” That said, we do feel pretty much at home in Marathon as well as Newport News, New Hampshire and our present location of Vero Beach. This familiarity comes from time spent in each location as well as the friends and family we spend time with while there.
However, not all our friends are attached to a single geographic location. Many of our friends are cruisers, so we meet up with them in different places. Sometimes these meetings are expected or even planned, while at other times they come as a surprise.
Our experience this spring in Vero Beach is a perfect example of such meetings. We’ve now been here for a bit more than a month.
We arrived in late April to find Derrick & Sharon on Yknot, friends who’s company we’ve enjoyed in Marathon each year. Not long after they left, Dick and Libby on Tarwathie stopped in for a short visit. Both couples were on their way north from Marathon to Green Cove Springs, Florida, where they will each store their boat for the summer while they travel to see family and friends.
Not long after they left, Bob and Deb, formerly on River House here in Vero, stopped by the marina, and we were lucky to catch up with them. They are no longer cruisers but are now CLODs (cruisers living on dirt) and own a house in this area.
And then Larry and Terri on Vixen stopped by on their way back to their home in Jacksonville from the Keys. While we often see them as they visit Marathon in late winter, we first met them several years ago when we were invited to spend the night at their dock just off the St. John’s River.
Our most recent visitors were Steve and Kathy aboard Kit. While we had spent time with them in Marathon, we thought that we wouldn’t see them again until next fall upon our return. So this was a pleasant surprise. They left this morning headed to Jacksonville where they have decided to leave the boat for a bit as they do some family visiting and also spend time in northern Florida before heading somewhere south in the fall. We might meet up with them at that time…or not, depending on their travel and ours.
So you see, we’ve gotten together with a number of friends here who are not really part of the Vero scene. This is just one of the ways a cruiser’s life is a bit unusual. We do enjoy feeling at home in a variety of places, although we are never quite sure who we will meet up with while there.
The sunset in Boot Key Harbor from the bow of Carpe Diem suggests appropriately that our time in Marathon has ended for another season. From most perspectives, we would describe it as another good season. We were a bit more involved in land based activities. Sandra continued her work helping others learn how to make pine needle baskets while also getting herself and others interested in make things with fused glass. I continued to volunteer at the Dolphin Research Center once a week. The highlight of this experience was the opportunity to get in a pool with a young dolphin for some unstructured play on one occasion for about an hour – really a treat.
Both of us continued our involvement with Tai Chi including a weekend workshop in Miami with a few of the top instructors in the organization.
Boat projects continued, of course. This winter we had all the old paint taken off the boat’s bottom before putting a barrier coat and new paint. It appears that we have blisters forming, so we’ll have to plan for dealing with them probably the next time the boat is out of the water – uck!
Visitors included Sandra’s sister and our daughter Jenn before we left in April to bring the boat to Vero Beach and then drive to Orlando to meet our other daughter, Sam and family for several days of fun and adventure. We all enjoyed a day at Disney World, another at Sea World and then drove to the Cape Kennedy Space Center before we returned to Vero Beach for a few days at the beach.
Following their visit, we planned to prepare to head back south to West Palm Beach with my sister Mary Jo joining us. Following that, we were to continue on south to the Keys again. But our plans are written in the sand, easily disappearing with a change in the tide.
We started with an engine problem that resulted in a delay and then a tooth ache which turned into a route canal and crown procedure for me. As we reviewed the calendar, it became clear that we’d be better served by changing plans and staying in Vero, since we’d have little time to enjoy the Keys by the time I resolved my tooth issue. No trip back south for this summer. We decided that we’d leave the boat here in Vero once again. The change has already worked well, allowing us some time with a more relaxed pace as we attacked our “to do” lists.
This just reminds me of the advantage of remaining open to change when cruising. It probably would serve us well
even if we were not cruising. The truth is that change is part our reality. We begin to run into problems only when we get upset because we sense a loss of control of our planning. If, instead, we decide that change always includes a potential good outcome, we will be more likely to see that good and take the appropriate actions to continue to control our future in a positive way.
This has been a quick overview of our past several months. I’m hoping to get back into a routine of blogging. Getting the first one out was difficult. The second should be easier.
We already miss the beautiful water of the Keys. This was taken on the old Seven Mile Bridge.
Our view in Lake Sylvia in Ft. Lauderdale.
A courting flamingo at the butterfly conservatory in Key West.
A view of life from the perspective of one who lives aboard