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Still, Still heading South

Vero Beach

We anchored out on Monday, 02/08/10, about 27 miles north of Vero Beach, our first anchorage this trip. It was a nice evening, warm enough, barely, to have dinner topside; so we did. Two other boats that pulled in with us and two more came into the anchorage later. There must be some art to setting an anchor that we have not yet mastered..... how much initial scope, how much speed in reverse, etc. Because the trip was shortened last year we just haven't done it enough to do it efficiently. There is a penalty for getting it wrong. One boat anchored well .... the other did not. (I made that up but it could be true.)

We were rewarded the next morning with this, an amber sunrise along the Indian River.


Along the way to Vero Beach we saw several osprey's, the first of the trip. Both of these were at nests, so it must be getting close to, or is, breeding season.

At the marina we got our own mooring ball; it's late in the season, not so many boats, so no rafting to another boat. Les and Jean came to pick us up and we stayed with them for two days, a very nice visit. When boaters visit people with cars that generally means getting driven from store to store to replenish all the esoteric supplies that have been exhausted. Les and Jean were very nice and very gracious, drove us around and did not complain. We had a great dinner the first night at a restaurant from which we could see the marina, but not our boat.

When we were growing up in Connecticut Les, who is a couple of years older, was always my hero. I was, and continue to be a klutz; Les was the guy who could, and did, hit the baseball out of the park, something to which I aspired but never attained. It must be a gift of some kind to do these things so well. Now, a half century later, shooting in the 80's for as round of golf is OK but doesn't make him happy. The two cousins.

When we were setting up the dinghy to leave the boat and to meet Les and Jean, I had a devil of a time getting the O/B motor started despite having had it serviced before we left Brunswick. We did get to the dock and, after the visit, back to the boat but that was it; the motor would not start again. One of the good things about marinas like this, ones that have a lot of passers-through, is that some folks make "house calls." In this case, I rowed the motor to the dock, it was picked up; 24-hours later it was back and working. The problem: water in the fuel tank, and I did NOT put it there. The proximate cause was probably high content ethanol gasoline and in the cold weather the ethanol condensed, or something. So, back to the owners manual .... the O/B manual said nothing about fuel type, the one for the Honda generator did. The upshot is that we now will buy only marine grade gasoline, very high octane, no ethanol. I can only wonder why we have to make every mistake in the book; it would be nice, and a lot cheaper, to skip a page or two.

Vero Beach has been nice; the weather has not. It was 37 F this morning, the coldest yet, and 49 F inside the unheated boat. We've been working the Honda generator hard and the space heater is OK but not great: toasty is not a word that comes immediately to mind but with several layers polar fleece we're comfortable enough. We've talked to many people that have stayed at this marina and all liked it very much, not so much for the physical plant, which is average, as for the convenience. Vero Beach has a free municipal bus system that is quite good. The buses are of the type and size that rental car agencies use to move customers from airports to remote parking lots. We got to a Home Depot, West Marine and a grocery store in just a couple of hours and saw a lot of the city along the way. This is also snow-bird season in Vero Beach: lots of people, lots of cars everywhere. In our sixties, we help lower the average age .... a bunch. It may have been my imagination, but Vero Beach sort of had the pushy/aggressive feel of the North. The locals have not much liked the weather and do not much seem to like all the visitors.

Now, we're waiting for a weather window to head to Miami or, in a pinch, Ft. Lauderdale. I think that we may have accept a cold night because good weather and comfortable temperatures seems an impossible combination. Monday, the 15th, has possibilities. We can only hope!

Posted by sailziveli 05:52

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As I have heard quoted "Tuition in the School of Life is expensive". I have found that to be true, myself. Sorry you are so very cold, but you should be here in SC...AND I can tell it was cold, because you posted this at 5:52 AM. This certainly has been the year for WEATHER. We got stuck by a snow storm in Asheville on Friday night (a case of the forecast NOT matching the actuality) Today is sunny and should be up in the 40's before the snow begins again tonight! JOY! Safe and good sailing-warm and steady winds!

by SCfriends

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