Friday, January 30, 2009


Originally Posted January 10, 2009

Well, we're still in Pompano Beach but we're starting to think of heading south again!!

Tammy here....

We have gotten tons of work done around the boat in the last couple weeks while Colleen and John have been visiting Colleen's parents - we are re-provisioned with enough food on board for a couple months (hopefully now that we are in FL and heading south we will be able to catch fish for dinner!!!); we have ordered all the spare parts we think we need (of course, the first spare we will actually need will be one we don't have - murphy's law of course); and we have oiled, fixed, polished and cleaned most systems on the boat. We still have some work to do but there is starting to be an end in sight, although on a boat there is really never an end to the maintenance - its amazing what salt water does to electrical and mechanical systems!!

This of course makes us want to be on the sea again not just in a marina on the ICW - wanderlust was a main cause of this trip to begin with after all. However, we've changed our plans slightly based on the weather patterns so far this year and lots of advice from our cruising friends. Instead of heading directly to the Bahamas which are subject to lots of nasty cold fronts in the winter (this year thus far has been even worse than usual), we are going to take at least a month and work our way down the Florida Keys. As everyone knows, Key West is just about one of our favorite places so how can the rest of the Keys be a bad place to spend a month - they are warm, on the water, have lots of cool little beach bars and cays to explore and did I mention the weather is great!! Sorry to rub it in (not really...) to all our family and friends back home in the snow - sounds like we got out just in time to avoid a really cold and snowy winter!! Did we really used to love to ski??? Seems like so long ago! We just had a cold front go through here the other night and it dropped the temp to just 73 yesterday....sorry again!!

So that you don't think Doug and I have become all work and no play (as if anyone would) .....we actually spent a whole day at the beach a couple days ago (before the cold front when it was about 80!). We had dinner one night with Colleen's parents at a great Italian restaurant and drinks another night at their condo (or the asylum as they refer to it) with some of their friends. Doug and I have also found what has become our favorite bar in Pompano - Flanigans - where we had dinner and watched the National Championship game with all the other Florida crazies. What a great night! Somehow they already know us by name - kind of like our Cheers in the south although neither of us looks like Norm or Cliffy yet! We'll head back there on Sunday to watch some of the football playoffs - with pitchers of cold beer and just about the best ribs ever, can't see why we wouldn't!!

We just heard from some cruising friends of ours, Norm and Vicki on TideHiker ( a 49' DeFever just like ours) whom we first met in Delaware back in May on our trip bringing Gypsies up to Maine for the summer, that they should be in our neck of the woods in the next day or so. Whenever they get here, a grand cruiser reunion will take place - we haven't seen them since our going away party up in NH. They have been cruising the East Coast as well but have always seemed to be a couple weeks behind where we were - we have the boxes of wine ready!! They are traveling with some friends, also on a DeFever, so hopefully we'll get to meet them too! This is actually part of the lifestyle that is so much fun - you meet people and in a fairly short period of time, you get to be good friends since you are experiencing so many of the same things and lets be honest, it takes a certain type of crazy person to just chuck everything and go off for points unknown in a boat - so we bond!! Then you might not see them for months at a time, but when you do (and you usually do!), its like old home week and the party picks up right where it last left off. Speaking of friends, now that we'll be down in the Keys for a month, we'll be able hopefully to hook up with Brett and Jill on Muircu, our friends from Alligator River and Belhaven, SC who we last saw in Fernandina Beach, FL - they are wintering in Marathon so we'll get to surprise them!!

Lots of people always ask how the cats are doing so I figured we'd post a couple pictures of them doing what they do best!

Have no fears, both Puss and Boots are doing just fine - they have totally adapted to the boat and seem to love having us around all the time. They have completely commandeered our love seat in the salon - one or the other if not both are always on it.

But what the heck - they are 21 years old and deserve the best seats in the house. They have both recovered from the trauma of going to the vet for their rabies shot - we'll have to bring them back to the vet for a health certificate before we head to the Bahamas but they have earned about a month's reprieve on that one. So they remain happy and healthy and lots of fun - even the boat rooster has calmed down somewhat which the human gypsies appreciate - a lot!!!!

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