Thursday, June 17, 2010

Aventura - Our New Home

I know, I know - a blog is seriously overdue!! We are safely ensconced in our new home at Turnberry Isle Marina - Gypsies is tied up in her cement dock cocoon and Bootsie is a very happy girl since the boat no longer rocks and rolls with the Biscayne Bay winds and chop. In fact we are so well protected that we barely move at all - while we miss some of that sea breeze which used to cool things off in Coco Grove, we do have the pool to cool off in here - point to Turnberry! We are fairly comfortable that we can ride out a hurricane if we have to - let's all hope and pray we don't have to!!!

Life used to be so simple when we were cruising - at least we had it down pat after a couple years on the water. When we wanted to go somewhere, we just threw off the lines and went - no muss, no fuss. Not so anymore - when we wanted to leave Dinner Key Marina we had to figure out what to do with the new car (not just load the scooters on the boat which we had already figured out in KW but which is still a real pain!) - no now a car was involved! So after trying to figure out the public transportation situation between Aventura and Coconut Grove which we determined was abysmal (4 buses were necessary), we decided that Doug would single hand Gypsies while I got stuck motoring the car up to our new home. Doug has only cruised on Gypsies once without me and that was only across the Chesapeake Bay from Rock Hall to Baltimore (a pretty easy straight stretch) when I had flown to MA for a visit and Mother Nature had prevented our move of the boat while I was still there. Can I tell you how weird it was for me to throw off Gypsies' lines but stay on the dock??? I watched her cruise out of the marina and into Biscayne Bay until I couldn't see her any longer - despite knowing we'd be reunited in a couple hours, it was very strange - there was our home, with Doug and the Bootser, leaving me behind....way weird!
Doug Took Gypsies Out the Port of Miami and Back in Bakers Haulover Inlet
It Was a Busy Day Out on the Water
Gypsies Approaches the Turn into Turnberry Isle Marina
Gypsies Approaches Her Slip

Driving in traffic is something I definitely didn't miss while we were out cruising but just another thing we are having to get used to again in our return to the real world! After a 30 mile trip up the macadam highway (which took me 1/2 an hour but which took Gypsies several hours, time I spent lolling by the pool), I met up with Gypsies by jumping aboard at the fuel dock - with no current and not a lot of wind, Gypsies easily slid into her new home slip with the help of a great dock hand. I must say that all of the people here at Turnberry have been fantastic - incredibly welcoming, friendly, helpful and they know how to run a marina (how refreshing after our KW experience!!!)

The past couple weeks we have spent acclimating ourselves to our new home - we have liberally taken advantage of the pool which is rarely inhabited by more than a couple people at a time and we have gotten our bearings by finding the local Home Depot, West Marine, the grocery stores, Walgreens, the library, the mall and most importantly good Chinese food!! And of course we have taken advantage of the beach club which is amazing - gorgeous long stretch of sandy beach with beach loungers, towels, umbrellas and crystal clear water that is actually warm enough to enjoy (much more like the Bahamas than Maine)!! Think we're going to like it here!!
The Beach and Water View from Our Beach Chairs
The Beach
Doug Relaxes on the Beach
There is also a great 3 mile long exercise path that rings the golf course here - it is a wonderful spot for people watching as it sports bikers, walkers, runners and rollerbladers (we're getting ours out next visit to the pod for sure!) but also to see some fun wildlife. The same weird and ugly ducks that populate KW are up here - maybe it's FL that creates these mutant ducks!! But they sure do love the golf course - they are everywhere!!
The Mutant Ducks
The Mutant Ducks Walk Across the Green
The coolest sight on my first walk was a real live flamingo - not being from down here, I don't think I've ever seen a real one - way too many plastic ones in people's driveways or yards (what is up with that really??), but a real one - nope. Cross that off my list - they are very cool! Beautiful and graceful - even when cleaning themselves - check out the pics!!!

Our second weekend here was our first road trip - yippee!! September Song was back from the Bahamas and in Fort Pierce. Did you really think we'd miss out on seeing Stephanie, Bob, Cassie and Godiva??? Guess the car isn't such a bad thing since we didn't have time to take Gypsies all the way up to Ft Pierce (going 7 knots when you have time constraints can be a problem! funny how it never was when we were cruising!) Anyways....we had a great reunion!! We were welcomed by Cassie and Godiva on the dock - big hugs all around! Their grand-daughter Brianne is traveling with them so we had the added bonus of being able to hang out with her as well. Drinks and apps up on the flybridge to try and catch up were followed by a great dinner of wings and coldies up at the tiki bar!!! Just like the old days!!!
Cocktails and Apps on the Flybridge
Dinner at the Tiki Bar
The gang was all back together even if just for one night - have we always laughed like that - yup!!
And We Laughed and Laughed...
The next morning we woke up to the best farmers market ever - Bob was all but salivating at the thought of all the warm baked goodies awaiting him!!
The Farmers Market
Last summer when we cruised with SS we had discovered this same farmers market and had been dreaming about it - we weren't disappointed!! After scoping out all the offerings (and after Bob had scored his first chocolate something!),
Bob's First Chocolate Something!
we munched on breakfast while the sun shone brightly and the band played its Latin rhythms. Life is good! The farmers market is always a great place for people watching (or in this case dog watching - is that really a dog or is it a pony??)
and the vendors all have such a sense of humor - witness a few of these signs.

Next it was on for a quick provisioning trip - although cruisers are pretty self reliant and walk with backpacks to get most things, when a car is available, you take advantage of it!!! Even provisioning can be fun when you're with friends!! We hung out for awhile up on the flybridge because none of us wanted to say goodbye again - way too short of a visit!!! From the flybridge we had a great view of the boats coming in and out of the marina - it was Saturday so we saw boats with palm trees,
boats filled with grass skirted, coconut bra wearing parrotheads (no not us) and fishing charters filled with wanna be anglers!! But too soon we had to trek home to feed the Bootser - when you get to be a 24 year old cat, you deserve to be waited on and even spoiled and September Song was leaving the next morning for points north!! Before saying goodbye, we all promised to figure out a reunion sometime this summer halfway between Aventura and Georgia where Bob and Steph will be - whenever and wherever it is, it will be fun - you can count on that! Thanks guys for such a great time .... as always!!!

Back on the home front, Doug and I have both been busy networking our you know what's off - Doug in his new role at Tatum and me to get my butt back to work. Once you make the decision to head back to work, you want to just jump right back in - unfortunately it doesn't happen like that but hopefully something will shake out. A really fun part about the past week has been re-connecting with so many old friends and clients - the best email I got to a linked in connection request was "holy *#@! - where the hell are you?" WE'RE BAAAAACK........

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