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No Reservations- Northbound on “Margarita”

Ed and I flew into Ft. Lauderdale airport Friday morning,
May 15, 2020. Rented a car for one way and headed down to Marathon, The Keys.
Not sure if we could get through when we were stopped at the border patrol.

Ed said, we have property and we have to get to it.
After a little time went by the the officer said, “Go ahead…”

Wow, it was a little stressful at first.
We got down to our boat after leaving it not wanting to be stuck in Florida.
Stocked up the boat with food to start our journey north.

Saturday: Prepared boat to leave:

We cleaned all of the sea strainers, cleaned the air filters, checked all of the navigational lights, checked the anchor chain, and on and on checks.
We launched the dinghy, Ed took me out in the bay so that I could get my therapy.
I jumped out and noodled around, it felt great to be in that ocean.
All of the negative energy that was attached to me was cleansed off.

When we got back to the boat, both of us decided, “let’s go out and support local,” so we went to a favorite place we like.

Seven Seas, well, it was packed. A band was playing outside and it was great seeing people again.
They had just opened two days from the date we arrived.
The food was great and we truly had a lot of fun.

Sunday:  May 17
Departed Marlin Bay Yacht Club and the entire marina was leaving the same day.
Seas were amazing, tons of dolphins kept us company along our journey through the emerald green waters.

I love them, they are just so entertaining and I can’t get enough of them.

We chugged along and we were heading to Miami Stadium to anchor out with our friends with their Nordhaven to have a barbecue.

Well, as we traveled, the coast guard  announced  that a thunderstorm was rolling in.
So we decided to tuck into Card Sound and drop anchor so I could jump in the water.
We made food and had a great first night on the hook.

Our friends were in the thunderstorm in Miami, they sent me pics.
We had sun and perfect weather, I was happy.

Monday: May 18
 Got up to the stadium in Miami and dropped anchor at noon, we were going to hook up with our friends from Miami in the late afternoon.
I swam all day and enjoyed the day; five boats from Marlin Bay cruised in and waved and said, “this place is too packed for us, we have to find another anchorage”.
Ed dropped in the zodiac, zipping all around enjoying the day.

Later, we made food and it started to really get dark out early, then it started to rain. I mean, wicked rain, pour, next, thunder and lightning.

This Anchorage is really cool due to you looking at the city lights all night.
Well, the wind kicked up and this storm blew in and you couldn’t see any of the lights in Miami. Then it started to hail, then the wind shifted it was going side ways. You couldn’t see anything, two cats dragged there anchor and they were moving there boats in the middle of this storm.

Our wind meter read 60 miles an hour.
Ed said that our boat clocked three times.
It was wild, crazy weather, thank God our anchor held.
Then as quickly as this storm rolled in, it rolled away.
Wow, it was pretty crazy.
Our angels were really watching over us this night.

Tuesday: May 19,
Ed went to lift the zodiac out of the water with the Davit and due to all of the rain from that horrific storm, water got into the electrical control box and it fried.

Well, we had to drag the zodiac behind the boat to Royal Palm. That’s where we were heading to hook up with the mechanics so that they could change our oil.

I asked for a Thead so that we could figure out how to get the zodiac up on top of our boat, but you guys know Ed, he can invent create, build so may things.
He tried to get the part that fried shipped but no way would it be available until a few weeks, no time, we have to roll.

As we were heading through the first bridge in Miami to have it opened, as many times as we radioed the bridge tender, nothing, just radio silence. Trying to hold the zodiac and the boat in the wind between two bridges with boats zipping all around you can be nerve wracking.

I just thought maybe I had the wrong name, then finally the bridge tender came back and tells us he had radio problems.

Wow, really, don’t they have back up radios?
It was wild.

While waiting for the bridge to open, a beautiful dove flew into our boat and swept across Ed , then landed on our boat.
It hung out for a bit and gently flew away.
I knew our messages were heard.
What an amazing experience,
I just love it…


We arrived at Royal Palm, got an Uber to the airport for a rental car, bought more staples, then went to Jimbo’s, another favorite spot we like to go.

Ed had to figure out how to get the zodiac on top of our boat, so we went shopping for lines, and everything else to make a block and tackle set.

He had to learn a Sheep’s head knot, due to the first try we got it mid way up and the knot gave way and the zodiac dropped.

Well he did it, wow, what an arm work out as he was cranking it up. The weight of the boat, the motor, along with all of the water in it was about 900 pounds.
He didn’t have to go work out that day, between mind thinking and lifting.
I was so psyched I got to get my haircut here and we went back to Jimbo’s and met up with our friends from Miami.

It was so great, we have been in CT and it was so great seeing people out and enjoying themselves.

As we had the work done on the boat, which took two days, it slowed us down but we got things done.
We decided to start our trip north. At about 4:00 in the afternoon, we pulled off the dock and Ed said, “Meg, I have no port throttle, I have an issue…”
Well we spun the boat around and got it back to the dock and looked at what it was.
It was the Hydraulic fluid. It needed some in the port throttle, we got the air out then decided to depart early the next morning.

Friday: May 22
Departed Royal Palm at 7:00, as everyone knows there are a ton of bridges throughout the ICW through Florida and most of them open at different times, and you have to time your speed as you travel through so you’re not sitting there waiting forever.

Well, we lucked out. A sea tow was pulling a monster sport fish behind us; this sport fish was huge and he was pulling it all the way to Palm Beach. Perfecto…

It was pretty awesome that the bridges were being opened for him so we got the great advantage.
That’s until we go to the monster bridge that they have been working on forever in West Palm Beach.

Ocean Avenue Bridge was down due to mechanical problems. The bridge tender said there is a wait- a two hour wait- until opening.

“Oh well,” Ed said, “Meg, let’s drop the anchor,
make some food, and I’ll fix the top where the Bimini support ripped off in the storm we were in.”

Ed had all his tools out fixing the support and I heard Ocean Bridge is preparing to open. We both rushed around really fast so we didn’t miss this opportunity to roll through.
It wasn’t two hours, it was about 15 minutes.
That night we anchored out at Jetson Bridge.

Sat. May 23
Anchored out at New Smyrna
Boats are everywhere, jet skis are all over the place, people along the sand bars fishing swimming, really enjoying being on the water.
Just so many boats! I have never done this trip with so many boats zipping around and really enjoying the water. It’s great to see people again enjoying themselves.

Makes me happy.

Sunday : May 24
Drove until 10:00 at night, found an anchorage in the pitch black of night. It was a really dark out and we both were wicked exhausted.
When we found this anchorage, we had to drive over a sand bar at low tide with no water; it was wild. No issues, so that was great, we were anchored with a boat from Texas.
Current was ripping we had to get it right.
The anchorage was called Sawpit Creek.
When we woke up in the morning we said, “Wow, make a note of this spot, it’s a great anchorage,” but last night in the pitch black it was wild.

Stopped for fuel at Palm Coast Marina; it took us two hours. The dock master was from the city. He was a riot, he asked me if I was from NY, I said, “I love NY.”

He told us a story about an older gentlemen had a 70 foot boat cruising to Maine, all alone. He asked the gentleman, “Can I join you as your mate?” He came back with,
“No, I’m looking for my mermaid.”
I cracked up.

Monday: May 25, Memorial Day
We cruised to St. Simon’s Island and grabbed a dock at Morning Star due to us both being pretty tired.
Made food and hung out for a early morning.
We met JT, he owns the same boat as us but it’s a 66 footer, really great guy.
His port is Charlston, SC. He travels all of the Bahamas but not this year.
Name of his boat is ‘Vixen’…

I had to Google that name, I never heard of it, wicked cool, means, “a very difficult woman”. I cracked up.
He was with his girlfriend on his way back from Ft. Pierce.

Tuesday: May 26
We headed to Hilton Head for the night and stayed at Harbor Town Yacht Club.
Wind was wild out there all day and the waves were a little crazy. It was nice to get to a dock.

We found a really nice high-end restaurant with a really nice crowd. We’re fine-dining!
Enjoyed the evening.

Wednesday May 27
We pulled off the dock early and the seas were calm, flat and just cloudy. No worries, no problem.
Well, about 8:00 in the morning the Coast Guard says “Mariners, a tropical storm is coming, it may turn into a tornado.” Extreme high winds, on and on,
Well here we go again…

I said, “Ed no way am I going to ride out a storm like this.”

So I called the town dock marina In Beaufort, SC. Thank God I got the last slip before it was full.
I guess our angels were with us.
Docked the boat and Lorraine is texting me, “I see you’re driving into Bertha…”
Omg, no way..
Docked the boat and the sun started to come out while north of us, Charlston was getting hit with storm Bertha.

It all worked out well. We walked a mile to Public’s for a few staples and Uber-ed  back.

Walked around the town and in the evening, we went out for great pizza.
It turned out really great; this town is really nice too.
Met a few people. One was selling their boat due to them just finishing the great loop and wanting to spend more time with their grandchildren. They were from Chicago and built a home in Beaufort.

The other couple were from California; they love the Bahamas but not this year so they are putting their boat on the hard and driving home. They are too worried about flying home.


Thursday: May 28
 Departed Beaufort, SC this morning and chugged along to Georgetown. Slow and steady dolphins are with us all along the way.

Hopefully calm weather  going forward.
Calm seas too.

“Sea” everyone soon!

Huge hugs,

Meg