Friday, February 8, 2013

KEY WEST - Part 1

We left the Dry Tortugas at 7 pm and motored all night to get to Key West by dawn. We reached Key West Bight Marina and docked for fuel and water, and a short walk to get a gas can for the dinghy. There is an anchorage just out from the marina, so we go find ourselves a spot amongst the other boats. Everyone is still tired from our crossing the Gulf of Mexico, so by 6 pm, we are all asleep. Fourteen hours later, we manage to wake. We needed that sleep.

The contractors were lined up for our repairs to Kairos, but they couldn't start work on her for a couple of weeks, so we anchored out in Key West. I have done a lot of reading, writing, playing cards, and cook occasionally. Our batteries on Kairos are bad, they don't hold a charge, and won't take a charge from the wind generator, so we can't keep our electronics charged. My phone is kept turned off most of the time, to save what little battery I do have. This is one of the things to be fixed while she is dry docked. It will be good to be 'connected' again.

My favorite son-in-law, Bill, is a manager at Fogarty's on Duval Street. Our first outing, we just happen to stumble onto it, so we stop and have a much needed meal that we didn't cook. French Fries, oh how I've missed you! My daughter, Amy, grabs the kids and comes up to see us. Aiden, my four year old grandson, entertained Captain and helped me eat my french fries. 

Getting low on previsions, Mako and I visit a little grocery close to the marina where we dock the dinghy. On our daily trips ashore, we do the touristy things; have our picture taken at the southernmost point of the USA, visit Fort Taylor, have a slice of Key Lime Pie, and of course, sit and drink beer while watching the parade of tourist walk down Duval Street.

Our trip ashore to do laundry.

Mako has been a lot of fun on this trip. He comes up with funny log entries:
 Day 18. We no longer count the days in hours, we count them in beers. It's beer o'clock.
Day 19. Radio Officers Log: The Captain is drunk again. He stumbled onboard after a foray onto shore cursing that he 'wanted a red light, not a red light' and ordered us to consume nothing but chips and beer for the remainder of the day. I am generally not adverse to this, but this is the fourth day in a row he's issued these orders.
Day 20. The Capt'n is drunk again and shouting obscenities to the passing boats.

Cribbage is our card game. Captain taught me to play back in Kemah. I was not catching onto the game very fast, so I downloaded an app on my phone and practiced. During our trip, we have played three times now, and I'm keeping track of the winnings… Bill 0, Mako 0, Lezlie 3. Okay, yeah, I'm bragging. I'm sure my winning streak will end soon.

One day, we had strong winds from the south and an ebb tide flowing in the opposite direction. I noticed that the sailboats, catamarans, and power boats all reacted differently under these conditions. There were several 'almost' collisions between the three different designs.  The catamarans were swinging in all directions, and dragging their anchors. The power boats were facing their anchors and oncoming tide, while the sailboats had their anchors aft their sterns and facing the oncoming tide. Since the boats were not all in sync, it made for quite a circus. Luckily, the catamaran that was dragging toward us, had people onboard and we got their attention before they got too close. I spent nearly the whole day in the cockpit, being the lookout. The cockpit, my favorite place to be.

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