Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Opposite Ends of Amazing

August 17-18, 2013 
South Seas Resort & Calusa Jack's - Opposite Ends of the Amazing Marina Spectrum

Feeling much better after a few hours sleep, the morning motoring was beautiful but land couldn't come soon enough! 
Sky takes the helm
I would have been glad to stop sooner but the guys were able to push on to Pine Island where we stopped at South Seas Resort.  The girls and I booked it to the swimming pool while the guys fueled, topped off the water and docked us for the evening.  We ate at the resort restaurant which was very pricey but, at that point, we did not care!  

When speaking with potential sailors, I would strongly advise against their very first day at sea - ever - being a 24hr day :)  We were safe and never in danger but the toll round the clock sailing takes on your body at the beginning of what is to be a long trip anyway may set you up for mental exhaustion later.  But, live and learn and move on, right?

We slept in the next morning to catch up on some rest.  The girls headed to the swimming pool while I did a bit more provisioning (mainly ice and water) and the guys pulled the bad sails.  Amazingly, we found two additional sails aboard that we didn't even know we had.  They were a bit smaller in size but both in good condition.  So we rigged the new sails, added some antifreeze to the engine and took a quick dip in the pool before heading out.  
Under our first bridge
Our first drawbridge
We had breakfast lunch and dinner on board, quickly realizing our appetites shrink while at sea, probably due to the heat and also drinking tons of water.  
We made good time and were excited to make it to the first lock - Franklin Lock - with plenty of light in the sky to make the published closing time of 9:30pm and have plenty of ground to cover before the next lock.  But to our disappointment the locks currently close at 7pm.due to the high water levels on Okeechobee and the Army Core wanting to push water toward the Atlantic.  So we motored back down the channel to the nearest dock, Calusa Jack's Marina.  It turned out to be a diamond in the rough.  Joe, the new manager, lives on sight and his family was super welcoming.  We fueled and topped off water to be ready for an early departure and were then invited to dinner and evening chat with other fellow sailors and Joe and family.  It was a great night of sharing stories, getting advice and enjoying the sailing lifestyle.  We were introduced to Cody and Angela, who had purchased their boat 3 days prior.  They invited us aboard S/V Dragon Star and shared scotch as we exchanged our experiences as new sailors.  After exchanging email info, we finally turned in and scheduled a 7am departure to be at the lock when it opened first thing in the morning.

Our journey continues in "Lock and Load".

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