Estates, Condos, Boats and Bridges

When I woke up Easter Sunday I was resigned to the fact that for the first Easter in my 33 years of marriage, the Easter Bunny would not be able to find me with my chocolate rabbit.  After all, we were not on land for at least a week, and it’s hard to hide something on our boat.  I was incredulous when I looked in the fridge, and front and center was my chocolate rabbit.  The day was bound to be a good one.

At the Fort Pierce anchorage, one boat that had been left with two anchors and extremely long scope drug anchor in 37 knot winds, two boats were banging together, some brave soul ventured over and moved their fenders so they wouldn’t destroy each other, then the wind shifted after he left and they started damaging each other.  One owner showed up and drove off, into an incredible storm.  The coast guard showed up hours later (after dark, and after the boat dragging blocked the channel) and towed the boat away.   It was a rocky night, but our anchor held firm.

We thought the houses on the Okeechobee were huge; in fact we called them mansions.  That being the case, the properties between Fort Pierce and Vero Beach can only be called Estates.  I cannot even begin to describe how huge these places are.  They certainly live in a different world than I do, but we share the same view as we cruise by, and wave.

It is a kind of culture shock coming from the Keys and the Gulf to the East Coast.  There are fishing boats, motor boats, speed boats, trawlers, sailboats, shrimp boats, steel boats and rafts, all competing for the narrow channel called the Inter-Coastal WaterWay.  We made the mistake of travelling on the weekend, and at one intersection where there was a steady north south flow of traffic, we, and several boats in front and behind us had to cross that line of traffic.  It must have looked just like synchronized swimming, and we all made it safely, another good day.  We anchored near Daytona Beach in a very crowded anchorage, and were surprised when an ice-cream boat went by, ringing his bell, just like the trucks of old.

After the incredible properties, there are condos and bridges.  Someone counted the bridges we will go under on the Loop, and they said it is 630.  Most of them must be on the East Coast.  The condos look just like little boxes.  All the same, and go on and on.  I have no idea how someone finds their own door after a few cocktails.

The Manitees are an apparently endangered species that are protected throughout Florida.  Personally, I am unsure why, they look like an overgrown Seal that never moves, just kind of crawls.  But then hey, what do I know, and here they are.

There are still derelict boats everywhere, just left to disappear on their own.  We see at least one a day.  Last night we anchored at Fort Matanzas, it doesn’t hold a candle to Fort Jefferson, but then it was a smaller river to protect.
When we leave Florida this week, we will go outside if the weather holds, and see what the Ocean has in store.

I hope everyone is having a wonderful and exciting spring.
Love to everyone,

Joe & MB Amelia
S/V “Pot ‘O’ Gold”

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