December 25, 2015 Christmas Day
We got tired of the anchor chain dragging along the sides of our boats and pulled up our anchors for another ride down the ditch. Our progress in the beginning was slow, painfully slow. We had winds on the nose running 15 to 20 knots. We had seven bridges to pass through. Each opening on it's own schedule. The average wait time for each bridge was 20 minutes adding to our frustration about our progress. The real surprise was the number of powerboats out on the water. It was Christmas Day, what are they all doing out on the water? Most were pretty rude about creating wake. One Canadian boat pushed through Joe and I as we were preparing to go under an open bridge. What are some of these people thinking?
We got to the Jupiter Bridge and hit about a 3 knot current against us as we were coming through. That much counter current can knock you about quite a bit. Karen got a nice picture of the lighthouse as we were going by.
We continued our slog down the ditch, waiting for each bridge as appropriate until we arrived at North Palm Beach. We took a turn into the lake a bit late and ran into shallow water almost grounding ourselves. We found the channel again and headed up to the anchorage to drop the hook. There were about 40 to 50 other boats already in the anchorage which forced us to look around for an open spot. We ended up in the north east section of the anchorage. It was in about 12 feet of water and the protection was pretty good for the weather conditions.
It was Christmas Day so we shared a meal on board. Kathy made turkey, gravy and mashed potatoes. Karen made minced meat pie and green beans. It was a great meal with friends.
We untied from Tarsie the next day and had a difficult time setting the hook. Third time was a charm. We went ashore with Joe and Kathy to have a late lunch with her cousin. She was very close to her cousin when she was young but had not seen her in thirteen years. We also got to meet her cousin's husband as well. We all met at Duffy's Bar and Grill.
Later we headed back to the boat with the winds still blowing 10 to 20 knots.
Tip of the day: A teaspoon of petroleum jelly in the toilet once a month will keep it well lubricated.
We spent the next several days in North Palm Beach. We went to the West Marine there several times. It was about a mile away from where we tied up our dinghy. Publix and Duffy's were also conveniently located close by.
December 31, 2015
Still in North Palm Beach. Decided to take the bus to Palm Beach to break up the boredom. Caught the Route 21 bus half way and picked up the Route 1 bus that took us into Palm Beach. We got off the bus and walked to the tourist center to find information about the town. There were two tram routes that were free so we picked one and rode to the mall. We did the mall. Kathy was on a constant quest for a pair of sandals for Joe. We went back to where we started and had some beer at Duffy's. Karen decided she wanted to eat somewhere else and went back to the mall with Kathy to eat at the Cheesecake Factory. Joe and I followed up after finishing our beers at Duffy's.
We caught the route 21 bus back at about 5:30. We were told that the buses ran until 10:00. We waited for our connection on route 1 until 6:30 only to discover the bus did not run that late. It started to rain heavily so we went for cover. Karen learned how to use Uber after downloading the application. We got our ride about 15 minutes after she figured out the application. The ride ended up being free because it was the first time we used Uber and it was such a short trip (3 miles).
January 1, 2016 New Year's Day
We had a rough night with little sleep. There were fireworks going off all night. Also many of the local big yachts were blowing their horns celebrating the New Year. We also found that the holding tank had overflowed and had to clean that up. What a mess. After cleaning that up we did the usual; went ashore, did some shopping, and ate at Duffy's.
Finally we found a good weather window for heading south tomorrow. We pulled up our anchors and headed down to Lake Worth to stage ourselves to go out to the Atlantic at 3:00 the next morning.
We prepared for going out in the ocean by doing the following: stowed all the fuel cans in the dingy, stowed the dingy motor, put all the bottles in the sink, checked the engine oil, coolant and belts, and put away anything that would flop around while at sea. I also greased the prop shaft seal which is not normal preparation for going to sea.