Merry Christmas everyone!
We left Tarpon Springs, FL on 12-7-09. Unfortunately we tried to leave the marina at low tide with a very strong river current coming in. OMG!!!! Steve backed out of the slip and Zephia couldn't move. We went aground and Zephia couldn't get away from the pilings since the current was pushing us into them so hard. Not only did we have pilings to deal with, we had the bow of a huge motorboat next to us trying to take the bimini and solar panels off Zephia. Pat and Diane (from Canada) came to our rescue. Pat got his dingy and tied a rope to our stern which he than tied onto a pier across the river. He tied the bow to a piling ahead of us to keep Zephia more secured. Diane stood on the bow of the motorboat and helped Steve push Zephia away from it. I was pushing Zephia off the pilings. To say the least, we definetly learned a leason.....never leave at low tide or when the current is pushing against you with all it's might in a slip. We had to wait about an hour for the tide to start coming up and once it did, we were able to get out of the marina. We decided to anchor out in the bay instead of travelling that day since it was later in the day and we were exhausted from yes....this was an ordeal......not an adventure :)
We left Tarpon Springs Bay the next morning and traveled to Boca Ciega Bay, FL. It was a beautiful day.....sunny and warm! We decided to stay in Boca Ciega Bay the next day to just relax and maybe go ashore. When we got up the next day, you couldn't see anything around you let along the shore. The fog was so thick and it stayed all day! We were unable to get off Zephia the next day too because of the heavy fog. So what do we do on Zephia when we can't get off her???? We play a lot of backgammon and I'm sure I don't have to tell anyone who "rocks" at playing this game! I also had the opportunity to use my new non-electric washing machine that I bought at a boat show in St. Petersburg, FL. Steve thought I was crazy, but it works great and it's more fun to wash your clothes in it than in a bucket. They actually got clean!
We left for Sarasota, Fl when the weather cleared up and had a nice day to travel. We anchored in the bay surrounded by lots of beautiful buildings, an island park, and other boats. It's a short dingy ride to the Tiki Bar where we dock our dingy for 2.00 a day. We are right next to the downtown and have had a lot of fun expoloring Sarasota. We have also taken the public transportation a few times around town to find other stores. We have become extremely resourseful!
When we were anchoring Zephia in Sarasota Bay apparently our shifter cable snapped. OMG.....this would NOT HAVE BEEN GOOD if we had been traveling. So.....Steve has taken the entire steering column apart and ordered all new cables for the steering unit. We just got the cables yesterday and today we will work on putting the steering unit back together.
OH........as part of our "adventure", we got to experience the worst "Norther" Sarasota had in 20 years a couple of days ago! There were 5 foot waves coming directly at our bow every 3-4 seconds with gust up to 40 mph for 14 hours. You couldn't even walk inside the boat without hanging on for dear life! Yes....you heard me right....this was an "adventure", but at times it did boarderline an "ordeal". I think we got about 2 hours of sleep all night. The next morning we saw four sailboats laying on the beach and one in some rocks because their anchors didn't hold. Another leason to remember.....always anchor away from the crowd for safety and security. Captain Steve is the best and just keeps proving to me why he is the Captain!
Well....I should probably go and help Captain Steve with the installation of the new cables. We have decided to stay in Sarasota for Christmas since it's suppose to get a bit stormy here. We will leave for Ft. Myers, FL as soon as the storm goes by.
We wish you all a wonderful holiday season. Look out Bahamas....we are very close now!