Call Me The Cat Lady


Catfish that is… All my attempts at fishing produce multitudes of catfish.
Our journey continues south with a few delays, but we are still moving.

Nov 24 – Thanksgiving

We have moved out of Gulfport to Snead Island. Had Monte Cristo sandwiches for our turkey day dinner. They were marvelous.

We stayed in this anchorage for a couple of days. We were waiting for mail to arrive general delivery.

Snead Island is a wonderful park that was someone’s homestead. Hundreds of acres of trails and wildlife. I saw a rosette spoonbill. The last time I saw one of those in the wild was probably on a camping trip with my family.

Snead Island Sunset

Snead Island Sunset

Nov 26 – DeSoto National Memorial.

We moved across the bay to DeSoto National Memorial. This is another nice park with a visitor center and hiking trails. Ozzy and I took full advantage of this park.

Nov 30 – DeSoto National Memorial, Bradenton

My mail has arrived, so I took a LYFT to the post office and Winn Dixie.

Dec 1 – Thursday, motored to Sarasota

Sarasota

Sarasota

Oh my, FOG. This was my first experience in dense fog. Thank God for Radar! We took it slow and followed our GPS charts and watched the Radar for other boats. One boat must not have

Fog

Fog

had any GPS, because when he saw us he turned and tailgated us until the fog lifted.

Fog rolled back in and we were due to go under a bridge. Whoa! We knew it was there somewhere, but it just appeared large a looming before it was expected.

We made it to Sarasota safely and took a mooring ball at Marina Jack.sarasota-map

Dec 2 – Friday – Sarasota

My cousins, Marguerite and Tom Hankins took Luke and I took lunch. Great time catching up on family happenings. Then they gave us a ride to the grocery store. We filled their car with food and wondered how it was all going to fit into the dinghy. Magically, it all fit, the next challenge is to get it all in the boat.

Many thanks to Marguerite and Tom for a pleasant visit.

Cousins

Cousins

Now, it is time for laundry. Due to a line, it took way too long to finish. As I was finishing, it was almost sundown and I still had to get back to the boat to get Ozzy to shore for potty time.

Met a nice guy named Russ in the laundromat. He has been in the mooring field since May and shared much useful information about Sarasota and other areas that we might visit.

Goceries in Dinghy

Groceries in Dinghy

Dec 3 – Sarasota

Luke and I went to the farmer’s market and splurged on brunch at a cute downtown café the strolled through the market. It was a nice relaxing morning. Later in the day we had the boat bottom cleaned and I had a marvelous long and hot SHOWER! I washed my hair multiple times. Great showers at this marina.

Recently, a hair dresser told me that you can buy products that make your hair look like you have been in the salt water. REALLY!!?? Ain’t nothing glam about itchy gummy salt water hair.

We went to the Sarasota Christmas Parade. We only had to walk a block from the marina. It was a real treat. Tons of tiny dancers, Shriners, marching bands and veterans. Then it was back to the boat for blueberry pie and whipped cream! Another pleasant day.

Dec 4 – Sunday – Lv Sarasota motored to Englewood/Manasota Key

28 miles on the ICW, took longer than expected due to outgoing tide. We were averaging about 3.5 knots. We could have walked faster.  We made it to our anchorage in time to get Ozzy to shore. We begged someone for dock access and climbed up on the dock, stepped over a fence and made it to a road where we could walk Ozzy. Along the way, a fisherman had some smoked fish for sale. We snatched that up and that is what we had for dinner. Yum.

Dec 5 – Monday – Manasota Key and Stump Pass State Park.

At sunrise, we moved Nice Lady about a mile further up the pass and anchored. Luke was concerned about the wind. I got Ozzy in the dinghy and we went to Stump Pass State Park for potty time. When we returned a woman on shore called to me. I headed towards her, I was concerned that she was going to reprimand me for going to fast or something… I was wrong. She was very sweet and offered that I could walk Ozzy in their back yard and bring any trash we had and put in their cans.

Later that day, she and her husband took us for a sunset cruise and made dinner for us. I cannot say enough about how we appreciated their generosity.

When moving the boat, we had more engine problems. This begins a whole long saga.

Dec 6-Dec 19 – Engine problems, towing and Olsen Marine.

Trying times for all. Engine decided to not work while we were going down the ICW. Fortunately, we had been motorsailing and the wind was in the right direction.  We continued to sail and called for a tow to a boat yard for repairs. When it was clear that the repairs would take a few days Ozzy and I went to Orlando to spend time with my family.

I returned a week later, boat work was still not completed so Ozzy stayed in Orlando. We were finally able to get back on the water the next Monday.

 

Dec 20 – Leave Ft Myers Beach arrive Marco Island

Smokehouse Bay is tucked in the middle of the island. It is surrounded by condos, but it is quiet and breezy. We enjoyed our stay here and met a fellow named Trevor on S/V White Pearl. He was having engine problems, so Luke assisted.

Dec 25 – Marco Island

We took Nice Lady out in the Gulf for a Christmas Day cruise. The weather was perfect. Later we had our Christmas dinner and a well deserved nap.

Dec 26 – Leave Marco arrive in Goodland

Goodland is a cute little fishing village in the 10,000 islands. There are two marinas and 5 bars and that is it. No groceries not even bread or milk. There is constant dolphin activity in the bay and low boat traffic. I attempted fising (again). Just call me the Cat Lady. All I every catch is catfish.

It is very pleasant here, in fact, a couple we know is staying here in the marina for the season and they got local employment. We considered staying for a month, but we get too antsy and want to move. We are staying here until after Friday – predicted high winds and cold temperatures.

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