Monday, May 13, 2013

Beginning our 2013 cruising season

We left Dunedin and headed for Jacksonville to pick up our bikes.  They were rusted from the 2 years of salt water boating, so we had them restored and repainted.  As we pulled in to Jacksonville, the heavens let loose of bucket loads of water, and we got soaked as we loaded the bikes on the truck.  Our truck looked like the Clampitts of Beverly Hills with two kayaks, two bikes and boxes full of everything we needed for the next six months on the boat. 
Duke loves riding in the truck.  he's truly a 50 pound lap dog while riding.

We pulled in to a Choice Hotel around 9:30 pm.  While Ron walked Duke, I hiked up to the room and discovered that Sleep Inn really means "sleep with others".  Imagine their surprise when the couple in the room heard their door being opened.  I returned to the desk clerk who swore no one was assigned to that room.  After getting a new room, we discovered that we were only 75 yards from I-95.  Did I mention the CAFFEINATED soda I had just finished.  Needless to say, Sleep Inn did not mean "slept well".

4/30/13 We arrived at Denise and Brian's (Ron sister) where we stayed for 3 nights while we checked the boat for damage from Hurricane Sandy. Thank you Denise and Brian, for your hospitality!!
 We were very lucky---3 boats in the marina were totalled.  If the water had come up even a few more inches, all of the boats would have floated off their stands.

May 6-10
We drove to Norfolk, VA via the Cape May/ Lewes Ferry for the Spring America's Great Loop Cruisers' Association (AGLCA) Rendezvous.  We attended numerous seminars (along with 200 others), met up with old friends, and had a great time. During the drawing for prizes, Ron's name was pulled for the flat screen TV!!!
 On the last evening of the rendezvous, I even joined in the musical jam session with my dulcimer.  Thanks to Eva (hammered dulcimer, mountain dulcimer, and auto harp) , Ron (guitar and mountain dulcimer)  and Betsy (harmonica) for allowing me to join them.

America's Great Loop Cruisers' Association's photo.
AGLCA boaters

May 10
We returned to New Gretna, NJ and started on many boat projects.  Ron is currently building a kayak rack for the roof of the helm. 

May 11
We experienced 24 hours of heavy rain!

May 12
We spent a nice day with Ron's mother.  Denise (a wonderful cook) fixed dinner.  Since Ron's mom loves ice cream, we took her out for an evening ice cream sundae at Stewarts.

May 13
Temps today are in the 50s, but tonight a freeze warning is expected.  By the end of the week the temps will be back in the low 80s.  WOW!

Our plan for the next few weeks is to complete projects and test drive the boat.  We are hoping that Barnegat Bay will be navigable for an inside passage to Manasquan.

To the OLL choir, the Yoga and Yoga Lattes groups and our Florida friends....we miss you!