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Friday, January 27, 2012

Conch Republic

Time travelled:      4:30
 Nautical miles:     45
 Docked at:          Galleon Marina, Key West

Marathon mooring field
We left Marathon bright and early Thursday morning. The first two hours were rather lumpy, Heather and Stacy started out on the bow leaving the harbor.

Did someone say dark clouds ahead?
 Once we got out into the Atlantic it got very lumpy, the spray was coming up on the bow. Heather and Stacy moved to the back deck and Zeke was panting and drooling on the couch - perhaps he is a Portuguese Land Dog . About half way here the winds died down and the waves decreased making for a  very comfortable ride. We were all out on the bow catching the rays. Garth unfortunately had to man the helm and dodge crab pots the whole way but at least this time he had daylight and two engines. I am sure his arms were sore from all the steering he had to do!

 We got settled in the slip and washed the salt off the boat, Frank and Carrie stopped by to say hi then we headed for Duval Street. The marina is in a great location, five minutes to the main drag and the back of the boat faces west so we get a pretty decent sunset.









We walked up and down Duval and settled at a Burger Bar as it was dog friendly.  When we were walking back to the boat we meet our neighbors, twelve guys on a weekend getaway from Tampa. Seems they had been bar hopping and when they saw us coming down the street they yelled "NEIGHBORS" - hugs all round and off we went. Pretty quiet next door tonight.

This morning we rented an electric car and toured Key West in style, our first car had issues with the brakes so we returned it and they gave us a red car that made a loud crunching sound when we made left hand turns so back we went again. This time they gave us a mini hummer and an extra half hour! We took Zeke to the dog beach and drove around drinking Pina Coladas for four and a half hours - only in Key West. Funny thing was we saw Frank and Carrie on our first drive around town and then about every hour we would see them again as we cruised  Duval Street.  It brought back memories of when we were young and we would cruise the streets on weekends - only this time we had a chauffeur

Stacy doing a pina colada run & water for Zeke!

Mini Hummer! 
Along the lines of "sometimes you're the show and sometimes you're the audience" - we were sitting on the back deck relaxing after our strenuous day of sightseeing. Boats come and go until all hours, one small boat was coming in, Stacy and I were watching him and I said, this guy is heading right for the rocks and before we knew it - Caboom - he smashed into the jetty wall right behind  our boat. I yelled to him to see if he was alright, no answer, I called Garth to get the spotlight and then called the marina. Garth and Stacy went up to the flybridge and shone the spotlight on him - asking "are you alright", still no answer. A dingy came out of the harbor and saw the light, he drove over and yelled "are you in distress". He did not get an answer and started to leave. Fortunately, Garth kept the spotlight on the boat, the man yelled "help" and the dingy came back and towed him into the dock. We all watched and when the dingy came back I asked if the man was OK - yep he replied he is very very drunk! Bet he will have a real thumper in the morning!! This may be his wake up call to curtail his dinking & drinking!
The view from the back deck!
Life is good and boating is fun!