If there was one thing that kept me going during those torturous days of sanding and other painfully dull jobs that I had been complaining about not to long ago, it’s that our friends Bo and Allison had promised us a day out on their boat as soon as they arrived back to Stuart after finishing up jobs and other odd and end things. Back on Daze Off while my arm were growing numb and dust kept seeping into the corners of my mask, I could usually keep myself happy in my head with daydreams about a fresh breeze blowing through my hair while having a good conversation with my friends, and most importantly, a cold cocktail in my hands. Don’t get me wrong, I love hanging out with these guys, but the promise of booze makes any outing infinitely better.
There were a few times that plans were made and then cancelled due to last minute things with work and family, but eventually they made it down to Florida, as as soon as their boat had it’s owners back for a few days to get it in ship shape, we were on our way. All of the 90 degree weather that had been bothering us for so much of the month had now decided to replace itself with off and on showers for the past few days, but we were not going to let that keep us from getting out on the water and having a good time. Walking down the dock in my new rain jacket and a set of Keds that had not yet been broken in and were tearing at the flesh of my heels, I quickly kicked them off and made myself at home as soon as we stepped aboard their 42 ft Brewer, Selah.
There were of course hugs to go around, as well as a tour of their boat to see how the layout differentiated from all the other Brewers we seem to have been spending time on in the last year. They showed us their new fridge and freezer with pull out drawers as we stood there drooling over it, since we had found something very similar we almost purchased, only it wouldn’t fit in our space. Time for 5-foot-itis to set in already. A few more spaces to tour, and we were ready to get this party underway. Before we could head out to the open waters of the St. Lucie River though, we needed to swing by and pick up a few other boaters in the mooring yard.
New friends to Bo and Allison, Cameron and Dani are another set of young cruisers that are looking into the lifestyle of setting off into the sunset, and are currently living in Florida while trying out a new boat for them (long story). We quickly rafted up to their 41′ Morgan with painted blue handrails and took a moment to tour it as well as play with their adorable cat and dog. Soon the 6 of us were piled on to Selah and were off again. During the ride we had a nice presentation of fresh veggies and dip places in front of us, and after I returned to the cockpit after a quick trip below, I found a mimosa waiting for me as well. Even with threatening clouds in the background, this day was off to a great start.
The sails may not have been attached to the boat yet, and no one felt like catching a bridge opening to get to a wider bay of water, so we just moved ourselves a mile up the river and dropped anchor off the side of the channel. A better way to spend the day anyway, so this way no one had to watch out for other boats or shoaling, and we were able to just sit in the cockpit and enjoy each others company.
After having a fun little photoshoot on deck where I was able to show off some of the new gear we just received from Vineyard Vines, the grill was fired up and lunch was turning into a fancy affair with burgers made from grass fed beef and placed on a buttered bun. The mimosas had been finished off and we were moving on to ice cold beers as all of us talked about our sailing experiences in Florida and how thankfully this whole boat realized how overrated Marathon is. I told myself I would never bring it up again after our quick visit there, but yes, it is a floating trailer park.
As Bo and Allison get ready to depart for the Bahamas, we gave them our ‘not to miss’ list of places that we really liked while we were there, and they promised to make a list for us of their favorite places in the Abacos. An area we have yet to hit in that island group. Dani and Cam are planning on sitting tight in Florida for just a little longer while they cruise while having the ability to work from their computers. Lucky bastards. Just joking, they’re a great couple and we may have been just a teensy bit jealous that they still have a paycheck coming in. It does suck to watch your bank account dwindle down, and rebuilding a boat does not help.
We were lucky that the storms appeared to be passing all around us, but never over us. And although we could have stayed out all night, (Which was my original hope. Slumber party!) Matt and I had to get back to Indiantown for a Saturday BBQ they put on and we had signed ourselves up for as well as promised our presence to a few people. While we were busy trying to get all our friends to come back with us, they were busy trying to get us to stay for the rest of the night. With the promise of cold beer and a Hot’n’Ready pizza, it was a tough coin to flip.
Indiantown eventually won out, with only two of us attendees, and so it was time to drop Cam and Dani back off at their boat and bring Selah to her slip. We didn’t have the sun or even any sails for our day out, but it was exactly what we needed. I will say that I’m disappointed that this is the only time we’ll be able to get out and do this again because everyone but us will be moving on, although maybe that just means we’ll have to hunt Bo and Allison down somewhere in the Bahamas or Caribbean when we’re ready for a good long break from boat work.