Delayed in Fort Pierce

Tuesday afternoon while I was off blogging Richard carried on tidying and ordering the boat down below as the marina guys were doing Morphie’s final wash, wax and polish of the topsides which had been delayed by bad weather….    Doesn’t she look lovely and shiny?

Looking shiny and polished

We ate on board and enjoyed sundowners in the cockpit as the bar – and lots of other local restaurants – remained closed due to the City gas leak.

Wednesday morning we were up early as we had to return the car.   So back for the final time to Publix for some last minute groceries; on to West Marine for more supplies (varnish and hoses this time); and then to Enterprise to drop the car off.  All sorted, bill paid, and then we were given a lift back to the marina. It wasn’t the best car we’ve ever driven but we’ll miss having our own wheels. We went into the office – our refund had finally been credited to our card – and checked through the parcels.   Nothing for us, although the outboard spares are imminent according to the tracking information.   But we still had not received an update from Lewmar about the delivery of our autohelm unit. So we chased the guy by phone – but nobody appears to be answering….  This is all so frustrating.

Later on we installed the new dodgers;  re-installed the lifesling;  and then Richard reinstalled the wind generator while I got on with some paperwork. We then collected the cradle parts from the boatyard; dismantled them; greased them up; and put them away in a storage hole we had cleared.   Frustratingly there were four parts missing but, hey, never mind we still have enough to put it together again if we need to….

Dodgers on

After dinner on board we went to the bar – which had reopened in the afternoon – and caught up with the staff and regulars who had all been out scavenging huge amounts of oil, coffee, ramen noodles and wine boxes from the coastline as a result of a shipping container spill.

Anyone for coffee

Thursday morning we were a little lazy and had a lay in.  I went to the office and picked up the spares for our Tohatsu outboard – just waiting on the autohelm now. Richard got on with his woodwork projects – the beading for the ex-microwave cupboard and the new TV stand – both items needed to be sanded and sealed.  Cupboard looks pretty good…

Finished new cupboard

I set up the office in the salon and printed, copied, scanned and sorted out all spreadsheets / banking etc.  Richard managed to get through to Lewmar who apologised – there had been a mix up – so the new part was now being sent directly from the UK to us here in Fort Pierce.  Still not convinced that it is actually going to turn up!

Mid-afternoon and Richard was down the battery hole again – the US inverter is playing up so he removed the melted in-line fuse – and identified a couple of other things that needed attention.   I was chopping vegetables and cooked a huge tray of Mediterranean roasted vegetables for my contribution to the holiday potluck.   All done and freshly showered we headed to the Pavilion for the event.

Pot luck at Harbortown

Was OK but most people are long-term residents so lots of groups.  Our table was the “left overs” and we sat with a nice older lady who was alone on a trawler waiting for her husband to arrive…  And she won the raffle!

Time for the raffle

The lucky winner

Then we chatted to our old neighbour Jack – and his friends – and they won the raffle too!  So we sat next to both winners… shame we weren’t lucky… I fancied the spa vouchers / Amex gift cards… with Richard coveting the Sea Hawk bottom paint!   There was a huge array of food with some very generous people – including the marina who supplied the entertainment, the ham and the deserts – whilst others just supplied bags of M&Ms and crisps.   And some even came empty handed at the end for the pickings – was surprised at the nerve really, but hey, nothing surprises me anymore.

Rose from Harbortown Pot luck entertainment

After the official event ended we decamped to the bar and kept them open for a while…listening to good live music too….

Live music in the bar

Friday morning – lazy start again – and we’ve received an invoice and tracking info for our autohelm from Lewmar – can’t believe it, it is actually on its way, although Southampton seems a very long way for it to travel from!   But will it get here by Wednesday when the marina business office shuts for Christmas?  It looks like we are going to be here for Christmas after all…. Oh well….  All is not lost though – as I did manage to get ingredients to make home-made sausage rolls – and I’ve got bubbles on board too LOL. And yes, it’s raining cats and dogs again now and getting cold again – back to the fleeces…

Another rainy day

Friday night we headed to the bar wrapped up warm and ended up chatting to other marina dwellers and singing along to the music.

Friends in the bar Another music night More friends

Saturday morning and we were picked up by Jim and ShaSha as we are going over to their place in Okeechobee for the weekend.   Was cold, cloudy and grey but Richard and Jim were stoically wearing shorts LOL.   We stopped at the Dolphin Bar for a lovely lunch and enjoyed watching the boats traversing the ICW – then went outside to feed the seagulls and talk to the baby pelican who was sitting there watching the world go by. It was lovely to see them again.

Dolphin Bar Jim and Richard Jan and Sharon Baby pelican Feeding the birds on the ICW

About half a mile from their place Jim needed the bathroom so we all traipsed into the local Tikki Hut bar which was filled with bikers wearing colours, some confederate hats and flags….   Wanted to take photos of them in their outfits but didn’t think it was necessarily a good ideal LOL.   Great place for people watching!

Bikers bar

Moving on we popped in to see ShaSha’s mum and were amazed at the difference in her place and her – the cabin is lovely now that it is finished, and mum appeared 10 years younger.   We finally arrived back into Jim and ShaSha’s gated community and was met by a very excited Molly who seemed to remember Richard!

Gated community

The Burke lot Look that way Molly

We took Molly out for a run – well we drove around in the Golf Buggy – while Molly runs like a loony here there and everywhere. She is a really cute dog….

Beautiful grounds of the community Coming back from the walk# Molly

Back to their plot and we were honoured to be the first overnighters in their little guest hut – which they call the shed.  It was far from a shed with TV, lovely futon bed, air con and heating, full cooking facilities and bathroom. They have done a great job in such a small space. Amazing!

Our guest suite

We settled down for the evening in the Tikki hut and, although it was cold and we kept our jackets on, we didn’t really notice with the alcohol and memories flowing…..

Relaxing in their Tikki hut

This morning, Sunday, after a really comfortable night’s sleep, there were more chats in the Tikki Hut before ShaSha’s mum turned up.

Sunday morning chats

We all drove off to the airport – where there is a diner on the runway.   We had a wonderful home-cooked breakfast which was made quite interesting with the helicopter and small plane activity.   Lovely time had by all and, then, all too soon it was time to say our farewells.   They are hoping to drive down to see us when we are in the Florida Keys in the New Year so this wasn’t a sad moment…..

Breakfast venue ShaSha and her mum

Back to the marina and we checked the tracking again – there has been a problem in Stansted so the package has stalled in the UK – with still no information about its arrival date / time.   We talked to the marina guys and they think they can slot us in somewhere for a couple more days if we need it – so watch this space!

Richard has just finished the TV stand and I’m blogging down below…. We’re going to have another movie night tonight – hoping for some warmer weather tomorrow….    I want to go in the pool!

Will blog again just before Christmas – so this is only a short “bye for now”.