Monday, December 17, 2012

We made it to Florida!

The last 5 days have been a whirlwind of events. By Thursday afternoon the house was empty with all of our belongings loaded up in The Beast (alias Pop Pop's big old Chrysler) and a rented minivan. We slept on the floor in a few layered blankets, woke up early and were on the road to Florida at 8:30 A.M. Tears flowed as we said good bye to Evan who stayed with us to the final night and continued to be such a huge help in getting us on our way. The folks buying our home were doing the final walk through before closing shortly thereafter and the closing was scheduled for 10:30 AM. I see the money in the bank so I guess everything went smoothly and the new owners are enjoying our old home as much as we did.

Off we went with me in the minivan followed by Gayleen in The Beast. Being anxious to get to Florida we decided to drive straight through. First, note to self, for future reference do not go through the Baltimore / D.C. area at evening rush hour on a Friday night. We lost about 2 hours there  but our friendly GPS was nice enough to lead us past the Lincoln Memorial and a couple other interesting sights. We were doing well after that until it got to the point where we both needed sleep. At this point we were in North Carolina. The problem was that between D.C. and North Carolina the outside temperature went from 56 degrees to 30 degrees! How does this happen driving South? Needless to say that the plans to sleep for a few hours got slashed to about a little over an hour because it got too cold in the car to sleep. After a few short nap and drive cycles the sun rose and we crossed into Georgia and then across the Florida border. We were doing well until a little after noon time when we both started crashing and needed to figure out how to make it through 2 more hours. Gayleen bought a Monster drink and started on a buzz wide awake, then she convinced me to drink the second half. Well, it had the opposite effect on me and just accelerated my tiredness. One more nap and we were on the last leg to Fort Pierce, Florida. Our home for this week is the "lovely" Fountain Resort Hotel. I could do a whole blog post on this so called resort. Let's just say The Bates Motel has this place beat by a wide margin.

Today, Monday, we had the Boat Survey and Sea Trial. Of course Gayleen thought she was cute and funny when the boat was on the hard...

Little did she know that after the splashdown...

She would be talking to bridge operators on the VHF radio to open the draw bridge for us and then simultaneously steering the boat, working the engine and tailing the main halyard while Bruce was up front raising the sails. The surveyor and current owners wanted to break us in right away and delegated it all to us telling us the sooner we get comfortable the better. We all had a nice chuckle when Gayleen was hailing the draw bridge operator speaking into the back of the microphone. The Surveyor was very nice and gently grabbed hold of the microphone and turned it the right way for her. She took control and with a nice "Windstar 4 is clear, thank you" to the bridge operator she threw in an "over and out" and we were on our way.

We are very excited that the soon to be named "Pearl" passed the Survey and Sea Trials without any concerns. The Surveyor could find nothing wrong with her and we are fast on our way to jumping through all the bureaucratic paperwork to finalize the purchase of our new home.

Pearl is now sitting at a slip in Harbortown Marina in Fort Pierce which will be our home base for the next 3 to 4 weeks as we get familiar with the boat. The current owners are amazing and generous people. They have scheduled training sessions for us on the boat systems and maintenance for a couple of hours each afternoon for the rest of the week. Hopefully we get to move aboard by the end of the week.

Here are some of our new noisy neighbors...


  1. Hey, guys, welcome to your new world, you might want to jot down some notes on all you are learning, so later, yah know...I spent the first few months of our cruising reading the technical manuals...

    1. Thank you that's great advice. We have been filling up a notebook to the point of writers cramps. We learned a new term to decribe what you suggest..its called Cruiseheimers

  2. Happy Travels!!! From the Hall's Looks like you are settled in.


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