David and Rhonda came to visit for the weekend. We were so happy to finally have family come and share what we are experiencing. David and Rhonda have gone sailing with us many times but I was a bit concerned about them sleeping on the boat while we were on the ball. Most nights it is ideal – a sweet breeze coming in the hatch and the soft sound of water lapping on the hull. But sometimes it can be a little wild – sailing around the ball and the mooring ball lines squeaking and water banging on the stern – which can be heard most loudly from the aft cabin where they would be sleeping. It turned out fine – the weather cooperated!! We rearranged some of the stuff that we keep in the aft cabin (garage) to make room and took three milk crates of things off the boat and stored them in David’s car for the weekend, so there was “plenty” of room.
They arrived on Friday afternoon and we took them for a dinghy ride around the harbor, up Sister’s Creek to the beach and up some of the small canals to see a few of the larger homes that border the water. We came back to the boat and then headed up to Burdines for dinner. Burdines is a local place that overlooks a section of the harbor. The place is rustic, the music local and the food delicious.
Saturday morning we listened to the cruisers net and they got a feel for the sense of community that we are part of here. They heard this one offering to help that one and this one looking for a single part that someone else just happened to have on board.
Natives at a fast food restaurant in Key West.
We left just after the cruisers net was finished and headed for Key West. What can I say about Key West – it is a unique “Keys” experience. We walked Duval Street (almost the entire street) stopped for a drink mid-way and ended up at Mallory square an hour or so before sundown.
This guy had a bit of an attitude - threw his hat at audience members who were talking while he performed. He has to work on his bedside manner.
Bob and I remember almost 35 years ago when we were here and it was Mallory PEER. Now it is a large square with many street performers, artists and food vendors who all come out right before dusk. Everyone stops to see the sunset, and then shortly thereafter it is quiet once again.
Key West Wisdom
After sunset, we walked back to the car and stopped at an Italian restaurant for some pizza. The place did not pass the “busy test” but we were too tired to continue walking and the pizza turned out to be very good. The waiter was a typical New Yorker, friendly but a bit gruff. He asked us where we were from and people at a table nearby must have heard our reply. A few minutes later a guy from one of the few other occupied tables came over and explained that he was there with a friend from his youth who docked his boat in Cleveland. A few minutes later, out walked Tom from Tomfoolery, a boat that docked near us at 55th Street Marina in Cleveland. What a small world. We got back to the boat well after Cruiser’s midnight (9:00 PM), showered and fell into bed.
Lots of weirdos on the square.
I think that everyone slept pretty well and we feasted on rocky mountain toast for breakfast. After the net, we walked around so that David and Rhonda could see the Marathon Community Park where we enjoy so many activities. Other than Rhonda falling when we were in Key West, I believe all had a great time and we enjoyed showing them Marathon. Next year the Bahamas!