December 20. Today we rolled out of bed at 0830 and it felt like noon. After the walking of the dogs I dropped the dogs back at the boat and picked up Christy and our laundry. Laundry is the biggest adjustment we’ve had to make. It was always so easy to just throw some stuff in the machine and go off in the house to do something else. Now it’s a coordinated event that takes planning and preparation such as hoarding quarters for the machine. It’s also a social experience as there are always some other cruisers there to compare ordeals and adventures with.
Laundry took us close to noon to complete so we had a couple of hours to kill before slack tide. Our dinghy ride into town takes us under the Bridge of Lions and the current rips through so slack tide makes for an easier / drier ride. So since we had time we crossed the street and took our laundry to lunch at the A1A Brewery. The homemade beer was good as was the food.
In the evening Christy and I left the dogs aboard and took a long walk around town and saw as much as we could before we stopped at the Milltop Inn. It’s an old water wheel driven grist mill that is now a pub with live music. We ate and drank for hours and as we were leaving in walks a couple we had dinner with 4 nights and 200 miles ago. So we turn around and sit again and proceed to drink too much. Tom is an amateur musician and he asks the guitarist if he can join him for a little impromptu jam and gets rebuked. So off we go in search of a bar Christy and I walked past and saw some music happening last night.
We get to the Tropic Tavern and walk into a Twilight Zone episode. The place was packed and had something for everyone. The band was playing Lynyrd Skynyrd and ZZ Top type music. The base player / singer was a little fat man wearing a Santa suit and swilling beer. The band rocked and the place was jumpin. There had been a wedding on the town green a little earlier and the bar had cumber bund wearing wedding goers dancing next to biker trash. It was awesome.
During a break Tom approaches Santa about jumping in on the next set. When the bands starts playing again Tom jumps on stage and blows the crowd away with his harmonica. After a few songs Tom retires from the stage and we finish up and head back to our respective boats. Tom and his wife Audie are leaving tomorrow morning as they continue south to the keys.
It’s been a wonderful day.