Wednesday, April 11, 2007

March 30 & 31

March 30. As predicted the ride to shore with the dogs sucked. The wind was cranking and by the time we got back to the boat we were soaked. We hauled the anchor and were on our way from Rodriguez Key by 0830. The forecast was for 10 to 15 knots and what we got was 25 knots steady. That’s the job for me, weatherman, you don’t have to ever be right and nobody seems to care. At least they got the wind direction right.

Same thing as yesterday, motoring in big wind but with calmer 2 to 4 foot seas. After an hour we put up a reefed mainsail and then 2 hours later we shook out the reef. We were flirting with 7 knots all day and as the wind abated we were headed directly north so it turned into a pleasant beam reach.

The sail in under Cape Florida was nice as the tide had just turned and was flooding in with us. We saw 8.9 knots on the GPS. When we got into Biscayne Bay the water was FAC (flat ass calm) so it was a very nice trip up into Miami through the back door.

When we got to the Rickenbacker Causeway Bridge some little future inmates were throwing crap off the bridge at the passing boats 100 feet below. We were fortunate to escape without any damage. On the bright side though, they’ll probably get hooked on crack or heroin and die before their 20 years old. Hopefully.

We anchored in the same anchorage as we did on our way south. The current really turns with the tide here but its not that obvious to you when you anchor. The wind was still from the east with the tide trying to face us south. So when all was said and done we ended up anchored only about 40 feet from the boat next to us. That is until the wind started gusting, the tide went slack and then turned. One minute we’re 20 feet apart then we’re 60 feet away. We’re probably going to have to move in the morning but we’re good for now.

March 31. When we got up we moved the boat a little further from our neighbor and went ashore to the bank and for a walk around. When we got back to the boat we did a few boat chores and were sitting when the law pulled up to tell us about the anchoring restrictions in the area.

It was the same officer that had taken care of this paperwork the last time we came through. He was lamenting the fact that the area is overrun with idiot jet skiers. It is amazing to watch so many clueless people with so much horsepower available at the twist of their wrist. We told him that we had a celebrity encounter earlier in the day. Hulk Hogan the former professional wrestler (read that as mental midget) had come through the anchorage in his scarab at 40 or 50 knots within a few feet of anchored boats showing off for his family and friends. While the police boat is tied to our side guess who comes back. That’s right, the Hulkster. He comes within 100 feet of our boat before he’s aware of the flashing lights and blaring siren that the cop now has going. The cop motions for him to slow down and gives him the international sign for ”What are you; an idiot?) He slows way down turns around and leaves with no citation.

We did get some info from the cop that we’d been wondering about. Back in January when we were leaving this anchorage we called the Coast Guard about a group of people that we saw on a deserted island nearby. Turns out that they were “rafters” as he called them; illegal aliens that were abandoned there by the people that smuggled them into the United States. He said that some of those people had paid up to 7000 dollars apiece to be smuggled into the country. I’m think’n, where do I get some?

There was a party on shore more than 300 yards from our boat and they had the loudest sound system I’ve ever heard. Picture Springsteen playing the Meadowlands. It wouldn’t have been bad except it took more than 2 hours before I heard a song that I recognized. Thankfully it stopped at 2000 hours.

Tomorrow we’ll hit the local Pulix for liquids. We’re pretty well provisioned so far as food goes but we’ll stock up on the heavy items being this Publix is right near a dinghy dock.

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