As many times as I see them it never gets old. The only scare we had was during the night on Saturday when I am dozing and Dirk says there is a ship out there over 150 feet showing up on the radar coming right at us. We watched it as it kept heading for us in the pitch darkness. Finally we decided to change our course as he wasn't doing anything. Dirk tried hailing the vessel to no avail and we figure they just had the auto pilot set and were all asleep. Whew! I'm awake.....Daylight broke on the second morning and we were in the home stretch. Yes....I was never so happy to see the sun rise. About 11am we hit the Egmont channel and were greeted by a very large pod of dolphins being our welcome committee. I was at the helm and suddenly I felt like a very small boat on big waters as these huge container ships were headed in and out of Tampa Bay. Wow those suckers can move some water and go fast. Once I saw the sunshine skyway bridge I knew it was only a matter of time before we could say we did it.
The longest leg of our journey was over and it was 36 hours after we had begun.Dirk saw all these boats trolling so he threw his line out and it was only a matter of time before we got a hit.We were hoping for a grouper but we ended up with a king mackerel. That would do.....I got the fish whiskey out and Dirk gaffed the fish and raised it up for me to spray the Jim Beam into its gills. I have read that if you spray alcohol down the fishes gills it sedates them and they wont thrash as much. Ha....I think he didn't like Jim too much and he thrashed away sending blood spaying around everywhere. Finally he succumbed to the drunk and went beddy bye. It was either the whiskey or the fact that Dirk gaffed him through a major artery and he bled out. Hummm..... So now I need to see the best way to cook King Mackerel, any ideas?
We are docked right now in a good place on the inter coastal waterway in Bradenton. A place called the seafood shack marina whose rates are the best we found in the area if you go for the weekly rate. They have a marina lounge with washer/dryer and shower/bathroom facilities. To boot we are docked right in front of the restaurant which we have eaten at a couple times and the food it good. Below is where we are docked with Tybee Time on the left.
On the blog position map it shows us several docks down where we were when we first got here. We have since moved on down a ways as we wanted a little more protection. Right across the bridge is Anna Maria Island with many shops and a beautiful beach. These parts are some of my old stomping grounds as I lived here many years ago for a couple years. We will stay here a week, relax and visit with family and friends that are down this way. Our next stop will probably be down in the Naples area somewhere. It feels so good though to be on our way. Dirk and I both have to keep saying that this is real, this is happening, finally.......