Sunday, 25 Oct. 2015, San Antonio, FL

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Well somewhere around midnight Jerry came down with symptoms that appeared to be caused by kidney infection or kidney stone.

We woke up the Captain and told him he was going to have to perform a Medevac. Being we were anchored just outside of Phil Foster Park we didn’t feel we needed to bother the Coast Guard to get a Helicopter. So we contacted a car rental place at West Palm International Airport and Captain Bob dingyed me to shore to meet a cab.

Upon my return I met Captain Bob and Jerry in the dinghy with ALL our stuff.

Then we loaded up the rental car and drove across the state to Florida Hospital in Zephyrhills beings we were only three hours away.   Lucky we did because they admitted him and we were home.

We were sorry we had to abandon Captain Bob for the last 52 miles, but we feel he was capable of driving the Miami Mermaid home.

We really enjoyed the trip. It was a unique experience and opportunity of a life time for both of us.

The good news is that the treatment for Jerry was successful and after a couple days he was released from the hospital.

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Saturday, 24 Oct. Riviera Beach – West Palm Beach. , FL

It really got crowded today beings it was a beautiful Saturday traffic was heavy, we traveled 57 miles in 6.5 hours arriving at Singer Island for anchorage.

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Rise to the morning sun and our first bridge.

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Coast Guard ship anchored at Fort Pierce and another bridge.

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Meeting a SMALL pusher tug and Betty being friendly as usual.

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Passing St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant.

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Power plant in the distance and another trawler.

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The “Old Salt” looking ahead and our navigation equipment.

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Jensen Beach Bridge with people loving to fish on a Saturday morning and sail boat races.

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Passing a pusher tug.

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Sewell Point Bridge and an inlet from the Atlantic Ocean.

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Houses along Port Salerno.

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Cross the St. Lucie River into the Manatee Pocket.

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I guess this ditch cuts through St. Lucie State Park.

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Traffic started picking up.

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Passing through South Jupiter Narrows.

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Entering Hobe Sound and a small work barge.

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Looks like traffic is picking up and Captain Bob came to the flying bridge to offer advise.

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Locals are making use of the shoal island in Jupiter Sound as the traffic FLYS by.

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The jersey boys on the  “Sea Jeannie” plowed past us with no consideration of their wake, but we caught up and passed them at a draw bridge because they had to wait for it to open, we didn’t.  But guess what the jersey boys plowed pass us again in Lake Worth.

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Traffic on the water on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.

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These folks seem to take there party bar with them – kind of reminds me of “Little Big Town” singing “Pontoon.”

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Jupiter Lighthouse.

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Loxahatchee River.

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Traffic on Lake Worth Creek.

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Our final anchorage at Riviera Beach – West Palm Beach.

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Doing our final chart plot and iPad route for tomorrow to Hollywood, FL.

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Our final sun deck evening with our wine and books.

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Friday, 23 Oct. Garfield Point, FL

We traveled on the Indian River 81 miles in 9 hours to arrive at an island for anchorage between Vero Beach and Fort Pierce, FL

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Leaving Titusville Municipal Marina.

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NASA building on the left and Titusville on the right. This is where we stood on the banks of the Indian River in Titusville to watch “Atlantis” lift off.  This was the Last space shuttle launch on 10 July 2011.

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Scenes while transiting the Indian River south bound.

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The trawler “Shady Lady” apologized for passing us AGAIN.  He said we must have had a long day yesterday to get back ahead of him.

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Again today went from hot blazing sunshine to fast moving rain showers.

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We passed this blue sail boat in South Carolina when we were idling through the flooded area.  Betty hailed him and asked him where are you headed?  He said “SOUTH“.  We passed him just after we came out of the Haulover Canal yesterday afternoon.  Guess what we passed him today on the Indian River, it appeared he was still anchored from the night.

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Captain Bob had me adjusting his satellite TV antenna so he could watch the “Walton’s”  while we did our blog.

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We anchored off this island in Avalon Beach State Park.  Then, a glass of wine and a cold beer to watch the sun light up the sky and drop behind the western horizon.  A wonderful ravioli dinner prepared by “cabin boy Bob”.

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Each evening we prepare a route for the next morning deciding if we need to stop for fuel, water & groceries or if there is a port we want to go ashore or just find a secluded anchorage and just relax.  Our aids are Skipper Bob Anchorages Along the Intracoastal Waterway has been a necessity to find the anchorage and Waterway Guide is great to see what is available in each port.  Jerry charts this on the NOAA Navigation Charts for the Intracoastal Waterway.

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Betty is the techy in the group and does her charting on Captain Bob’s iPad using the Navionics APP.  This continuously shows a lot of informational time and distances from point-to-point along the route.

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Of course, Jerry likes to use the Garmin GPS navigation mounted at the helm, which I too have to fall back on when Captain Bob STEALS back his iPad to pay his bills, etc.

Thursday, 22 Oct. Titusville, FL

Traveled a lot today 10 hours and 86 miles arriving in Titusville, FL at 5pm.

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Captain Bob got up and weighed anchor early and got under way at 7:19am to get an early start.  Because we were planning on a long trip today.  After breakfast we relieved Captain Bob of the helm to be greeted with these early morning photos.

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Looks like were headed for a pot of gold.

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Little bit over cast today just kept dodging all the really bad showers, but actually the showers dodged us because our route was pretty confined.  Where have all the boats gone?

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Dolphins at play while passing Palm Coast.

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ICW shore line on Smith Creek.

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Knox Bridge on the Halifax River opened so we could pass and a Bald eagle keeping watch.

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Being passed along the Halifax River.

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Tug moored to private home on the Halifax River.

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Bridges and scenes going through the Dayton Beach area.

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Ocean inlet and then the Ponce de Leon lighthouse.

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New Smyrna Beach Marina.  It looks like these three pontoon boats are headed out to party.

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A whole bunch of Pelican on an island.  Head boat “Past Time Princess”.

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Man and his dog north bound on Indian River.

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Sea turtle surfaced as we passed by.

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Picture looking north and south on the Mosquito Lagoon. The west bank is marsh and the east is separate from the Atlantic by a narrow barrier island. Other than the channel the lagoon is only 4-5 feet deep and it took us an hour and twenty minutes to transit it.

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The Haulover Canal and bridge leading into the Indian River to Titusville.

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We moored at the Titusville Municipal Marina for the evening.  After fueling and taking on water Captain Bob departed on a grocery run.  Jerry & I met a number of local and transit boaters in the marina lounge over cold drinks. We then used the marina facilities to take Hollywood showers and catch up on our laundry.

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Upon returning to the Mermaid Captain Bob was watching Congress question Hillary Clinton on TV while fixing a delicious late evening shrimp dinner.

Wednesday, 21 Oct., Fort Matanzas, FL

We traveled 76 miles in 8.5 hours arriving in Fort Matanzas, FL

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While weighing anchorage this morning we cut the tow line to the dingy and it was drifting into the mooring field filled with sailboats.  Captain Bob maneuvered the Mermaid while we captured the dingy with the boat hook.  Retrieved and reconnected the tow line and we were off.  (Sorry no pictures we were all busy.)

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First set of bridges for the day.

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Beautiful house and the other picture with the white dots are actually white pelicans that have migrated south for the winter.

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It appears that it is necessary to have a REALLY long dock to get to the water.

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This is coming into the St. John’s River between Mayport and Jacksonville.

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Atlantic Marine Shipyard on the St. John’s River.

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Scenes along the ICW.

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Ran into a little rainy weather this afternoon.  This was really a relief due to the fact that the early afternoon was a hot blazing sun.

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Crossing under the “Bridge of Lions” in St. Augustine and there beautiful lighthouse.

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Crescent Beach Bridge and scenes along the way.

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Our captain —- is this trust or what.

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Coming into our anchorage for the evening at Fort Matanzas.

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Fort Matanzas

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Early dinner of baked cod fish with dirty rice with vegetables.  Rainbow at dinner .

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Fort Matanzas State Park Ferry Landing and cocktail on deck after.  Looks like we have approximately 277 miles yet to go.

Tuesday, 20 Oct., Fernandina Beach

Traveled 37 miles in 5 hours arriving in Fernandina Beach at 1:30pm and had a wonderful time exploring.

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Rise and shine at Brunswick Landing Marina – no poop sucking for me this time.

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Captain Bob trying to figure out where to put the fuel.  We loaded 200 gallons of diesel at $1.89 per gallon.  Great price as most of the marina’s we passed we in the high two’s to mid three’s.  Captain Bob was ecstatic.

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Betty takes on water then plots the course on the iPad for todays adventure.

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Departing Brunswick via the Brunswick River.

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Coming out of Jekyll River getting ready to cross the big open St. Andrew Sound.

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Wind picked up and the seas went form 3 to 5 feet with Betty at the helm and then….

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We informed Captain Bob he needs a better storage plan for his salon.

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We passed the trawler “Connecting the Dots” and then were relieved for lunch.

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While eating lunch we sailed past the active Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base.  Security seemed pretty tight and noticed a couple Coast Guard vessels moored there.  Note  the submarine moored there.

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Zoe” this dolphin picture is for you.  We actually have seen quite a few along the way.

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Coming into Fernandina Beach.

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Our personalized Yeti mugs, where ice never melts.

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New and old ways to determine the water depth under the hull.  (Electronic depth finder verse the lead line.)  Jerry’s lead line seems to be the only one that works beings Captain Bob’s depth finder is still in the box.

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Liberty launch headed into Fernandina Beach. T-hank God for the “Ding-A-Ling”.

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Florida’s oldest tavern “Palace Saloon” we started with whiskey sours at 1443 hours in the afternoon.

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Captain Bob asked a perfect stranger if he knows how to hot wire this car. (1960 vet)  The master fudge maker at “Fantastic Fudge”.

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Jerry discussing the up coming trolley ride with “David Levy Yulee” (earley settler, US Senator, developer, and Rail Road builder.)

Boarded the white trolley for an Historical tour.

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Got back downtown and found Captain Bob with his friends.  Then ditched him and out to dinner and drinks.

 

Monday, 19 Oct. Brunswick, GA

)On the way at 8am and went until 6pm covering 70 miles in 10 hours arriving at Brunswick Land Marina in Georgia.

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Birds were in abundance today from pelicans to sea gulls.

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Trawlers passing us on Front River of the ICW.

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Beautiful island on Front River and the “Sea Wagon” passing us.

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Looks like another trawler caught Captain Bob while we were eating lunch in the salon.

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Dead center in the Mouth of Brunswick River opening to the ocean with high winds and three foot seas we developed an electrical problem and had to call TowBoat US.

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Meeting a large RoRo Vessel (car carrier) in the Brunswick River.

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Scenes on the way to Brunswick Land Marina.

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Captain Bob assisted Jerry (retired Coast Guard engineer-once a snipe always a snipe) with the electrical repairs.  Test ran engine, satisfactory.  Then spent the rest of the evening doing laundry at the marina, then ZZZZZZzzzzz.

Sunday, 18 Oct. 2015 Sunbury, GA

Traveled 52 miles on the ICW, turned off at mile 620 proceeded 8 miles across the St, Catherine Sound and up the Medway River to Sunbury Crab Co.  The Waterway Guide said this is “Key West just a whole lot closer”.

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Departed Cooper Creek anchorage back on the ICW headed south.

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Container ship going down Savannah River, glad it passed before we crossed,  note how the cold 51* wind is blowing the grass.

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Crossing the Savannah River.

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Along the ICW.

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Two more bridges.

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A Savannah Marina wow!

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Miles of open flats then marina’s filled with boats.

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Bridge inspection or repair.

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Pastrami sandwich for lunch, by our ever creative Captain (or cabin boy Bob).

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A little chillier today on these big bays.

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Crossing St. Catherine’s Sound with a view of the Atlantic Ocean off the bow.

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Sail boat coming and going.

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Medway River note the demise of this vessel……guess that Skipper should have attended Captain Bob’s Trawler School.

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Pulling up to Sunbury Crab Co. Marina and Restaurant.

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Putting out the anchor snubber before liberty is granted.

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Boiled crabs, shrimp and whiskey sours makes a good mix for a wonderful evening.

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Captain and his first mate.

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“This place is funky, ecclectric and fun.”

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Heading back to the “Miami Mermaid” for the evening.

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First mate redoing the hook for the “Ding-A-Ling”.  One more chore before we can rest.

Saturday, 17 Oct. 2015 Cooper River Anchorage, SC

We spent the morning touring Beaufort while Captain Bob went to resupply groceries and hardware items.  Thus, we traveled only 32.5 miles today in 4 hours. It  looks like we have 500 + miles to go.

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A beautiful SUNRISE from our stateroom window in the stern of the trawler.  Then, back ashore in Beaufort.

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Captain Bob treated us to breakfast at Blackstone’s Café.  Last night we were told that this was a fabulous restaurant for breakfast.  But as we walked up Bay Street we could not remember the name of the restaurant and this nice lady asked us if we were lost (I guess we looked lost).  We told her we were looking for Shrimp and Grits.  She laughed and said up one block and to the left.

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Best shrimp and grits we have EVER had, and the owners and waitress truly showed “Southern Hospitality”

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This restaurant was filled with posters and pictures of movies and movie stars that filmed in Beaufort.

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We visited an old church and cemetery. We saw Captain Bob over at an old grave and look what he dug up.

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We did a walking tour back through the Historical District.

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We visited several shops and art galleries on Bay street and loved meeting the shop owners and artist.  We probably spent as much time talking to them as shopping.

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Betty was blown away by the number of infused olive oils and vinegars at the “Olive the Above”.  The shop owner spent a lot of time with me discussing and letting us taste the different oils and vinegars.

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Waiting on Captain Bob with our shopping treasures and there he is with his.  But the good thing is we can eat and drink his.

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Headed back to the Mermaid.

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12:40pm departing Beaufort and here comes our first bridge.

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Our “Lost Cajuns” are passing us AGAIN and guess what now their VHF radios are not working also.

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Passing Parris Island – US Marine Corps recruit training base. That’s where Captain Bob spent his early days in the Marine Corps.

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Installing the new snubber lines.

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Shrimp boat working in the bay and the little trawler that we seem to pass us daily.

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The Miami Mermaid’s Salon and a late lunch of pizza.

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Our 2nd bridge and the famous Hilton Head, SC.

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The Port Royal Lighthouse.

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Passing construction barges on our way to anchorage.  Jerry is replacing the tow hook for the dingy.

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Relaxing with Wilma at anchor.

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Sunset on Cooper River out in the middle of no mans land.  Note the lights from Savannah over the dingy in the sunset picture.

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Blue dot is where we are anchored off the Jack Rowe Island a 65 acre private island.

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Ended the day with wine and a grilled salmon dinner prepared by our GOURMET  CHEF “Captain Bob.”

Friday, 16 Oct. Beauford, SC

We had a beautiful trip to Beaufort, SC traveling 52 miles in 8.5 hours.

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Getting coffee and breakfast in the galley and the start of another cool calm day.

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Captain Bob was up earlier than normal, weighed anchor and got underway while we ate breakfast.  Thus, we relieved HIM of the helm.

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Head-to-head passing the pusher tug “Sun Chief”.

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Scenes of the ICW.

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Small shipyard, it appears to be two river barges on dock – or being constructed.

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Seems to be a busy little port.

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The first of  two bridges and both with plenty of clearance.

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Catching up and passing the “Sun Merchant” pushing a LARGE tank barge (Not really large to Jerry but it sure was while I had  the helm).  We were maybe only a knot faster than them.  Jerry said don’t pull in front of them until I had plenty of clearance, because if our engine quits they will squash us like a bug.  (no brakes!!!!!!!!!!)

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Going under the Beaufort, SC swing bridge.  A patriotic sail boat in the anchorage.

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The “Sun Merchant” and tank barge finally caught up with us.  Betty checking out the anchor.

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Captain’s with a cold beer after a hard day.  Betty scoping out city map of Beaufort, SC

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Start of our historical tour of Beaufort.

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Beaufort’s Historic district.

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Captain Bob thought this would look good on the bow of the “Miami Mermaid”.  Betty in downtown Beaufort.

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A toast to our cruise over hot steaks at Luther’s on the River Walk.

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Scenes from the River Walk as the sun sets on another day – by the way where did we tie up the “Ding-A-Ling”????