If At First…

Six weeks ago, we spent the night on a sandbar off Longboat Key. That story can be found here. Let’s say that attempt at anchoring at the Mar Vista Anchorage didn’t go quite as planned. What does one do when one falls off a horse? Get right back on, of course! So, with a couple of days off, we untied the lines, and after a brief excursion out into the gulf, we headed right back to the Mar Vista Anchorage for a redo.

What a beautiful bird!

What a beautiful bird!

When we arrived at the anchorage around 4 p.m., there were perhaps ten boats at anchor, not as many as previously. We meandered our way through these boats, picked out our perfect spot, and dropped anchor. After backing down on the anchor with both engines at 2000 rpm, we were confident our anchor was set. I then joined my wife for a little acrylic painting before we dinghied over to Mar Vista Restaurant for dinner. The soft-shelled crab was out of this world.

One of the several dolphin visitors to our anchorage

One of the several dolphin visitors to our anchorage

Beatitude at anchor

Beatitude at anchor

Heading to dinner

Heading to dinner

Dinghy at the dock

Dinghy at the dock

View from the Mar Vista Restaurant outdoor seating with Beatitude in the distance

View from the Mar Vista Restaurant outdoor seating with Beatitude in the distance

After an uneventful night at anchor (Thank God!), we arose early to take the dinghy over to Cannons Marina on Longboat Key, about a two mile ride. It was a beautiful morning for a dinghy ride. When used to moving at 7 knots on Beatidue, it was exhilarating to move along at close to 20 knots in our 12 ft dinghy.

I had made an appointment the previous week to have our dinghy’s 15 hp Yamaha outboard serviced. It was overdue for service, and it had been running really poorly when cold. There was also a recall on the fuel tank which had to be taken care of. The marina staff, especially Angela, the service person, were so nice and helpful. While the motor was being serviced, Cindy and I walked a mile or so to the Blue Dolphin Cafe for breakfast. Combined with the previous nights soft-shelled crab, this morning’s three-cheese sausage omelet with grits made for two of the best back-to-back meals I can recall devouring. On the way back to the marina, we stopped at Durante park and sat beneath a huge Florida tree to read for a bit.

Sunset over Longboat Key.

Sunset over Longboat Key.

Construction of the new home of the owners of our catamaran neighbors at Regatta Pointe.  Their cat will soon be leaving the docks at the marina to be tied up to the dock at their home.

Construction of the new home of the owners of our catamaran neighbors at Regatta Pointe. Their cat will soon be leaving the docks at the marina to be tied up to the dock at their home.

A blue-heron strolling through the neighborhood near Cannons Marina.

A blue-heron strolling through the neighborhood near Cannons Marina.

Cannons Marina, Longboat Key

Cannons Marina, Longboat Key

Reading in the Park

Reading in the Park

A splash of beauty!

A splash of beauty!

More of God's beauty!

More of God’s beauty!

After a short and refreshing dinghy ride back to Beatitude, we fired up her engines and made our way back to our slip at Regatta Pointe. Two new additions made their way onto the ever-enlarging to-do list. Our starboard engine was not running right and would die at low r.p.m.’s. I’m thinking it may be the fuel filter, so I’m going to change that and see how that goes. Also, our anchor windlass quit working. It appears one of the electrical wires got caught in the chain and snapped off. I had to finish hauling in the anchor by hand yesterday. This is a not so mundane task now that we have upsized our anchor. With a little help from Cindy, though, it now rests securely in its bow roller.

From last week: A visit from the Stephen's family, our neighbors from our previous home in Lakeland

From last week: A visit from the Stephen’s family, our neighbors from our previous home in Lakeland

That’s it until the next adventure.

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