We are still hanging out in Boot Key Harbor, guests of the Marathon City Marina on one of their mooring balls. The weather (which is one of the big reasons we are here) has been very good. We have been enjoying it thoroughly. While the rest of the country has been shivering, we are doing our morning walks in shorts, tee shirts, and sunshine. The breeze, at times, seems cool but all you have to do is move into the sun and everything is fine. Quite nice.
We have been doing a couple of boat projects, nothing too serious. I changed the engine oil. As there is no drain plug on the Yanmar (the dipstick is plumbed into the bottom of the oil pan), this is accomplished without even picking up a wrench. I didn't even get oil on my clothes.
We met up with some friends from Oriental who are down on vacation. Good move on their part, as Oriental has even cancelled their Chinese New Year celebration because of the cold. They drove down and pulled their fishing boat, which was a boon to Carol as she got to go fishing. Not only fishing, but CATCHING! She caught more fish in the three hours or so that we were out than she has caught in the past year. We then took the boat to the Sunset Grill where she chowed down on some excellent sushi. A good time was had by all. Many thanks to the captain.
We have decided to stay here another month. The weather pattern has been steadfastly pounding this area with front after front. While we have weathered it well (see above), it would still be uncomfortable traveling weather, and anchoring in 30+ knots of wind, unless well protected, makes for an uncomfortable night. AND I don't HAVE to. So we will stay. The plan (here we go...) is to look at what is happening mid March and if things have settled out, start our leisurely trek north. I want to spend some time visiting places we passed up on the way down because we were fleeing the cold. Going north, if we start to hit cooler weather we can just stay put for a few days knowing the trend is for the weather to get better, not worse (as it was doing on the way down).
Speaking of weather, the next couple of days are forecast to be some of the worst we have experienced in Boot Key Harbor. Low of 46 tonight. High just over 60 tomorrow. Low of 44 tomorrow night. Winds in the 20 mph range and gusting into the 30s. Believe me, that has my suntanned skin's attention. Carol broke out the blankets (remember, there is no heat on Sea Bird). If we can make it to the weekend, temperatures are supposed to moderate (into the 80s!)
We plan to survive the siege with coffee, rum, and hot tea, with the aid of Carol's new whistling tea pot. This was inspired by after dinner tea on a friend's boat. Carol is starting her collection. So far, her favorite is good old Earl Grey.
So today was Day One of The Great Freeze of 2015. It rained last night, but was supposed to clear off around noon. It stopped raining, but the clouds lingered. I was going to make a trip to the store for essentials (something to cook on the grill). But then the wind came. Even with my jeans and a hoodie pulled over my tee shirt, it was a little cool. For good measure, I swapped flip flops for tennis shoes. Still not enough.
So I read a book instead, and listened to the wind. I'm still listening as I type this. It's a much more comfortable sound securely tied to a mooring ball rather than on anchor in a shifting current. So really, I don't guess I did anything today.