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What do you think?

19 Apr



“In 1882, four years before he bought the land, Ralph Munroe visited this hole in the ground. Even then it was shrouded in mystery. A popular tale of the time claimed it was dug by Ponce de Leon in his search for the Fountain of Youth.

We know that Ponce de Leon never entered Biscayne Bay, and  he certainly did not dig this hole. Who did, and why, remains a mystery to this day.

Int eh 1840s it is believed this land was occupied by Edmund D. Beasley. The next person know to live here was Dr. Horace P. Porter, who tried to start a coconut plantation in 1872. He abandoned the plantation after two years; by 1882 only two coconut trees remained. As the only two people known to have lived in this area, it its thought either Beasley or Porter dug this hole.

Although we call this “the well”, its function is no more clear than its creator. Why did a well when there were so many nearby springs? Why was it already dry in 1882? Why put in steps?

Speculation by park visitors has included a ceremonial bath, a root cellar, and even a dungeon. What’s your guess?”

Some Enchanted Evening…

17 Apr

OK…maybe this evening was not “enchanted” per se, but it was damned enjoyable. We met our friends Hank and Lisa at the Coconut Grove Sailing Club’s clubhouse where Lisa shared her amazing skill at crocheting with the girls. They gave it their best effort but, in the end, I think that maybe this is something that is not their forte. Regardless, Lisa was very sweet and very patient and the girls loved the attention. (We are quite smitten with Miss Lisa).

Since it was approaching dinner time we started thinking about places to eat. We all noticed that club members were walking around with all sorts of goodies as there is a restaurant and a bar on the premises. We walked in and asked for a menu and were excited to see that tonight was “Sizzling Fajita” night! Sweet. With Pavlovian dog looks on our faces we placed our order with the nice fellow behind the bar. “Are you members of the club or any of the reciprocal sailing clubs?” the nice fellow asked. “No…we are just staying on your mooring field.” we replied. “I’m sorry but the restaurant and bar are only for members.” he retorted. (He was actually very nice with his denial of service). No sizzling fajitas for us. Sigh.

Undaunted we decided to walk into Coconut Grove and check out the restaurant scene. Long story short, we found a very nice place with some very wonderful food and we all forgot about those stupid fajitas. We had a very nice time with our friends and we spoke of opportunities to potentially meet in the Bahamas in a few months. I hope we can make that happen.


No sizzling fajitas…but we ate it all up!



Experimenting with crocheting



Hank gets to play taxi for all the Beck gear


Coconut Grove is Quite Nice Indeed

17 Apr

Spent a little quiet time yesterday evening taking in the scenery before our friends Hank and Lisa from S/V Haanli. It was really great to see them again. We grilled up some teriyaki chicken and served it with potato salad, a tangy broccoli salad, and watermelon. Unfortunately for us they have to head back up to Fort Lauderdale tomorrow so we will just have to savor their company while they are here.

Right now I am helping Peyton with some math test preparation and watching some very eager little kids learn how to sail at the sailing club. Very cool.


Tango is on TV!

2 Apr

Night shooting with can lights blinding us


Our marina has become a location shoot for an episode of Burn Notice, and we think our mast and boom will be background in some of the shots. Does this mean Tango wants a SAG card now?


There is Bruce Campbell! Andy even got to say hi!




See Tango in the background?



3-2-1 Blast Off!

1 Mar

In Titusville, thanks to our friend Mark, we got to see the launch of a Falcon 9 rocket as part of the SpaceX Dragon program to resupply the ISS under a Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) contract with NASA.

We are told this wasn’t as ear splitting as a shuttle launch, but it was truly awesome!

A shot of the vehicle assembly building

A shot of the vehicle assembly building

Mark and Andy solving world issues while waiting

Mark and Andy solving world issues while waiting

Many shuttle buses bring tours out to watch

Many shuttle buses bring tours out to watch

Girls are ready for action!

Girls are ready for action!

The launch facilities across the water

The launch facilities across the water

St. Augustine Lighthouse

18 Feb




Saint Augustine, Florida

11 Feb

Sunset from our mooring location.

The stockade at the Saint Augustine Pirate and Treasure Museum.

The stockade at the Saint Augustine Pirate and Treasure Museum.

This is the oldest masonry fort in the United States. Construction started in 1672.

This is the oldest masonry fort in the United States. Construction started in 1672.

Simply BeautifulWe made the rather uneventful five hour trek from Jacksonville to Saint Augustine with some really awesome weather. A tad chilly, but with the blizzard “blizzarding” in the northeast we have no room to complain. We pulled into the mooring field in “Saint Auggie”, as the locals say, around sunset. We were assigned mooring ball #30 in a field of over 150 which made finding it a bit of a challenge. Once we honed in on our target it was simply a matter of easing up to it and grabbing the mooring line and attaching it to our bridle. Robin nailed it on the first try.

After motoring the dinghy to the marina office to check in we decided that it was getting too dark to be shooting back and forth to the shore and the city and we would put on our tourist hats for the following day. We were all pretty tired anyway. A nice dinner and a good night sleep was well received by all.

One of the fears that I constantly fight is the thought of our anchor breaking free while we are sleeping and having our boat crash into something hard and craggy. That would be bad. I have an anchor alarm app on my iPhone that gives me more piece of mind while we are sleeping but I am always on edge for the first few hours at anchor. The river that we are in has a pretty strong current so, even with my phone keeping watch, I still have a little cartoon devil poking me in with his pitchfork and reminding me that catastrophe is just around the corner!
Technically we are not at anchor since we are hooked up to a mooring ball and the chance of anything breaking free from it are slim to none. Regardless, at around 9 AM Robin and I heard an odd noise coming from the bow. I popped out of of my sleep and walked up into the galley area just in time to see the boat next to us moving past us. WE HAD BROKEN FREE! (or so I thought in my sleepiness). I grabbed the keys and jumped into the cockpit with nothing covering me except my underwear and a cloak of sheer panic. As I fired up the engine my wits started to settle in and then I remembered that, when you are in a tidal river all of the boats will move around depending on which way the tides and winds are moving. We were still attached to our mooring ball and my cloak of panic shifted to a cloak of embarrassment. Not because I was wearing only underwear in a crowded mooring field (this is me after all) but because I panicked when I should have just evaluated the situation calmly. Live and learn.

Saint Augustine is an amazing city. Gorgeous Spanish architecture dot the landscape of the oldest city in the U.S. We took the dinghy ashore and did a little shopping, a little eating, and a little sightseeing. The highlight of the day was a trip to a pirate museum where we saw incredible artifacts like doubloons, pistols, and even Captain Kidd’s Bible. Neat!

We will be here for another week or so as we have to have some repairs done at a local shipyard. This is a great place to be stranded for a week!