With tooth pain worsening, we decided to not just swing into West Palm Beach to pick up our new mattress (which is great, btw!…but not photo worthy…I mean it’s at worst a PG- rated blog!) but instead spend the night and tracked down a dentist. Luckily this timing worked and resulted in another opportunity to see former-Tacoman Caitlin and her dog Chapman too!
We went out into the Atlantic for the first 20 miles to avoid some bridge openings that would have been long waits and also to get some speed and miles in since, as it turned out, it could have been an 8 hour day given our distance and the no wake zones compounding our route. The open water was white caps and a little rough but the swells weren’t too bad. Ziggy went down below into her crate for an hour to get out of the sway at the upper helm. We did turn into the ICW for the last section though. It’s fun to look at all the houses and other boats.
But before getting to the dock, we had to pass the gauntlet of heavily armed coast guard boats plying the Inter Coastal Waterway around maralago (no caps on purpose and I am purposely NOT including photos of that place or the local tower, etc!) Likewise, all the docks at Palm Beach Marina (the most expensive yet, by the way, at $185–but the teeth cried for attention!) was inspected and marched upon at least 4 times just in one afternoon by armed US Coast Guards. …ok , ok, backing away from the boarder of politic- speak.
N tracked down an emergency dentist and was in and out early Saturday morning. Nothing major that a little good old-fashioned penicillin couldn’t clear up! Yay!
In West Palm Beach, Caitlin and Chapman guided us through the fresh greens open air Saturday market and were both greeted at nearly every stall by name. Ziggy even got special treats too. We loaded up on some very nice specialties—lettuces with their root balls (just think how fresh they will stay in my refrig!); handmade fig provolone ravioli; oyster mushrooms; pickled peppers; not to mention fresh, warm apple cider donut holes and perfectly strong coffee! By the way, Floridians don’t drink coffee the way we do in the NW! It’s about 50% as strong—what’s the point?!? On top of that, the Starbucks are far and few between.
We pushed off after the market and continued our spring time, goose-like northward journey. Passed by one of Paul Allen’s ships, the Tattoosh. We are continually in shock and awe at the amount of wealth on these waters
As we continued down the ICW, out of the clear blue and for no apparent reason, Nick said: “I wonder if Howard’s Florida house is around here.” So he called him and sure enough we were literally less than a football field away! He gave us directions and we did a drive-by as they were at their airplane loading it for their flight back to the NW Monday morning…but we scheduled a pre-departure dinner. It was a bit serendipitous that our financial adviser winters here while we gawked at all those big boats. Maybe it’s a sign!??!
Within minutes of passing Howard and Nancy’s home, we docked at Old Port Cove Marina where we’ve stayed for 2 nights. Super nice and one third the cost of the previous marina! AND they gifted a bottle of wine too! Bonus!
The marina has lots of docks to walk and gawk at boats. There were at least 4 other Loopers here the first night too. So lots of chatting. Those 4 were all heading out the following morning to make the crossing together to the Bahamas. They did leave on time (see top feature sunrise photo) but all turned around after a few hours due to big seas and winds. Those 4 Loopers’ boats are all way bigger than our little Bayliner so I can’t imagine how we would have bobbed and tossed (cookies) out there. A few of them returned here so we heard their stories later in the day.
The marina and abutting condos are set at the end of a small peninsula that juts into the ICW so the paths around the tip are nice for strolling. Z and B got plenty of nice walks in while N jumped over to the nearby golf course.
Luckily this three-some wasn’t (and besides, it’s a PG rated blog, right?!) because Howard and Nancy were there too!
Another shout out to another Homie NWesterner: Alix, one of our faithful readers, painted this super cool art for us to hang up every time we drop the swim ladder to remind us to LIFT IT UP before getting under way! LOVE it! Thanks Alix!
Bonus: If you want to read some NY Times quality stuff on the Loop see this: We know the guy who took her around…. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/22/magazine/an-improbable-6000-mile-boat-trip-around-the-east-coast.html?action=click&contentCollection=magazine®ion=rank&module=package&version=highlights&contentPlacement=2&pgtype=sectionfront&_r=0