The Search For Bright Waters

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Melbourne with Friends

We arrived in Melbourne Friday around 3 and our friend Missy came to pick us up.

I think this is Cocoa Beach

The Pineda Causeway Bridge
Anyone know the difference between and Causeway and Highway?

Bright Eyes anchored just outside the Eau Gallie Bridge

We dinghyed into Ballard Park, down the very scenic Eau Gallie River 

All off the stuff we brought ashore.  The dinghy deflates nicely and fits into a car trunk

The weekend was a mixture of running errands, getting paperwork done, and hanging out with Missy and Josh.  It's always a good time seeing them and we are appreciative that we could stay with them so long.

Missy and Christine

One of our errands was the final stage of provisioning.  We went to Super Walmart and had to carry $300 worth of groceries onto the boat, mostly canned goods!  Christine has been doing a great job of keeping track of all the food we have available.

We also got our Sunnys BBQ!

Our dinghy engine, named Black Betty, began having some trouble running because oil had leaked while it was stored on its side.  We had  to make a run to the store to buy oil so it would start and then had to run it for a awhile to get all the leaked oil out.  We also cleaned the spark plug and soon the dinghy engine, was running fine again. Or so we thought...

During one of the trips to the boat, I went alone while Christine ran to get us lunch.  I made it to the boat fine and dropped off groceries and threw in two bags of blankets we would be storing at Josh and Missys.  After I started up the dingy engine and let go of the boat the engine decided it wouldn't go past the "Restart" icon.  When I tried to give it more gas it just died.  The current was pretty strong as was the wind and after I restarted the engine I looked up and saw I was already a good 50 away from the boat going down the river toward the bridge.  The engine wasn't strong enough in the restart position to fight the current so I continued away from the boat more, I gave it gas and it died again. I restarted it, looked up and Bright Eyes was getting smaller.  O crap!  Of course the oars were left back at the house, my cell phone got ruined days ago, and i didn't have a vhf or anchor.

This pic was taken at a different time but I was floating on the other side of our boat between the boat and the bridge, closer to the bridge.

I eyed up the bridge in case I had to grab onto it but the engine was giving me just enough power to move northwest back toward land, as long as I kept the strong wind from blowing my bow around.  I eventually made it to another anchored boat between our boat and the bridge and tied off to it. There was no one aboard so I took that time to try to fix the engine, luckily I had kept the adjustable pliers in my pocket.  But to no avail after doing all the same troubleshooting as before it would not allow me to increase the throttle.

I decided I could make it to the land part of the bridge and from there I could just walk back.  I was worried about Christine and what she must be thinking when I was no where to be seen.  I was also hoping she'd be waiting at the bridge for me.  As I got closer to the bridge the waves calmed down and I was able to get really close to the west shore.  From there I could push past the surf and I eventually made it back around the corner to our dinghy landing in Ballard Park.  As I rounded the corned I saw Christine and we waved and it was a relief.

She watched me slowly fight the current and make my way back into safety.  She greeted me with a hug and kiss and McDonalds!  

Turns out she had seen me attempt to leave Bright Eyes in the dinghy and then drift outward.  Within a minute I was out of sight around the corner up river.  She knew I didn't have oars and the engine could be giving me trouble so she quickly called towboat to come rescue me!  Tow Boat tried giving her grief because she couldn't see me but she gave them the distressed/angry wife voice and they agreed to come.  But of course Tow Boat takes forever and in 45 minutes I had gotten back to land on my own so she called to cancel them. It was nice to know though that she had planned to save me :)

When we got back we took the dinghy engine to a shop and they said some oil had drained into the carborator and water had gotten into the fuel tank so there was a lot of grim to clean out.  It was worth the money to have a solid working engine again.  Our dinghy is the equivalent to the family car, so it's gotta be ready to roll!

Wednesday we said our goodbyes and went back to the boat to unpack all our provisions.  It was too late to leave that day so instead we dinghyed back to shore and brought our folding bikes.  We biked to Incredible Pets!  We heard they had monkeys and other cool animals so we really wanted to go.

They had really cool Cotton Headed Tamarins but we didn't get a pic, this is courtesy of Google

The rest of the pics we took

This bird said Bye Bye while the bird in the next cage said Hello

Sleeping Ferrets, awww

I think this was some kind of sloth

They had tons of snakes, all sizes

They said this tortoise will live to be 120 years old. It was huge

Frisky lizards

This was a spotted shark

Thursday we finally started moving again.  Only 4 more days till Miami!!!


Chris said...

If you're stopping in Fort Lauderdale, let me know. I'd love to say hi and can give you a ride if you need one.

Joey and Christine said...

Thanks Chris, we passed through Ft Lauderdale. Beautiful city! We've never seen so many boats in one place.

Chris said...

Sorry I missed you. I'll be in Miami for the boat show next Sunday if you're still around and would like to do dinner or something.

Mid-Life Cruising! said...

Good thinking Christine! I don't know if I would have thought to call Tow Boat for the dinghy! Glad ya'll didn't need to use it after all. Enjoy Miami!

Laura and Hans said...

I don't think anyone has or will ever have as many adventures as you two!!
We plan on leaving Vero Beach tomorrow but I'm not sure where we'll end up.

christine said...

Hi Chris, we are still here. Sorry for the delayed reply, our internet is horrible! Even though the city offers free wifi and even though we tried going to shore to use Starbucks internet. The only thing I was able to do online was give myself a virus and have to reinstall Windows. haha. So yeah, my cell is 240-305-7177, give us a ring if your around and still wanted to meet up tomorrow.