Saturday, March 12, 2016

Traveling with Friends On Our Way to a Race!

I have been busy and distracted by people and places so am a bit slow with this blog.  We spent 3 nights in Ft. Myers Yacht Basin.  Al inspected our leak with the help of his smallish wife and after too much time and effort, we agreed to pay to have it repaired.  So Thursday 3/3 Al hung around watching guys work and I went to explore the Edison and Ford winter homes.  They of course were good friends with Harvey Firestone who is a special historical figure in our lives since Al made a living working for his company so it seemed proper for a visit to the estates.
I took lots of pictures but will only post these two.  The above is the office for Edison where he matched his brilliant brain with Ford and Firestone to work on finding vegetation that would produce latex for rubber efficiently.  After studying thousands of plants and trees they agreed on Goldenrod, a plant I consider a weed.  The tree in the picture below was imported from Southeast Asia and while it is an amazing tree, it grew too slowly to produce latex.  It was planted by Edison in the early 1930's.

On Friday 3/4 our Nashville friends Ann and Rob joined us to begin the journey north to attend an IndyCar race at St. Petersburg.  Al has worked that race for many years, longing to have his boat moored at the Yacht pier, brought in just for the race.  An invitation from the track promotors cinched our attendance and that is where we are as I write this blog.
We began the trip north in heavy Saturday boat traffic in the Ft. Myers/Cape Coral area.
Rob's agility and balance helped us decide if we could safely get under the many bridges in the GICW. I am too chicken to stand where he is to see over the top, so in the past we likely have requested some bridges open that we probably could have traversed under.  We think we are about 21' tall but measuring exactly is tricky and htting a bridge  is a definite mistake to avoid!  
Checking out the bow for Dolphins. 
We did have several dolphin shows and this guy was likely the winner of the high jump contest! We returned to our favorite beach area on Cayo Costa for one night and then enjoyed a more urban anchorage between Lido and Otter Keys near Sarasota.  We were surrounded by beautiful homes and it seemed invasive to take pictures so there are none for this post.  We also anchored a night off Snead Island on the Manatee River which runs into Tampa Bay and enjoyed a long walk on Emerson Point Preserve. This creepy boat was permanently anchored in the cove and made us think of ghosts!
So we took a lap around on Victory Lap to make sure none would get us in the night!!
Then we watched another beautiful sunset over Tampa Bay and ended the day with the plan to head to St. Petersburg, a short 3 hours away.  Next will be a summary of our race experience. Who would have thunk it that we would include an Indy race in our Loop, but that is the core thinking;
 do what you want,  when you want!! 

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