Pandora’s plans shaping up and a banana named Bob.

It’s Saturday morning and it’s shaping up to be a cloudy day in nearly southern Florida.  We are still in North Palm Beach and were treated to lovely sunrise a moment ago.   Yes, I know it looks like any other sunrise.  I guess you had to be there and we are.

We’ll be here for another day but will likely mosey on down the short distance to Boca Raton on Sunday.  We have been pretty vague about making decisions on what our plans for the next few months will be but I think that we have a pretty good feel for things now.   Well, it’s only been a month since we left our “land home” and headed south.  But hey, we haven’t been aboard even a full three weeks.  These things take time.  It’s hard to make decisions fast on a boat that only goes about 7kts, right?

A key determination on what’s next for us is that the Axel, the son of our good friend’s Kari and Gerhardt is getting married in Columbia SC in later April so we will surely have to be back in FL early enough to make that event.  Between now and then, our plans are to continue heading south to Miami and the Miami Boat Show, where we will be volunteering to help out at the booth of the Seven Seas Cruising Association, a group that we have become pretty active in.  This is the group that we do the spring Gam in Essex, the three day SSCA, Summer Solstice Gam each June.

Anyway, we will help out at the Miami show.  An added benefit of working the booth is that we tickets to the show for the day and yet only have to work for part of the day.  So, you have to ask yourself if it’s altruism or the free show tickets.  You decide…  I have wanted to see that show for years as it’s where the “big boys” buy their toys.   Tickets or not, we will have a nice day.

After that we will continue to head down to the keys and will probably make our first major stop Key Largo.  After that, I can’t say that I know enough to say but probably Marathon, a spot that is the winter home of many cruisers.  We’d also love to head to Key West but have heard that the anchorages are pretty exposed and the marinas very expensive.  Not sure how to handle that but perhaps we’ll splurge in a marina for a few days.

We are also looking forward to a visit from our son Rob and perhaps his fiancé Kandice in late February as they will likely visit us for a few days in the Keys.  And Chris, who knows, as he’s pretty busy these days meeting with investors and potential business partners in New York on a new business that he’s trying to launch.   We’d love to see him to but he’s pretty pressed for time.

So, all of that will take us to March when we will likely head up to the northern Bahamas for a month or so.  After that, back to the states.

One thing I haven’t written about much in the last month is our quest to purchase the Aerodyne 47 and sell Pandora.  We did have the survey of Ariel a few weeks ago and while a few “issues” came up, as is so often the case when a boat is surveyed, they seem to have been sorted out and we are planning to move forward with the purchase in the spring.   Pandora will soon be listed with a broker in North Carolina so I guess that we’ll be showing the boat a bit while we are in Florida.   It’s a bit weird to be selling Pandora as she’s such a great boat.  I have to say that I have mixed emotions but the Aerodyne is even more amazing.  Oh yeah, I have written about names for the new boat and we’ve decided to keep Pandora as so many know us by that name.  Besides, we have monogrammed towels, cocktail glasses, fenders and even an entrance rug.  Besides, the name is memorable. Wasn’t that easy?

As you can imagine, moving Pandora to NC, closing on the new boat, attending our friend’s son’s wedding and getting that boat up to New England in the spring will certainly pose some interesting logistics in the coming months.   Hey, after more than 30 years of moving boats around I am, somewhat, used to all of that.  Can you say “want to crew with me in the spring, on two boats?”

Yikes, I am getting a “logistics” headache.  I won’t think about that right now…  For now, I’ll just focus on the next few days heading to Boca.

Oh yeah, yesterday we had a lovely lunch out with our friends Linda and Richard.  Years ago, in a different lifetime I worked with Linda.  It was so nice to catch up and talk about “old times”.   How is it that I am now old enough to have “old times”?  Hmm…

The restaurant was a terrific seafood place that also had a retail fish operation.   The fresh fish was beautifully presented.  How about some stone crab claws?  They are only $65 a pound.  What a deal.  Interestingly, these claws are “harvested” without killing the crab.   When the crab is caught fisherman only take one of the claws and toss the crab back.  And, in about another year they grow their claw back.  “Hello little crab.  Good news, I am going to let you go.  The bad news is that I am going to rip your left arm off first.”

As an interesting side note, when Brenda and I were dating in high school, back in the early 70s, we bought a small banana plant in Westport CT and over the years kept it in our homes and later in a greenhouse that had for over 20 years.  While Linda and I were working together in NJ I gave her an offshoot of the plant which she still has in her yard in West Palm Beach.  So here’s “Bob” the banana bearing fruit in Linda’s garden.  Wow, that is one happy banana 42 years later.  Actually, I think that “Bob” looks pretty good, given his age.  So, how old is he in “banana years” now?

It was so nice to see Linda again.  Here’s a shot of us last year when we met on our last trip south as I forgot to take one yesterday.   You will have to trust me when I say we haven’t aged a bit.   Don’t we look marvelous?  Almost as good good as Banana Bob.It’s fun to think about the “good old days” however, I’d say that these days are pretty darn good and both “Bobs” are doing fine.  I am hopeful that the good times will continue to roll for us.   So far, so good.  Fingers crossed.  

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