A very pretty view at the marina. I was there long enough to take a couple of pictures.
A few days ago, after our guests departed from Marathon Marina very early in the morning, Hans and I quickly got to work as we needed to leave by 11 AM. Staying at a marina is similar to staying at a hotel (except of course we bring our home with us) and you have a check out time.
I gathered up our laundry and since I didn't know when we might have this opportunity again, I ended up with a huge load. I think the only thing I didn't stuff into the bag was Wilbur who thankfully keeps himself pretty clean. And even though I thought I was quite the early bird (my idea of early is before noon) I was dismayed to find only one washing machine available and I had three loads. While I got the first load going I ended up talking with a lady (note: I will strike up a conversation with anybody, anytime. I think I was vaccinated with a phonograph needle) who was just as glad to talk/vent (she's new to sailing) to me. I spent more time talking than I should have but at least another two machines opened up. After cramming them full I ran back to the boat, dug the shop vac out of a lazarette and swept up the inside of the boat. I also scrubbed the filth from the bow where the anchor chain makes a mess, mopped the cockpit again (a waste of time as it gets dirty within seconds), and washed some dishes. Back to the laundromat I went where I threw most everything into driers and then went in search of ice. After filling two coolers with the ice, beer, and club soda it was back to the laundromat again. By now I was hot and sweaty but I got everything folded and when I got back to the boat it was time to shove off. Hans had topped off the water tanks, checked the engines, and took a bath house shower (I never did get one). We headed to the fuel dock and then we were on our way.
Pippa, a pit mix at the marina who let Wilbur know she didn't think he was cute. Wilbur reciprocated by telling her her mother wears army boots.
Where to go? We had several options but it became obvious that the closest ones weren't going to work out for us. We already knew the mooring field had a waiting list and the anchorage right beside it was packed full and actually looked like a tent city where the homeless hang out together. A bit further on we thought we could anchor in Sister Creek but once there we noted that every single boat was anchored bahamian style (bow anchored out in the river with a stern line tied up in the mangroves). We've never implemented this style of anchoring and I wasn't about to start now. Of course Hans thought it might be interesting and right about then I started feeling the effects of way too many late nights and early mornings. A small 'discussion' took place (perhaps a mini-meltdown on my part) and we moved on. Out in the open water we found wind and very rolly conditions which did nothing for all the crap lying about in the cockpit: dock lines hadn't been stowed, cushions were all over the place along with a bag of my wet laundry that should have been hung to dry in the head, and a dog that feels the need to be comforted when we first get underway (every single time). There was one more place to try to drop the hook and that was in the lee of Boot Key Island. But since we were underway Hans suggested we continue to Bahia Honda Key and would I mind sailing in the rolly seas for a few miles. Another 'discussion' (and a not so 'mini' meltdown) took place and we hurriedly anchored near Boot Key. I was tired and snappy and trying to put things in order when we realized we were dragging.
Honestly, we've never dragged anchor as many times as we have during this cruise.
We were finally set when I realized we were missing a lot of laundry including Hans' Knotty Cat shirt (a present from me and not cheap), my quick-dry towel (which actually takes longer to dry than regular ones), and my favorite sweat shirt (15 years old from when my son played high school hockey). I swore I'd checked the laundry area before I left and it was obvious we'd allowed ourselves to be rushed and it was now biting us in the butt. Trying to rush on a boat is usually a recipe for disaster (big or small). Hans did agree that it made sense to anchor quickly and take a day off and we have to remember we're no longer on a strict schedule. When you're overly tired you really do make stupid mistakes.
The next morning we felt much better and after contacting the marina we motored to the fuel dock where we didn't even have to tie up. They just heaved our bag of laundry into the Knotty Cat as we slid past and we were off once again.
This time the seas were less rolly and we actually sailed to our next anchorage.
One last picture of Marathon Marina. Some day I may get to enjoy it.