Vero Beach, FL

7 April 2015

A pretty sunrise this morning as we pushed out of Loggerhead Marina in Stuart. It’s 5 miles back to the ICW and we are the only people on the water. At 8 AM we go under the East Stuart Bridge, the water is pretty flat and it looks like another good day underway.

Susan has been missing her dolphin friends since we left the keys. In the Indian River a pair came over to the boat to visit. While the ones in the keys didn’t jump as much, this pair was excited to see Susan as she was to see them. Big splashy fully out of the water leaps, very, very cool to watch.

About 15 mins later we passed a turtle, it looked like a Loggerhead, but it was only on the surface before diving down.

The ICW along here is a mix of houses and wilderness. The houses are nice, but not the mega-homes from farther south. We are seeing lots more seabirds around us which is a good sign.

We land at Loggerhead Vero at noon and spend the next 30 minutes dumping 151 gallons of fuel into our tanks. At $2.90 it’s the cheapest so far on the trip and has helped drop our average cost of fuel to $4 a gallon. That makes me really happy, we are well under my $6 gallon budget. But we are over in dock fees between the extra two weeks in Tavernier and the two weeks in Miami while getting repaired.

While at the fuel dock Susan found a chameleon on one of the safety stanchions. He was bright green and didn’t look happy. She scooped him up and put him in the grass. We are thinking he came on the boat in Palm Beach since we were close to shore. Other slips have been well away from the water.

Once we were in our slip we again attached the weird smell problem. Susan sprayed white vinegar all over the chain in the locker and then rinsed it with water. We put vinegar in the forward bilge and into the catch pan for the air conditioner. Hopefully this will start killing whatever is growing down there.

There were Gold Loopers in the marina, but they were not aboard, maybe another time. There was also a boat called “When Pigs Fly” but we were not able to get a good picture with First Mate Pig. We borrowed bikes to go to the store and to the new pizza place. [Let me say that the “ease of borrowed bikes” was soon outweighed by them not being multi-speed and having fat cruiser tires that wobble. ]

On the way I was almost killed. We were coming up the street where the cross street had a stop sign. An older couple came through the intersection at speed, passing about 10′ in front of me. Had I done an extra two pedal pushes I’d been road kill. I was watching and thinking “umm too fast”, but not enough to really do anything.

The pizza place was mobbed. We ordered wine,beer, salad and pizza. She came back a few mins later and said it would be 30-40 mins for pizza. We said OK we can wait. We ordered garlic knots (ummm butter!) with their red gravy. Very good. But time ticked on. More drinks and the salad came. Right at the 35 min mark our pizza arrived. Waitress said that the drinks, salad and knots were free. They had only been open 8 days and they were still on the learning curve.

The pizza was very good, the sauce was good and the dough was tasty and well baked. (I expected that if they were rushing they would give us a ½ baked pizza. Our bill was $16 and I left the waitress a $15 tip.

Did a minor grocery shop and Susan found Cheerwine! Yay! With water and Cheerwine I was again lamenting my decision on borrowed bikes. But we made it back safely.

The boat didn’t smell as much this evening, so we may be on to something. We’ll keep the AC running hand the ports open to help air things out.