Saturday, November 22, 2008


Our trip down the Intracoastal Waterway from Titusville to Palm Beach was uneventful...until we arrived at our destination.

Motoring into the North Lake Worth anchorage, we heard and felt something hit the port hull and then bounce along underneath the boat. As we watched, an object bobbed up behind the stern and floated away. It appeared to be the remnants of a palm tree, barely visible above the surface.

Suddenly, the port engine began to vibrate, causing the whole boat to shake. We switched off that engine and proceeded into the anchorage using only the starboard engine. Once we got anchored, we tried the port engine again, and again the engine rattled and the boat shook. We both had visions of a broken propeller and another $400 haul-out to fix it.

It was nearly dark, so we had dinner and went to bed with somber thoughts of high-priced repairs.

The next morning, Phil donned a snorkeling mask and swam under the boat to inspect the propeller. He soon dislodged a four-foot mess of tree bark and fiber. We took the attached picture of the "blob" that had attacked our propeller.

Back on board, Phil started up the port engine, which now purred like a cat. Crisis averted!

We enjoyed a wonderful three-day visit with my brother, Allen, and his wife Dorie, whose lovely winter home is just a few miles from the anchorage. We celebrated an early Thanksgiving with them, made trips to WalMart and West Marine for supplies, and did our laundry.

We relaxed on their huge screened-in porch, enjoyed dinners in and out, chatted about politics and got caught up on family news. Life in Palm Beach Gardens is good.

We pulled the anchor late Thursday afternoon and headed out for our first overnight sail, which would take us from Palm Beach to Miami. I'll describe that trip in the next post.


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