Due to terrible wifi connections i have not been able to successfully upload my blog entries for the last week. It is incredibly frustrating because this past week has been outstanding and quite eventful and there is now only so much time to share with you so i will give a brief account of my favorite things.
As you probably guessed we did in fact make it on shore despite the broken dingy motor. A spot deep enough for a boat with 7ft. draw finally opened up and we taxied our motor over to the yamaha dealer/mechanics shop. After being quoted an end of the week completion Tina (Who had grown rather fed up with all our delays) decided that simply would not do and began strategizing her neotiation tactics and leaving no means out of the equation. After some persuasive pleading our mechanic, Scott, said he could probably take a look at it that day. This was very fortunate indeed asTina was just about ready to offer me over as collateral to sweeten the deal!! "haha That wont be necessary." He chuckled. We left to walk the 2 miles back to the marina as Tina turned to me and very triumphantly reported, "Well Brittany, it looks like we saved you virginity after all!" "Gee, Thanks!!" I replied with mellodramatic playfulness.
Our Spirits were much higher now being docked in this beautiful marina. We had rested up in the sun on the private beach, unwound at the marina's tiki bar with live music, made use of the small weight room and much welcomed showers and were within walking distance of the grocers. Once we all felt a bit more human we made our way out to explore the island a bit.
Throwing on my running shoes and turning up Boston in my ears i took off in an excited sprint out of the marina and into down town. Between all the zig-zagging, double backing, epic tree climbing and circumnavigating that i did i would say i made it at least 8 miles (For those of you who don't know me well this was quite an accomplishment) before i felt saticfied with my exploration. There were crowds of spring breakers and tourists, old salty sailors and the local few and i loved all the people watching. I got to see the attractions that are obviously more focussed toward the 'cruise-shippers' and vacationing families but what really interested me were the things that typically go unseen. The Docks. This is where i felt drawn.
This island is rich with nautical history and even today its inhabitants have not forgotten to pay a proper homage to that. Huge replica tribute ships port here and gorgeous schooners and tall ships and all kinds of other lovely sailing vessles can be found making there way up and down the coast lines daily. And, I have fallen in LOVE. Haha i found MY ship the one i have dreamed about for years now. She's a fierce beauty and one day she will be mine. Until then though, it is nice to have a clearer image to dream about.
sidenote: I have truely missed the smell of the fishing boats as they come back in after a long day trolling. Watching the mates empty their catch onto the cleaning tables and filet right there and even cleaning out the cooler....i am a bit jealous and miss Nantucket for it. haha I walked past and took in a breath and noticed a gaggle of college girls all holding their noses staring at me with a look of alien disbelief. I tried to not chuckle. A sailors life isn't for everyone...
The day was cooling off rapidly and the sky started to turn a tint of gold suggesting the sunset would be a uniquely brilliant one. My playlist had now progressed onto Jefferson Starship and my heart nearly lept out of my chest with the thought of running off to race for the coast before the sun had gone. So that's what i did. Dodging through streets and crowds and stores i was getting closer. I had to run -respectfully though quickly- through one last shop to find a backway letting out to the actualy coastal edge of the island but what i saw there was far more than i could have ever expected.
Not only was this the best vantage point to watch the day end but i had also accidentally found the exact location of the SunSet Celebration. An archway over head read "Welcome to Mallory Square" and framed the scene of a concrete board walk strip packed with acrobats, magicians. dog trainors, sword swallowers, fire spiners, jugglers, vendors of art jewelry, delicious foods and tropical drinks, fortune tellers, comedians and hundreds of wide eyed, cheering spectators. Street musicians and show hypers and ooo-ing/ahhh-ing provided the soundtrack for this chaotic festival while fresh bake pretzles and pineapple, and flickers of fire and cracks of sparklers tantalized other senses. Not to mention, my very favorite, the coconut man! Most simple stand: a cart filled with fresh coconuts and a man with a machete. If you havent ever drank coconut water from a freshly whacked coconut, i HIGHLY suggest you add it to your list!! :)
The sun shown it's vibrant pinks and oranges and the colors bounced off of the lingering clouds and sailboats that were now coming in accross the horizon to dock after catching the last bits of light. It was my next moment of devine splendor and i sat there, just me and my glorious creator.
I count myself so blessed to have these oportunities to witness God's magnificence through the beauty of his creativity. I feel the Holy Spirit filling me up each day and i keep praying for ways to pour these blessings and this love out onto others but i have not been able to keep up with HIs measure of supply. Great is our God!
Of course, there has been plenty more going on in this last week but i can wrap it up by saying, "We've seen some of the stuff and done some of the things." But it is already midnight now and we set sail in only 4 hours for a 12 hour day tomorrow. The Dry Tortugas is our next destination. Also, quite unfortunately, it will be our farthest destination.
The decision was made a couple days ago that after we have had our fill of adventure in the Tortugas we will be sailing back to Ft Luaderdale. Ken and Tina have decided to sell the boat. This has not been an easy choice and we are all quite heart broken about it. There are several very good reasons why they have come to this conclusion but i know it is not something they had hoped to do. I, of course am devistated to know that my dream of sailing to a new country will now be postponed and that our adventure will be cut short but more than any of that my heart is heavy for the Duncans. Please be in prayer for Ken and Tina as they let go of this dream and seek to make wise choices in the upcoming process of selling Actric Tern.
Until then though.... It's time to light the fires and kick the tires!! Plenty of adventure to be had in the next month and who knows what could take place. But if anything's gonna happen, it's gonna happen out there. ;)
So raise your glass with me now. My friends, Here's to dreams. Keep them fresh, keep them big and keep them coming!!