We have been sitting in Ft. Lauderdale for a few days now waiting for an opening in the weather that will allow us to cross the Gulf stream into the Bahamas. We came through Palm Beach, which was an impressive assembly of massive hotels, it was really cool to anchor in 12 feet of water and to be able to see the anchor crystal clear right to the bottom, we had not seen water that clear before, and have not seen it since, I guess Palm Beach is popular for a reason. Brian caught up with us for a bridge filled day on the waterway. Going through southern Florida is truely an amazing spectacle of gratuitous wealth. The houses lining the ICW are incredible, many of them with 100+ foot yachts parked on a dock in their yard. We saw a small nice looking house get demolished so that a bigger house could take its place, the tiny, maybe 1/4 acre lot alone cost 1.2 million dollars. The question of where all this money comes from is popular these days. The girls were fishing for coconuts, grabbing any they saw floating along with a net, we later cracked them open and ate them, quite delicious.
We met a crazy couple that sold everything they own and set out on a boating adventure from South Dakota on our way to Ft. Lauderdale. The day was full of excitement, with a 35 knot gusting wind and sttrong currents on your bow all day with 20 drawbridges to go through, that calls for a lonnnnng day. We got through it without getting into any bad situations... until we were docking. Going off the waterway onto the New River was a nice jaunt through luxurious neighborhoods, that turned into gigantic condos in the downtown area where we docked. The river was about 100 feet wide, with multi million dollar yachts lining the sides, a lack of communication left me sitting in the middle of the channel, in a quarter mile section with closed drawbridges on either end, a tide that was going out at a few knots, and a 30 knot gusting wind coming the same direction as the current. And I had to turn the 39 foot boat around in this narrow channel lined with yachts, I get it turned around, gettin close enough to the edge for Mark to push off the side to get our bow turned around. We are going with the current now, movin along, and I realize, this is going to be impossible. I see our spot, in between INXS, a 106 foot behemoth of a boat which I just found out is probably the boat that the producer that tried to sell Paris Hilton's voice sold when he realized she is a waste of life, well, in between that and another huge yacht, and i come barrelling in with the current and the wind whipping me along, stick my nose in, bring the stern around, it comes whipping around towards INXS, I am gunning the throttle, epic failure seems imminent, all 6 tons of the boat comes crashing towards the dock, and... nothing... I got it in position, under control, and she rested, two feet from the dock, didnt even rub a rail... woo! A video can be found here. It was essentially just like that, haha.
So here we remain, docked in the midst of multiple high rise buildings, in a channel s aturated with wealth, there is literally a Rolls Royce parked a few yards from our boat, next to a line of a whole bunch of other luxury cars, people walking their little yap dogs down the dock all day, with the occasional 120 foot yacht being towed through the channel next to us. It is pretty awesome. We went grocery shopping, that is always quite an experience, filling two shopping carts so high you can barely see over them, and then getting that back to the boat. We had lunch at the grocery store, and as we sat there, this guy came sprinting past us, a bag in each hand, and right behind him was the cop that was standing at the door. All the people that were standing on the corner started shouting GET 'IM GET 'IM, and all went OOOOOO when he did, it was awesome. I was trying to decide whether I would trip the guy if I saw it coming, I think that I would. What could he have been stealing anyway? saffron? Anyway, no pictures for now, I will get some more up before we leave the states, which is looking to be Saturday at the earliest, so after that I will be basically out of contact until May, so if you wanna talk to me, do it before then! Also, more people should give me their address so I can send something from the Bahamas. send it to BRawlings@gmail.com if you want something cool from the Bahamas.