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Date: 11 November 2013. Making Friends.

© janice142

One of the truly delightful things about cruising is meeting new friends and getting together on each others boats for a shared meal. An arriving boat into the anchorage is always a thing of interest and that's where my social secretary helps a great deal in getting acquainted with the new folks. I know you are probably thinking that aboard a 23' mini-Schucker having a social secretary is a bit "much" but there you would be mistaken!

Whom you may ask would take the job? None other than my Deck Swabbie, aka Skipper:


Skipper is always ready to greet the new boat and if they have a dog, it is even better.



Back in Apalachicola while walking in a riverfront park I met a lady named Jill and her adorable ball of fluff Poppy. We invited them for a visit and as you can see, the kids had a great time:


Both girls got along fine, and even enjoyed sharing treats. Jill was able to tell me about a nearby store that sold dog treats and was kind enough to bring back for Skipper a bag of
 Iams dog food. It is simply not available everywhere and I had not bought any since January so was running low.

Plus, well, it's fun to have a spot of Earl Grey tea with a lady now and then. This lifestyle is predominantly male, but there are a few soloist gals out here enjoying life on the water. It is fun to be able to perhaps open land-dwelling eyes to alternatives, as not everyone dreams of life in a condominium. I am blessed.


Opening horizons to folks who might not ever consider boating is something I enjoy immensely. I suppose most folks think of boaters as either extremely wealthy or dirt poor, forgetting there is a middle ground with room for the rest of us. Goodness knows you can spend all you have and more getting a Yacht, but that is not necessary. There is a lot to be said for living within a tight budget, and goodness knows I am having a blast!

Lots of money is not required to travel to beautiful places such as CEDAR KEY and BAHIA HONDA.


Too many folks run their mouths about the mass-produced boats, yet those very boats are getting folks out on the water every day. And I've got to tell you: I've seen more MacGregors actually sailing than I have the bigger more expensive "blue water" sailboats. Recently they have been to both Cedar Key and Bahia Honda.

There is a corollary between the size of the boat and usage:

The smaller the boat, the more likely it is to be actually used.
Owning a bigger boat doesn't necessarily mean greater utilization.

One of the many fun aspects of cruising is meeting others who are on their journeys. Last summer I met a couple aboard S/V Gypsy who were just the nicest! They were cruising on a MacGregor and had a boat dog too. That pleased my Skipper. She likes new pups and Mac was just a bit larger than her. Heck, most cats are bigger than my Skip, but that is another story...

S/V Gypsy at sunset. Photo taken by Joanne at Bahia Honda in the Florida Keys.
Joanne takes amazing sunset pictures. She took one of Seaweed that's a favorite!

Joanne and Glenn and their boat-dog Mac took their MacGregor26 down thru the Florida Keys and had a lovely cruise as you can well imagine. But prior to the weather clearing for departure to Cedar Key we shared a couple of meals aboard. The first was on Seaweed and included Robin from Dawgfish. After dinner over popcorn we watched
Serenity. They had not ever met the Browncoats (as seen in Serenity) so I brought them up to speed.

Side Note regarding Browncoats: You will want to buy first Firefly. It is a DVD collection of a cancelled television show that could have been amazing, and indeed was for its short run. In fact it drew such a following after cancellation that a full-blown movie was made called Serenity. Both are great and are aboard Seaweed. I would even go so far as to say "pay retail" for this duo.

After dinner aboard Seaweed with the two MacGregor's the following night we moved to S/V Gypsy for fresh caught fish. That day both Glenn and Robin (of S/V Dawgfish) were successful, and a few hours later Glenn fried them all up. I tell you, it was delicious! There is nothing quite like dining on fish that only hours before was swimming. Joanne sets a nice table too. Everything was wonderful. We even had wine -- a treat for me.


Chef Glenn

Fisherman Robin
and Miss Kitty
watching for fish

Appreciative connoisseur


Mac and Skipper
Dinner aboard Gypsy
included the kids too.

Skipper and Mac watched everything
 cooking, and then had dry dog food.
They did not seem to mind -- much!


Dinner concluded with a viewing of
Star Trek the new movie featuring the prequel kids of TOS* (The Original Series). It was interesting to me as I had not seen the show (no television since 1993) so to watch actors that looked so much like their older counterparts from TOS was a real treat. The company was great fun.

Another Side Note:
Often boaters refer to each other by either the name or brand of boat. I'm surely in a few cell phones as Janice Seaweed. There are Mac's, and Cal's and IP's, along with Selene's and Mainship and Gulfstars... So, whatever you do, pick a good name for your boat. You'll be using it on the radio and well, can you picture a deep masculine voice saying "Mayday, mayday, this is Sea Twinkie"?

And worse yet are those juveniles who select a boat name that is either risqué or plain obscene. Really, that only tells listeners you are an idiot. Truly it is not cute to be IV Play or some such nonsense.  Try to show a modicum of maturity. Thank you.

That is life from the waterfront... wish you were here too.

I'd love to hear of a fun night aboard your boat. Do your suppers end with movies too?
What's your favorite science-fiction movie?

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