Blue Hair: Not a Fashion Statement


Sable at Useppa Island

Sable at Useppa Island

Dec. 18: Marathon Marina, Florida Keys. You can’t get lazy or bored sailing. Everyday is different. For example, yesterday we crossed from the Marco Island to the Florida Keys. This means either sailing overnight or stopping somewhere without protection from the weather in Florida Bay, an extension of the Gulf of Mexico. We opted for stopping since the winds had died and seas were flat. Dinner was caesar salad, lamb and rice and of course followed by wine in the cockpit. Life is good. A calm night for cooking, eating and sleeping.dplphins

This morning we pulled up anchor to finish the trip to Marathon where we planned to refuel before finishing this leg to Miami. Since we have no wind-for now- we have to be prepared to motor all the way. Within 20 minutes Ed realized the engine would not open up full throttle. Normally we don’t run it that fast, but right now we are breaking in a new engine and every half hour we have to run it for 4 minutes wide open. He knew the most likely problem was something caught around the prop. He tried a trick that has worked in the past with seaweed, run the prop in reverse. No luck this time. So dive.

blue hair

Now Ed is 78 and I’m not real eager for him to do this anymore, and he’s not so eager either. He has to dive with breath-holding and a face mask, working along under the stern of the boat to the propeller. But we had no other option. Sure enough, here is a photo of the line he cut off the prop. Took two dives and even then, he didn’t feel it was all off. The blue hair is from the bottom paint which had to stay until we got showers in Marathon. Once there we hired a diver to check again since our next plan is to run overnight up to Miami in Hawks Channel which is the Florida Straits along the coastline. Sure enough he came up with almost as much as Ed had already removed. Hope we don’t meet up with the fisherman who lost a trap!

crab pot line

crab pot line

So, who knows what tomorrow, or I should say tonight will bring. Nothing serious we hope, just a long night changing watches. We will be in deep water, so that is good, but there still has to be someone to stand watch to look for traffic.
More from Miami,
Jan, Ed and Sable

About ejhowle23

Authors and adventurers, participated in the World Race 2011, an automobile rally from New York to Paris, crossing three continents and 14,000 land miles. Following much the same route as the setting for our debut novel, The Long Road to Paris. This blog describes our own adventures and challenges. And now you can follow our Bahamas sailing adventure that provides the setting for our second novel, Night Watch. Our rally, the African Safari Challenge, crossed five countries in South Africa in May 2014 and in 2015 we participated in the second Trans-American rally this time from Nova Scotia to San Francisco. Spring of 2016 we travelled 28 days around Australia with friends from previous rallies and in the fall participated in our most exhausting rally through Argentina, Chili and Peru- the Rally of the Incas. We were awarded the Against All Odds award. We're still not sure if this was for us or our car. Stewball never broke down and we hardly did. We will soon take on Iceland as a self-drive tour and in the fall of 2017 we will participate in the Odyssey Italia and then back to Africa for a do-over (almost) of the Africa Safari Challenge.
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2 Responses to Blue Hair: Not a Fashion Statement

  1. Carla says:

    You guys are our heroes. Doing this kind of stuff at 78….wear the blue hair with pride, Ed 😉

  2. joanie Alexander says:

    Loving following your adventures through my old sailing grounds. I had a trap snag that anchored us to the bottom, by the shaft, in heavy current. No blue hair banner to sport. Ditto Carla, Ed. Wear with pride!

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