We are heading south down the Intracoastal Waterway of Florida. We are "inside" meaning we are behind the barrier islands on the coast, trundling past the backyards of fancy houses and in wild, marshy, mangrovy areas. We are seeing lots of dolphins, some of which swim alongside the boat jumping up to take a look at these interesting creatures floating on the water. The pelicans glide just above the water - we keep waiting for one to catch a wing tip and cartwheel into the water, but they never do.
The other night, I woke up very early and reached over to my bedside light to get my headlamp to read for a bit. I felt something cool next to the headlamp, turned it on and was surprised to see a small, very green lizard on the wall by my head. I did not scream (as Jeff would have you believe), but did wake him up to see it as it walked across his pillow. I was a biology major and am not freaked out by most fauna. The next morning we found the lizard, caught him and contained him and were able to let him go when we docked in Cocoa, FL to visit the world's biggest, funkiest hardware store. He was glad to get back to land.
We've met some wonderful fellow cruisers - a pair of Aussies on the sailboat "Salty Sally" - a great name for a boat, I think - and another Minnesota couple on another sailboat.
In addition to new friends, we ran into some old friends. We took a mooring ball in Vero Beach, dinghied in to the dock and took the free bus to town to start provisioning for the Bahamas. When we returned, there was a note on our door from Dan and Kathy "Ariel" - fellow cruisers we met doing the Great Loop trip six years ago! They now spend their winters in Vero Beach and were looking at boats in the marina to find friends from Michigan who had just arrived. They saw "Adirondack," checked at the office to find out if the boat was still ours and left a note with their phone numbers. We made contact and had a lovely dinner and catch-up with them. It helps to have a boat with a fairly unique name!
We are starting to look at weather to find a good window to make the passage across the Gulf Stream over to Bimini and the Bahamas. There are lots of lists being generated - things to pick up for the boat at the West Marine mother store in Fort Lauderdale and food and drink to stow for the trip where groceries will be expensive and hard to find in places.