CHAPTER 13         MAR 11, 2008

INTRACOASTAL WATER WAY (ICW) Ft Myers FL to Marathon Key FL

PICTURES

The ICW in FLORIDA is full of crab pots and low bridges. We are continuing to enjoy sunny, hot and humid weather in the 8os, and its winter!

Mar 11 We picked up a mooring in FORT MYERS BEACH and saw our first Roseate Spoonbills - beautiful big pink birds with large bills shaped like spoons. Next evening we anchored in MARCO ISLAND surrounded by expensive high rise condos. A fellow in the sailboat next to us played his bagpipes at sunset. How very special! And, the following evening we anchored in the EVERGLADES LITTLE SHARK RIVER (with plenty of mosquitoes, alligators, and no cell phone service), and heard a fellow on a sailboat play his conch shell at sunset (see picture). I love Florida!

Mar 14 arrived in MARATHON KEY and stayed 3 weeks in Marathon Marina. It stayed windy, hot and humid the whole time. It took a couple of days for us Northerners to get the hang of it, but we soon adjusted to the much slower paced lifestyle of the Keys. We rode our bikes or took the dinghy everywhere. Note: Living on a boat means when you go to the grocery store, you only buy what you can fit in your backpack and in basket on the bike (see picture) - many people actually have coolers strapped onto their bikes. Its so hot and humid here that you cant even leave fruit out for more than a day or two or it spoils. One day we biked 5 miles each way to Office Depot to buy a new printer/copier/scanner, and strapped it onto the back fender/carrying rack of my bike! Other times we went to Sombrero Beach by dinghy (see picture). Another fun adventure was taking the local bus (1 hour ride) to KEY WEST - cost was $1! Another day, we biked the "7 Mile Bridge" to PIGEON KEY (see picture). We had great fun every Tuesday at the "7 Mile Grill", where we met with other Krogen boat owners (aka Krogen Mafia) for breakfast and conversation.  During our stay in Marathon, we enjoyed many happy hours and dinners with other boaters. Saw manatees, dolphins, and stingrays swimming, lots of beautiful birds, and some very colorful lizards that lived at our marina. Unfortunately during our stay in MARATHON, a women sitting in a speeding boat was killed by a 75 pound stingray when it flew out of the water and hit her very tragic.

I love the colors of the Keys (see picture)! It was great staying put for a while, but tomorrow we start heading north again for the first time since last June!

So far we have traveled 3680 miles on this trip, plus the previous 1000 miles when we brought SUMMERTIME up the Intracoastal Waterway from Charleston SC to Old Saybrook CT in 2005. We look forward to hearing from friends and family please keep the calls and emails coming!

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