First of all, we’d like to wish everyone a very HAPPY THANKSGIVING! Hope yours was blessed with family, friends, and good times. We have finally found our way to Florida, and so far, the Sunshine State has really lived up to its name. Weather has been gorgeous and not too hot or cold (yet).
We did make a stop in St. Marys, GA last Sunday and were pleasantly surprised by the changes to this small town. As I mentioned before, Mark was stationed there from 1995 to 2000 while on the USS Rhode Island and then on shore tour as Squadron Engineer. Though Mark was quite busy during these years, the kids and I became very creative in finding ways to entertain ourselves in this “quaint” little town. To St. Marys’ credit, the downtown area has come a long way since we left - it was wonderful to see the city’s plans for a waterfront park come to fruition!
After a few more uneventful anchorages, we have stayed in St. Augustine for the past two nights in the municipal marina’s mooring field (tied up to a big mooring ball instead of using our anchor). Lots of dolphins around, and even a few manatees have come close by (no luck taking pictures of them yet despite my best efforts). We have found the city to be very charming and boater friendly - so many things to do and so little time! Favorite attractions include the historical St. George St. shopping/restaurant district, tour of a local chocolate factory, the Castillo de San Marcos, and biking across the Bridge of Lions to Anastasia State Park (more sea-shelling of course).
Today, we were very grateful to be included in the huge Thanksgiving pot luck extravaganza hosted by the St. Augustine Cruisers Net (this was their 4th annual). Sponsors provided 7 turkeys (4 roasted and 3 smoked - yum) and 3 hams; plus all of the home/boat-made side dishes, it was an amazing and delicious spread. We met lots of other couples and families, all with various destinations along the East Coast and all extremely friendly. I couldn’t help but miss my kiddos, family, and friends a lot today; though a reason to be even more thankful for their roles in our lives is always welcome.
Our next notable stop will be a visit to Mark’s Uncle Jack and Aunt Patty in Cocoa, FL - with the promise of a warm visit with family and a bonus of being offered a comfortable bed (WOW!). We will definitely post more before long, and we remain grateful for all of our friends reading this - be well, friends!!!!