When we pulled in to Delray Beach yesterday, we got busy exploring and forgot to put a red dot on our big pilothouse Loop map. Which meant we didn’t put a number on the red dot missing from our big pilothouse Loop map. Which meant we forgot to celebrate our 100th stop since leaving Washington D.C.
Delray Beach was a pretty awesome spot for an important milestone. Because today the plan was to cruise only three hours or so, we had time for a leisurely breakfast and a walk to the beach.
Now this is our kind of beach. No rap music. No marijuana hanging in the air. No garbage. None of those pesky kids. Just clean white sand and coordinated umbrellas in a pleasing shade of blue stretching to the horizon. Some of this even was codified.
We understand outlawing ballgames and some of the other stuff, but the “no pet” thing brought flashbacks of those those miserable slobs at Half Moon Bay. Because Delray Beach is such a nice town, however, we’re pretty sure that if the city council members knew Oscar and Benny they would’ve included an exception.
Even this stretch of A1A was pleasant.
Then off to the north again.
Since we’ve been Looping we’ve seen bridge houses and lock houses of all shapes and sizes and conditions. The bridge tender at Ocean Boulevard works in one of the coolest. They looks like the kind of towers where an evil king might imprison his daughter for having the temerity to fall in love with a common bridgekeeper.
As we approached West Palm Beach, another tower loomed off to the side. It looks like the kind of tower where an evil resort owner might position Marine snipers with orders to mow down anyone who has the temerity to say something unflattering about the size of his, um, “tower.”
The common wisdom is to stay put on weekends in Florida in order to avoid the crazy boaters. Fridays aren’t too bad, but as time passed today more and more folks came out to enjoy the day and to give the state law enforcement guys some action.
They take their no-wake zones seriously around here, although we got off yesterday with just a warning. (In our defense we were desperate to catch the next bridge and we go too slow to make up any lost time. Plus our cruising speed basically is what would be considered a no-wake speed for most boats.)
Anyway, we got our slip assignment just outside Palm Harbor. Palm Harbor has a great website with a map of numbered slips. We’ve noted before that this also should be required by law. We pulled up the map and found A209. Hang a left, nice easy shot down the last fairway, then slide right in.
What the map doesn’t show is the huge breakwater protecting the nice boats in the marina. THAT’S BECAUSE THERE ISN’T ONE. And exactly no place on the glossy website did anyone bother to mention what felt like a 10-knot current ripping perpendicular to the A-B fairway.* Perhaps we’ve had a more harrowing docking experience, but when we later discussed it at lunch nothing came to mind. At one point in the process Dana helplessly closed her eyes and waited for the certain crunch that only sheer luck prevented. But we’re in.
We have some basics—like Little Debbies—aboard Misty Pearl, but we’re not sure we’re provisioned enough to last in West Palm Beach through the weekend. Supposedly the restaurants around here are quite persnickety. Doug’s Big Orange windbreaker with the Power T obviously would make a more-than-acceptable dinner jacket but Dana foolishly failed to bring along anything that reasonably might serve as a cocktail dress, so we might be screwed.
* Yes, we probably should’ve recognized that there wasn’t protection from the fast current we’d been riding along the way, but we’re really not much into self-recriminations.