Archive: » 2011 » July

Real Time Update!

We’ve been trying to catch up on our entries documenting our travels along America’s gulf coast, but clearly we don’t work fast enough, take too many pictures, spend our days and nights goofing off, or all of the above. So here’s a real-time update: We’re currently in Key West getting ready to sail to the Dry Tortugas from where we’ll launch to Isla Mujeres, Mexico. We’ll be heading south from there, passing through Belize, and ultimately arriving to the Rio Dulce in Guatemala. This is a safe place to be during the hurricane season. So that’s the plan. Now all we have to do is get there.

Further adventures on the Mississippi Sound

So, we finally get the bikinis out and start to feel progress toward a warmer climate. Here we begin our sandcastle project in earnest – we’ll share more on it when ready, but for now we’re just happy to be running our fingers through the sand.

Exploring the Mississippi Sound

Well, after the Big Easy’s whirlwind sojourn we’re happy to be off for some quiet time. Here we hit the first white sand beaches and start working on our tan lines, although the bikinis will have to wait a bit.

New Orleans

After spending our anniversary aboard and in seclusion, we venture into the Big Easy for a scandalous few days where everything is crowded, festive and verging on riotous. We decided to leave the camera at home for the actual Fat Tuesday parades; sorry for the lack of coverage on those wild festivities. But there’s much more to this wonderful city, and here’s our summary.

Anniversary weekend

We met five years ago today, on March 5th, 2006, and what a ride it has been. As we dive into this new chapter of our lives our relationship is still growing and deepening. We have goals for our next five years and will start working on them as soon as we finish writing this sentence.

Arriving into New Orleans

Today is a big day for us. We’ll be navigating through the Harvey Locks (ICW mile marker zero), down the Mississippi River past New Orleans, and then on to a marina in Slidell, about 25 miles east of the Big Easy. We were going to stay closer to downtown, but we can stay in the Slidell marina and rent a car for a week for the same price as staying 3 days tied up in the city. We thank Dean and Alita of Adagio for this tip; we’re still cruising this leg together.

And yes, our timing is impeccable: we hit the city exactly during Mardi Gras, and we also get to celebrate our anniversary here. This is 100% happenstance because we really don’t know where we’re going nor what we’re doing half the time, and the other half we don’t plan either.

Heading to New Orleans

We leave for New Orleans with Dean and Alita of Adagio. It’ll take two days; here we get to within 5 miles of Harvey Locks, staging our final approach into the Mississippi River and the Big Easy.

Houma, Louisiana

Another great Southern town. We eat well, enjoy the sites, the people, the music, and meet another sailing couple.

Morgan City Update

You may have heard about the extensive flooding that occurred this Spring in the southern states. This is a photo that Tommy McNulty sent us of the public dock we were tied to. Everything is under water except for the piles. That’s the RR bridge in the background.

Morgan City, Louisiana

Here’s a sleepy little Southern town where most folks would just stop for the night or pass right on by. But how many big cities have such an amazing assortment of grand bridges? That alone pulls us in, so we stay till satiated.

Slowing way down, we explore and find Morgan City to be a hidden gem. The locals are open, friendly, and gracious with their time and knowledge. ¬†Latin Corner, a Cuban restaurant, serves us the best plantains we’ve ever eaten (a distinction that means a lot coming from Ricardo). We discover a family-owned hardware store where we spend hours getting lost in the aisles, marveling at gadgets of intense precision and mysterious specialty. Plus, we meet a Red Hot Cajun Babe who, weeks later, plucks us from the throngs of revelers at Mardi Gras in New Orleans – a fun coincidence of sorts for sure.

It is in Morgan City that we begin to understand what this leg of our trip will offer, and we’re seduced.

Heading to Morgan City

Presently we’re in the Florida Keys getting ready to cross to Central America, but before we tell you more about that, we need to get up-to-date. We continue with our delightful voyage along the continent’s “third coast”, a marvelously low-key setting that has broadened our understanding of this truly diverse country.