Saturday, January 10, 2009

Good Morning one and all. Day three started with a wonderful breakfast here at the "compound" The house is nice but old and will do fine. The hot tub is broken, but we have figured it out. We have our own fiberglass guy (Grady) with us whose second order of business is to fix the hot tub. We should be neck deep by this evening.

The trip down was every bit the adventure expected. Most of the excitement was with Grady and the powerboat,it seem a motorhome in front of him ran down a construction barrel and bounced off a bairier then kissed the red chevy Grady was pulling Thunder Rogue with.Between accidents he and the boat arrived here mostly safe, except for a dented fender on the truck and wiring to replace from when the trailer separated from the hitch.

Towing Lightning Rod was an adventure in and of itself. The picture is from when we first loaded her. After this Bill white worked 18 hour days to give a fine racing bottom and last Wednesday we had our Bon Voyage party where the entire crew helped load her for the road.

Along the way we were passed by three Catalina 22s, one of which Glenn recognized. "That's Micky Richardson," he exclaimed, "with Mischief." we later stopped for gas at the same place and found out they were having a Regatta at Gilbert's in Key Largo. We loaned one of the three boats our tire inflator to pump up a soft tire, to no avail as his valve stem broke.The tire was quickly changer and off they went.

We had to have a permit, wide load signs, flags and flashing lights for the trip. Officer Barney Fife, one of at least ten of the DOT officers we had already seen along the way stopped us to check our permit and he did say the four flags we had were not sufficient, so even though we didn't get ticketed, $100.00 he warned us we could and especially down on the Keys. Barny Fife the DOT officer was a hoot a slight black dude ,pleasent face and kind of dancing motion about him,a two inch cigar hanging out of his mouth,not lit did his act perfectly.Later that day we send Glenn up to attach flags at the "widest point."

We did this with free flags from Home depot and some tape.

The first excitement Jerry and I were involved in happened as we began our journey into the keys. It seems I had forgotten to renew the registration on the small boat trailer and Grady also had been stopped and warned. So while we had eight hours to burn waiting for our police escort to come down into the Keys at 9:00 PM We started out to go see the Catalina's rig, but we decided to have lunch and then take care of the registration. On the way down to the tag office, Grady and Glenn were driving along and the receiver came out of the hitch and the boat was careering down the road. I'm sure a very scary moment for Grady the boat came to a halt saftly and Glenn found the receiver, we gave them our hitch pin and fixed the scarred wiring. Soon they had the updated the registration and off they went to open the house.

Jerry and I went back to get Lightning Rod and found the greatest trailer part store where we bought a spare for the power boat trailer, a bunch of different pins and were gifted with the stuff we needed to fix the wiring right.

At 9:00PM we met Bob from the Monroe County Sheriff's office. A big and nice guy, he was our escort into the Keys. Whenever we needed to make a turn he would stop traffic for us and we arrived safely at the Old Island Marina at 11:30. Boy was Jerry relieved!

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