Escape to the Keys!

Happy Saturday!

Ugh, winter.

Ugh, winter.

I decided to hibernate from blogging over the last couple of months, since life (in the form of wedding planning, among other things) was eating up my free time, not to mention any semblance of calm, happy thoughts.

Oh yeah, this also happened. My poor Seahawks.

Oh yeah, and this happened. My poor Seahawks.

But now the hard parts are over. All there is to do is wait for the next month to go by so that things can get back to normal.

Besides, there wasn’t much to write about – in January after the temperatures dropped, Chuck and I moved off the boat to wait out the winter living in various rooms in random people’s homes. Shady? Perhaps. But at least they have central heat, which is more than I can say for poor Harmony the Sailboat. I was having flashbacks to the townhouse I rented while stationed in Japan – only three space heaters in the entire place, so if you were anywhere other than the living room or two of the three bedrooms you were SOL during the winter. My morning routine had consisted of dashing to the bathroom to turn on the shower, then throwing a towel in the dryer while sprinting back to bed to wait for everything to warm up.

Yeah, I'd say that's accurate. (Photo from

Yeah, I’d say that’s accurate. (Photo from of the Ice Hotel in Sweden. BTW, who on earth builds a toilet out of ice?!)

However, Chuck and I did get a reprieve from the winter last week. He had to fly down to Key West for work, and I joined him for the second half of his trip. After the frigid air of Virginia, the sunshine sure did feel nice!

Fabulous Cuban coffee!

…as did the fabulous Cuban coffee!

Key West was fun, but the highlight of our trip was our excursion over to the Dry Tortugas. One of Chuck’s friends had brought his sailboat down for the winter, so six of us had piled onboard last Friday to spend Presidents’ Day weekend sailing, fishing, and enjoying the sights and the sunshine.

No sign of pirates anywhere

No sign of pirates anywhere

Though I was doing my best to stay out of the sun so I didn’t mess up my skin before the wedding (yeah, I know – I’m turning into one of those brides) I was eager to get in the water for some snorkeling. Unfortunately the visibility wasn’t the best, and the water was freezing! Even with a wetsuit on I was shivering the whole time. Oh well, that’s what the summertime is for.

Chuck and his friends are avid spearfishers (thank goodness, because I’m terrible at it) so we dined on fresh fish every night during the trip. On the way over to the Tortugas, we had anchored for a couple of hours near the Marquesas while the guys caught enough yellowjack, mackerel, snapper, and hogfish to last us for the four-day journey.



We even had some friends join us for the trip! Like Pete the Pelican, who had decided to come aboard and chill on the deck.

He also left a bit of a mess to clean up. How rude!

Though he did leave a bit of a mess to clean up. How rude!

And then there was Josh the Goliath Grouper, who hung out at the boat while we were anchored by Fort Jefferson. You can’t tell from the pictures, but he was HUGE – close to seven feet long and happy to devour all the fish scraps we threw overboard.

Hey guys, don't mind me

Hey guys, don’t mind me

I woke up like this. #flawless

Just here admiring your boat

Overall a great trip, and one I highly recommend if you find yourself in Key West! You can get to the Dry Tortugas by ferry or by seaplane, or you can do what we did and find a buddy with a sailboat. It’s about 65 miles away, and with decent winds we were able to leave Key West early Friday afternoon, anchor at the Marquesas that night, and arrive at Fort Jefferson on Saturday afternoon.

While we were away, Snowmageddon 2015 happened on the East Coast, meaning we had to unbury the boat as soon as we got back to Virginia. Oh, what I would do for some Key West warmth and a Cuban coffee right now.

The hell with this, I'm heading back to Florida!

I’m gonna hijack this thing and sail back to Florida! That is, as soon as I dig it out from under the ice.


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