Monday, July 30, 2012

Relaxing on the coast

Beach Bliss

We are in Cocoa Beach, on Florida's "Space Coast" where the area code is three, two, one, just like a rocket countdown. No map link today in consideration of our host, who generously provides us will full hookups when we come to visit. We are just a block from the beach, and we also have access to a pool, hot tub, laundry, and a half dozen restaurants in easy walking distance. Two of those happen to be fantastic Italian places, and we've patronized both since arriving here Thursday afternoon. We also pulled the scooters out and rode down to a nearby resort for half-price massages, courtesy of Space Coast Coupons, a site I highly recommend for anyone visiting.

I was surprised to find the sea temperature to be a bit low for comfort, as it was nice the last couple of times we visited. The pool is nice and warm, though. We've been using our time here to recharge our batteries -- both literally and figuratively. Other than the couple of excursions to the beach and the pool, we've been mostly staying inside the bus and catching up on email, boat searching, and the last remaining hiccups from our domicile change to South Dakota. In the evening after the sun sets it is cool enough to take a walk, either before or after cocktails on the roof deck. As always, a very pleasant stay.

In keeping with the recent theme of boats disappearing from the market just as we try to see them, the boats we had lined up in the Treasure Coast area south of here are now off the list. The one that we really wanted to see is on the hard and unavailable for viewing, so the listing broker is pulling the listing. Two other boats, which we have already seen but we thought might be worth a second look, do not warrant a trip from Fort Lauderdale for our broker. Ironically, one of the boats that we had to wave off in Jacksonville because it was "under contract" is now back on the market, which really ticks me off because we asked (through our broker) the listing broker if we could get aboard anyway -- contracts fall through all the time -- and he said no. Really short-sighted on his part -- we've decided it's not worth renting a car and making a five-hour round trip to see it from here.

I spent a good part of yesterday combing through Yachtworld again. I'm trying to avoid the same mistake I made in Savannah by not searching deeply enough before we moved along -- you may remember reading that we ended up renting a car in Jacksonville and driving back to Savannah for the day to look at a boat that, had I done the work ahead of time, we might have seen before we left town. Also, as many prospective candidates are now off the list, we need to re-fill the pipeline with some fresh prospects. That will also shape our route plans, at least unless and until we get called to a disaster.

Several people have asked just exactly what kind of boat we are looking for, and why it requires gallivanting all over the country. That's a great question, and other than resorting to Potter Stewart's famous quote, "I know it when I see it," it's hard to answer concisely. So much so that it probably warrants its own post, which I will try to get to over the next few days. I think we manage to confuse even our broker sometimes, as the variety of boats we ask him to show us can seem all over the map, but rest assured there is a method to our madness.

While the boats on the Treasure Coast are off the table, we still want to visit our good friends there, Captains Chris and Alyse Caldwell of Captain Chris Yacht Services. Regular readers may recall that we spent Christmas with them last year, and that Louise and our good friend Stephanie took a week-long training cruise with them. We always enjoy their company, and our schedules happen to mesh, so we have arranged to meet them for dinner on Wednesday. Unfortunately, the only reasonable overnight option with power will be a mobile home park a few miles away, who were reluctant to take a one-night guest, but I managed to convince them.

From there we will head south to Palm Beach, where a member of the DeFever Cruisers group has offered to show us his DeFever 52 Offshore Cruiser Thursday afternoon. This is a model we are seriously considering, but only 17 or so were ever built. His is not for sale, but having a look will inform us whether or not we should go to great lengths to pursue them when they do come on the market. There are two on the market at this writing, but all reports are that both are somewhat rough and have suffered some neglect.

Once in Palm Beach there are two other boats we'll try to see -- assuming our luck changes and they don't drop off the market before we even get there. From there we will likely head all the way to Fort Lauderdale, where we have friends we'd like to visit along with one more boat to see, long shot though it is.

Photo by Scott Ableman, used under a Creative Commons license.

1 comment:

  1. At the risk of asking questions that might somewhat peeve you a bit, kinda like my over analysis question..... Wasn't Odyssey somewhat neglected when you found her? You powered thru and made her perfect, can this happen with one of the DeFevers?? If you stress reality of what they might be worth considering the necessary repairs...


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