Jan 2000

It sure seems strange to write that date. As we seldom write cheques, it will take us quite a while to get used to the new century.

The launch of the shuttle finally took place and we were there to see it go. A most spectacular sight, but over quickly. I took some photos, but as they haven’t been developed yet, am not sure if they turned out at all.

Within a day of the launch, Windswept IV was finally underway again. Murray single-handed the boat, while I drove the car. It was two short days to Vero Beach where we took a mooring until after Christmas. The marina requires that vessels raft together on these mooring, so we were tied to friends, Bev and John on Chalet de Mer.

Christmas was quiet aboard, but Santa managed to fill our stockings. The cruisers got together for dinner ashore. It was a lovely time, but quite cool. No snow though!

Our friend Linda arrived on Dec 29th and we dropped the mooring and headed further south the next day. Peck Lake was our planned destination for New Year’s Eve. I guess that was a popular choice, as it started to fill up. By evening, it was packed. So, not too much drinking aboard this ship, just in case we had to haul anchor quickly during the night. Just before midnight, the fireworks started from at least three different locations. The next 45 minutes were spent quaffing champagne and enjoying the beautiful display.

New Year’s Day found us out on the ocean heading for West Palm Beach. It was a glorious day, with lots of sun and sea. But no fish. So, we had turkey.

After a few days in Palm Beach area, we headed back to Peck Lake for one more night, then on the Vero and a mooring. Linda’s last day was spent enjoying the stores of the outlet mall. She’s much more fun to shop with than Murray! On Saturday, we returned her to Orlando airport and sent her northward to snow and work.

Now, we are still in Vero and awaiting the return of our watermaker. I forgot to mention that we had found a good deal on a used PUR 80 watermaker. It needed some repairs and was shipped back to PUR over the holiday season. They expect it to arrive here within the next few days. Then, we will finish installation and head south once more.

As soon as we get a weather window, we will cross to the Bahamas. Most of our friends are there already. Silent Running and Dromenon, also from Port Stanley, have traveled through the Bahamas already, visited Cuba, and headed on to Jamaica. Their plans are to spend the summer in Guatemala. The visit to Cuba did not go as planned and was a great disappointment to them. Perhaps it is just as well that our plans to visit there this winter did not work out.

We will stay in touch. I will not check this address too frequently, so send any mail to the pocketmail address. That one we check almost daily while in the US.

All the best to everyone,

Heather & Murray Rand
aboard Windswept IV
Ham Radio VE3 ZUA