From there we made what I consider one of those "I'm not-doing-that-again" decisions. Temperatures were in the high eighties, we couldn't sail any of our old haunts, and we elected to clear the final 22 bridges in ten hours. It would have been a shorter day if two of the bridges had not had mechanical difficulties. Flagler Bridge is now opening only once an hour at quarter past. After an hours wait there, we waited more than an hour for the next bridge to be opened manually and under duress. This waiting always results in us fighting current and trying to hold our position, doing donuts or sailing back up stream and lapping the waterway until the tender says we may pass through. This year we added the stress of paddle boarders crossing the waterway at Boca Resort, a service the resort should not provide! But all ended well, we made Lauderdale by 5:15, had a cheap dinner on A1A across from the beach, and crashed before our last day on the water. This trip it is the admiral who is saying, "No more ICW. Seen it, been there, give me ocean sailing next year."
Our run to Miami was as uneventful as this whole trip was. Sadly, we had 4-5 knot winds, 4 foot seas and we were forced to motor all the way. The good news is that we were safely tied in our new slip in Coconut Grove about 1 PM and we were ahead of the cold front expected Friday. We made our November 15 goal by two days and had a safe, simple passage.
So, from Miami it was a two day drive home to Delaware for family time. It was hard to leave that tropical feel when you knew it will be so cold up north but we will enjoy the family and look forward to Miami after the New Year. Happy holidays to all and best wishes for fair winds and safe crossings to our sailing friends. We will see you in the Bahamas!