Monday, January 15, 2018

Adventures of 2018 On Ireland’s Eye Jan 10th

While waiting at the terminal at Logan Airport to head back to Ireland’s Eye Nana suddenly heard the voices of her children and grandchildren. Happy 60th birthday Nana could be heard coming from little voices carrying birthday banners and favors. There right in front of her was strollers, toddlers and at least seven of her ten grandchildren all ready to board the plane. Well we did it one of the daughters said - we are going to The Pink Shell Resort to celebrate your birthday. Poor Nana was dumb struck and just could not believe that they had made this happen. Nandad did a great job of keeping it a  secret as indeed did all the grandchildren four of which were never on a plane before and all under three - wow what a plane ride. We had the best time at the pool, on the beach and even had a sunset dinner at Bongo’s which was a little chaos - apologies to anybody there for a quite romantic dinner! 

January 13th Nana and Nandad said goodbye to all the family after packing them into the limo that had six car seats, a booster seat and of course enough seats for the adults. One could sense a little apprehension about the flight ahead as this time Nana would not be onboard. Nandad was very quick in making sure nobody was missing or left behind - we really did feel a little like the movie Home Alone! 

Nana and Nandad returned to IE at Cape Coral exhausted and ready for a nap. In the afternoon Nandad took out his e-bike donned his back pack ( a gift from his secret Santa ) and headed for the grocery store. Nana was very impressed when he returned - this bike might be the best thing.

January 15th Ireland’s Eye after filling with diesel at the Landing Marina headed for South Seas Captiva. A very pleasant passage in the sunshine and wind. After a wonderful bike ride to the Santiva General Store and a well deserved ice cream Nana sat by the ocean and read her book while the sunset. Nothing better - what a life. 


Thursday, December 14, 2017

Dec 14th 2017 Heading back home

Well if Santa can't have snow I guess the next best thing would be a hammock. Irelands Eye is back at Cape Coral where she will remain until we return sometime in January. Nana and Nandad are ready for some home time to catch up with all those little ones. Wishing you all a very happy Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year. Looking forward to Cruising adventures on Irelands Eye in 2018. 


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Dec 13th 2017

Ireland's Eye holding her own beside the Black Cove motor Yacht. Our view at night while sitting outside astern. The lights are so pretty and the wind blowing through the palms is very calming. 

Dec 12 the Nana and Nandad took the day to ride to the J.N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge. It was a five mile ride however this time the wind and sun were kinder and we also had the shade of an actual bike path all the way. When we arrived to the visitors centre we were provided with binoculars for the four mile Tram ride around the reserve and Nandad purchased his lifetime National Parks and Federal Recreation Lands Pass - oh the places we will go. We also purchased our Kick the Bottle bags so we could fill up with filtered water for our ride. 


The park is over 6400 acres which means that over 70 percent of the island is conservation land. It is a mangrove forest that form an ecosystem of its own. Our tour guide Lewis was incredibly informed and we has lots of time to see and witness the wildlife in its natural habitat- a truely not to miss event. On our way back we had a wonderful lunch at Rosie's Cafe & Grill on Palm Ridge Rd.,  which is this very cute hidden away little gem. Nana finally has a Conch that she can attempt to blow at sunset - not as easy as you might think! This was also purchased on our way back to the marina at She Sells Sea Shells - now try saying that fast! 


On our next visit Nana would like to do a guided kayak tour around Tarpon Bay, bike wildlife drive at sunset and bike along the West Gulf Drive. It was a great nature day where we got to see alligator, nesting Osprey, herons, egrets, white and brown pelicans, roseate spoonbill and these tiny black crabs crawling up the trucks of the mangrove. 

Today Irelands Eye will cruise to Cape Coral where she wil stay for a few weeks while Nana and Nandad celebrate Christmas with friends and family. Time to return to the snow. 


Monday, December 11, 2017

Dec 11th 2017

Sunday December 10th a Layday at Pink Shell and as you can see Nana is well wrapped up. We rode our bikes 6 miles to get Mass at St Columbkille Fort Meyers. Now trust me when I tell you it was a very long ride against the wind all the way. Naturally we arrived as Mass was finishing so a very nice lady offered to drive us to Subway where we got breakfast and then walked back to the church which was another mile!! We were very determined that we would get Mass. After all that effort we were honored by the bishop, The Knights of Columbus and a wonderful choir. During Mass Nandad recharged his e-bike for the ride back. A very active morning. 

Monday December 11th Irelands Eye is leaving today for Sanibel. A great picture of Nandad at the Christmas Poinsettia down at Time Square Fort Meyers beach. Also when returning to the boat last night after a wonderful evening stroll this was our late night visitor. 

Monday Ireland Eye leaves The Pink Shell after four wonderful days. She arrived at Sanabel Marina which is just a short ride across San Carlos Bay. Again the Skipper did a fantastic job of backing in Irelands Eye into a narrow slip right beside the Gramma Dots Seaside Saloon. The Marina is surrounded by magnificant Black Cove motor yachts as the owner runs Ireland Yacht Services. Irelands Eye looks quite the elegant lady holding her own. A wonderful bike ride to the Lighthouse and stroll along Lighthouse Beach where lots of bleachers are doing the Sanabel Stoop collecting shells. Sanibel has 22 miles of bike trails crisscrossing the island which is 12 miles long and three miles wide. 


Saturday, December 9, 2017

Dec 9th 2017

Dec 6th

Irelands Eye enjoyed her stay at THe City of Cape Coral and before leaving Nana found her next fun adventure. Biking around on this beautiful machine. Not sure Nandad would approve! We left for a quite anchorage spot away from the crowds and found ourselves the perfect spot right off Pine Island at the tip of St James City. We had the perfect evening with a wonderful dinner, sunset and star gazing sitting right at the bow of the boat. It is truly one of the amazing parts of boating to be able to enjoy Mother Nature at her best. We spotted a falling star and a very clear Orion but the moon and the dipper stayed hidden away. We also could hear the dolphins play and breath but unable to see them which was an experience not to be missed. Perhaps we can share someday with the grandkids. 

Dec 7th

Irelands Eye is headed for three days at The Pink Shell Marina where Nana intends to soak up some sunshine, catch up with some friends, have a massage, swim in the pool, eat wonderful food, and enjoy many walks along the beach. Life at its best. 

On Thursday night we had the opportunity to star gaze this time through a much bigger telescope which was fantastic.

We had a wonderful day with Sue and Dave Patton and Sue's sisters Marge and Nancy. They provided the lunch and we cruised right up the waterway and came around by the Gulf. There were some very narrow parts and the Skipper was happy to have some assistance from the experienced Dave. We also had a group of dolphin entertain us for quite a while which was very entertaining. I include a picture of a very happy Nandad cleaning the windows- he did a fantastic job. The things you will do when you are expecting visitors. 

Dec 8th 

After a fantastic morning at the Spa followed by a wonderful afternoon on the beach Nana and Nandad met with Helen and Jeff  and their friends Mike and Pia. We had cocktails onboard followed by dinner downtown at Nervous Nellies and then a night cap on the stern of Irelands Eye. A wonderful evening with great company. 

Dec 9th 

A very windy and rainy night with lots of thunder and lightening so today, Saturday is very wet, windy and cold. The perfect day for laundry, gym and blogging. Dave picked us up from the marina and took us to see their new condo where Sue had the most delicious dinner prepared for us. They have the perfect view with the ICW on one side and Sanibel on the other. Dave then drove us to see the lights at Naples Botanical Gardens which was truely a magical evening. 

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

2017Dec5th

Nana and Nandad are now at the City of Cape Coral Yacht Basin. This marina is right at the entrance to Redfish Pt. Just before the GIWW- Gulf Intercoatal Waterway Mile 0.It is part of the Cape Coral Parks & Recreation so lots of activity here. There is a very large pool, a small beach, lots of tennis courts and indoor pickle ball with outdoor handball- oh to have all that energy! Before leaving The City of Fort Meyers Nana and Nandad had a very active Layday. Nandad actually went for a ride on his little electric bike. 
Nana has decided that she really likes red sculpture which this ones definitely fits the bill. It is called Fire Dance and sits in the middle of Centennial Park however I doubt that it would fit in my back yard!
There is a wonderful restaurant called the Boat House right at the entrance of the basin with great food, live music and delicious cocktails.
There is definitely a Christmas atmosphere here with lots of friendly boaters. A very pleasant spot with again another wonderful sunset right over the river. 

Sunday, December 3, 2017

2017Dec3rd


 A very happy Nana doing her time at the helm. Today was a very long day going through four locks,multiple bridges and finally arriving at our destination The City of Fort Meyers just as the sun was about to set 5.34 pm. Leaving Clewiston and heading west along the OCWW brings the most spectacular bird watching opportunity. This stretch of about six miles provides the best viewing of all types of heron simply flying from towering leather ferns,stately oaks dripping with moss and verdant vegation along the shore- as described in the Waterway Guide. Nana did not see any gator this time round but did spot a very big bald eagle perched on the oak tree minding it own business. Lots of cattle grazing along the Caloocahatchee Canal and also some beautiful horses spotted grazing very happily on the front lawns.
Now I realize that lots of you will wonder what do you do while cruising for several hours. Well today Nana cleaned the inside of the boat, did two hours helm time, made lunch and dinner, did yoga on the stern and also sunbathing in the shade on the bridge. Now that's a good day. We arrived into City Of Fort Meyers where the shipper showed his true colors and backed Irelands Eye into her slip beautifully 
After checking in at the Ship's store we sat up on the bridge and enjoyed a cocktail while watching the sun set for the day. 
The cattle grazing along the Caloosahatchee Canal
The full moon view from the stern as we eat onboard- now that's what boating is all about. We will have a lay day tomorrow and then decide where to from here.