|The Voyage Begins|
|Tony set sail from Tierra Verde, FL on Saturday May 3, 2003 at 08:00, with Bob Armstrong as his crew. The objective was to get the boat as far north as possible, prior to June 1, to avoid hurricane season in Florida. Monica and Anne were scheduled to join him on June 1, somewhere on the North Carolina coast. So go the best laid plans...
Tony and Bob were making great time, with mostly good weather and fair sailing conditions. On Friday June 9, all that changed. They pulled the anchor that morning from Rodriguez Key in the Florida Keys, anticipating a glorious day of sailing. About 09:00 Tony had an accident on board about three miles off Key Largo. A winch on the main sail broke loose while he was cranking it and it hit him in the mouth, splitting his lip and knocking out his two front teeth. He called the Coast Guard for assistance and they directed him into the Ocean Reef Yacht Club, one of the most exclusive, (that translates into expensive), marinas in Florida. It was at this point that Bob Armstrong took over and began making the decisions on behalf of Tony, given his state. Our thanks to Bob who really managed the situation well and kept a cool head throughout the ordeal.
Bob rented a car and raced Tony up to a hospital in Miami where there was a plastic surgeon on duty ready to sew up Tony's lip. After that adventure, Bob decided to bring Tony home to recuperate for a few days and get his teeth fixed by his dentist.
|Tierra Verde, FL|
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|Tony was home for four days and then back at it with his brother Michael on May 13th. They drove back to Key Largo, paid the exorbitant marina bill and began heading north. ( I joked with Tony, it's the most expensive boating vacation we NEVER enjoyed!).
Tony and Michael were able to get the boat to St. Augustine, FL where they parted on May 20. Tony came home for two days for more dental work and to hook up with Bob Pippi, his Canadian golfing buddy who would crew with him for the next 10 days until Monica and Anne could join him on June 1.
Tony and Bob encountered a few problems along the way, the major one, keeping them in Myrtle Beach SC for several days, was the prop failing. They had the boat pulled, the bad prop removed and the old spare put back on the boat. The plan was to ship the prop back to the manufacturer for repair and reinstall once fixed. It was in pulling the boat that another problem was discovered. A seam had burst along the rudder causing water to seep into the rudder area. Fortunately, it was discovered and repaired before it became a disaster.
On Saturday, May 31, Monica and Anne left Tierra Verde, FL in Bob Pippi's car, to join Tony and Bob in Little River, SC. They stopped that evening in Savannah, GA and took off early on Sunday morning to make Little River by 10:00 a.m, hoping to get at least a half days sail in. After 10 minutes on the road, Bob Pippi's car broke down. It was towed to a nearby garage, just outside of Hilton Head, SC. Tony and Bob drove a rental car down to meet Anne and Monica. Tony, Anne and Monica drove back up to Little River, SC arriving just after 6:00 p.m.
Bob stayed with the car for another day to have it repaired and then headed back up to Canada.