Friday, February 18, 2022

Great "mini" Cruiser's Reunion and a sidetrip down memory lane.

On Wednesday the plan was to travel about 45 miles south to Palatka to meet up with former cruising friends from 3 other boats; Nancy formerly on Silver Seas, Marlene & Benno formerly on Diesel Duck, and Allayne & Dennis formerly on Audrey Paige.  

Nancy was also heading south, Marlene and Benno coming up from Ocala, and Allayne and Dennis coming inland from St. Augustine, one of the places here in Florida they have been visiting this winter.

We met each other while cruising in the Caribbean around 2006 or so and have stayed in touch over the years via email and social media.

The weather was pretty favorable although a small sprinkle passed by rather quickly. The park, Ravine Gardens State Park, is situated within a ravine, carved out over time by a spring-fed river. The park is well known for it's springtime azalea bloom and it's small formal garden and hiking/biking paths.  This is an akward time of year horticulturely, the trees are mostly bare with a few blooms here and there. Lots of spanish moss and leaf litter around too. Personally, I don't find that too terribly appealing, which is probably why I didn't take many photos, but here are a few.

The group: L to R - Marlene, Me, Nancy, Allayne, Dennis
Back row - Benno, Ed 
Harley the dog


Summer view of the Formal Garden
(Photo courtesy of

I would definitely like to head back there in May after things have leafed out somemore. However, it was a really nice spot for a picnic, and we had a ton of food - it was a potluck after all. It was also a gabfest! So fun catching up with everyone.

All that made me feel a little nostalgic for the Caribbean and Venezuela so I thought I'd put a link in for one of my slideshow videos I made up quite a while ago. The length is about 3:30 so it's not a snoozer (I don't think, lol). The music is nice too.

Here is the link to the youtube video on our channel of s/v Dreamtime and s/v Paradise sailing into Laguna Grande, Venezuela and on up the Rio Carioca where the Scarlet Ibis nest. 

Laguna Grande in the Golfo de Carioca, Venezuela

Thanks for the visit!


  1. Wow, after watching the youtube clip all those memories came to life. We had great times, didn't we. As to the present, your choice of the parks here in Florida were great picks and we truly loved them. It was another great day with you guys. Lets do some more..

    1. Count on it! It's always great to see you guys. That view from the top of the mntn looking back south towards the Vene mainland is one of my favorites.

  2. Awesome video! I bet that group could tell some tales!

    1. Oh man, you bet we can! Lots of drama to be had out and about on the ocean, like us being dismasted - yikes, and friends lending a helping hand (Benno's industrial grade rivet gun for use with stainless steel pop rivets). Jim, as DIY'ers you might appreciate reading about that adventure - here's a link Thanks for reading!