Commodore's Corner - March 2010
Well, the 5th Annual "Last" Keys Trip was a huge success
again this year. Thanks to Perry Morris for being our "group
leader"! A big shout out to you Perry to thank you for taking
on that monumental task! And, from what I understand, he is already
working on our 6th Annual "Last" Keys Trip!
The "first man" and I arrived in Fiesta Key on Friday
around noon to see that the SPSC Tent City was well on its way
to a complete takeover of the overflow area at Fiesta Key. Friday
was consumed with setting up camp, grocery shopping and getting
everything organized prior to the Martini sunset ritual. Thanks
again to our Master Mixologist Perry for awesome martinis every
evening and to those who brought a bottle of Gin to share. Saturday
brought good winds for the longboards and shortboards alike. I
think that everyone was able to get on the water and enjoy some
sailing at least one day when the wind was "right".
Sunday I was treated to my first outing for some Mangrove Snapper
fishing - thanks Digger! What a blast. Chris quickly learned why
they are called "snapper". He was taking a fish off
Tina's hook for her so she could rebait and get her hook back
in the water because she was on a roll! All of a sudden - SNAP
- Chris said - "get the pliers!". Those little snappers
like your fingertips so be careful when you unhook 'em!
Monday Chris and I joined Joe Q for an offshore fishing expedition.
The water offshore is so deep blue it is almost purple. The Islamorada
Hump is approximately 16 miles offshore from Bud & Mary's
Marina in Islamorada. After catching some bait at Alligator Light
we headed out to the hump to see what might be biting. Joe caught
two nice Amberjack, Chris got an Almaco Jack and an AJ and I reeled
in a big 50 lb (according to the Captain) AJ and a Rainbow Runner.
The SPSC Commune had a nice fish fry which consisted of fresh
Mangrove Snapper and Amberjack. Thanks to Digger for the Mangrove
Snapper Trip and the fish fry and to Joe Q for the offshore fishing
Tuesday was the day to head down to Key West. I believe it was
the Green Parrot where everyone ended up meeting. February 8th
happened to be Lizzie and Brian's birthday!!! I'm sure they had
an awesome time in Key West. Matter of fact, Brian said it was
one of his more memorable birthdays. Probably thanks to John S!!!!
On our way back from Key West we stopped at the "No Name
Pub" - thanks Wright for the suggestion! The pizza was absolutely
I think that Wednesday was a sailing day. Things get a bit fuzzy
for me at this point in the trip. I think I stayed in the Taj
and drank rum a little too long Tuesday evening. Thanks for the
Anejó Wright!!!! It was Yummy - especially on my head the
next day. Was this the night that we had the Lo Country Boil?
Thanks again Dave & Lizzie - it was awesome!
Thursday was "movie" night. Ya just had to be there.
In Fiesta Key "silhouette" takes on a whole new meaning.
Friday was get everything packed up to head back to the bitter
cold in Tallahassee. Folks decided to go to Little Italy for dinner
that night with just a few of us left behind to "fend for
ourselves". Management at Fiesta Key decided to open the
hall at the pavilion for the campers due to the weather forecast
for the evening. Chris, Tina, Kevin and I decided the pavilion
would be a good place to cook dinner given the forecast for rain.
No sooner than Tina left the cover of the pavilion to grab an
additional container of propane for her stove than the bottom,
top, sides & ceiling fell out! There came such a gust that
there were coconuts and palm fronds flying all over the place.
The SPSC Tent City looked flattened for a minute or so and then
the rain poured down. Poor Tina ran back to the pavilion soaking
wet but she had that bottle of propane for her camp stove! Tina,
Kevin, Chris & I decided to eat in the "Grand Hall"
that was opened for the campers. Can't thank the management at
Fiesta Key enough for that hospitality, it was dry and warm! Brian,
Joe Q and Wanda also joined us. Later in the evening the Feature
Film "Blues Brothers" was shown in the Great Hall and
all SPSC members who were there on Friday night enjoyed the show
along with other campers looking for a dry spot to hang out. Thanks
Brian for getting everything set up for the showing. I learned
later on that Marilee and Andy happened to be in their tent when
that horrendous gust came through the camp. She said it was a
good thing because had they not been there the bed and everything
in the tent would have been soaked. She said a mist of rain was
coming from the roof of the tent!
Sadly, come Saturday we packed the truck with all of our toys
and headed back to Tallahassee. When we arrived home I was ready
to turn right around and head back to Fiesta Key!
The 2010 Wind Ceremony is set for March 20! Make sure you reserve
the date to come join us at Shell Point Beach! We will be having
a Chili Cookoff for those interested in participating. However,
bringing Chili does not mean that you HAVE to participate in the
contest - no pot of Chili will be turned away! If you do not wish
to cook Chili, please bring something to put on the food table.
Registration on the beach will start around 3:00 with "suppah"
around 6. Swami and the Festoons will arrive around 8 or so to
entertain us with some oldie but goodies along with some new tunes
Swami has added to the music lineup. If you have any questions
regarding the Wind Ceremony or would like to offer your help,
send me an email at email@example.com. FESTOONS!!!
2010 Wind Ceremony
The 2010 Wind Ceremony will take place on Saturday, March 20. We
will have a Chili Cook-off this year so break out your best recipe
and bring a batch (at least a gallon please) if you would like to
participate in the contest. If you do not wish to participate, please
bring something to go with the Chili, your own special dish or a
dessert. The Club will provide chopped onions, cheese, Fritos, crackers
Pack your coolers, bring your chairs and come toss your wishes
to the Wind Gods so we may be blessed with another year of windy
days at Shell Point Beach!!
Registration starts at 3:00pm
Chili Judging at 5:00pm
Dinner at 6:00pm
Swami & the Festoons around 8:00pm
If you have any questions, call Donna McMahon at 877-3998 or
Thank You All For Making My First Keys Trip Possible
This humble piece of prose is an ode to the generous and cool
people of the SPSC. Thank you all for making my First Keys Trip
Having been a nomadic female for a couple of years now, I happen
to have very few material possessions. The only things that belonged
to me on the trip were my flat tire bike and my underwear (that
was optional at the Keys anyway, as I later learned).
get to Mile Marker 70 I caught a ride with Bob A. It was about
10pm when we reached the Campsite. I was on my way to freshen
up in the ladies room, when Dave D. stopped me with a question:
“Where is your tent, sweetie?” To which I responded:
“I’m not sure I have one.” For some reason,
my answer stroke Dave D. as incredibly funny, he kept laughing
at me for days. The truth was that Merrilee was graciously going
to let me borrow her tent, but she was still on her way from Tally.
At the same time I had something in the car that remotely looked
like a tent that I had borrowed from my roommates. It did turn
out to be a tent, but at the time when Dave D. asked me his profound
question, I truly wasn’t sure I had one.
The next morning after a cup of coffee by Lizzie and Dave D.
that I drank from William T’s mug, Bob A. and Linda helped
me rig “my” sailing gear. The gear, of course, also
belonged to William T, who couldn’t join, but wanted me
to go and “have fun out there” anyway.
Later that day I discovered that my bike had a flat tire. Fortunately,
darling Tina had brought down her treasure chest that contained
everything one might ever need to be able to fix a bike. She gave
me a tube and the tools and Bob A. helped me replace it. However,
in the process I stripped the bolt. So again I was bikeless. When
I went for a 15-mile bike ride with Kathy V. I borrowed Bob A’s
bike (Perry fixed my bike the next day, but I don’t want
to jump ahead of myself here). In the evening, when it got chilly
and the magnificent martini ritual was about to begin, I put on
Tina’s leg-warmers and headed to sunset point…
Dinner was steak and chicken from the Master Chef Brian, accompanied
by cocktails and music from Perry’s refined collection.
It was a fun and memorable evening.
Next day was light air and I was actually able to go sail. After
almost three hours on the water I started feeling tired and headed
towards the shore when the wind suddenly picked up. Jerry was
keeping an eye on me and noticed that I was having trouble. He
stayed close and helped with some sailing tips, but I kept falling
into the water and had to uphaul over and over again. I started
drifting into the open, when the Savior of Maidens, Andy R. appeared
on his Red Kayak and delivered me from the fate of the Titanic’s
On Monday the wind died out completely and I was invited to join
the crowd on the Three Hour Cruise on Wright’s Pontoon Boat
(Yey Wright!). It was a beautiful ride through the Mangroves and
towards the World Renown Limacoladas (Yey Andy!).
When we got back, my bike was magically fixed. I’ve always
said that Perry is the Man!
Unfortunately, some evil spirits were against my going to Key
West the next day. So by the end of the evening the tire was flat
again. So, following the original plan, I took a ride back to
Tally with Linda. The ride home always feels shorter, especially
when accompanied by sailing stories (Yey Linda!).
Alas, I’m no longer a Keys Virgin!!!
PS: As some of you may know, I lost my job recently. I’ve
been looking actively and have a couple of opportunities lined
up in the Northeast. To pursue these I took a trip up to New York
City this past weekend. That’s where I’m right now.
Hopefully something will work out. I’ll be in touch and
will keep you guys posted!!