Forts, Family, Friends and Fasteners in Fort Pierce, Florida

February 12-25, 2018

Miles Traveled: 0

Total Miles Traveled: 3651

A little more history about Fort Pierce is in order.  One morning on our walk, Nancy and I visited the Historical Fort Pierce Park.  In 1838 the U.S. government built a Fort here on the beach with the idea of forcing the Indians up and out of FL, preferably west of the Mississippi.  Many of the native tribes were extinguished or went west but the Seminoles persevered and although a peace treaty was never signed, a formal truce eventually ended the conflict.  A respected and protected Indian mound of human remains is located near the center of the park.  The fort lasted only four years as it burned to the ground in 1843.  It makes me wonder about the histories of other fort cities in Florida, ie., Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, etc.



Secondly, today we saw the annual Cracker Parade come through Fort Pierce.  While I don’t have many details, the parade commemorates a cowboy tradition of driving cattle across the State from the Gulf coast to somewhere on the Atlantic, probably to auction or sell.  Story has it that the name Cracker stems from the loud (and scary) cracking sound of the whips these Florida cowboys used to drive the cattle herds.



See the whip?  I was delighted to know the noise did not come from any contact with the horse!

  Our/Jim’s major project this week has been getting the dinghy operational for grandchildren visits and anchoring out as we head up the inter-coastal.  Although cleaned and inflated, our stubborn little 6 horsepower Mercury engine wouldn’t start again this year.  Jim tried everything he and everyone on the dock could think of but to no avail!  A trip to M & M Marine where they worked their magic and she is humming once again.  Additionally, unlike sailboats, trawlers carry their dinghies on the stern or swim platform instead of simply trailing them behind in the water.  The Namaste was already equipped with half of the davit system needed to haul her out and keep her attached to the boat.  However, we needed to purchase an outrageously expensive pair of “dinghy thingies” and then use a two-part adhesive system to attach the expensive hooks to the side of the inflatable.  The complex directions required that the dinghy be deflated, that the temperature be below 70 with low humidity and no direct sunlight or rain (kidding, right?) and that the adhesive would take 48 hours to cure under pressure.  Mike and Nancy offered their much longer and wider dock space which is sometimes in the shade.  Jim began the process in the late afternoon for coolness and when finished he and Mike weighted the davits with logs and wrapped the whole thing in a tarp just in case and yes, it did rain!  All the while we hoped for the best as we really, really didn’t want a do over!  Success, it appears that the adhesive has bonded the hooks to the dinghy and we are in business!


 Nate said, “Grandpa, if you were in the same State, I would be there to help you!”


 “Dinghy thingies” attached and holding.  Captain engineers are great!

Speaking of Mike and Nancy on “California Lady,” we continue to spend time together at dock-tales, meals, the laundry, shopping, jazzercize, and are heading to the movie today to see “Post.”  We also found a gelato place serving from 7 am to 9 pm along with an exploratory trip down South Hutchinson Island turning up a dog beach and several other gorgeous spots to share with our upcoming guests.  Tonight Mike and Nancy are at a Haitian Church fund raiser but, not being Haitian or Catholic, we opted out of the $100 per person tickets.


Dog Beach!  Four of the most well behaved dogs I have ever seen! 


Son Mike and Lee (Liam 12) flew in for a weekend visit, adding desperately needed family energy and spirit to the new Namaste.  It was three days of catching up for us and bantering relaxation for them.  Beach time was the priority and the weather was beyond Florida perfect with sunny highs of 79-83 and a balmy breeze. We also visited the Navy SEAL museum, ate at local Tiki restaurants, played cribbage and rummy, took the dinghy for a trial ride and simply hung out together on the fly bridge.  The final morning on the way to the airport I coerced them into watching a sunrise over the Atlantic followed by a picnic breakfast on the beach.  From the eyes of proud parents and grandparents, they are a great father/son combo!  Although all was perfect, we missed Veta, Klava and Oscar.  Maybe next time?


Liam is a good swimmer but grateful for Grandpa’s watchful eye in big waves.

Lee (Liam) Working out on the Navy Seal training equipment!


Hanging out on the Fly Bridge.



A sunrise to remember!

Gwen (Brooker) and Bill Klenk also visited from Satellite Beach,  50 miles north.  The story here is that Gwen and I were baptized on the same day in Livonia at the Rosedale Gardens Presbyterian Church and have maintained a friendship over a life-time, mostly to her credit.  It was a fun day of remembering people and events from our childhood while looking forward to our 55th high school class reunion in September.  Bill and Jim talked boats, engines, marinas and helmsman-ship!


Three out of four Livonia Bentley graduates and one Viet Nam Vet!

This weekend has been a particularly difficult time to be away from home due to missing great family  fun.  Pat (49), Mike (46) and Curt (39) have played hockey together on the Biggby Bombers for more than 20 years.  This weekend was the Labatt Blue Tournament in Lansing, which they have played in every year and have won twice.  They just won a third championship this morning – the Stanley Cup of over 30 hockey where most of their guys are over 40.  Proud hockey mom and dad forever!


Self Explanatory


Enjoy the moment!

Then Ashleigh (16) is skiing in the Michigan High School State finals at Boyne Mountain on Monday with all the girls living in our Boyne House this weekend.


Go Milford!

On the wildlife side, there are manatees nearby including almost turning into one as we left the fuel dock this morning.  Liam fed the marina fish and we watched a Green Heron catch and eat four minnows live in about 15 seconds. Strike, gobble, strike, gobble, strike gobble. . .


Marina fish


Strike, gobble, strike, gobble. . .

Sammy Sayz:  Guess what – the other night J put a platter of chicken on the table in front of my nose.  Best taste ever! I got a good scolding and had an upset tummy for days but come on, I’m a dog!


Photo re-enacted

Good Boat Name:  “Gotcha” on the biggest and prettiest 50′ Grand Banks Alaskan we have ever seen.

Quote:  “Any day with a grandchild in my arms, on my lap, in my home (on my boat), or on my mind, is a very good day.” -Love Style

Happy Birthday:  Shawn, Ollie





2 thoughts on “Forts, Family, Friends and Fasteners in Fort Pierce, Florida

  1. Phew, you did have a busy February. Glad to have been a part of the festivities. One, Stanley Cup of over 30……might be a stretch;). Two, it looks like Lee is drinking a beer in the picture on the fly bridge. Great post and thanks for keeping us all up to day. Mike


    • Mike, I’ll take the mom prerogative on the Stanley Cup analogy! Two, as for Lee and the beer, your Dad said the same thing! Please note the Sprite bottle directly below his left knee! The table is small and I love this picture. 🙂


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