Saturday, December 14, 2019

St. Petersburg to Longboat Key (The End)

(Postdated, since we actually crossed last Saturday, December 7)

We'd put it off for long enough. We purchased a slip in Longboat Key, but it isn't ready for us yet (there's still a renter in it). The marina let us stay a couple of nights in another slip in the interim for free. So. We came.

One of our navigation systems had mapped out the entire voyage, so when we approached the Manatee River, we could see exactly where we'd been, exactly where the adventure started. We watched as we slowly approached and retraced the beginnings.

Been a crazy year.

Up early, we headed out just as the sun peaked out over the horizon. It's Saturday, and we wanted to be off the water before most of the weekenders got on. The bay was calm with a slight chop. The trip was uneventful. As we closed the gap to our starting point, we took photos.

I've been weepy-eyed on and off  ver since.
Showing off our golf looper burgee

For starters, we're now "gold" loopers, and while that's an accomplishment (early on it was mentioned that there are fewer loopers than people who have climbed Mt. Everest), it means we aren't "white" loopers. We've graduated. Ask most grads how they feel and they'll typically say things like, "Now what?" Sure, we have plans, and we intend on doing new things, but it's over. We'll never be white loopers again.

Secondly, we bought another boat -- more on that later -- which means we're selling this boat. As I was docking Cat-n-Dogs I wondered how many more times I would do that? We at least have to move it to a more permanent location, and we might possibly take her to Looper-palooza (if we can get in). But otherwise, maybe not for months. Maybe not ever.
The last white flag sunrise

Lastly, now there's a ton of work to do. The new boat (which is just like the old one, but with a different layout. Yes, we loved it that much that we bought another Endeavour) will need a bunch of stuff done to it, just like Cat-n-Dogs did when we first got her. Not to mention moving off one and onto the other. Not to mention the intense deep cleaning Cat-n-Dogs is going to need. Hey, we lived on it for over a year.

So it ends. With the new boat will be a new name. And a new blog. I will put one last post on this blog when things settle, announcing the new name and blog. This one has reached it's conclusion.

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