On Hold in Naples

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Author: Pete

Location: Naples, Florida

 

We found the boat, the cogs are in motion.  We just need time and energy to make all of the machinery work.  It’s a arduous, thankless task, but on the bright side, we are staying in a beautiful house in Naples.  My childhood neighbors serendipitously have a house here that they graciously offered to us while we’re boat hunting.  Such nonchalant generosity is rare and humbling.  We’ve been enjoying the gems of an easy, if bureaucratic life in Naples.

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Waiting around on the paper chase of buying a boat requires patience.  Documents are slow to be exchanged and fruitless insurance leads wind up dragging you down the rabbit hole before terminating.  Between daily trips to the ‘office’ (library, see below) we enjoy our time in Naples.  Citrus grows freely in the trees, fat and juicy from the daily thunderstorms that pummel down rain at some point every day.  We plan, prep, fix, build, research, call, read.  We make lunch, and do it again.  And sometimes we even swim in the pool.  Hard times kiddy.

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RIVERSPLIT

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We are getting our first taste of living off the connection grid.  The Naples house doesn’t have internet, so when we need to be connected, which is daily with all this paper chase, we load up in Big Red and bounce on down to the Naples Public Library, conveniently located a few miles from us.  It’s like going to the office, icy-cold air conditioning and strange ‘regulars’.  We sure do get a lot of research done though.

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Back at the ranch we generally make the phone calls that we couldn’t in the ‘Shhhhh!  Keep your voices down, aside from all the crazy old people who feel free to talk really friggin’ loud because their hearing is going’.  Sorry.  Library.  Then we get a little dinner going.

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We usually unwind with some light reading, research, conjecture, notes, page flipping, text referencing, and highlighting.  Have to get used to being off the grid.  Our newest, fanciest equipment is an iPad mini with Navionics on it.  The 4G iPad version that we got also has a GPS chip in it, so you don’t actually need cell signal, only clear skies.  That’s what everyone says anyway!  The Navionics is quite frankly magic.  It loads maps of the entire Caribbean, Central and South America, and parts of the US.  You can zoom down to see minute detail.  We’ll check it out on the real water.

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Let’s face it.  We’ve been blessed with easy sailing so far and it should be expected that eventually (now) we’re getting some chop. It’s so beautiful in this little house with the canal right in the back yard, but we’re itching to get on our boat and make headway.  It may be slow and frustrating at times.  But one things for sure… even if it feels like w’ere on hold, we’re on our way in Naples.

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Driving South to Florida

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Author: Pete

Location: En route from Green Bay, WI, to Naples, FL

 

After our ‘victory lap’ of Lake Michigan to say goodbye to all of our families, we made ready to head south. Miranda and I loaded up the red 1993 Plymouth Voyager minivan with shovels and rakes and implements of destruction all of our worldly belongings and drove towards Florida.

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The Wisconsins rolling hills gave way to (boring) flat corn fields of Indiana, then to the curves of the Smokies. Miranda and I listened to audio books and hoped the Voyager didn’t fall apart. The old girl didn’t put up too much fuss on the long, arduous journey and neither did the van, bwa-hahaha!)

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Clunked twelve hours to Nashville where we stayed with Miranda’s college buddies, Lilly and Brandon. We arrived there a little later than intended due to Trusty Rusty’s approximate top speed of 42 mph. Still got to go out to eat at a fantastic spicy fried chicken place. Finger-lickin’ fan-frickin-tastic!  Took a little tour around the music-rich city. Really great history and a constant supply of great live tunes to be had!

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The next morning we hit the road a little later than anticipated. Some strange time changes put us an hour behind for the second half of the journey. So again on the road we found ourselves!

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Cruised steady throughout the day first passing Atlanta, then finally into the Orange Tree License Plate State: FLORIDA!

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Florida is a funny state. I forget that it’s extremely long! We went over the border at seven and didn’t get into Naples until 1AM! Could’ve been due to heavy rain, navigating in the dark, and a pretty old van. She got us there though! Three cheers for Trusty Rusty!

Hip hip! HUZZAH!

Hip hip! HUZZAH!

Hip hip! HUZZAH!