After our tough crossing from Carrabelle to Tarpon Springs, all 3 boats ended up at different marinas and all of us crashed for a day. By the next day, Rhonda and I had recuperated well enough to get back in the sight-seeing mode. We had been to Tarpon Springs by car several years ago but were looking forward to seeing it again. About halfway through the day we ran into our friends from the other 2 boats. You can imagine all the stories we had to tell because we still had not heard ALL of the story details from the other boats. Anyhow, here we are, The Survivors. Note everyone is back to smiles again.
There were 2 others elsewhere in the city that missed the picture, Tom and Marge. Tony and Stephanie are traveling with Tom and Marge on "Bluegrass" and Tony said at one point during the night when things were very rough that Tom came up from downstairs with his life jacket on! I'm telling you, it was bad. Heck, Tom may still have that life jacket on, impacted for life!
Tarpon Springs is all about Greek food and heritage, sponge divers, oils, soaps, lotions, shells, and clothes. They seem to have quite a few naked statues around also, men and women. Not sure what that's all about but they don't leave much to the imagination! Here's a display of sponges - every store has some.
And a statue tribute to the sponge divers.
Rhonda and I had a hankering for something chocolate so we went to one of the many bakeries and later to Palaka's restaurant for a couple of gyros.
And Rhonda has decided I should post a picture of a Christmas tree from every stop now until Christmas so here's one along the waterfront in Tarpon Springs.
We departed Tarpon Springs this morning after a delay for fog and had a nice, easy 32-mile run to Treasure Island in the St. Petersburg area. Remember our sailboat neighbor from the Ft. McRee anchorage that we have seen two more times since then? Well, make it a third time. Here he is again anchoring on the south end of Anclote Key. Clearly, we are on the same travel schedule!
We are now in the land of condos and shorelines packed with home after home after home after home after......
Also lots of bridges from the mainland out to the beach area. So far we have not been delayed by any. We need 18 feet of clearance (with antennas down) and everything has been 24 feet plus.
We had planned to dock at John's Pass Marina between Treasure Island and Madeira Beach but a member couple in the AGLCA makes the dock at their home available to Loopers who are interested, and we were. Our friends Rich and Mary Gano had stayed at the Wright's dock previously so they got in touch with Jeff and Suzanne for us and we realized it was just a few blocks from John's Pass! So, we have a 2-night stay here at their dock, free of charge, close to the beach and anything else you might want to do. What a nice gesture on their part. Thanks again, Jeff and Suzanne! We got our bikes out and rode to the beach, which is mighty fine compared to what we had in Galveston the past 2 years.
We worked up an appetite for pizza and one of the locals we ran into recommended Gigi's.
With plenty of energy restored after pizza, we rode the bikes to one of the causeways to see the boat parade. Lots of these are going on this time of year and we had heard this was one of the better ones. We counted 52 boats participating and here's our choice for first place. It's my Christmas tree picture for the day also!
Since we were in the neighborhood, we decided to re-provision with a few groceries from Publix and called it a night. All in all a very good day. We're going to attend an early-morning worship service tomorrow in Madeira Beach and then sight-see the John's Pass area. Later.