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Section 13 & 14

The Gulf of Mexico to St. Petersburg.

(Photos taken November 10 - 22 , 1999)

Our base of operation in Mobile was at the Dog River Marina that also happened to be a Hatteras dealer.  So while we were in New York and St. Petersburg on business, we had some timely routine maintenance done.  This is a good place to visit and to have work done. 

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We traveled both in the Intracoastal Waterway and in the Gulf on our trip across the northern end of the Gulf of Mexico.  While in the Intracoastal we came across this barge of "reef material"  The school bus on the bottom is overhanging the barge by more than half its length.  But, it seemed stable, at least for the moment.

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A little further down the ICW we passed this "littl' toot".  It is a steam driven micro-sternwheeler.  He saluted us with a cute toot on his air horn.   We returned his toot with one of our own.  Now he wears hearing aids.

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The ICW is unique in this area--reminds one of a swamp with a canal through it.   Very quiet and very primitive--it was a wonderful trip.

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Then we arrived at Carrabelle (Florida).  This city is best known for the smallest police station in the world.

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This police station has only a telephone on the inside.  And the handset from the telephone is missing.  Do you suppose it was stolen.  Who says crime here is "no big thing"?

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At our marina we fueled.  Can you see the sign in the center of the picture.   This was a "Pure Oil Station".  Bill claims he hasn't seen a Pure Oil sign in 20 years.  Jan doesn't think she's ever seen one.  She also claims to be much younger than Bill.

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We had a major crossing of open water to make our way back home--160 miles from Carrabelle to Clearwater.  For hours we were out of the sight of land.  We enjoyed the serenity, and the gorgeous blue of the sea.  We made the crossing in about 7 hours.

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After a day of R&R in Clearwater, we left mid -morning for our final leg of the journey--a run down Pinellas County from Clearwater and up Tampa Bay to St. Petersburg.   And so we end our photos with a picture not unlike the first we shared--St. Petersburg's skyline, this time from the bow rather than from the stern.

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But there is an addition to the skyline--the Florencia.  It's grown from a hole in the ground to a grand structure while we've been gone.  Next July it will be our home. 

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