The alarm woke me at 4:15 a.m. today. I scurried through a cold shower, dressed in business clothes and flip flops, closed all the thru-hulls and window, and then hopped in the dinghy with my suitcase for a ride to shore. It was still dark and a little chilly but the sky was full of beautiful stars. We weaved our way through empty sailboats anchored near shore and landed the dinghy on a sandy beach.
A short walk down a dark trail led to lights in the distance. The trees and shrubs were so overgrown it looked like a tunnel. Just before I got to the light I noticed that there were two cars waiting for me – my taxi and a police car. Lovely! I quickly said goodbye to DJ and Coleen, leaving them in the shadows, grabbed my suitcase and emerged into the lights.
A very curious, but pleasant officer wanted to know what was up. I guess he initially stopped the taxi to find out what he was doing near the park at that hour. He said he was waiting for a fare, so the officer hung around to see if it was true, perhaps because he was a black man in a fancy car in an affluent neighborhood in the dark.
Anyway, I told the officer I had a boat in the cove and was headed to the airport for a business trip to New York. He found this all very amusing and actually ran a check on my drivers license. When I asked if I had done something wrong he said no that I wasn’t in trouble. I replied with a smile that I would be in trouble if I missed my flight. He wrote down my name, address and phone number for his little report and finally let me go. Meanwhile, thankfully the taxi was waiting patiently. We both had a good laugh over it.
Yesterday I had a few minutes at lunch time and threw together a quick picnic. We took the dinghy to shore and had a short walk, got rained on until we were soaked, took the dinghy back to the boat and spread the picnic blanket on the cabin floor. Thankfully the lunch was dry.
8/26/09 - continued
Thankfully I had an uneventful flight to New York City and it was easy enough to catch a taxi to my hotel. I was quite impressed with the brand new cab that even had a tv monitor showing some clips about things to see & do AND a GPS which helped me figure out the things I was seeing out the window :-)
I stayed at the Tudor hotel on 42nd Street which turned out to be a very nice place. I was in luck my room was ready early - and you guessed it the very first thing I did after checking in with work --- take a luxurious bath in the huge whirlpool tub! I spent the afternoon working from the desk in my room - enjoying a comfortable chair and a great view. I even opened the windows to enjoy the sounds of the city. Then after work I set out to explore. It had been several years since I was last in New York and two things impressed me... it was much cleaner and quieter - not as much horn honking since there is a $350 fine for it. I managed to find a good bargain on a new business suit - that's easy care and non-wrinkling. Then I treated myself to a much needed haircut and had dinner at a little place overlooking the street where I enjoyed watching all the people go by. I must say that although I really love the quiet and peace of living on a boat - I also really love NYC. Great as a place to visit now and again.
Yesterday, I got up early and had all day meetings with my client. No one ever guessed that I'd been on a boat the day before. I looked like every other business woman :-) Everyone was extremely nice - so much for the stereotype about New Yorkers. I had a great time meeting all the new people, both my client and those that work on my team. Anyway, after my last meeting, I dashed back on foot to my hotel, grabbed my suitcase and a taxi for a quick run to the airport. Not much traffic - thank goodness, until we got on a bridge just before La Guardia. There we found a car pulled over in the left lane, over heated and surrounded by Chinese tourists who were trying to cool it down by pouring their little water bottles on the body of the car! The taxi driver and I had a huge laugh out to that!
Anyway I had a nice flight back to Tampa, then a long cab ride to Bradenton. I had the driver drop me off on little bridge over a tiny canal where DJ and Coleen where waiting with the dinghy. It was about 11:15 p.m. It was hard to find that place in the dark! I had to jump down into the dingy a few feet from the bridge - and then we speed off quietly down the dark little canal and out into the open little cove where the Glass Slipper was peacefully swinging on her anchor rode.
Yes, life is good!!!!