Dec 19

One of the first settler’s wives saw that the Anclote River was bountiful with a fish she thought was tarpon. Turns out, it was mullet. Mullet Springs?? I don’t think so. We are stuffing ourselves with the most wonderful Greek food.  Spanokopita, Pastitso, Mousaka, Dolmades, Keftedes.  I’m taking pounds of domestic cheese (feta) & kalamatas with me when we leave tomorrow.  English is the 2nd language here. I didn’t understand a word they were saying.  It was all Greek to me!!! LOL!!!  Had a fun cocktail hour with “Phantom of the Aqua” and “Full Circle”.  Heard two really good jokes that I will try to remember and repeat when appropriate.   One last fantastic Greek meal and we are off at high tide tomorrow morning, 7:10am.  Life if Good!

ONE GREAT DAY IN TARPON SPRINGS!

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Dec 20

We are up early for high tide but alas, we are fogged in.  Watched the water level drop for 2 hours and eased out at 9 AM without a bump (a boat the morning before was not so lucky). Followed a pirate ship from Tarpon to Clearwater (a short hop of 15 miles) and were snug in a new slip before lunch.  Half a dozen Loopers here including Ajax (haven’t seen them since Carrabelle) and Lola Marie (from Steinhatchee).  Also Lady Pamela from our yacht club in Guntersville is here, but her owner and crew do not seem to be around.  Toured on bikes for 3 hours and cooked Grouper on the boat for dinner using Sally Mullis’ recipe she fed us in Panama City. It is wonderful and worth passing along:

Wash filets and sprinkle with lemon juice and garlic powder. 

Slice red onion thin and lay on top (plus I added some capers)

Smear Hellman's mayo on top of filet and top with cracker crumbs or bread crumbs

Bake 375 degrees for 20 minutes (It should start turning golden grown)

(Increase cooking time if filets are real thick or you have a lot of them)

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Dec 21

Clearwater has a great beach, lots of good restaurants and shops, but the thing we noticed most was the contrast.  While they have their share of modern high rise condo complexes, they have just as many two story, mom & pop, retro looking motels from the 50’s era.  The kind that evoke that warm, fuzzy and pleasant nostalgic feeling with memories of playing shuffleboard and spending 8 hours a day in the pool when you were a kid.

We enjoyed the day, went to the Sunset Celebration at Pier 60 and then went to dinner at Frenchy’s with friend’s Bill and Debbie off Ajax.  We will be leaving for St Pete tomorrow and Ajax (who has family here) will be here until after New Year’s and will then return home to Bon Secour.  We are glad to know that they live close to us and we will definitely see them again after we complete the Loop. Already 1/6 of our trip is over and it is unbelievable how fast time is flying.  If my hormone pack didn’t have the days of the week printed on it I would never know what day it was.  But I do know that every day is a holiday and every meal is a feast!

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Dec 22

Stiff winds out of the North with the passing cold front made us choose the protection of the ICW for the jump down to St Pete. Lots more to see that way, too. Like the Don Cesar Beach Resort, the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, and a McDonald’s you can drive your boat right up to. (See pix) That's right!!  McDonald's has a McDock so you can McBoat right up for your Big Mac!  Arrived at the Municipal Pier by lunch and spent the afternoon exploring.  The Columbia Restaurant and the Ceviche are really close by and we want to eat at both before we leave here.  That North wind had the boat “rocking and rolling” like Elvis but we both slept like babies. Temps were in the 60’s but should be back to almost 80 by Tuesday

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Dec 23
Warmed back up today and winds laid down a bit. We were here several years ago and did a pretty good tour of the city. So we stayed close to the bay and visited other marinas, the parks, the airport, the attractions and the beach.  Enjoyed sitting in the sun on the beach with a picnic of Mimosas and Greek Pitas (from my Tarpon Springs supplies). Enjoyed the Day.

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AND MORE ST. PETE!!!

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