Tuesday was our day to tour Key West, so we rented bicycles and from 9:30 Am to 9:30 PM, we went all over stopping at a few tourist sites we thought would be fun. The view from on top of the light house was great, and the Mel Fisher Museum was very interesting. Hitting a few key spots BUT too many places to chose from especially for eating. Cycling up and down the streets was a great way to see the city - you could ride slow enough to see, smell and hear everything, and parking was easy. Key West is very bicycle friendly, with bicycle lanes in the major streets, and bike racks everywhere. We missed our recumbents though. It felt very strange to be sitting so high up - no where near as relaxing. It was a beautiful, nearly cloudless day with low humidity and a cool breeze out of the north courtesy of the frontal passage that brought us rain the day before. Wednesday was supposed to be a day of rest and relaxation, but turned into boat chore day. Steve wanted to put a wire in to connect the GPS to the pactor modem so when we send position reports that information will automatically update. And as with all boat projects they tend to take longer than expected. And multiply. While working on the wiring, we ran the generator to charge the batteries. After an hour or so it overheated and shut down. So the next project was figuring out what went wrong. The first check was the water strainer on the sea water flow to the generator. It was clean, so the next suspect was the sea water pump impeller. To check that required dismatling a good part of the salon to get access to the pump - half an hour of work before even starting on the pump. Another half hour to take the pump apart, check the impeller and find there is nothing wrong. Reassemble, then back to the strainer. Dismantling the hose from the through hull to the strainer finds it plugged with sea grass. Problem solved! But it still takes another hour or so to put everything back together, put away the tools, clean up, etc. The old adage is true - cruising is the art of boat maintenance in exotic places. A jump off the back of the boat into clear water for a swim helps remind us why we're doing this. And then there is the beautiful sunset at the end of the day that we stop and be thankful for this great life we are getting to live.
Thursday morning we will head over to the Dry Tortugas for a few days than come back here on our way up to Marathon.