To Palatka

Many Moons is tied tonight to the free dock in Palatka, a town of about 10,000, after traveling 41 miles down the St. Johns River. (Even though we’re traveling north, towards Jacksonville, we are going down river. That’s because this river flows north.) It was hard to leave the clear waters of Silver Glen Springs after three nights at anchor there, but what a glorious cruise we had, with perfect temperatures and calm seas…so perfect, in fact, that we drove all day from the fly bridge, which has a bimini for some shade but is otherwise exposed. We stopped for lunch at a waterfront place we’d heard raves about. The food and service was great, but the experience was marred by the many in-your-face political statements on display, both flags and signs, in a tone I haven’t seen before and too crude to post here. They went beyond support of a party or person, into harsh judgment of those who might disagree with their sentiment. I’m disappointed that many commercial establishments seem willing these days to alienate a whole segment of customers. Ah, well, it is their right! This briefly sent me toward a sadness that is familiar but not useful. A return to calm waters and light breezes helped shake it off.

Palatka is a town that needs a little TLC. It reminds me of my own hometown…not unsafe, but a bit run down, with the occasional vacant storefront and cracks in the sidewalk. Yet the church bells chimed like everywhere else, parents held their kids’ hands to cross the street, and the local Dollar General provided what I needed. (One difference from my hometown is the racial diversity here — seemingly about 50/50.)

We will hit the sack early for an early-morning departure, planning to make it to Jacksonville tomorrow. It’s just 50 miles and we’ve gone much longer distances than that — but we now have the tide schedule to consider, and its impact on our forward progress. We now look at the tide app (Tides Near Me), alongside my wind app (PredictWind), to make daily decisions about when to move. Navigation decisions will become a bit more complicated soon. Photos and captions follow. (Doing this post mostly on my phone, for the 1st time, since signal here is too weak for laptop. Hope it works. Typing on the phone is laborious so please forgive any typos!)

Leaving the beautiful Silver Glen Springs this morning.
Jeff at the helm of the flybridge, looking a tad scruffy. 😉 This is our 4th night without water or electricity hook-up.
I always have a coffee mug handy, even while driving. I wear caps to hide my owm scruffiness. 😄
We stopped at this waterfront tiki bar for lunch. This sign about a drama-free zone made me laugh – because my sister calls me a drama queen! But the rather dramatic (note the irony) signs and flags inside took my laugh away.
We tied up at Palatka in late afternoon, near two other boats taking advantage of the free dock.
Even somewhat run-down towns take pride in their waterfronts. It’s a nice riverfront park.
Small talk therapy! I could use some of that! I’ve never been very good at it. ( A storefront downtown.)
View of the bridge from our berth tonight

2 thoughts on “To Palatka

  1. On our way south on the river we stopped at Renegades on the River. It was highly recommended by some boaters we met in Palakta. We discovered the same over the top vitriol targeting anyone with a different opinion. We will not stop there on the way north. Have a fun safe voyage and I hope we can meet up along the way. Keep writing! James MV Alvin James

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wasn’t sure if I should mention it in the blog since I don’t want to make it “political” — but I also report on “America,” on what I see, and not just on the water. And this was hard to NOT see. I hope it wasn’t a mistake because I don’t want to turn off ANYone. I try to keep a moderate’s view of things. And my view, on this cruise, is a still-divided America. At least in some places. Thank you for your comment


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