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  • sailorstacey

The Best and Worst of Another Week on The Hard

Updated: Dec 17, 2018

There were distinct high points this week, and it's always good to begin with those. On one of our frequent walks through the Secret Woods Nature Center, we watched a large, graceful manatee swimming lazily in the New River. Two round nostrils on its snub nose emerged above the surface of the water, followed by its sleek gray head. Its easy pace invited us to slow down and stay awhile, so we did.

Another was a visit to the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami. We set out to see the AfriCobra exihibit at the Museum of Contemporary Art. This exhibit of political art from the 70's celebrates the dignity and breadth of black lives. It is also a history lesson on the foundational work by a collective of black Chicago artists whose beautiful and colorful mixed-media work was informed by the politics of black power, shared African heritage and protest against racial injustice.

We walked down 2ndAvenue to Wynwood Walls, famous for its wall art and grafitti. The scene was a mix of street art and Miami-Basel high brow; the multi-ethnic crowd enjoying all of it, snapping selfies in front of fantastical, brightly colored murals. We stumbled upon an outdoor food court at Wynwood Yard, comprised of repurposed shipping containers surrounding raised beds containing a profusion of herbs. A bar served original mixed drinks and high school musicians entertained with excellent renditions of jazz classics.

When we got back to the boat, we were too tired to cook or go out again, so we had a bowl of popcorn and streamed “Roma.” This masterful film, inspired by the childhood of director Alfonso Cuarón, is not to be missed. It is a lyrical, understated meditation on the contradictions, hypocrisies, oppressions and moments of tenderness in the life of a Mexican family, seen through the eyes of their housekeeper. It is reminiscent of Fellini, Truffaut, and De Sica, a true masterpiece.

Today, Mike and Karen met us at Kaluz for lunch, and then joined us for an airboat ride at Sawgrass Recreation Area. The noise of the engine was deafening, although we did eventually slow down to observe a 10-foot long alligator swimming along in the slough. There were many exotic species on display in a separate observation area, including boa constrictors, bobcats, leopards and a gray fox, all purportedly rescued from unhealthy circumstances. We each got to hold a baby alligator. We were more impressed with the beautiful red gallinules walking on lily pads with their spindly yellow legs and bright red- striped beaks.

Oh yes, and our rudder is fully repaired! Some fiberglass work and painting is all that's left to do.

The low point of the week was the night I awakened at 3 a.m., clutching my belly because of painful spasms that reminded me of labor. I had never really contemplated the design of Delfina’s head, but my gastric tract truly appreciated the proximity of the toilet and sink. For the next four days, I ate nothing but soup, until the virus passed out of my system. But sailors learn to manage whatever comes along: resilience is the name of the game.

We have cleaned and detailed Delfina from top to bottom, readying her for the launch on Tuesday. Our unexpected detour is coming to an end, and we will soon be afloat and under sail.

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