Hanging out in Pensacola
We left Gulf Shores, AL and spent an incredible day on the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (GICW) - with views of sparkling sun and gorgeous white sand. The morning held enough warmth for me to spend about 30 minutes outside on the bow of the boat soaking up some sunshine! We are laying over here in Pensacola at Palafox for a few days to wait out the small craft advisory on Pensacola Bay.
Pensacola has proven to be an incredible provisioning stop. We visited Ever'man Coop on the rec of some other looper friends. It's Vegan Mecca. OH MY WORD. After traveling though the rural South, I bought stuff just because I could and *might* use - a can of Toona (this was good!) and a box of Pumfu (pumpkin seed tofu like product - TBD. ) They had giant selection of vegan cheeses and vegan meat substitutes along with some fabulous sauces and regular grocery items. It was a sunny day, so we took the doggo for her longest walk in weeks. She loved it. So did we.
The next day we ventured out for lunch on a windy but sunny walk and enjoyed Nick's Boathouse. Eating out while vegan, soy free and gluten free is a real challenge, so we are compromising on the vegan. Bruce had mahi mahi tacos and I had a salad with salmon. On the way back to the boat, we walked past a cute walk up coffee shop and grabbed some hot mochas with almond milk for the windy walk home. AND I was able to get quarters from a bank for laundry.... Julia and Reid gave me all the quarters they could scrounge up when they met us in Columbus - $15. It lasted until the last marina. Can someone please make these laundry machines accept debit cards?
Our third day in port, we set out to see the Pensacola History Museum. It was a really informative exhibit and wonderful to learn a little of the history of the area. It's been so long since I had American history I'd forgotten that there were a lot of other things happening during our Revolutionary War - like Spain being busy in Florida! Also, Florida officially rejoined the Union 3 years after the Civil War ended. That seems like a long time. Our $10 tickets are good for 7 days for admission to the 20 other sites in the museum network including the Pensacola Museum of Art, the Museum of Commerce, and the African American Heritage Society. We passed a sister shop of the coffee place we liked and of course ran in for another mocha for some afternoon umpf.
Tonight I think we'll try the food truck area on Palafox for dinner. Arepas (pica, avocado and mozzarella) have been calling my name for days and Bruce is keen to try some Asian bowls with tuna.
We've really enjoyed time here and I think we'll be here til Friday. If the weather cooperates, we will then continue our trek East toward Destin, Panama City and Apalachicola. Bruce is teaching a course for 4 days and we want to be as close as possible to Carrabelle to be ready for a window to cross the Gulf of Mexico. Depending on our weather, we'll either be "Team Rim" (my first choice - hello Manatees!!) and take three hops from Carrabelle to Steinhatchee, Crystal River and then Tarpon Springs. Otherwise, we'll just take the direct route of one LONG day of170 miles from Carrabelle to Tarpon Springs or Clearwater. It is odd and sometimes frustrating to be so dependent on the weather windows for travel. The trip continues to challenge my ability to hold plans open to accept what the day is going to give us.