Friday, July 23, 2010


Click on pictures for full screen
Tropical Storm Bonnie approaches Key Largo on July 22; an unrelated tropical wave is shown near Mexico
The National Hurricane Center shows Bonnie's track, likely to brush our area with 2" of rain or more

A beautiful lighthouse point at the Key Largo Angler's Club overlooks the Atlantic Ocean

Alabama Jacks is a hidden gem on Card Sound Road, near Key Largo

Alambama Jacks is all outdoor seating, very rustic and "old Florida"

You can arrive by car or by boat, as these Customs & Border Patrol agents did

The Feds boats feature four 225hp outboard motors and four point harness to strap the Captain and crew in for what must be an incredible ride

These local fishermen were so still, for a moment I thought they were props.  This picture was shot from the tables at Alabama Jacks.

Home in Port Charlotte
82* with rain on the way

As the second named storm of the 2010 Atlantic Hurricane season took aim on the Florida Keys, I felt it was a good time to head for our home port.  Although Tropical Storm Bonnie is minor by Florida standards it is expected to bring two to five inches of rain and winds in the 40 MPH range.  I was due to depart on Friday morning but thought better of driving across the Everglades in those conditions so I headed out Thursday evening, after work, arriving back in Port Charlotte at 9PM. 

While in Key Largo this time, a colleague took me to Alabama Jacks for lunch.  This historic hole in the wall sits on Card Sound Road, well off the beaten path of the Overseas Highway.  The joke of their sign (above) is that not only is there no downtown Card Sound, there's no town at all.  Alabama Jacks is a 50 year old, open air, floating bar/restaurant/marina set amongst the mangrove trees in Card Sound, a narrow body of water between the Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico.  I'm told that Alabama Jacks has been featured on the television shows Miami Vice and CSI Miami.  There are pictures of many a celebrity who stopped by for a cold one.  On weekends it is as much a biker bar as it is a boater bar.

Back home, I have discovered some new erosion on the canal bank out back.  In February, 2009 I did some seawall repair using 2 cubic yards of rip rap.  I'm going to have to finish the entire property line along the canal, which will involve about 10 more cubic yards of rip rap and about 5 tons of soil.  I had a contractor come give me a bid for a concrete seawall but it was over $20,000.  That's completely out of the question.  I'm hoping to do the rip rap job for about $1,000 in materials.  I may look into hiring a day laborer to help me moving the materials from the yard, down the sixteen steps of the deck and placing the rocks beneath the dock.  I recall how intense the work was last time and this will be that, 5 times over.  I'm hoping I can wait until fall when the weather cools.  Being able to wait will depend on how many named friends follow Bonnie.

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