Last week was busy. We rescued Nirvana from the boatyard, brought her home, and I spent the next few days schlepping 100 lb batteries up and down the ramp, and Monte made sure they worked. The old ones lasted 5-6 years. The new ones will hopefully perform similarly.
We got everything installed in time to race the beer-can regatta on her with Kurt and Kevin and she flew with her new bottom. We think she’s at least a knot faster.
Then over the weekend we anchored in the cove for a sunset grilled dinner. Nice. Very nice. We had our annual first jump in the lake, finally, a week or so past the usual Memorial Day dip. It was fantastic.
We are making more frequent trips to the lake lately to get a break from the endless 100 degree days we have here in Austin.
Last Sunday when we came home from the lake, we realized we were missing our styrofoam cooler. It’s not just any styrofoam cooler, though. It is a cylindrical bait bucket that’s been in Monte’s family as long as he can remember. And it has been along on all of our camping and boating adventures for the last 20+ years. It makes a great, compact ice bucket. As it has worn thin and broken over the years, Monte mends it with wood and epoxy. One day, I expect it will be all wood. It’s special.
We went back to the lake Tuesday but didn’t find it on the boat. So we sadly assumed it must have blown into the lake from the parking lot while we were loading the car. Monte added it to our Lost-shit Log of things we’ve lost in the lake.
We looked for it on lee shores as we sailed, but didn’t spot it. Returning to the marina Wednesday afternoon after anchoring out for the night, we learned it had been found and turned in to the office. Awesome!
Rachel and her friend Becky are visiting this weekend. We didn’t think we could keep up with a couple of vivacious 30-something’s in downtown Austin on a Friday night, so I dropped them downtown tonight for an evening of fun. I was treated to a view of tonight’s lovely sunset on the way home.
Today Monte, Kurt and I sailed Cupholder to our favorite cove, to check out the reopened and recently upgraded Arkansas Bend Park. We walked ashore and checked out the new bath houses, parking lot, playground, and campsites. I checked on a couple of my geocaches. We anchored and floated for a while. It was nice to experience the lake again from our favorite wooden boat.
It is HOT in Austin this summer. A cool drink goes a long way to make you forget the temperature outside. I have recently been introduced to a lovely pink frozen beverage called Frosé, made from rosé wine, but presenting as a slushie. Brick Oven Pizza served up my first one (and several since then). Pretty good!
Ever since then I’ve wanted to try making my own. We have a Cuisinart electric ice cream maker which we use to make delicious sorbets. So, I asked myself, “Self, can our ice cream maker successfully make frosé?”
The answer is, “YES!”
Today I conducted a test run. Inputs:
– 1 Bottle of chilled rosé wine
– 1/3 c chilled simple syrup (see recipe below)
– 1 Cuisinart ice cream maker w/ pre-frozen canister. Our model is ICE-25R but is likely replaced by a newer model by now.
Pour wine into the canister, add simple syrup, and stir. Put canister in ice cream maker and start her up. At 15 minutes it was freezing nicely.
I ran it for another 10 minutes and it looked ready.
I scooped some into a wine glass, added a paper straw (no plastic!), and put the rest into the freezer for later.
Delicious! I highly recommend. Cheers!
Simple syrup recipe:
– Heat 2 cups sugar and 2 cups water in a saucepan over medium heat. Boil 1 minute. Cool and refrigerate.
Fran and Aaron came down to Austin for a visit. They just returned home yesterday. Whoooo, it was HOT while they were here. But they were troopers and hung in there, as we spent most of their time here outdoors.
We spent a couple of days and a night playing on the lake on Nirvana. We spent another morning sailing the newly relaunched Cupholder around as well.
We played multiple tournaments of corn-hole and pool and mario karts. And we sampled a good bit of Tex-Méx, BBQ, and backyard grill-fare.
We spent a day down at Barton Springs Pool, hitting Sno-Beach on the way home for the best sno-cone evah.
We walked 9 holes of golf. And then topped it all off with a few rounds of Rummikub and some beer at Live Oak Brewery, which is thoughtfully placed just across the street from the Austin airport.
They braved it all. We had a blast. Keeto can’t wait until they come back again. 🙂
Day 3 – 17 bridges (yes, 17). 58 miles. Today brought us across the South Carolina border into North Carolina.
Captain Lori picked the departure time perfectly, which isn’t easy with currents being different all along the ICW and worrying about vertical clearance under bridges, and the depth of the water along the way, given that the tide changes water depths in this area by 4 to 6-feet.
Again, we lucked out and were not hit by the storms around us. Today’s challenges were long stretches where the current was against us, which slows us down, and navigating the areas of the ICW that cross river inlets to the Atlantic Ocean. The coast guard temporarily moves the channel markers to safely navigate changing shoals in these areas. Oh, and there was that one jackhole in a fishing boat who nearly ran into us from behind at high speed as he wasn’t paying attention. Luckily he looked up at the last minute and we only got water from his boat spray in the cockpit.
We started the day running up the ICW behind Myrtle Beach. Lots of homes and boat traffic.
Civilization, bridges, and traffic from the air and from the sea… ICW kitsch… Swing bridges that opened when asked nicely… More kitsch…First channel marker in North Carolina…
It turned beachy at Shallote’s Inlet. If you look closely you can see the surf breaking on the Atlantic side… And we got to see the backside of many beach homes…Home for the night…
We enjoyed floating and fishing with Lori and Mike and four of his grandkids today on Nirvana, anchored in our favorite cove on Lake Travis. It was a fun time. The kids were great, and they caught 4 fish between them!
We checked out Brick Oven’s Jazz night for dinner. The patio was full, though, so we had to sit inside.
The first dip in the water marks the beginning of summer for me on Lake Travis. I wait until after Memorial Day to jump in the lake. That happened this past weekend, and it was marvelous.
Monte and I anchored up in a lovely cove overnight on Saturday. Though the wind went completely calm overnight, it wasn’t too hot. But we did battle with no-see-ums and mosquitos, a first for me in about 15 years of playing on the lake. No matter. It was wonderful to be there.
We enjoyed a weekend floating in a full lake on our noodles with Marty, Sue, Kurt & Kevin. Welcome, Summer!
The next day, we drove to Colleen’s house. She cooked pulled pork, from scratch, and it made for delicious sandwiches. We visited with her, Lee and Jake all night. The next morning we headed to Whidbey Island for a day trip.
The smoke and haze was very bad. But it’s a beautiful destination.
Whidbey Island Distillery makes a nice whiskey, and delicious berry liqueurs. They use a continuous still, homemade – see the copper pipes and tubes in the second picture below.
I walked down to the beach to get a view of the Deception Pass bridge…We popped into the Admiralty Point lighthouse…Then we hopped the ferry to Port Townsend…VERY smoky. This is a shot from the deck of the ferry of the sun setting over the beautiful Olympic Mountains. 🙂