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Thursday, September 21, 2017

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Row row my boat gently through the bay.  Merrily, merrily merrily merrily life is oh so gay!
I spent the first few months aboard the Tarquin rowing my dingy back and forth.  Most days I found it good exercise but there were the few that seriously scared the crap out of me.  The winter weather and water are not to be messed with.  I rowed so hard to work one day I was shaken when I got to land.  One evening I went in to get something at the local corner store and ended up getting sucked up in the current and against a seawall.  BoatsUS to the rescue!
 
I now have a 5hp engine to power the little dingy.  We are luckily a two dingy family; it makes life a lot easier.  I have the "beater" and my husband drives the "Caddy".  It's no different than having two cars on land.  If you look in anyone's garage one car is new and the other the hand me down.
 
My daughter, Grace, and I love to go and pick up trash in the bay and surrounding canals.  Taking a ride in the dingy is the best way to see the birds and other wildlife.  We've even had a few fish try to catch a ride with us.  We've had stowaway crabs and once a pelican that decided he was riding in the dingy too while we were on land.  We saw a blue heron and a frog all at once the other day.  Grace loves the birds and bugs.
 
Having a dingy instead of a car has taken some getting use to.  It slows you down enough to smell the salt water.  TW
 

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As published by Southwinds magazine written by Capt. JAY for Southwinds.  www.piratesloretradingpost.com and all credit to Southwinds mag, piratesloretradingpost.com and Capt.Jay.
 
 
November 2011 - 10.20.11
 
 
Below is the original letter written June 19, 2011, submitted to Southwinds Magaine.
 
 
FWC
 
FWC Blacked Out
 
I have been witness to FWC'S blacked out stalking tactics around Marco Island. Now these are the very same laws they claim to enforce. I have seen this around Factory Bay and the Marco River;  When they go blowing through Factory Bay, a known and well posted manatee zone.  and they are not the only ones! There is a pod that lives back here and I see them swim out here almost everyday.  We shake our heads at FWC and say it must be an emergency fishing. and all others we say it must be a boating emergency Now I have never had any of them do a night time raid on me or anyone I know, but there have been two times I was watching them and cringing , at night for I have had dealings with them and most were not good up till that point.  But  there has been a notable change that anyone and everyone on the water near Marco can see in FWC. What fallows is good and bad starting about a year ago and working toward present.
 
One time I was in  my tender doing repairs on the starboard side of my ship.  The port side of my tender was fast up alongside my ship and there was no way they could see my numbers or sticker, the motor was up and out of the water when they went past me on the starboard side roughly 200ft. or so.  They threw it in reverse hard just to tell me I had better row that thing in and proceeded to threaten me with a ticket, impound my boat and throw me in jail if they saw me out here.  I replied that I had just yesterday got it titled, tagged and a motor on it.  I even pulled out my flare kit and showed them the new sticker, and went on to say that here soon, "as in today!" I was going to go in to the marina and by letters and numbers to put on the side of my tender.  That was not good enough for them, they continued to threaten me with my 3 year old daughter standing right there and my little girl is freaking out by now.  It was really scary!  In a rash attempt to make them leave us alone I ripped the back of the sticker and smacked it on the side of my boat, and said, "you happy now?".  The last thing they said is, "you have been warned!".  They said nothing more and just drifted away slowly.  So that menacing encounter was the first of many to follow. And it was all most a year ago when this happened  One morning I was awaken by my wife saying, "Hey, hey, the sheriff is out here" and it was all I could do to get a pair of shorts on, get out and just as I did the sheriff’s bow was hard in to the port side of my ship.  Wow what is going on? A FWC officer boards my ship, now all this was happening as I just turned the corner.  He landed mid ship and said I need to see your head.  Well since I have nothing to hide and was out of it from just waking up, I showed him it.  First off he had no clue how to even work it, or what line was what.  This could not have been a worse time because the night before my little angel flushed something and clogged the line to the tank.  I explained the problem and that is was the first thing on my list to do today.  He  was nice about it and said he would be back by noon to make sure I had fixed it. He asked me for my papers I gave them to him.  As we were still waiting for the USCG NVDC paper work to come back, he did nothing but tried to inform me that I still needed registration, knowing better! I kept my mouth shut that he did not even know the laws he was tryng to enforce.  He left but made it clear he would be back and it would be real soon. Rather than trying to unclog the line which was my plan prior to this happening.  I knew I had to do something fast so I went to West Marine got a new hose and replaced the whole line that was about a year old if that, went to the FWC web site and down loaded the full law!  I was going to be ready for him this time!  And inform him of not only FWC's laws but the boarding laws as he never asked to board me, so if he had given me a ticket it would have gotten thrown out of court.  It was however an illegal boarding and not to mention he was out of his jurisdiction boarding a vessel of federal navigation without asking the captain permission to board, and having no probable cause. Needless to say he never came back. I also think in him talking to me he knew I was telling the truth, sincere, and knew I would fix the problem. And I did ASAP!
 
 Side note: FWC has since misconstrued the real law and what the laws they state pertain to. FWC's web site however is no longer a good source for the real law of Florida. Instead look for it at
 
Google: CHAPTER 2009-86.     Council Substitute for Committee Substitute for House Bill No. 1423 
 
We have had many other dealings with them on land and at the dock, for instance this one night I went in to the marina with my tender.  I had turned off and put down my flashlight as I turned the corner to free my hand for docking.  There is lots of light around I don’t need it and am not required to have it on by law.  I just need to have it handy, if i remember right, and I am not even sure that is required by law, but is advised by the Coast guard to carry one for your own safety! Let’s face it, you would be stupid not to have one aboard and handy. They spot lighted me and met me at the dock. He demands that I shut down my motor and asks me if I stole the boat.  What? Questions me some more with some nonsense, runs my FL's, it came back clean of course! Tells me to make sure I keep my light on at all times, angrily and storms off!  If he really thought I stole the boat you think he would have made sure the numbers matched the VIN numbers, but he did not. I have been stopped by FWC on foot in the parking lot and questioned to what point I still don’t understand. And onto the next contact yet another time, one had actually followed me back out to my boat once before he broke off pursuit.  That was after he had detained us at the dock! Now a more recent contact; I was over talking to a sailor, me on my tender, and he on his sail boat, and here comes FWC right at us.  As I was leaving FWC pulls up to me while I was under power and it was blatant that I was not in any kind of trouble requiring assistance, or for that matter had any problem what so ever. He pulled up alongside me asks is there a problem? No! I reply. Do you have your driver’s license? No, I do not it is on my ship! Do you have your registration with you? No that is on my ship as well! Do u know your FL number? No, but it is on the other side of the boat! Still holding on to his boat I maneuver the tender around back words struggling at it, and read him the numbers. He runs them, and it comes back clean. Gives me a warning after I explained that there is nowhere to keep my registration safe and dry on my tender, and that I had the piece of paper on my ship and invite him over to get it. Even know he knows that I am currant, not only by my sticker, but it came back clean and valid. He turns me down and gives me a written warning, and sends me on my way. Now he was nice about it. And you could tell he felt kind of bad after all this. He said lots of people laminate them and that is ok! And I should do the same. So I comment that laminating it to me would through up a red flag if I were him. That is what they do to forge them! After all there is a reason it is on a special kind of paper and laminating it does not make it water proof! Plus there still is the fact that I have no place to put it! It’s an open boat! One ore, an anchor, a life jacket, ("that blows around a lot cause I have no place to secure it; I have lost two of them already because of this problem".), a fuel tank and that is it there are not even seats in this thing! I have since fixed this problem; well, I think! I got one of those credit card water proof cases and put it in that.  But now I have to carry one more extra thing and try not to lose it.  I will let you know how that goes!  The whole time I was with in 100 or so feet from my ship.  Really! come on! what is the problem? It’s not a car, no glove box, it's a rib!
 
Now all the above I am talking about 3 different boats 2 were ribs and 1 was mother ship the flair kit I had mentioned earlier went with the old tender and my new one does not have one, and I am not required to have one on this boat!
 
I do have one question how do we inform and the rest of the state, county, city police of the laws without causing trouble for ourselves? Well my plain is to hand them the whole printed law, rules of the road USCG and maritime law with my papers when asked so if there is a problem we they can show me what I have done wrong according to the law. So we both can see it in black in white. I should not have to do this that is there job not mine!  Now no one has done a “safety check” on us, but they don't have to.  I put it all out there so they can see it:  jackets hanging from the ceiling, flair kit hanging on the side of the pilot house in plain view as well as a fire extinguisher all out there for all to see, plus upon any one talking to me knows that safety is always first on my list. And yes, I get it, there are those out there that should not even be aloud to drive a boat, and have no clue! With no regard to life or limb, or even know how to handle or proper etiquette and or the laws!
 
Now dont get me wrong the CCSD and MIPD we have no problems with them and have even worked with them twice salvaging boats. They all wave at us as they go by, even the Coast Guard waves at us.  FWC did not till recently!  I think most FWC officers are not bad, more than half that I have come into contact with were real nice guys.  But their training, and higher ups or something has misconstrued the law and what they teach and tell these guys. I am sad to say that some of this is still going on This is not right, and they do not have the right to stop you for no reason at all, or at anchor and with no probable cause. This is the same kind of tactics land police use by calling in a tag for no reason, and find out in doing so that the owner of the car is under suspension and pulls the car over just to see who is driving.  It is not right either but now they at least have probable cause to suspect that the person in question is driving.   Unlike FWC. no cause, no rhyme, no reason!
July 4th 2011
 
The set up: we had a ship that was abandoned here at anchor, broke loose in a storm and crashed into a sea wall.  The next day all of us sailors got together and decided to as they put it "police ourselves a little", and go help this ship out.  After a hour or so, we managed to pull it free of the wall and anchored it away from the wall.  My rib and anchors did all the work, turned on the bilges and started to maintain it.  I made all the reports to the right people and was able through doing so to contact the owner.  He gave me the ship. He apparently did not want it and was trying to get rid of it?  It's a nice ship!  We were aboard this ship "S.S. Pirates Lady" a 40ft 1946 navy admiral tender!  This thing is decked out!  FWC came by to pay us a visit, asked for the papers and I told them all I had right now was a bill of sale and explained how I got the bill of sale with the help of the Coast Guard, MIPD, but mostly the CCSD and that was good enough for them. They had commented about hearing about this ship. It was implied that they were just checking to make sure we had the right to be there. They asked if we were having a good 4th of July so far, and we all said yes.  They asked if we had enough life jackets aboard for all six of us and I said yes we do and the jackets were out for them to see.  They asked about fire extinguishers and there were three of them. The questions stopped and we got to know each other a little.  They were polite, nice, professional and friendly. 
 
Please understand in no way am I trying to make anyone look bad or bash the FWC.  I am just reporting  my story and as I said above I have seen changes in FWC.  In a years time a lot has happened.  I and my family no longer fear FWC. I believe that we will not have any problems any time to come from FWC or anyone else for that matter.  And thanks to the FWC officers for stepping up to the plate and dispelling any doubt or fears anyone had in my local area they are the good guys.
 
Capt. Jay
 www.piratesloretradingpost.com
 
I have included below all the laws I have referred to here and advise all to carry them with the anchor laws if inside the state of Florida. I also have put a star * before and after* to the references I have made to the law. 
*Section 20. Effective October 1, 2009, subsections (1) and (2) of section
328.03, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:
328.03 Certificate of title required.—
(1) Each vessel that is operated, used, or stored on the waters of this state
Must be titled by this state pursuant to this chapter,* unless it is:*
(a) A vessel operated, used, or stored exclusively on private lakes and
ponds;.
(b) A vessel owned by the United States Government;.
(c) A non-motor-powered vessel less than 16 feet in length;.
*(d) A federally documented vessel;.*
(e) A vessel already covered by a registration number in full force and
effect which was awarded to it pursuant to a federally approved numbering
system of another state or by the United States Coast Guard in a state
without a federally approved numbering system, if the vessel is not located
in this state for a period in excess of 90 consecutive days;.
(f) A vessel from a country other than the United States temporarily
used, operated, or stored on using the waters of this state for a period that
is not in excess of 90 days;.
(g) An amphibious vessel for which a vehicle title is issued by the Department
of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles;.
(h) A vessel used solely for demonstration, testing, or sales promotional
purposes by the manufacturer or dealer; or.
(i) A vessel owned and operated by the state or a political subdivision
thereof.
(2) A person shall not operate, use, or store a vessel for which a certificate
of title is required unless the owner has received from the Department of
Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles a valid certificate of title for such vessel.
However, such vessel may be operated, used, or stored for a period of up to
180 days after from the date of application for a certificate of title while the
application is pending.
 
*Section 24. Effective October 1, 2009, section 328.56, Florida Statutes, is
amended to read:
328.56 Vessel registration number.—Each vessel that is operated, used,
or stored on the waters of this the state must display a commercial or
recreational Florida registration number,* unless it is:*
(1) A vessel operated, used, and stored exclusively on private lakes and
ponds;.
(2) A vessel owned by the United States Government;.
(3) A vessel used exclusively as a ship’s lifeboat;.
(4) A non-motor-powered vessel less than 16 feet in length, or a and any
non-motor-powered canoe, kayak, racing shell, or rowing scull, regardless of
length;.
*(5) A federally documented vessel;.*
(6) A vessel already covered by a registration number in full force and
effect which has been awarded to it pursuant to a federally approved numbering
system of another state or by the United States Coast Guard in a
state without a federally approved numbering system, if the vessel has not
been within this state for a period in excess of 90 consecutive days;.
(7) A vessel operating under a valid temporary certificate of number;.
(8) A vessel from a country other than the United States temporarily
using the waters of this state; or.
(9) An undocumented vessel used exclusively for racing.
 
These are the ones I have located and the search continues for the rest.
Category: The Community

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Hurricane season doesn't officially start until Saturday but Mother Nature is reminding us she doesn't go by our calendar.  Marco Island, Naples and surrounding areas were hit with up to 86 mile an hour winds.
My family and I were just sitting down to dinner and here came a storm.  Literally just sat down, no bite yet and our family had to spring into action.  Life jackets, windows closed....V birth window stuck.  The force of the wind and the motion of the water made it almost impossible to close.  Once everyone had jackets on, windows (all but V birth) the captain (my husband) went to the bow to drop another anchor.  We are the only boat who held fast.  Two boats hit the seawall and the other three anchored in Factory Bay blew.  The Captain whirled into action and took all the actions to keep his crew safe. He stayed on the bow to help with the distrabution of weight.  I saw him from the window of the V birth hanging on to the boom.  My daughter and I sat in the bow and took as much weight with us as we could  (cooler, water jugs and us).  She fell asleep life jacket and all.  We made it through the storm right where we started and only a little disaray inside the boat.  Captain and I agree that this was the worst one we have been through in the last nine months.  There were some bad storms this past winter but this truly was a doosy.
 
The Factory Bay had five boats in it before the storm hit.  There is one unmanned retired Navy tender boat in the bay and his vessel is now resting against the seawall.  Our neighbors, nor us, have a way to contact the owner. The boat against the seawall is a fiberglass hall. Sea Tow is pulling up to the boat now.  Apparently the owner went in to get parts.  My husband wanted to go and help but we were advised by Tow Boats US and officials to not board or help the boat.  It's unfortunate we live in a world that we have to be afraid to help others.  I certainly would want someone to help us.  We've advised all our neighbors of the bay bottom type, advised anchor type ect. and the ones that don't listen blow away.
After the storm, the sky was gorgeous! It's a comfortable breeze around seventy degrees with possible thunder storms until midnight.  The sky is full of beautiful lightening.

 

Tarquin's Wench

This is a friend of ours and we stood helpless, and wached the whole thing happen!

 Capt. Jay and crue.

Category: The Community

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This morning brought a lot of activity in Factory Bay as well as the marine radio.  The run away vessel from last evening was still resting on the sea wall this morning.  Information on the where abouts of this man is unknown.  The run away vessel was anchored and rafted with another of the sailboats out here for a day.  The woman on the sailboat said her captain went for parts and the run away vessel's captain went to Tampa.  She says she has no way to contact these men.  Meanwhile this vessel is putting all of the boats in the bay in danger.  My husband, daughter and one of our sailing neighbors from Cali towed the vessel back out into the bay and used our anchors to secure it.  The woman in the sailboat did not want to help the vessel but after talking with her she rowed out but didn't touch the vessel.  
My husband contacted the local sheriffs office and the coast guard to advise them he had salvaged the vessel.  We are receiving winds now that would have knocked the boat into surrounding docks.  We are in the process of trying to contact the owner.  
 
Tarquin's Wench
Category: The Community

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Oil spills happen all over our planet yearly.  Oil has been the center of conversation for our world, the US government and family kitchen tables for a long time.  I believe that most agree that conservation by all is the first and foremost for everyone involved.  We all need oil to function in our world.   The top five oil companies Exxon Mobile, Royal Dutch Shell, BP, Chevron and ConocoPhillips are also listed on the top ten corporations in the world.  Oil has become one of the most traded energy stocks.  Sounds like oil makes our world go 'round.
Our world is adicted to oil.  I'm guilty as the rest. here are hundreds of studies on the subject and truly more statics than one could write in an article; it would take a book.  So, we'll talk about the basics.  From the late 1980's until now there have been major oil spills in the water all over the world, increasing because of our worldwide need for oil.  Other "smaller" oil spills contribute as well.
For example, this year, in Nigeria black market thieves hacksawed through one of the Royal Dutch Shell companies pipelines causing Shell unable to meet their forcasted production.  The damage to this country is beyond my imagination.  Studies show that the Exxon Valdeze oil spill happens every year in this country and has for the last fifty years.  Most of the oil spilled here has never been cleaned up nor any help to the local people.  Royal Dutch Shell has the majority of the pipelines in this country.  Nigeria supplies nearly half of the imported oil to the US.
How many millions of gallons of oil goes into our waterways every year?  Americans alone spill 180-360 million gallons of used oil in our waterways annually.  Used motor oil is much more damaging to the ecosystem then crude oil.  Only about 12% of the earth's oil pollution comes from oil tankers, the rest mainly comes from factories and individuals dumping it down the drain or into the ground  or into the water.
If we refined the billion gallons of motor oil used every year in the United States, we would save 1.3 million barrels of oil per day, or half the daily output of the Alaskan Pipeline.  When we see the commercials or people ask, "but what can I do?", you answer dispose and recycle what you use.  If everyone did that one simple step we could slow down this insatable appetite for oil.
There are lots of ways to clean up but there are many factors involved to decide which method is best suited for the situation.  There is an organization called Matter of Trust that has found ways to make hair, fur and waste fleece into hair booms and mats.  I have included a link on the "links page" about their program.
How does all this afftect me directly?  After a difficult decision of weather to fix our 1984 Ford or sell it, we have decided to sell it.  The freedom of a vehicle is priceless but I have already felt the financial difference.  I'm not paying for car insurance, fluids, gasoline at almost $4.00 a gallon or worried about what needs fixed next.  The heat of summer here in Florida does make it rough when walking but it's good for the waistline.
After the major oil spill in the Gulf last year I realized how much it affects us all.  It affected many customer service employees all around me.  Europeans were afraid to come here and would not eat any fish, no matter where it came from. It affected a lot of pocket books because the oil companies didn't have a plan.  So what is the plan now?
Category: The Community

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