Last year, we had been in Halifax Harbor Marina only a month when the annual marina Christmas party rolled around. We attended, and it was really nice, but we really didn’t feel like we were part of the crowd yet.
This year, we had a much better idea of what marina life is like, and we decided we’d go to the boat to watch the boat parade, and then the next weekend, attend the marina party.
The boat parade is actually put on by the Halifax River Yacht Club which is located just north of Halifax Harbor Marina. I’m not sure if membership in the HRYC is needed to be in their parade or not, but my guess is not. There were some boats in the parade that would need some imagination to be called yachts, so I’m thinking that if it floats, you can be part of the parade.
We briefly considered decorating Magic Carpet, but reason prevailed, and we decided that we’d just enjoy the labor of others this year. Our decorations at home, at least on the outside, would be considered “minimalist” I suppose, and even that would be a pretty generous description.
We invited a couple we’ve worked with to join us on the boat for the parade. We are on the end of one of the piers, and the parade route brought the boats into the marina, past us, then they would all do a 180 degree turn and go back out, passing us a second time. We bought a few bottles of wine and a bunch of snacks and finger foods, and I tested the wet bar to make sure it worked properly. The wet bar has a dispenser that shoots out what I suppose is a shot-sized slug of booze at the press of a button. There are several large bottles stored underneath, and by pressing the appropriate button, you can get a shot of bourbon, vodka, gin, and a couple other different types of liquor. It’s neat for those who drink such things, but neither Janet nor I are big on hard liquor. Nothing against it, just don’t care for it. We’re much more into beer or wine. Anyway, I figured I’d make it available for anyone who wanted some.
Two other couple stopped by to join us to watch the parade, so we had a pretty good crowd, and pretty soon the first boat rounded the corner heading our way. One of our guests had apparently already found some eggnog somewhere, as he started calling heartily to all of the passing boats in his best “Aarrg, avast ye mateys” pirate voice. Exactly how the pirate voice fit in with the Christmas theme, I’m not sure, but he was doing a very good rendition of a slightly tipsy geriatric plunderer.
We rapidly realized though, that he wasn’t the only one who’d done a little pre-parade imbibing. The crews of some of the boats were obviously well lubricated, and we were surprised that nobody went overboard as the boats made their turns. We did have a couple anxious moments as one of the conga line strayed a little too close to us, but at the last minute the captain seemed to get his directional stability issues sorted out, and got back out into the channel without exchanging fiberglass with us.
After the parade passed by, we went back inside to make sure we didn’t leave any wine laying around. People drifted off, and Janet and I wobbled below for some sleep.
The following weekend was the marina’s Christmas party and we really enjoyed that too. We walked from our dock to the party at the marina office with two couples from boats near ours. One of the couples is about to take off for several months on their sailboat. They plan to go to the Keys, then to the Bahamas, then back to Florida, then up the east coast to the Chesapeake Bay area. Loose plan is to return to Daytona around September or October…maybe. REALLY envy them!
The other couple just talked us into joining the Marine Trawler Owner’s Association and we were their guests a few weeks ago at one of the monthly meetings. Seems like a pretty neat group, and we hope to learn a lot from the collective experience, and have some fun socializing.
The party was good, with an open bar, and all-you-can-eat shrimp. And believe me, I ate all-I-could-eat of the shrimp.
Me and Bubba Gump, we sho do like us some shrimps.
I almost forgot…the main reason we were able to play host and hostess on our boat was because I finished the installation of the new head!!
It was so exciting, I think I’ll write a separate tale about that adventure later. I know you’ll be waiting with bait on your breath.