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- Scorpions / Ratt-

ITINERARY Four: Travel date: 007.16.10

Passengers: Kevin Letize, Jr. Erskine, Papa Joh Erskine, Dan-o Garcia, Jo Jo Randazo

 

LOG FIVE:

A few major things have happened and a few trips I have missed out by non-documentation, not alot really has transpired except an incredible JULY 4th trip to Lake Sylvia, with full party barge and waterslide into the lake; Other than the fireworks being blocked by the building at the end, it was an A+ event. But that's not what this blog is about, this one is all about ROCK-n-ROLL - ( after the shift shaft story ! )

A major mechanical nightmare transpired and quite honestly I've been dealing with that more than ENJOYING the Grady White Atlantic. The SHIFT SHAFT on the 1991 Yamaha 200 2-stroke started going bad. No shifting in / out of gear without it sounding like something was slipping. Pauli Marchan of THIRD DEGREE CHARTERS out of Key West ( the most awesome boat captain / fishing assassin / cool guy / lobster destroyer - phone # : 305.797.7160 - Please visit : http://www.youtube.com/kwboyzfishin for more info ) came up and helped out this new first real-time captain. Pauli's experience on the water is measured in 1000's of hours...mine 100's -

With the SHIFT SHAFT basically getting too weak to turn the lower unit in and out of gear easily, it needed to be replaced; And the diagnosis was NOT GOOD - Pull the power head, risk many broken bolts, big job, marina guestimate $800.00 - After 1994, YAMAHA switched to a stainless shaft to cure this very problem, but as it went, this was a costly repai unless you know a trick or someone great! Paulie Marchan, with the technical guidance of one Paxton Peagler ( super Boat Mechanic also out of Key West ) called in the ultimate repair. GO GET A NEW SHIFT SHAFT and we're diving into it - Instead of pulling the power head, we removed the casing, the lower carb, which gave us access to the manifold; We carefully unbolted the manifold and tilted the manifold to the side, ever so slightly in order to reach the shift shaft. With a little coaxing, out came the old SHIFT SHAFT and in went the new; What normally would have lasted 8 hours, we're we're cleaning up in 4 - Other than a few misc. overtightens, seals, and basic hose issues, we we're back in by late afternoon - Fantastic info from Paxton Peagler and an incredible job by Pauli Marchan - If you are ever in Key West and really, really want to catch fish / lobster and want to do it with someone special ( and not too expensive ) please call the above info: THIRD DEGREE CHARTERS

So, now that we're caught up...let's fast forward to July 16, 2010 - The day started out grey and gloomy; Rain was forcast for most all of the day; Friday nite and it looked like the trip was going to be cancelled. After the first rain shower, the rain ended at about 3pm. I decided, screw it, rain or not, I'm going down to Bayfront Park by ship. I'm going to park out where I can see into the concert and listen / watch the show from the water.

Here's a aerial view ( see the RED STAR ) on the inset and regular shot ? That's where we decided ahead of time to set-up.

At 4:15, all the boys boarded the vessel and off we went; Rain or no rain, with the cabin on-board, how bad could it really be ? And you know what, it never rained a drop !

Crusing out, we set up easily and quietly. It was a no-hassle GUY CRUISE. We packed lightly, brought alot of food and drink and made off the dock within 20 minutes. Out the Dania Cut Off Canal, to the intercoastal, and down towards Key Biscayne

Crusing down it was SUPER SWEET - With me being on anti-botics for a vicious cold I couldn't shake, my sobriety was in full swing and was able to handle the ship like a good captain, sober and clear headed.

We stopped off at Beer Can Island for a quick dip. The water was ripping through there, but it was a nice splash, cool off. As we got down close, we knew we were in for a good nite. As we anchored off where those RED STARS are ( pictured above ) we we're parked next to a BIG BLACK TIKI BARGE and we're getting drowned out with HORRIBLE RAP MUSIC - IT SUCKED - so bad, that we had to move our ship. Just when we thought we couldn't take it anymore, we sailed around and into BAYSIDE MARINA - And wow, let me tell you, downtown Miami by boat is UN-REAL !

Jr. Erskine covered the $14 parking tab and Papa John said, " I'm staying on the ship. You guys go have fun. And so we did !

Dan-O and I decided to march right straight for the concert and not stop. Right past the trucks where we we're docked, right past the tour buses and BAM ! right back stage with no-one saying a word. With a little headsteam, and walking like you belong there, we walked right up and onto the grass, stage high and loving life !

Jo Jo got close, but bailed due to unrelated circumstances; Jr went back with Jo Jo and they headed off for WET WILLES FROZEN DRINK BAR ! First was RATT with Carlos Carvazo from Quiet Riot filling in.

Our zone where we sneaked was so good, we didn't want to move and jeaprodize losing our perfect setup. We we're thirsty but BEERS we're $8.00 a piece. Can you imagine, $50 for a six pack ? Welcome to Miami Bayfront Park ! Holy Cow; On-board there was probably 1000 worth of beer on-board, all cold and free ! The on came the SCORPS !

How close am I ?

 

 

I zoomed out so you could see the crowd ! It was packed.

Klaus Meine ! He was like 5 foot tall, but could sing his sack off.

So we stayed all the way until the final encore, ( Rock You Like A Hurricane ) and then we headed back to the marina.

Jr. and Jo Jo we're BOMBED - The 190 octanes kicked their ass. Papa John had enough by this point and was about ready to go.

The super sneak - in specials !

My first beer ( although it looks like I had alot ) in 7 days.

" Cmon let's go - I'm ready, the old man says "

Jo Jo is looking green...

Right before he barfed.

Dan-O says " oooh that's gross Jo Jo "

The motors we're purring on home.

All four of us looking for unlit markers at night in Key Biscayne Waterways. Its really easy to run aground and get lost. Fortuately my super Lowrance GPS with the chip saved our asses on the way back - As We stopped off at PJ's ( Jr's nephew's house at 1am ) and had a late nite round, we decided one last stop, Flickerlite - No one really remembers it, except me who was still fighting the cold. I broke ( the sober guy ) a bottle of hotsauce and the place went crazy. Other than late nite munchies, we we're quickly in and out.

Jo Jo decided to sleep it off. At 4:30 am, we returned back to the dock. With all the fuel gone, the boys headed out into the night, before day break. It was tough getting Papa John up and moving, but the next day, everyone realized, " That was one HELL of a ROCK-n-ROLL sea trip.