Shrimp, Pontoons, Gators and thankful for a light in the dark

This weekend marks a high and busy point in the last month or so. We were happy to have one of my oldest friends in town. Deanna is here with her husband Mike and three kids to visit the land of the magical mouse and for the Shuttle launch which is now twice delayed and may go ‘off’ tonight.
They came for a visit last night and we drove down to Brian’s parents to borrow the pontoon boat. I love getting out on the water. I don’t know if it’s a throwback to my childhood or the cool air on the water or the mild somewhat nauseating fear of alligators but I love actually going out in the boat.
We got a little bit of a late start and by the time we were on the water of Fell’s Cove and East Lake Tohopekaliga (Toho) the sun was just beginning to set. I commented that the boat seemed to be poking along mainly out of hunger but we didn’t put much thought into that since I am a fast driver and really was hungry.
We had a nice catching up style dinner at Crabby Bills which is a crab shack on the shores of Lake Toho smack dab in good old style Florida Saint Cloud (think Mullets, Confederate Flags and pickups). Fried Shrimp, Grilled Shrimp, Shrimp Scampi, Barbequed Shrimp… and a bit of Frog Legs and Gator tail for the more adventurous. Brian had the chicken.
Then we headed back in the pitch black night on the now simply sputtering boat. Twenty feet out of the channel the boat dies.
Mike has had a bit of experience with this in the past and is able to shove a pin on the engine from the throttle and we cruise across the water with relative ease. Reaching the other shore and finding a small white post in the dark presented a new challenge and we poked along the shoreline waving a maglite at the reeds until we breathed a sigh with relief at the reflective glow peering out of the dark.
Gliding through the channel Brian picked out gators in the dark as they smoothly retreated from our spluttering engine and finally we bumped into the dock and were home.

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