ICW Southbound – Mangrove Marina – Day 5

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We awoke to a small craft advisory with 20+ mph winds and reported seas of 4-6 feet waves in Hawk Channel. After yesterdays winds, we quickly made the decision to stay at Mangrove another day. We made our way down to Founders Park in Islamorada which has a beach, park and pool. We landed at the beach and although our daughter wanted to play on the playground more than swim, we managed to dip into the shallow beach often. We met up with some friends from home who were in Key Largo for the month and chatted with them a bit.

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After we had enough sun, we went back to the marina to get some boat chores done, get cleaned up and were delighted to find that the food truck would be open that evening. While we waited for it to open, we chatted with our boat neighbors, Rick and Janet, who lived on their boat, “Timid Tuna.” Their was nothing timid about this custom built yacht that Rick and Janet had the pleasure of building from 1983-1985. They had lived on their precious boat since 1987 first in Marathon and then at Mangrove Marina since the 90’s. They were also faithfully growing avocado trees on their boat transom. They were my new favorite people and we enjoyed every minute of our conversation!

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The food truck/bar, Fin and Juice, opened and we headed over to the most heavenly setting for a bite to eat. Their floors were sand, the ceiling palm trees and lights and the seats were rocking picnic tables. It was idealic. We settled on tuna tacos and a charcuterie board both of which tasted like they came from a 5 star restaurant not a food truck. I wish I knew more of the story of this bar but it is a MUST for anyone going thru the Keys. As we were limin, we noticed another patron with a Coral Bay, St. John shirt on and chatted with him and his friends for a bit. The love for St. John runs thru our veins and its an easy and favorite topic of conversation for us and usually anyone else who has been there. This guy runs charters all thru the Keys but remembered fondly his time in STJ as we chatted. It was the perfect end to a much needed relaxing day.

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