Marina Life on the Ortega River

April 19, 2018 0 comments

Living aboard Alli Oop has definitely changed since we stopped cruising.  Being in a marina full time has been both wonderful and challenging.  As you can imagine, we miss living on anchor and feeling the boat’s gentle undulations. I even miss the nuances of our daily dinghy rides: the buzz of the motor, wind in my face and splashes of salt water lapping up against the pontoons. To me, it was always the feeling of freedom. Sigh.

Our new digs

On the bright side, we can step right off of our boat and onto a dock that is filled with friendly faces and helping hands.  A quick stroll up the dock  leads us to the bath house which has clean private showers/bathrooms and even a laundry room.  Oh, the luxury!

There’s a lovely little gathering area complete with cabanas, fire pit and giant grill. We even have a little pool for when it gets super hot and humid in the summer (can’t wait for that). In addition, we are within walking distance to the local grocery store, restaurants and shopping.  If Dave wants to go surfing, it’s only a 30 minute drive to the beach. Not bad, huh?

After a recent trip back to PA, we picked up Dave’s truck and now have the added benefit of transportation. When we first arrived, we were content with walking, riding a bike or getting a ride from somebody at the dock. Now that we have wheels,  we definitely have a sense of independence back.  There’s nothing like being able to come and go as you please – something we used to take for granted.

 Marina Life on the Ortega River

A view from the cabanas.


The inside of our boat is starting to look a little more homely, too.  Cruising guides have been replaced with Southern Living magazine, in place of the sail bags is a bin of work clothes and a small mason jar filled with fresh flowers adorns the top of our heater.

We’ve taken most of our cruising staples (guidebooks, electronics, safety equipment,extra sails, etc.) and placed it all in storage.  Not only has decluttering given us a bit more space, but it’s also helping us to slowly move off of the boat, which is the ultimate goal.


Yes, we’re planning on living on land and selling the boat.  We’re ready to give ourselves some more livable space in the form of a small apartment where Darby Cat can roam free, I can cook to my heart’s content and Dave can put dirty dishes in a DISHWASHER!! All jokes aside, we are seriously READY.

As of late, we’ve been focusing on getting the boat ready to list. There’s been a lot of cleaning, polishing and sanding going on.  The job hunt continues for us both and in the interim we’re supporting our local economy by being very good tourists.

Marina Life on the Ortega River

Cozy in our slip.

Marina Life on the Ortega River

A windy day down at JAX Beach.

Marina Life on the Ortega River

Surfing down at JAX Beach.

Marina Life on the Ortega River

Our resident family of geese.

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