Living and Working in Cortez, Florida

Well Hello there!

Time to get this Ship’s Log up to date.

Let’s take it back to October 2015 through May 2016.

Claire and I were living aboard in Cortez, while working over in Longboat Key.  This area holds a “snowbird” season of tourism basically from Thanksgiving until Cinco de Mayo.  We both picked up jobs at Harry’s Continental Kitchens, a local family owned and operated culinary conglomerate.  Read about their history here.

Apart from working 6 days a week; we spent our time repairing the boat, enjoying the beach, and making new neighbors.

The Gulf of Mexico may not boast the biggest of swells…But with Florida being a peninsula, storm fronts pass over frequent enough to churn up something to get your fix.

Claire just cruising on by

sugar sand beaches, tiny shells, and coral bits

One evening at dusk, untangling a neglected power boat.  It had dragged anchor and was bouncing off boats through the Longboat Key anchorage.  We managed to get both of its anchors up, cleaned off, and re-set in a safer location.

Moore’s Stone Crab was sold at the time.  My father had worked here back in the 1970’s.  He had gotten to be pretty close friends with the family.  Here are some articles about the iconic restaurant.

Moore’s Closing Article

Moore’s Family Article


Our good friend Brian has his Cal29 anchored nearby.

The infamous Longboat Key Peacocks

There we are

Wild parakeets

Big old tree hangin in there

Anna Maria Fish Company

When the mullet run here, they come in droves through the inlets.  Usually involving a cold front snapping through.  Many boats are out on the water in not-so-great conditions.  The plump mullet are caught by hand with large cast nets.  Big money can be made off this natural wonder.

The Roe is collected and cured, sold as a delicacy known as Bottarga.

The flesh of the mullet is smoked and turned into fish spread, served with saltines.

The girls enjoying their water front home.

Looking out Longboat Pass from the south end of Anna Maria Island.

a smaller Cal

Claire enjoying an evening off from work.  A quick ride over the drawbridge to Anna Maria Island.

Every night

Stone Crab Claws another local delicacy.  One claw is removed, and the crab thrown back to grow a new.

Every night

Shawn Sr. and Michael Sr. came down to visit and help work on some things.

Lou Jacobs

Ca’ d’Zan

Looking East from Longboat Pass – Anna Maria Island to the North, Longboat Key to the South.

We splurged and got a Wirie AP+ for Splendid Isolation.  This long range Wi-Fi antenna will greatly boost our signal while also giving us our own secure log-in.  It came with minimal assembly and wired right into our switchboard.  The instructions were basic and simple.

Some days the traffic would get so backed up over the drawbridge, it was quicker to make a 25 minute commute to work in the dinghy.

Our 10′ Port a Bote has many miles under its hull.

A rare day of surf in the Gulf.  Still fog after a storm the day before, left us with waste high slick conditions.

Found a consistent longboard break conveniently between home and work.

We happened to meet Juan Rodriguez of One World Surf.

He did a fantastic repair to the nose of my longboard. [not the board pictured]  A legend in the surf industry for making top quality boards.  Also a detailed artist in reproducing historical boards and hard wood boards.

Comida guarding the boat from pesky birds.

Good selection of restaurants between Bradenton and Sarasota.

The dreaded drawbridge

The tricycle I restored!

Proud Piña

This is our ice box.  Block or bagged ice in the bottom, melts and drains to bilge.  Lid closes and bench seat goes on top.

Claire’s brother Will came to visit.

When we come home from a long day of work.

Sure do love our galley – here is a fat omelette.

Dad gigging Sheepshead from under the dock.

Sailboat under way.

Longboat Key Mangoes


Thank you for checking in on us!

Over a dozen new posts are on their way.

4 Responses to Living and Working in Cortez, Florida

  1. Chesni Groves February 21, 2017 at 8:50 pm #

    SO awesome! Great read and loved your adventures! Miss y’all! ❤

  2. Debbie-Lyn Calvino February 22, 2017 at 1:12 am #

    Thanks for sharing. Love learning more about the ocean and its’ critters!

  3. Robert February 23, 2017 at 10:32 am #

    Thanks for sharing. Hope to see you soon too.

  4. Shaun March 24, 2017 at 3:54 am #

    Great to see you both back..i have enjoyed your blog since the start and I love that you are showing all the armchair bluewater cruisers how to do it for real…you both got out and are getting it done with what you have and have done far more then most boat owners who drone on about needing a new $200k 40ft boat to cruise on…great pics and story and I Wish you both the best..

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