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01 April 2016

A Is For Anchor | Nancy Drew Investigates {A To Z Challenge}


During April, we're participating in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Every day (except Sundays), we'll be doing an alphabet themed post starting with "A is for Anchor" and ending with "Z is for Zodiac." Each post is an installment of "Nancy Drew Investigates the Case of the Missing Anchor" - so you may want to read the posts from the beginning in order to follow along with the story (click here for an index of all of the posts). At the end of each post, you'll also find some random thoughts on the day's particular topic.

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“I can’t believe we get to participate in the Grande Isle Regatta this weekend!” Nancy Drew’s blue eyes sparkled as she looked around at the sailboats in the marina. “This is going to be so much fun." She turned to her two friends and asked, “Aren’t you excited?”

George Fayne grinned and said enthusiastically, “I can’t wait to try out the new spinnaker you were telling us about. Imagine how fast we’ll be able to fly across the water. We’ll definitely win the race.” George nudged her cousin Bess Marvin and pointed over across the water. “See those sailboats out there. That will be us this weekend.”

Bess tucked a lock of her long blonde hair under her pink sunhat and gazed out at the boats anchored in the sheltered bay. She looked nervously at Nancy and George and asked, “But, what if something goes wrong? What if we hit something and our boat starts to sink? What will we do then?”

Nancy smiled at Bess and said, “Don’t worry Bess. The people who we’ll be sailing with are really experienced sailors. They’ve even crossed the Atlantic twice. We’ll be in good hands. Why don’t we go over to their slip now to meet them and then you can see their boat.”

The three girls walked down the dock to the far side of the marina, which was located in Pine Tree Bay on the outskirts of their hometown of River Heights. Nancy and George were regular visitors to the marina where they crewed on a friend’s boat during the weekly Wednesday night races. They had tried to convince Bess to join them, but the thought of zipping along on a sailboat while it was heeled over at an uncomfortable angle was too much for her and she signed up for a cooking course instead.

While Bess was busy daydreaming about the various pastries they would be making at next week’s class, Nancy pointed over to a white boat with red racing stripes. “Look, there she is. She’s called the Scarlet Slipper. Those are the boat’s owners, Marvin and Shelley, over there.” They saw a distinguished looking man with dark brown eyes and closely cropped gray hair standing next to his wife, a petite woman with green eyes and blonde hair streaked by the sun.

“It was really nice of my father to ask them if we could sail on their boat during the regatta. Marvin and Shelley have been his clients for years,” said Nancy. “Wait a minute...it looks like they're talking to a police officer. I wonder what’s going on.”

Nancy hurried over to Marvin and Shelley and asked, “Is everything okay?”

“Oh, hi there Nancy. It’s nice to see you again dear,” said Shelley. “And, these must be your friends. Unfortunately, you’ve come at a bad time. We’ve had something terrible happen.” Marvin put his arm around Shelley's shoulders. “Don’t worry honey. The police will catch the guy.”

Nancy turned to Marvin and asked, “What happened? Are you guys okay?”

Maurice walked over to the boat, pointed at the bow roller and said angrily, “Would you believe it – someone stole our brand new Rocna anchor!”

Tune in tomorrow for the next installment of Nancy Drew Investigates – B is for Boatyard

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That's our old Rocna anchor, which we used on our old boat in New Zealand. One of the first things we bought for our new boat, Tickety Boo, was a Rocna anchor. They might be pricey, but they bring good peace of mind when you're anchored.

Last summer, a bloggy pal asked me to take a picture of her boat, which was in storage at Indiantown Marina. By the way, if you’re new around here, I live aboard a sailboat at a small marina in southern Florida, east of Lake Okeechobee, smack-dab in the middle of alligator infested swamps and sugarcane fields. Why am I here? Well, it’s a long story – you can read about it here. But, let’s get back to the photo of my bloggy pal’s boat.

Other than the grime on the decks from the continual burning of the nearby sugarcane fields and the usual mold and mildew, which you can’t really escape in southern Florida, everything seemed fine when my bloggy pal initially looked at the picture of their boat. That is, until she had a closer look and noticed that their Rocna anchor was missing from the bow.

Yep, someone stole their anchor. That sort of thing will piss you off on several levels: (1) Rocna anchors aren’t cheap to replace; (2) the folks who stole the anchor probably knew a thing or two about boats, which means they were one of us, fellow boaties and cruisers; and (3) stealing stuff is just bad form.

Someone else had an outboard motor stolen from their lazarette and I wouldn't be surprised to find other folks had stuff stolen as well. Perhaps it was some sort of midnight raid by bad people who went around plucking all sorts of goodies off of unattended boats. I can only hope one or more of them stepped in an anthill full of fire ants and suffered for days afterwards with a painful allergic reaction to the tiny burning bites.

More likely, they just flogged the stuff on eBay and Craig’s List and then spent the money on beer and cigarettes somewhere in the Florida Keys. You’ve probably seen them hanging around in their dinghy somewhere in Boot Key Harbor, smoking, burping and scratching their fire ant bites (and other parts of their bodies which really aren’t polite to scratch in public).

I still get mad thinking about the anchor incident. Not just because it happened to a really nice couple, but because, if you refer back to point #2 above, it was likely one of our own. Cruisers (like RVers and other nomadic traveling type people) stick together. They help each other out. They have each other’s backs. Except for those yahoos who helped themselves to other people’s stuff. They’re not worthy of the cruiser label.

If I was mean-spirited, I might hope that their dinghy springs a leak and they find themselves slowly sinking in alligator-infested waters. A dinghy that they probably stole from somebody else, I might add.

If only we had had someone like Nancy Drew around when the "Case of the Missing Anchor" took place. Nancy would have solved the case in no time, all the time while looking immaculate in her twin sweater set, pearls, faux alligator pumps and matching handbag, without ever breaking a sweat (which is next to impossible in southern Florida). The anchor would have been recovered and justice would have prevailed. Even the alligators would have bowed down to her poise and intelligence.

Instead, my bloggy pal and her husband had to shell out for a new anchor. On the bright side, it inspired my theme for this year's Blogging from A to Z Challenge. An odd theme, but there you have it.

If you want to read the real account of their stolen anchor, check out the scoop here.

Have you ever had anything valuable stolen from your home, RV or boat?

Thanks for stopping by our blog - we love it when people come visit! We're also on Facebook - we'd love for you to pop by and say hi! 











66 comments:

  1. This sounds like an exiting adventure. I'll se you tomorrow ;-)

    @JazzFeathers
    The Old Shelter - Jazz Age Jazz

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    1. Thanks Sarah! Hopefully, I can keep everyone on the edge of the seat, wondering if she'll manage to solve the case :-)

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  2. Interesting story, fortunately I've never had anything stolen (so far). Would love to visit Florida one day though. Best regards! from The Truck Traveller

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    1. So glad that you've never had anything stolen! Florida has a lot to offer - definitely worth a visit.

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  3. I am lucky enough to say, no, I have never had anything valuable stolen, but my husband has, before we were living together - it's a nasty feeling. I look forward to seeing how Nancy and her friends solve the mystery.
    Tasha
    Tasha's Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

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    1. Sorry to hear about your husband - what a horrible thing to have happen. Thanks for stopping by :-)

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  4. Off to a rousing start! Best wishes!

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  5. This is going to be fun! And fuelled by anger, even better.
    The Glasgow Gallivanter

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  6. I love the story already! LOL Glad something good could come out of the incident. Looking forward to reading the rest of the story.

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    1. I wish Nancy had been around when your anchor was stolen. She would have definitely nabbed the thieves.

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  7. This is going to be an amazing series, Ellen -- love how you've twined the theme of "A" in so many levels. I'm battening down the hatches for a wild ride! And BTW, we're now expecting to be in your area either the weekend of the 16th or the 22nd; PM me if one is better than the other.

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    1. You're too kind Jaye! I'll send you an email re: getting together.

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  8. Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys were books found in our house when I was a kid. How the heck can an anchor go missing? Was it found under the sofa?

    I’m exploring different types of dreams and their meanings during the #AtoZChallenge at Stephen Tremp’s Breakthrough Blogs

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    1. You'll just have to wait and see where the anchor turns up. Probably not under a sofa though :-)

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  9. Wow - Nancy Drew! What a blast from the past! Didn't think I'd ever see a new Nancy Drew mystery. I look forward to the rest of the chapters. I love the real life bonus material at the end. (Sorry about the theft, though!)

    We were burglarized when I was 8 months pregnant with my daughter, many years ago. They got away with some jewelry that, while valuable, was even moreso due to its sentimental value. Those fantasies about fire ants? If I'd known, then, about fire ants... As it is, I just prayed that opals really were "unlucky" for anyone who wasn't born in October and didn't get them as a gift from someone who was! I have imagined all sorts of curses those gems might have rained down on the thieves' heads.

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    1. What happened to you is awful! Especially when the jewelry had sentimental value. I too home those opals cursed the thieves.

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  10. Looking forward to more! I know nothing about sailing or boats so I think I will learn something new while I enjoy the story as well. #A-ZChallenge

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  11. I'm not a boater, rv-er or traveller at the moment, but my son had the computer of his moped stolen from outside our house last year. The thief was caught because he'd burgled someone nearby and the dogs followed his scent to the bike and then onwards to wherever he ended up! So quite lucky in the end I suppose.

    Random thefts like this leave wondering what they were thinking.... I look forward to reading the following instalments to find out what happened!

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    1. Glad the thief was caught! Those police dogs are amazing! Thanks for popping by :-)

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  12. This blog looks like something I might have conjured up in my dreams. Nancy Drew and living on boats? Its almost my secret secret secret imaginary life.
    I look forward to reading more about both Nancy Drew, and nasty wishes about bad people who steal things.
    Happy Blogging,
    A Liars Den

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    1. I love that - secret, secret, secret imaginary life. We all have one, don't we :-)

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  13. We have the same thieves on the delta. Many are just scumbags that don't have a boat, they just see opportunities. So, I'm not convinced that all these thieves are fellow boaters. We've seen some arrests and they weren't boaters. Big relief there.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

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    1. Scumbags is right! Glad some of them were arrested in your parts.

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  14. Fabulous first installment, Ellen! Even though we have been traveling full time for 13 years now, by boat, RV and car, we have been very fortunate and never had anything stolen from us. Maybe it is because we barely have anything. :-)

    We had a Manson Supreme anchor on our sailboat Irie. It is a copy of the Rocna and much cheaper. We were so very happy with it and could sleep every night without the worry of dragging. They are great anchors and we would recommend them to anyone! If only every cruiser would invest in a decent anchor (or a few), the anchorages would be a better and safer place, with much less dragging going on! Happy blogging!

    Liesbet @ Roaming About – A Life Less Ordinary

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    1. Yes, I hear good things about the Manson Supreme. We went with a Rocna for this boat as we had one on our old boat and thought we should go with the tried and tested. Makes a huge different when it comes to sleeping at anchor.

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  15. We store our boat behind the business in the off season and last year some teenagers decided to make it into their "smoke den" and tore the cabin up and stole everything that wasn't nailed down. Thankfully, all of the electronics had been removed so the big money wasn't lost but it was at least $1,000 worth of damage.
    Following along on your April journey.
    www.thriftshopcommando.blogspot.com (No. 114 on the list)

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    1. $1k worth of damage is quite a lot! That was good thinking to remove the electronics before you stored the boat.

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  16. I LOL'd that Bess signed up for a cooking class instead! Too funny! I'm actually a huge burning down the boat clutz in the kitchen so that sounds very dangerous to me.

    Maybe the anchor hasn't been stolen, but just helpfully taken in order to be spray painted?

    We had police surround our boat a few weeks ago. They were apparently searching for a "hostile diver" that I guess had been stealing people's props. The police tackled a diver, who turned out to be a bottom cleaner, before finding the "hostile diver". Boat life = never a dull moment! - Lucy.

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    1. Oh wow - that would have been quite the excitement! We had some excitement a while back when some maniac attacked someone with a machete in the shower block. That's the kind of excitement I can live without.

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  17. That is really crappy when you consider it was one of you.

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    1. It is, isn't it :-(

      Although, someone else left a comment saying that non-boaters stole stuff off of boats in her area, so maybe it wasn't fellow cruisers? I don't know - either way, it isn't good.

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  18. I love the inspiration for this clever theme... and look forward to following the series throughout the month.

    Molly @MyCozyBookNook
    My Cozy Book Nook
    Revising Life after 50

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  19. What a clever theme and interesting life style you have...especially for a land locked Texan like me. It will be fun to read a Nancy Drew book from your view point. Enjoyed the read, the photo and all. I have owned a bass fishing boat which was always anchored on the trailer when not in the water. Visiting from the List..#374.
    Sue at CollectInTexas Gal

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    1. Thanks Sue - I always enjoy reading blog written by people who lead completely different lifestyles than me. Glad you enjoyed your visit to our little corner of the blogosphere :-)

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  20. Love your creative way of dealing with this challenge! Seeing Nancy D rise from the past and sleuth again is so fun. I'm just sorry her current case is based on your friend's anchor loss.
    Wish I had learned of the challenge before your blog post today as I would have joined, though I'm sure I could not top your creativity.
    I impatiently await Nancy's daily return. Thanks for the fun!
    Mary Grace
    http://helialetitbe.wordpress.com

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    1. It's not too late to join in! You can sign up here - http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/p/a-z-challenge-sign-up-list-2016.html

      It's be fun to have you along for the A to Z ride :-)

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  21. No one ever stole anything off of our boats. Someone just set our ski boat on fire. Burned down to cradle it was stored on. Wish they had stolen the anchor. It survived.

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    1. Ugh! Why did they set your ski boat on fire?! Terrible.

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    2. Police thought it was just some fire bug.

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    3. Police thought it was just some fire bug.

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  22. Great start, Ellen! I look forward to seeing where the story goes!

    Jordan Sala Tenna
    rdansalatenna.blogspot.com.au

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  23. Glad I found your mystery and I get to read it all month. Happy A to Z!

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  24. Great idea for the A-Z challenge! I've never had anything stolen from my house but that is such a scary thought. I once left my wallet it the car and had that stolen and felt so violated. I love Nancy Drew stories.

    Anne from AnneHiga.com

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    1. When we were camping once, we left a cooler full of food outside our tent while we went camping and someone stole everything we had. We were miles from a grocery store. The lovely camp host gave us some canned goods to tide us over. For every bad person who steals, there's a thousand more who do good things.

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  25. What a very clever theme! I did a much shorter thing last year with a continuing story, but this is impressive! I look forward to Nancy's adventures this month!
    Sharon Arthur Moore @good2tweat
    Parsley, Sage, and Rosemary Time

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    1. Thanks Sharon - hopefully, I can keep the momentum going through the month and readers engaged.

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  26. I'm visiting from the A-Z challenge. We are both doing mystery stuff, but so different! Great story so far! I'll be back.
    Sharon Arthur Moore @good2tweat
    Parsley, Sage, and Rosemary Time

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    1. Your A to Z posts are going to be really helpful for me!

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  27. A great start to the challenge...creativity and mystery tied up in a neat storytelling package!
    Writer In Transit

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    1. Thanks Jennifer! I'm having a lot of fun with the theme.

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  29. As a Nancy Drew fan and mystery lover, I am so excited to follow your theme!

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  30. I have to say, I've been surprised by how many Nancy Drew fans there are out there. Thanks for stopping by!

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  31. I love Nancy Drew and Trixe Belden! Looking forward to hear what happens next!

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    1. I've heard of Trixie Belden, but never read any of the books. Maybe something to add to my reading list.

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  32. What an awesome theme! And no, I've never had anything stolen. But I do have a boat in my backyard that I wish someone would steal.

    http://carolsnotebook.com

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    1. Wow, a boat that you want people to steal. I bet someone would take if off of your hands!

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  33. I can't recall ever having anything stolen but I love the story of how your A to Z theme came to be! And I very much enjoyed the first post :o) I might not comment every time but I'm going to try and read through to catch myself up! Well done! *hooked*

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    1. Thanks for popping by and I appreciate you following along with the story :-)

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We'd LOVE to hear from you! If we're out on the water cruising, our internet access will be limited and it may take a while before we're able to respond to your comments and pay a return visit to your blog, but please know that we will once we can get connected.