Sunday, October 7, 2012
Columbus day weekend on the bay
Anyone in Miami with a boat recognizes this holiday weekend as being famous for the Columbus Day Regatta (a trademarked name that is now known as the BARDARDI Columbus Day Regatta) that is sailed on Biscayne Bay. This weekend marks the 58th anniversary of the regatta, which is the oldest organized event on the bay. The regatta is a sailing race, but over the years it has become associated with the infamous powerboat parties. Hundreds of powerboats anchor near Elliott Key which becomes Biscayne Bay's version of south beach. Everyone in Miami, including those that remotely pay attention to the local news recognizes this weekend to be the most dangerous boating weekend of the year. Alcohol/drugs, stupidity and boating never go well together and with so many boats on the water, the combination of these three ingredients is a common recipe for inevitable tragedy.
While all of that mayhem was happening offshore, I was on the western shoreline Saturday morning, quietly approaching the wading birds. It was dark when my canoe touched the water, but soon, the sun began to peer over the horizon that had already become speckled with boats. I wanted to come here as the low tide was suitable for lots of wading birds in that perfect morning light. I knew there would be more than the usual noises coming from the nearby boat channel, but the birds would still be there.