Thursday, October 25, 2007

Sailing with Jimmy and Kathie

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While visiting with Willow we stayed with Kathie, my step mother and Jimmy. We borrowed their car and ran all around buying our fishing gear for offshore, propane for our galley, food and booze, and ate many good meals. We had a great sail with them on the York River; they are planning to join us in the Bahamas. Are you?

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

What Happened?

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We spent the weekend with our Granddaughter Willow to celebrate her second birthday. One of her presents was this very cool kitchen set (we girls all had them when we were growing up). Aye-Aye (Willow's name for Peter) said it would take 10 minutes to assemble. Need I say more? Willow upon waking from her nap was delighted to find her present, walked up to it, turned the spigot to the sink, and announced "what happened" when no water flowed. Sorry Willow, the plumber will be there tomorrow.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Shxxty Job at York River Yacht Haven

Here is my poor husband fixing one of our Groco heads for the zillioneth time. He is now qualified as an expert. We learned last week that Peter has again been named one of America's top lawyers. Who ever decided that should see him now.

We are at York River Yacht Haven. It has a great laundromat, my important requirement! Also has an iron and ironing board. Probably more important to most of you is the River Inn restaurant where we ate last night. It was 50% off wine night so we were happy. Had a "great meal" (me) or a "very good meal" (Peter).

After we meet with the electrician we will go running errands with my stepmother Kathie and Jimmy, her mate.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Mobjack Bay

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From the Piankatank we sailed to the Severn River on Mobjack Bay. Here we found one other boat, Sucia, a Canadian boat whose First Mate I met while folding laundry. She and her family (including two children being "home schooled") are also headed to the Bahamas for their first trip.

In the morning we awoke to the sound of this waterman pulling his crab cages. Hopefully he harvested more than we did!

From here we travelled to the York River, near Yorkstown, where we will dock while visiting my stepmother and granddaughter, for her birthday. We will be here several days and hopefully will work out some of the bugs we have encountered with the electronics.

Monday, October 15, 2007

The Corrotomon

Saturday we motored to the Rappahannock River and anchored in the East Branch of the Corrotomon for a lovely quiet night. Alas, no winds. On Sunday we sailed up the Rappahannock, although winds were light, and finished the day motoring to Fishing Bay on the Piankatank River. We are pleased to report no mechanical issues have surfaced. There are perhaps 10 boats anchored here, all apparently headed South.
We stayed at this anchorage seven years ago when sailing First Edition from Ft. Lauderdale to NJ, after we purchased her. Although I have been accused of having a good imagination, I actually saw a sea horse swimming in this bay.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Our Future Home

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First Edition at our dock.

We managed to snag five crabs about half the size of those our friends caught on the Wye River. But, our first crabs at our future home! Tonight they will become our hors d'oeuvre.

Our neighbors, Lou and Cindy, fetched us to explore the new hotspots in town. When we bought our land, there was one restaurant worth eating at and the Tides Inn, decrepit before its recent re-do. The Northern Neck has been discovered, which has its benefits and short comings. "Seven", a with-it martini bar is a welcome addition. We had one too many there, and then ate at a new restaurant, Swanks, not bad. We really enjoyed the company and look forward to settling down next to the Schuman's.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Small Craft Advisories

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We left Solomons Island and had an uneventful motor to St. Mary's River off of the Potomoc. Happy to report that no belts broke and everything was working!
Small Craft Advisories were issued by NOAA (your taxes dollars at work for my benefit, thank you) as winds were expected to gust to 25. We snugged up close to the shore and slept soundly.

SCA's continued into the morning but we decided to leave any how to reach our property at Wicomico Church, Virginia to celebrate our anniversary and to tie up at our dock, as winds were expected to blow 30 knots for two days. Leaving St. Mary's we found winds of 25, gusting to 29 which is A LOT OF WIND. First Edition has her mechanical issues, but boy can she sail. Fortunately, the winds were from behind so we raised our head sail only, partially reefed, and soared through five foot seas. It was exhilarating. A picture can usually tell a thousand words, but not so with waves; I tried to capture the essence nevertheless. It was grand.

We sit now at our remaining land holding doing chores, fixing things, paying bills, etc. I am getting ready to set our new crab lines and poke around our pilings to see if any critters are waiting to become crab sauce.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Fate Continues to Happen

The Tillmans left before us and report that they had a marvelous sail home. As we had the wind in the wrong direction, we had another one of those long slogs right into the wind for over ten hours. We broke another alternator belt and overheated again. We are now at Zahniser's, the #1 rated yard in the entire Chesapeake, and they declare there is nothing wrong with anything.

Every morning I open up the saying of the day, like a fortune cookie but drawn from a ceramic pot labelled A Year of Wishes for My Daughter, gifted by Kathie my stepmom. Yesterday's was "Fate continues to happen". Hmmm.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Vickie gets crabs

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We left Frog Mortar Creek on Friday and travelled to Rock Creek off of the Patapsco River, the home of the Baltimore harbor and our friends Vickie and Len. We anchored off of the Maryland Yacht Club for the evening and dinked to Phase II, their boat, for cocktails. Saturday morning we left out for the Wye River (after a number of course changes and after replacing an alternator belt that broke and caused us to overheat, always traumatic because an alarm sounds and shakes the be-Jesus out of you). We rafted up (tied our boats together at anchor)at Drum Cove, and set out the crab lines. The picture shows the results of the effort, and constituted a lovely crab dip, for which Vickie is known. The following day we motored to St. Michaels in about 90 degree heat (we did not miss summer after all), anchored, and to celebrate Vickie's birthday, went boutique shopping without the men. Had dinner ashore (not at the Crab Claw and not at the Inn at Perry Cabins since Vickie would rather have a new box spring for the boat than spend $250 on dinner), the boys did cigars on the transom, and we listened to the Yankee game. Yankees live to see another day.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Arrived in Chesapeake

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On Monday October 1 (October!) we left AC and sailed all the way to Cape May with SE winds of 11 knots, making over six knots. As I predicted, a school of dolphins accompanied us out of the inlet. Dolphin must be gamblers as we always find them there. We arrived at Cape May at around five o’clock and anchored in front of the Coast Guard station with a bunch of other boats all heading in various directions. This is not normal. Usually, when you lay your anchor down your boat points into the wind. Sometimes, if the current is strong, or the nearby land is mountainous, you will sit to the current or be backwinded (stern to the wind). We all sat akimbo for about ½ hour and finally all drifted into the wind where one can finally be satisfied you will not crunch into another boat in the middle of the night. Unless the phenomena repeats itself. And of course, there was no way we could predict this. Thus, sleeping was fitful but the night did not bring any uninvited guests.

From Cape May we had to transit the Delaware Bay, one of the lousiest bodies of water we have ever traveled. There is usually a steep chop owing to shallow spots and unprotected shoreline that makes the ride miserable; we were not looking forward to this 8 hour trip. But (is our luck changing?), we rode the current all the way with nearly flat seas (maybe 1-2 feet at first), and made 7-8 knots most of the way. We sailed for five hours until the wind died but made such good time we proceeded to the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal and transited it in less than two hours. This was great progress but presented a challenge, where to go now? In order to lay the anchor by nightfall (7pm) we had to take a chance entering the Bohemia River, described in the guide books as peaceful and charming, but shoaling to 5 feet. Since we draw something like 5 ½ feet, this would mean we would run out of water unless the tides were helpful, which they weren’t. We had overhead a discussion on the radio (the VHF or very-high-frequency radio is like an open party line). We hailed one of the boats who had anchored in the Bohemia and he gave us advice on how to enter. Our depthsounders each showed less than four feet (they are mounted above the very bottom of the boat so reading them is an art and not a science), and while we were probably kissing the bottom all the way in, we did not run aground.

We awoke to thick fog which parted at around 10 am and we proceeded for a short ride to Worton Creek, which we had visited before with the kids. We once again are waiting for the fog to lift and intend to head to Frog Mortar Creek on the Middle River, where we hope to find provisions. The guide books caution us that boats with masts over 37 feet constitute a hazard to low flying airplanes at the nearby airport. Ours is over 60 feet and we intend to anchor there to annoy Peter’s BF Chuck. Besides, what are the odds that First Edition would be hit by an airplane?