Saturday, August 28, 2010

Heading South 2010

We have begun the journey to Winter 2011, whereever we will spend it, with a departure from City Island South. A 7:30 phone call thought to be Sojourner, our companion for the trip, turned out to be our friend Debbie from Ocklawaha, Florida, who is caring for Aunt Dar while Aunt Bev, Dar's caregiver, is caring for her husband, my uncle, during open heart surgery. (Got all that?) Dar decided she needed a trip to the ER to deal with back pain and since a few weeks ago her pain triggered a congestive heart failure attack, I encouraged her to go. It is hard dealing with family hardships from afar, and having someone like Debbie makes all the difference. Needless to say, I was not anxious to begin an offshore journey.

We had sat on a mooring at City Island Yacht Club for three weeks, and one would think that we would recall historical events where black smoke poured out of First Edition (before Mooch's arrival), with engine temperature rising, and speed declining. But NO, these two geniuses just said "let's go, the Chesapeake beckons", along with appointments at Jay Gordon's and Zahnisers. We should have hired someone to scrape off the layers of barnacles and Long Island Sound Sea Scum, or Captain could have donned his diving gear. But we didn't, instead, lost over a knot of speed due to drag. And we fought the current most of the way after leaving Sandy Hook. A 23 hour trip became 27 hours. It doesn't sound like much, but trust me, it is.

Light winds predicted, of course, were not light, and were directly on the nose, slowing us even further---being unable to sail or power sail, and the wind throwing up a chop. It was not uncomfortable. Just slow, frequently seeing less than 3 knots pop up on the speedo. The double moons predicted turned out to be malarky, but it was a nice crisp night, and long fleece pants made for a toasty cockpit. On a positive note, we only ran out of fuel once, confirming our stupidity and miscalculation of drag on the prop from the freeloaders.

We now sit at anchor at Cape May, having arrived 3 hours after Sojourner. Tomorrow, the dreaded Delaware Bay. Forecasts are encouraging and currents run in our direction.

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