Monday, August 24, 2015

Cruising the Chesapeake St. Michaels/ Solomons Weeks 14-15

Saturday, August 8

After the last update, we went to Five Guys again and shared cajun fries and peanuts.  Hopped on the Banner bus line and rode out to Fort McHenry. Walked along the paths and then got back on the bus. We stopped off at a shopping center and picked up some things at Dollar Tree and the grocery store, hopped back on the bus and rode it back to the Harbor.

Sunday, August 9

Time to move on. Anchor up at 8:20am.  Anchor down in St. Michaels 7:20pm.

Monday, August 10

St. Michaels is a tourist town to beat all tourist towns. Lovely and charming, friendly people, top rate maritime museum, many many restaurants and high end shops.

Brian and I got up early to kayak. It started raining, so I headed back to the boat, not sure if the boys would wake up to shut the hatches or not. As I got back, Caleb was just finishing.  Brian continued to kayak in the rain. After breakfast, the rain let up and the boys started water runs to fill the tanks.  We walked around town, then later in the evening bought ice cream and enjoyed it at the park.

Tuesday, August 11

Luke's 4 year old Keens finally bit the dust.  Brian gave him his Keens that are just a few months old.  We went to the store and Brian got a pair of Teva sandals.  Walked around some more, then Brian and the boys washed the hull of the boat.  After dinner, the boys watched a movie and Brian and I went back to town and got a snack at the store. I wasn't too sure about the flavor at first, they are actually really good!

Whenever I saw the name of the store, all I thought about was Wiley Coyote from Bugs Bunny cartoons ordering stuff from Acme to use on the Road Runner.

Wednesday, August 12

Brian and the boys waxed the hull of the boat. Nathan did some school work. Another water run. We would just get two 7 gallon jugs full at a time whenever we went to shore.  We did laundry and Brian borrowed a bike from St. Michaels Marina to go get one of the propane tanks filled.

One of the restaurants kept water out for people strolling in the evenings. It was so refreshing with lemon and spearmint.

Thursday, August 13

Another water run, cleaning, inventorying the canned goods, lunch, nap, early dinner then attended a concert in the park we had seen advertised. After the concert we stopped off for more ice cream.  Now you know why we walk so much. :)

Friday, August 14

Anchor up at 7:20. We decided to head back to Solomon's Island, MD. None of the few places on the Eastern side held much interest for us, and we had really enjoyed Solomons before.  We anchored closer to the lower end this time. We arrived at 3:25.  Once settled we walked in town and got two Redbox movies.

Saturday, August 15

We ended up sleeping in since we had stayed up so late watching a movie the night before.  We watched the second one over breakfast. 

Brian has been wanting a parrot or picture of a parrot for the boat for a long time.  We remembered a gallery form our previous trip and so went back and asked if they could bring an idea to life.  Brian had found a clip art picture and Terry and his assistant were able to print it onto a metal 12x12 square.  They said it is actually baked onto it.

These crab pictures are the galleries specialties. They have 4 different ones and print them on all sorts of things and in many sizes.

That night we got very little sleep. We were anchored near the Tiki Bar and they had loud music and partying going on until about 3:30am.

Sunday, August 16

Not much happened. Just hung out on the boat and walked in town.

Monday, august 17

We moved the boat further back on Back Creek for quieter nights and to be closer to the library and store.  The kind folks at the Comfort Inn gave us permission to use their pool again, so we swam in the afternoon and picked up pizza for dinner.

Tuesday, August 18

Walking and time at the library.

Wednesday, August 19

Library time and got another Redbox movie.

Thursday, August 20

At a thrift store we found a little mirror for $5.  Brian repainted the frame and hung it next to the parrot in the front head.

Boys returned the movie and we swam again at the pool.

Friday, August 21

Hanging out on the boat, walking in town.

Saturday, August 22

Walk in town, return books to small lending library.  Boys hang out at the main library, while Brian and I walk to the store.  Coming back, Brian discovered a rusty discarded bike.

He has been wanting a cruising bike for the boat since DC.  He saw through all the rust and found potential and the perfect weekend project.  Straight to the bike store he went. Rusty now had brand new tires and tubes.

Sunday, August 23

After breakfast,  Brian and the boys removed the fenders and kickstand. Then Brian rode Rusty 5 miles to the Ace Hardware and bought primer and spray paint. 

A new seat from the bike store, duct tape on the handle bars and a new cruising bike joins the boat crew.

Thank you for taking the time to follow us on this journey!  

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Cruising the Chesapeake Week 13 Annapolis/Baltimore, MD

Thursday, July 30

After finishing the blog post, we gathered our stuff and headed for the grocery store.  While shopping, a man came up to us and asked if we were cruisers. We said that we were. He introduced himself and offered to give us a ride back to the dock so we would not have to lug everything. We gratefully took him up on his offer. His name is Ben and he lives in a condo community on Back Creek.

Back at the boat we put the groceries away and Brian and I left to go look at some boats with a broker.  When we got back, the boys told us that while we were gone the harbor master had come by and said that we were being hailed on the VHF radio by S/V LOON.  The boys turned on the radio and spoke with Ben.  He left his number for Brian to call when we returned.  So Brian called.  Ben offered to let us tie up to the guest dock at the condo marina the following morning and spend the night. Again we gratefully accepted.

Friday, July 31

We pulled anchor and motored the short distance to the guest dock where Ben was waiting by 9am. Once the lines were secured he offered the use of the laundry facility. Nathan and I gathered up everything and followed him. Brian and the other boys gave the boat a much needed wash down. After lunch Ben asked Brian if we would like to swim in the pool. Of course we did!

Jacob, Caleb, and Nathan had to take a swim test to be in the deep end. They all passed no problem.  Brian, Ben and I visited a while in the shade while the boys swam.

Ben had to go get ready for company that he was expecting, but before he left, he invited Brian and I to his boat for happy hour later that evening.

We enjoyed visiting and eating cold shrimp with cocktail sauce and wheat thins and hummus.

All day we had tried to repay Ben for the laundry and invite him for a meal, but he wouldn't hear of it. Generous and hospitality and friendship was the name of his game.  He talked with Brian about sailing and worked hard to convince us to go to the Bahamas for the winter. Jury is still out on that decision.

He was leaving for an overnight boat trip on Saturday and offered us the use of his slip for a second night of electricity and water.

Saturday, August 1

Before he left, he wanted a picture with the boys.  He had confided to Brian and I that he doesn't really like kids, but that our guys were so well behaved and helpful, they were the reason he made his original offer of a ride from the store. Then when they jumped in to unload the truck without complaint, he extended the offer of the slip and friendship.

After getting settled into the slip, Brian and I had to leave for an appointment with a broker to look at more boats. The boys would eat lunch on the boat then walk to the library and hang out.

We looked at a 47 ft Olympic named Gromit.  The family of five had just completed a 7 year circumnavigation and were moving back to land life in Canada.  The boat had tons of storage and plenty of space for everyone. We then looked at three more boats, that are not worth mentioning.

Back at the boat, it was nice and cool thanks to the A/C running all day. We had dinner with the boys and decided to show them Gromit, just to see what they thought.

Sunday, August 2

We moved the boat back to anchor, listened to church on the radio, had lunch and took a nap. At 3 we met John the broker and took the family to see the 47 ft boat. As much as the space would increase, it is a 1974 boat and we all decided we did not want to give up all the comforts and ease of sailing Grace offers us.  We did have an enjoyable few hours visiting with the family and hearing of their adventures.

Monday, August 3

We hung around the boat for the morning then planned to spend the afternoon at the library during the heat of the day. On the was Brian and I stopped in a marine store called Fawcetts. It has been a fixture in Annapolis since 1947. While there we visited with the general manager and he offered us jobs working booths at the Boat Show in October!  We were honored to be asked, but knew it would put us too far behind for heading to FL for the winter. After several hours at the library, we stopped by McDonalds for chicken sandwiches for dinner.

Tuesday, August 4

Time to head to Baltimore. Brian has been so excited for us to see the inner harbor. Several years ago he was there for a conference for work and has dreamed of sailing there ever since.

But first we had a quick overnight stop in White Hall Creek. To look at another boat.  It was a Beneteau 432.  It needed too much work.

Wednesday, August 5

Finally time to go to Baltimore.

Approaching the Bay Bridge.

Flag buoy marking the place where Francis Scott Key was held prisoner in a British Barge and wrote the Star Spangled Banner upon seeing the the flag still waving after the battle at Ft. McHenry in 1812.

Sailing past Ft. McHenry
Entering the Inner Harbor.  The submarine Torsk and Light Ship  Chesapeake.

The Constitution

Dragon Paddle boats for rent.
Anchored in the middle of it all.

Once settled, we went ashore to see what we could see.

Including a Michael Jackson impersonator.

Bumble Bee from Transformers at the Ripley's Believe It or Not

We wandered around and then found a 7-11 and picked up pizza for dinner.

Thursday, August 6

Celebrating our 21st wedding anniversary.  We walked to Federal Hill and climbed the stairs to the top.
Then we went to one of the art museums.

Back at the harbor, we sent the boys to the boat for their lunch and we had a lunch date at  Five Guys. We walked to a little mall that is in one of the Hotels.  I got some new kitchen gadgets to replace the worn out ones.

We met back up with the boys and walked to find a library. It was farther than we thought. After an hour we left and stopped at 7-11 for drinks.  Brian and I finished our date with pints of ice cream and then we all walked the piersand some of Little Italy.

 We found a fun area to hang out.

 We took the boys back to the mall for dinner.

Friday, August 7

We had been told at the visitors center about free buses that go on three routes. We took the Orange route and were not terribly impressed. This particular route went through Little Italy and then through a part of town that was very run down.  I was glad we were seeing it from inside a bus and not on foot.

We got off the bus and walked the short distance to Federal Hill and had lunch at Blue Agave.  They had the best picante, salsa verda, and a grilled tomatilla salsa for dipping the tortilla chips in.  If you ever get to Baltimore, you should eat here!

We stopped by CVS for a few things, then went back to the harbor.  We toured the Seven Knolls Screwpile Lighthouse.

We sat by the water and people watched, then went back to the boat for dinner.  Back at the boat we noticed that the Pride of Baltimore II had come in. The boys went to Barnes and Noble to hang out and Brian and I watched all of the goings on around us and listened to the different live music groups.

Saturday, August 8

After coming shore, we got a deck tour of the Pride of Baltimore II.

We walked past the fountains.

And came to a library closer to the harbor.

Right now the plan is to stay through the weekend and then go to the Eastern Shore and start working our way back down.