Friday, September 18, 2015

Returning From The Chesapeake to North Carolina

Tuesday, August 25

Solomons, MD

We moved the boat back closer to the public docks. We had moved the boat back and forth between there and Back Creek. The public dock is free to leave the dinghy at, but is a mile further to the library and 2 miles to the store. We also do not like it there on weekends because the Tiki Bar is so noisy well into the wee hours of the morning.

Wednesday, August 26

Brian and I shared a 1/2 price appetiser at the Striped Rock restaurant. Loaded nachos that had us leaving the table waddling out the door.

Thursday, August 27

We found out we needed to stay several more days while waiting on a piece of mail to come General Delivery.  I was a bit upset about it,as I was ready to start heading back. But we made the best of it.

We went to hang out at the library and since Brian took the bike, he beat us coming and going.  As the boys and I got back to the dinghy, which we had tied up at the Solomon's Island Yacht Club, Brian was talking to a few of the men.  They invited us to stay for their monthly birthday social/potluck that evening.  I have just gotten some cinnamon bread at the store, so we sliced up a plateful as our contribution.

Such friendly folks and a delicious spread.  There was also an amazing rich chocolate birthday cake for the 8 or 9 members celebrating August Birthdays. One member was celebrating his 101st birthday.

Brian did a burgee exchange with them.  A burgee is a small triangular flag that clubs have representing themselves. Members often fly it on a flag halyard on their boats.  When visiting other clubs they can exchange burgees as an act of goodwill and friendship.  This particular club had over 400 different burgees hanging from the ceiling.

Weekend, August 28-30

Not much happened. Just walking and hanging out. We did try out hand at fresh coconut. It took a hack saw to get through it, and we had fun picking pieces out to snack on.

Monday, August 31

Mail arrived at the post office!  To celebrate our last night in Solomons, we recreated the loaded nachos from the restaurant, then Brian and the boys walked to the store for icecream.

Remember the bike Brian and the boys redid?  That had to be loaded onto the boat.  The boys had already put the dinghy on deck, so Brian brought it from land on a kayak.

Tuesday, September 1

Anchor up at 6:45am.  We originally thought to go to Reedville, but were making such good time we pushed on and went to Deltaville,VA.  Anchor down at 5:10pm. A 60 mile day.

From friends post on FB we learned that several of our sailing club friends were going to be at another members house on Goose Creek that weekend.  We thought it might be fun to surprise them by showing up at some point during the weekend. We did not say anything in case we did not end up arriving on time.

We knew it would be really pushing it with long days, but everyone was up for the challenge.

Wednesday, September 2

Anchor up 6:05am.   In the afternoon we saw about a dozen dolphins swimming and jumping in the Bay.

The closer we got to Norfolk/Portsmouth the bigger the ships were.

 Tied up to the ferry docks in Portsmouth, VA at 3:35pm.  A 54 mile day. Just as we were sitting down to dinner, a storm blew in.  It was short lived, but packed a punch.

Thursday, September 3

Untie from the wall at 6:45am. This was bridge day. Brian figured up we would need to go under about 8 or 9 bridges. Most open on the hour and half hour. We thought we could make the first one at 7:30am. We got to it, but the bridge tender said they would not open until 8:30, after rush hour. So we just had to sit tight and go in circles if we started drifting into too shallow of water.  After that we made all the bridges and the lock without any problems.

We knew we had to get across the Albarmarle sound before anchoring. Brian and the boys did a fantastic job. We anchored after dark for the first time. Anchor down was at 9:05pm near the Alligator River Bridge.  It was a record setting 79 mile day!

Friday, September 4

Anchor up at 7:40am. Fuel stop at the Alligator River Marina, then on to Goose Creek.  Terry's place is just at the mouth of Goose Creek where it empties into the Pamlico sound.  Our friends saw our boat coming into the anchorage, but didn't realize it was us.  They called on the VHF radio to invite us in. We were able to surprise everyone afterall.  We got the anchor set at 6pm. Loaded up in the dinghy and went to see friends we hadn't seen in 5 months.

Including us, there were 8 boats from Blackbeard Sailing Club, and another 10 members drove in. Altogether there were about 27 folks.

We had a wonderful weekend of visiting, eating, and the boys got in some good fishing and running around.

 Clair, Mary, Corita, Ann, Ollie, Marsha and  Kerri

 Saturday evening they had a fish fry.
Benny, George, Richard, Bill, Terry and Scott

Sunday, September 6

More visiting and hanging out.  That evening Terry hosted a neighborhood potluck.  More food than you can imagine for 50 some people.

The next day, a few of the boats were going to go from Terry's to Ocracoke Island, and invited us to come too.  Brian has been wanting to sail there, so we tagged along.  It was nice to go with boaters who had gone before and learn the way. 

Monday, September 7

It looked like a stormy sky first thing in the morning. We delayed our start, but it turned into a beautiful day and great sailing. We put the anchor down in silver Lake about 4pm after leaving at 8:45 that morning.  The three other boats we traveled with all tied up to the Federal Docks near the ferry's.

 Our first boat, "Wings" now owned by our good friend, Charlie.

"Our Freedom"  owned by our good friends, The Fosters.

"Tarantella" owned by our good friends, The Fortuna's.

 After dinner, we went walking around. We stopped at a  little general store and got popcorn as a treat.

Tuesday, September 8

We planned to go to the beach this day. The morning was very rainy, but as were were dressed for the beach, we started off anyway.  We stopped by the lighthouse and then went on a natural trail.  After that the rain had let up and we headed for the beach.  That morning, before the rain, Brian had ridden the bike to the beach just to know the way.  But on our walk, he said we should take a"shortcut" down a Jeep trail.  An extra two miles late, we reached the beach.  Then another mile to the public part.  We ended up having a great afternoon jumping waves and enjoying the ocean.

Walking back to town, we stopped at the grocery store and picked up salami and chips to have for dinner and then went back for ice cream.  All told I think we walked about 9 miles that day.

Wednesday, September 9

Another rainy off and on day.  That afternoon, we went to the Fortuna's boat and watch "The Pink Panther II"  then got ready for our potluck dinner on the Foster's boat. We squeezed fourteen people on their boat for a great meal. Then took photos on the dock.

Jim and Jody Fortuna, Brian and Kerri Brooks, Ron and Mary Helms, Marsha and Charlie Batchelor and Tom and Ollie Foster.

Thursday, September 10

We walked to the British cemetery and the Treasure Chest souvenir shop. Brian and I had a lunch date at the Ocracoke Bar and Grill.  On our way back we had ice cream with the Helm's and Foster's. That evening the boys checked out the library and Brian rode to the beach.

Friday, September 11

We had planned to leave this day, but the weather had other plans, so we all decided to stay the weekend and leave on Monday.

We decided to make it another beach day.

Ghost crab hiding in/on the sand.

We liked to take over the lifeguard station, now that no one is on duty.

Beautiful sunset.

Saturday, September 12

I spent the morning cooking for another meal with Charlie, Tom, and Ollie that evening.  Then we stopped by the Ocracoke museum.

Sunday, September 13

Good day of rest. The boys met Charlie in the park to play Aggravation.

Brian and I had another lunch date. We went to SMacNally's for the "Best burger on the island".

Monday, September 14

Charlie's wife had to leave early and go back on the ferry to be back for work, so we offered a couple of the boys to crew with him going back to New Bern. Luke and Caleb won the honors.  He stopped by our boat at 6:10 am and was able to get close enough for them to hop on board his boat.  Then Brian and Jacob set to work getting our anchor up.  We were motoring out by 6:35.

It was good sailing on the Pamlico sound. When we turned into the mouth of the Neuse River, the wind died and the engine was turned on.  We got back to the club about 4pm.  On the way back, we passed our friend, Archer, on "Ceil Bleu". He was just heading to Ocracoke.

Tuesday, September 15

Busy busy day. I got school books out of the trailer.

The boys helped me figure out who needed what.

They also washed the boat with Brian and got all of the salt washed off.
That afternoon we did laundry.

Wednesday, September 16

We moved the boat to downtown New Bern and anchored near the Union Point Park. There is a great dinghy dock and everything is with easy walking/biking distance.

Our friends, The Hardee's, came down to spend the day.  The boys all played at the park while Geri took me grocery shopping. Brian was around to keep an eye on things. We had lunch together, then came back and put everything away and hung out on the boat awhile. 

The boys played Farkle, a fun dice game.

Geri and I went for a short kayak.

That afternoon, Scott Wade on "Dragonfly" came and anchored nearby.  We had him over to join us for dinner.

Thursday, September 17

First day of school. Long day, getting back into the swing of things, but I think it will be a good year.

We are back for about a month. Then it will be time to start heading south for the winter.