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Lemons Way
The continuing adventures of a cruising sailor/family lawyer, his wife (also a lawyer), and their young children.
Spice Collection
Keith - mid-October, 2007
10/16/2007, Somewhere in North Carolina

Every good sailboat kitchen needs a a good spice collection to make good on-board meals. I picked up that Salsa Huichol at a little Mexican food mart/gas station in Bellhaven, NC. The entire rest of this little town was closed for Sunday. They looked at me like I was completely crazy when I greeted them with buenos tardes, but I got some nice Mexican treats that afternoon, like strawberry wafers, mango juice, and a lime paleta, which I ate while taking a walking tour of the town. I also have a Force 10 stainless propane grill on the stern rail which makes excellent grilled steaks and chicken breasts. It has a ceramic hot place system that catches the drippings and turns them into smoke or gristle so they don't drip onto the boat. When the Force 10 is cooking, the smell of grill on boat is unbeatable.

Interior of Tropical Dreamer
Keith , mid-October, 2007
10/16/2007, Somewhere in North Carolina

The kitchen, the most important part of the boat. From the top clockwise, counter top near companionway steps, cold storage bin under counter (this boat has an excellent cold storage machine that even makes ice or freezes things - it does use a lot of battery power, but it seems to work out when motoring often), cabinets and microwave (works on shore power or when the engine is running with the high output alternator, same with the water heater), a stainless steel propane stove and cook top that can be set to swing back and forth depending on the heel of the boat (great for boiling water underway, which I did pretty much every day), dry pantry located under counter, and two sinks set towards the middle of the boat to reduce the anti-draining effects of large angles of heel. There's a port that opens right above the cook top for light and venting if the companionway planks are in due to rough seas or weather. I've cooked a lot on the boat this trip - in fact, I've probably only eaten out a handful of times. The propane burners are also useful for heating up the cabin temporarily when it gets chilly at anchor.

Another Sunset at Anchor
Keith, October, 2007
10/13/2007, Middle of Nowhere, North Carolina ICW

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Boats Lined Up and Waiting For Bridge
Keith - October, 2007
10/13/2007, Around North Carolina Border

Boats lined up for the last drawbridge for the next 65 miles. The operator opened exactly on the hour and made us all stand in line before he would open in order to minimize the amount of time traffic had to be held up.

Tripical Dreamer at Sunrise
Keith - October, 2007
10/13/2007, Great Lock, VA

Took a walk to the grocery store at sunrise and picked up water and better coffee.

Great Lock Town Dock with Guests
Keith - October, 2007
10/13/2007

Parked next to me was this long, skinny Hunter sailboat. I asked how long it was and not long afterwards was enjoying the house wine with the friendly Canadian trio. Later they came over for cocktails and they invited me to dinner in town, but I had plenty of food (some perishable) and chose to dine alone. As I was leaving, the kind man advised that I put my dingy on the deck before going out into the Atlantic because a large following sea would tear the davits right off the back of the boat. I hope I see them again.

The Great Lock and the ICW Distance Sign
Keith - October, 2007
10/13/2007

I managed to navigate through the lock without too much trouble thanks to the help of the kind operator lady. The next opening contained numerous ships. After I entered, the door closed and they removed the water from the lock. The 14,000 pound sailboat lowered about 3 feet. The operator taught me how to string two dock lines to posts and one back to each hand. I can let out the lines from the center of the boat and let it fall with the falling water level in at least perceived control. After the water lowered, the other door opened and I was on my way to what turned out to be a great free town dock experience.

First Anchorage on ICW
Keith - October, 2007
10/13/2007, 5 miles or so from Norfolk

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Bridge Ahead on the ICW
Keith - mid-October, 2007
10/13/2007, South of Norfolk, VA

This is the standard fixed bridge of 65 foot height. My mast stands 55 feet. This one is located just a short ways in from Norfolk. It is almost sunset. Instead of staying another night at the hospital flats anchorage across from Norfolk, I determined to head out and find an anchorage on the ICW itself. In this picture you can see my radar, radar reflector, and one of the lines for the dutch flaking system that makes it easy to stow the large mainsail.

First Bridge of the I.C.W.
Keith - mid-October, 2007
10/13/2007, South of Norfolk, VA

This is the first of many many bridges crossing the ICW. Most of the bridges are above 65 feet and not a concern for my 55 foot mast, but many are low and must raise. Those operate on a schedule. Sometimes they will open on request from the VHF radio. Some of the operators are laid back and some are like prison guards, making the boats line up before he will open the gate.

 

 
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