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Cruising with Osprey
Dafuskie Island
12/08/2007

Location: Dafuskie Island
Mile: 567.7
Co-ords: 32 07' 52.8" N
080 52' 24.6" W

Tom's back was good enough for us to leave Beaufort today. We awoke to find fog blanketing the immediate area around us. As the sun got higher it did begin to burn off and so we left the dock. As we traveled down the river we ran into a thick fog bank with almost zero visability and we actually turned around and back tracked knowing that it would improve in a while, which it did. We then resumed our course and were contacted by another sailboat that fell in behind us to ask if he could follow us as his radar had packed up. So we crept onward in tandem and gradually things got a little better. There was lots of chatter on the radio as various boats decided whether they were going off shore or not. I think most decided to stay inside. At least one boat headed to the outlet into the ocean and then announced on the radio he was coming back in!

We would have loved to anchor tonight as it is so calm and still but we didn't want to risk pulling Tom's back again. Even though I could probably manage to launch the anchor myself I am not confident I could get it back up again in the morning. We had decided to pull in to this place - Melrose Landing which is the dock for the "Dafuskie Island Resort and Breathe Spa". We weren't sure what we would find. We know the island itself has no connection to the mainland and people get here on ferries. The island was named by the early settlers who saw it as "da fus key" (the first key!). When we arrived at the dock it was deserted. A guy from the ferry came over, showed us where to tie up and helped with our lines. He then told us that the dock attendant had left early to go to a party so there was no one to pay. It looks as though we have a free dock tonight as we will be leaving early in the morning.

We traveled across a wide sound today and saw several shrimp boats doing their thing.

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12/09/2007 | Dad
I do not like to read the banter about Mr Depp whoever he is!! I think you should get an elastic support belt for the back. I have the same problem and whenever I feel the "Tweak" I don the belt and immediately feel the benefit. Just a day or two is sufficient. Love this photo I think it is one of the most beautiful yet. You will be pleased to know that Holly James is an H I & G C. As most most owners know this means a Highly Intelligent and Gifted Cat!! She is six weeks old and already recognizes me and runs up unaided to her new friend. When I was six weeks old apparently I couldn't even walk! We all find the history fascinating, I think the survivor of the Charge of the light Brigade must have been H I & G Cavalryman. He chose to ride a very slow horse.
Much Love Dad XXX
St Helenas Parish
12/07/2007

This afternoon we visited the old Episcopal church which is beautiful. The graveyard was fascinating. This is the tombstone of William Henry Cory. As you can see he was born in Clapham, London, where my sister lives! He survived the Charge of the Light Brigade and went on to serve in the Confederate Army, which he also survived. He settled in Beaufort and went on to live to the ripe old age of 62 (which was old in those days).

The church was also used as a hospital during the civil war. Apparently, the marble topped tombs made excellent operating tables!


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Beautiful Beaufort
12/07/2007

We just cannot drag ourselves away from here. Beaufort is, by far, our best stop yet. It is such a wonderful place - the whole town is a preserved, historic district. Yesterday morning we decided we would stay another day, so we headed out for breakfast. I had shrimp and grits!! Very southern - it was delicious but I'm not sure that shrimp for breakfast is right. After that we signed up for a walking tour of Beaufort. This was done by Jon Sharpe - a retired Hollywood actor. He was very good and gave us a fascinating tour of the town. Tom and I were the only ones who showed up so we had our own personal tour. Beaufort really has an amazing history. The area was first discovered by the Spanish, who were only interested in the fact that there were Native American Indians here. After capturing a hundred or so they left and went to South America instead. Then came the French who set up a colony. However, the French were not very good colonists and they soon starved. Finally, the English came on the scene and also set up a colony. Eventually, these colonists realized how fertile the soil was and so the plantations grew up. A successful crop was Indigo, which grew very well here and was exported in vast quantities back to England where it was used to dye wool. Rice and sea island cotton were also profitable crops. The owners of the plantations grew very wealthy and owned 100's of acres of land which of course was worked by slaves. Because the plantations themselves were not good places to be in the summer months (too hot, yellow fever and malaria) these wealthy land owners built summer homes in Beaufort, overlooking the river. The homes were all built with large balconies facing south to catch the cooling sea breezes. Many of these homes still exist here in Beaufort today and are beautifully preserved. It was interesting to find out that the articles of secession were drafted right here in town. (It is amazing to us, as we journey south , how many of the places we have visited are interconnected by history). Once the civil war started many southern towns were burned to the ground by the Union troops under the command of General William T. Sherman. When the wealthy townspeople of Beaufort realized that the south was being routed, they left en-masse - an exodus described as the "great skedaddle" by northerners. When the Union troops arrived they found all these great homes abandoned and instead of burning them down, used many of them as hospitals for the wounded troops and others as headquarters for their operations. And so the town was saved from being destroyed. After the war, a federal tax was imposed on these huge properties and the original owners could only retake possession of their homes if they could afford the tax. The majority of them could not, as their plantations had been destroyed in the war and they had left with few, if any, of their belongings. It was fascinating to hear that in some cases these magnificent homes were then bought by the former slaves who had worked there, sometimes for as little as a few hundred dollars. Of course, these homes are now being sold for millions of dollars!

Today, we had originally planned to leave and make our way to Hilton Head, but when we got up Tom had bad back pain (he had tweaked it yesterday lifting up the cockpit grate!). So we decided we had better stay put so Tom could rest his back. This actually worked out fine as it gave me chance to catch up on the laundry and I borrowed the Marina car again to go grocery shopping.

We are enjoying a lovely spell of warm weather - sunny and in the 70's, which is forecast to continue for another week - lucky us! As you can see from the photo, Tom has swapped his George Clooney look for Indiana Jones!

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12/08/2007 | Tim
Looks and sounds a fantastic place.
I like the Indiana Jones look!
So we have had George Clooney from 'The Perfect Storm' when you were up north, Indiana Jones from 'the temple of doom'..cant wait till you hit the Bahamas, then we can have Johnny Depp in 'The Pirates of the Caribbean'! Im spotting a theme here.
Not given up completely on the trip over..but it does look unlikely at the moment. Will keep you posted.
12/08/2007 | Vicky
OOH! I like the sound of that. If Tom could emulate Cap'n Jack Sparrow (aka Johnny Depp) I would hot foot it off to the Bahamas tomorrow!
Bruce - this one is for you!
12/05/2007

Hi Bruce, we though of you today as we passed the Marine Air base here. There were lots of these jets buzzing around and making a hell of a racket!

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12/06/2007 | Bruce
Was it the Marine connection or the racket,
was not sure.
It is incredibly cold and windy here, could you
find it your sharing caring heart to send me a
plane ticket and I will meet you at the closest
airport,PLEASE.............
Well I made the OH SO BIG COMMITMENT
yesterday. A MARINE friend of mine, has a
36 Unitred Princess, we traveled to Fairhaven and both purchased complete
new wire rigging for our respective sailboats.
Name of the business is Rigging Only, great
set up, not to mention incredible pricing, such
a deal as THEY say.

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