Mike -Another beautiful day
10/20/2007, Solomon's Island, MD
On the road again...We were up early and made the 7:30 bridge opening on Spa Creek. Although small craft warnings were in effect, with the winds out of the west waves shouldn't have room to build much on our side of the Bay. There were a few stubborn clouds in the east that kept the sun off us most of the morning as we motored south. Actually the motor was off and on. When our boat speed got below 2 knots it was on. Then at around noon or so the forecasted breeze began to fill in behind the front. The second half of the trip was a wonderful sail in 15 to 20 knots at or just below hull speed.
We ran the engine enough to get a real good charge on our battery bank and I bled the hot water heater (the hoses from the engine had some air) so that we can make hot water again while under power.
We arrived at Solomon's Island at about 3:30 and found a place to anchor for the night. Although we haven't been to shore yet, it is an interesting place. From the Bay proper we enter the Patuxent river for about three miles and then head north into a smaller bay. From the smaller bay there are four creeks, all of which are wall to wall marinas, docks, and boatyards for at least a mile. We were told by friends where to anchor if we needed provisions and so here we are just up stream from the Holliday Inn. There are probably in the neighborhood of 50 boats anchored in this area tonight. Some friends from Spa Creek radioed us this morning and the are close by.... We'll try to find them in the morning for info on the town.
The weather looks good for the next few days so we're going to spend tomorrow washing a few cloths and hiking to a grocery store that is 1.5 miles away for a few things...onions and Mayo come to mind. We're low on beer as well.
It was really nice to be on the water again... especially since we had a perfect sail this afternoon.
The Thomas Point Shoal Light in the picture is "a unique, red-orange-roofed hexagonal lighthouse that guards the long shoal extending off the northern shore of the South River. It is the only cottage-style lighthouse on the Bay that remains in its original location."
Getting water into the boat
Mike and Kathy
10/20/2007, Annapolis, Maryland
Wednesday, October 17th
I contacted the company today to get the shipping numbers for the radio system for which we are waiting here in Spa Creek. After running the numbers through UPS tracking, We found that one package would come arrive on Thursday and the last on Friday. Weather permitting we are planning on leaving either Friday at noonish or Saturday am.
I continued the process of refinishing cockpit teak and Kathy continued polishing stainless.
After lunch we attempted to walk to West Marine which we knew to be just a couple of miles. Without a map and very little confidence, we turned back after about two miles in defeat. Checking on Mapquest on our return to the boat we were almost within sight of the strip mall in question before we quit. Since it was probably our last 80 degree day for a while we decided to wash and retreat our the sunbrella on our dodger. it had been showing some dirt and mildew... which happens with the lighter color, and needed some attention.
While things were drying we took the dingy to town. Kathy needed to purchase a card and I headed to Fawcett's for some Cetol...which they didn't have. Which means that there is definitely going to be another attempt at West Marine tomorrow.
Thursday October 18.
I am happy to report that we successfully walked to West Marine this morning. It was a little over 2 miles one way and hot. We picked up some Cetol that I needed to fining the cockpit and purchased a LED stern light. Since adding the davits our stern light has been somewhat covered by our dinghy when traveling and we needed to do something. I was out of 3m4200J, which has proven to be my bedding compound of choice, and picked up a couple of small tubes.
I finished the refinishing job when we returned and then after lunch, took off for town because the UPS tracking said that our package had been delivered. First though, we had to hike to the Post Office which is located a few blocks from the water front just beyond the Maryland State House.
We collected our new radio equipment from the Harbormaster's office and returned to the boat. Our last job...before relaxing with a bunch of new manuals and installation instructions, was to clean, grease, and replace the cockpit winches that had been removed for the refinishing work. I cleaned and greased everything and Kathy polished and waxed them before putting things back together.
We both spent the rest of the afternoon reading about our new toys and how they should be best installed.
....An unrelated point of information for those who have been here. The downtown harbor area in Annapolis was closed as of last Sunday night when the Power Boat Show ended. I overheard a conversation in Fawcett's that the whole place was going to be rebuilt during the winter months and that they hoped to have it finished by spring. Yesterday there was a barge with crane in Ego Alley, and about 50 surveyors in the immediate area with interesting looking laser equipment.
Friday, October 19th
A cloudy day-we don't see many of those since we left Michigan. Mike heated water for showers and dishes, took a shower and headed to town to pick up our last package and check on some things we need for installation of the new radio. I did dishes and cleaned the boat down below. Mike also got water on his trip. We have to find a dock that will allow us to get water and fill our four 5 gallon jugs, haul them back to the boat and dump them in. We were allowed to get water at the city docks in Ego Alley, but that has been closed since the boat shows.
We had a little rain this afternoon so Mike jumped out and scrubbed the decks with the fresh water. It is still 78 degrees, so he had a nice warm shower ...again. We read books for a while, went to town for ice and gasoline, and put our cleats back on in the cockpit. The cockpit looks great right now.
We are looking forward to traveling again!
Mike's favorite oyster bar
10/17/2007, Annapolis, Maryland
The day was promised to be cool but clear. We worked on refinishing the spindles on our taff in the morning...scraping first, then sanding, then bronze wool and finally a coat of Cetol. Kathy took the dingy and picked up Carol to go the grocery store while they still had access to the borrowed truck. When she returned we finished our refinishing and went for a dingy ride to pick up some ice.
The solar panels are working well and almost cover about 90% of our electrical consumption.
Lisa and Ellie... who both asked the same question. Our boat runs mostly on DC current... ie batteries. We have seven. One is only connected to the engine for starting purposes and has a dedicated alternator. (on the engine that charges it when the engine is running)
The other 6 batteries are wired together and run everything electrical on the boat. The refrigerator is the biggest user at 5 amps an hour in hot weather 3 in more moderate temps. The solar panels generate about 6 amps each per hour at optimum conditions and send the electricity to the battery bank.
We also have a Honda 2000 generator that we run to make up the difference between consumption and production of power. The Honda is also our only means of producing hot water when we are not running our engine.
Sunday, October 14
Another perfect day... mid seventies, cool breeze... but hot in the sun. We are still in Spa Creek mostly by ourselves. Our friends and neighbors have all headed south. "Restless" pulled out about noon today and we hope to catch them in a few days. We worked on refinishing more spindles ... half now have two coats and the other half have 3. I went to town for gasoline and water while Kathy cleaned below decks. We should be about full of water but don't really know because our gauge hasn't been working for about two years.... it's just one more project. We had a nice lunch and spent the afternoon alternating between work and reading.
Monday... October 15
We got another coat of finish on our spindles and then went to town with high hopes that a package would be waiting. Alas and alack.... No delivery. We shopped for awhile and then had a very nice lunch. When we reached the dinghy dock on our way back to the boat we found one of the tubes of the inflatable almost empty. I noticed that the cover on that tube's inflation hole was partially opened and closed it. We took off... a little lopsided, for the boat and stayed close to the shore. We made it and quickly pumped up the tube which remained inflated for the rest of the day... no puncture. For safety's sake we hoisted the big motor up to the stern rail and dug out the 2.5 horse for the remainder of our stay.
Not wanting to waste another perfect day I took the winches and cleats off the top of the taff rail and sanded everything down. While I was applying finish, Kathy cleaned and polished the cleats.
We boiled up shrimp for dinner and watched then watched another movie. (We are in desperate need of a movie trade. I am real tired of the ones we have on board)
Tuesday... October 16
We worked on teak in the morning and went to town at around 10am to check on our delivery. Nothing again. We wandered around a little and ran into Kevin and Liz who we had met in Cape May. Back at the boat we chicken fried rice for lunch (read multiple leftovers) and went to work on the teak...again. Kathy has been working on the stainless steel with Colonite Metal Polidh which seems to be the product of choice around here and seems to hold up reasonable well.
While the varnish was drying, we went to town to the Sailrite store and purchase some sunbrella to make covers for deck stuff... generator, jerry cans, etc. We stopped to see Kevin's solar panel installation before heading back to apply another coat. I made a pot of chili for dinner using some venison that Jack had given us in Delaware... it was a little hot but Kathy added another can of tomatoes to tone things down for the next time it becomes a meal.
We watched a real bad...Sam Elliot western that I think we will put in the trash. Sam was a bad guy ... which is just wrong.