Laurie's Dad, Jim and Jean joined us on the boat and we had a fabulous weekend! (See Fathers Day photo Album.)
The weather was fantastic - bright and sunny on Saturday with winds running 15 - 18kts from the north east, which allowed us to sail up to the point of Prudence Island with only one tack and down the other side of Prudence to Newport on another tack.
On the way down to Newport, we got to watch day one of the Rhode Island Airshow from afar - with the USAF Thunderbirds (I stand corrected!) display team making one helluva racket with some neat, high speed, close formation aerobatics.
Sailing wouldn't be sailing without one idiot move. Saturday's was gybing the Genoa and finding that the furler was all tangled, preventing it being rolled up (we have to furl the forward sail before gybing because there's not enough room to pass through the narrow gap between it and the inner stay). We found this as we were headed right for the shore above Prudence Island - but managed to man-handle the sail between the slot before touching bottom! I thought I had it all sorted out - but later when we gybed before the Newport Bridge, it happened again, so we decided to take the Genoa down and fix the furler properly. Jim and Jean retreated to the salon while we made lots of noise and then dealt with a mass of Dacron on the foredeck! We re-reeled the furler and raised the sail back... No better! Rats!
We repeated the whole process again - exhausting! Still no better . Does this mean the furler needs to be replaced? In desperation I start looking around for other issues and suddenly realize that the Code Zero halyard, anchored in front of the Genoa was not tight - and was getting wrapped up in the Genoa as it was being furled - preventing a furl... Twit! Still, nice to have a simple fix when you've just decided it was otherwise going to be an expensive repair or replacement...
We anchored (third attempt) beside Ida Lewis YC and enjoyed a sausage and pasta dinner followed by a game of cards - what's it called - hand and foot? - a bit like Canasta...
Sunday dawned a little cloudy and cool. We got up to find Jim asleep in the cockpit! He apparently went outside at 1:23 (in fact he went out at 12.3V!) and got a good night's sleep!
We headed over to Ocean Breeze for breakfast (highly recommended) and departed Newport around 11:00am, headed for Quonset and a date with the airshow and Neal...
There was very little wind so we tried flying the code zero for a while, but then gave up and motored to the airshow and anchored by the security zone. They've certainly moved that out a good deal - we were a mile away from the runway! There were hundreds of boats!
We were then joined by Neal, Cathy, Deb, Leo, Wayne, Joan, and Waynes' daughter and beau! Certainly filled the cockpit up and Laurie and I were evicted to the bow!
Everyone had a good time - the weather was magnificent and the show very good - the Thunderbirds certainly being the main attraction - however the more fun display was watching bunches of folk dragging anchors across the ocean floor - mostly while trying to set them!
Our ride back was fantastic - broad reach in 12 - 15 kts making 8+kts! We passed another sailboat like they were anchored! Jim and Jean seemed to be having a ball too.
We got back around 6:00pm and set to cleaning up the boat. Idiot move two came when I hear my name being yelled out - coming from the fairway. Synergy, our next door neighbor couldn't get into her slip because our dingy was strewn across the whole lane! Oops! Getting used to life on a dock might take some time!
There were some heavy heads in the morning, but Sunday dawned beautiful - if a little too calm.
I messed about in the dingy for a while trying to see if I could get the engine going right by simply running it with the new gas - but no luck. However, I was able to get out to the Canapitsit Channel - and I think it's navigable with Toodle-oo! Maybe one day we'll check that out...
When I got back to the boat, Laurie was feeling a little better and time was getting on - so we weighed anchor at 11:15 and set off to catch Elixir, with Jamin in hot pursuit. That didn't last long as Jamin pushed the button and raised the main, while we had tangles left, right and center which delayed the main for some time!
We motored out past Middle Ground with very little wind, but it began to pipe up so we launched the spinnaker in about 8kts and gybed to starboard towards Horseneck Beach. Meanwhile, Elixir, a mile or so ahead was also flying a kite and Jamin joined in shortly after on port tack. To keep everyone in sight, we lowered the spinnaker and gybed her over (gotta get another sheet!) so that we could follow Jamin, with a heading pointing us well out to sea - but a forecasted wind shift occurred and we were suddenly on a direct course for Newport in about 8 - 10 kts, managing to sail along at 6 - 7 kts in bright sunshine.
We were slowly hauling in Jamin and then chatted with Elixir, who were waiting up for us, with just a main up. As Toodle-oo! and Jamin went past, Elixir raised her kite and we had the three of us, flying spinnakers all in pretty close formation! Very cool! Lots of photo ops too - so check out the photo gallery on the right.
After an hour or so of wonderful spinnaker sailing, Elixir and Jamin peeled off to head up the Sakonnet while we pushed on towards Newport. By now Laurie was feeling much better and had her nose back in The Book.
Once we got to Brenton Reef, we found ourselves inundated with sailboats of all shapes and sizes returning from a regatta. I've never seen so many boats packed into the East Passage. Unfortunately, the wind had dropped, so we motored the rest of the way to NEB, arriving at the dock at 6:15pm. Long sail - fun sail.
Thanks to Jamin and Elixir for making it a great weekend...
Our intention this weekend was to head to Newport on Friday night and then head on to Cuttyhunk on Saturday, returning on Sunday...
Bad day at work can sometimes mess with the schedule and Laurie's day was particularly poor. We therefore decided to stay on the dock at NEB and drown her sorrows instead! I decided to have a go at equalizing the batteries again - so set them to it as we went to bed. Laurie started reading her new book...
Laurie didn't sleep well - I wasn't aware of why at the time - b I didn't sleep well either. I was up at 3:00am and decided to check the batteries and seeing that the voltage was only 14V (instead of 15+V), decided to abandon the equalization. Something's amiss. Even though I went back to sleep, I was up again shortly after 5:00 - Laurie was awake too - so we decided to have an early start to the day...
With little wind forecast until the afternoon, we pottered around the boat for a while - or I should say, I did - which I was quite happy to do. I managed to get the bad dingy gas dumped and replaced it with new. I fiddle-farted with all sorts of stuff - while Laurie read her book.
At 9:15 we finally left the dock and headed down the bay to Newport. Laurie read her book.
Knowing there was going to be light wind from behind, we'd decided to keep the main under it's cover with a plan to sail the spinnaker once the wind developed. Out past Newport, after sailing through the start of a regatta, the wind finally kicked up to 7 or 8 knots, so I managed to pry Laurie's nose out of her book in order to launch said spinnaker.
We then had a great sail towards Cutty (sort-of), making about 6kts. Since Laurie's head was buried elsewhere, I decided to set up a fishing rod...
Wouldn't you know it, I managed to hook a fish - only my third in about 1,000 miles of trawling the bloody thing! It was going to be big judging by the effort I was having reeling it in. Meanwhile, all hell broke loose as I barked orders at Laurie - get the camera! No not that lens! Why can't you learn how to change a lens! Get the net! Chaos! Eventually I reeled in a whopper (my biggest catch anyway) and landed it on the side deck, with Laurie clicking away merrily.
I couldn't get the hook out. Despite her pleas to have me cut the lure I insisted I'd get it - "bring me some rum so I can quiet this bloody thing!" She brought out a bottle which unfortunately turned out to be Black Grouse Scotch (a favorite tipple of mine) - which I didn't notice until I'd poured a cupful into the hapless fish's gills. I thought I was going to be calming the fish down so I could extract the hook and release it - but no, I killed it! What a way to go!
We then had to call Laurie's brother Neal to find out what we'd caught - and after sending a photo, found we had a Blue. Edible but notoriously oily. However, having killed the beast, we were duty bound to consume it, so another call to Neal gave me perfect instructions for a -nearly- bloodless filleting method. I managed to get about 2lbs of meat off this thing - no doubt leaving much more on the carcass than I should have - but this would be enough for appetizers with the crews of Elixir and Jamin that would be waiting for us in Cutty.
All this was going on while we were still under spinnaker! Still doing 5 - 6 kts in almost the right direction.
Laurie went back to her book - I went back to tweaking the sail...
Once we got to the Buzzards Bay tower we had to change course - too deep to fly the kite, so we furled and motored towards Cutty. Just before we got to Middle Ground, the wind picked up, so we flew the Code Zero for the final couple of miles... arriving in Cutty at around 5:00pm and anchored in the inner harbor in 12 ft on 65ft of chain.
A glass of wine was in order! Laurie read her book.
Jamin called to coordinate dinner plans - and we discussed the cooking of the beast. We headed over to Jamin shortly after 6 and met up with Peter and Diane of Elixir, Jane and Mike of Jamin and enjoyed libations in the cockpit.
Finally I get to find out that The Book is a particularly erotic novel involving all sorts of interesting hardware(?) - and quickly a line sets up for whose going to read it next!
A festive evening follows with some participating a little more than they should (as tends to happen when one reads too much and sleeps too little). The morning would be painful!
More later - but just to note there's a new photo album on the right hand side... We had a blast this weekend, not withstanding the booze and book descriptions(!), the ride home with the three boats all flying spinnakers in close proximity was just great fun!
June 9 -10: Cuttyhunk
June 16 - 17 Rhode Island Air Show
Overnight at Dutch Harbor with Jim & Jean
June 22 - 25 Shelter Island
June 29 - July 1 Newport - Americas Cup Races
July 3 - 4 Bristol Fireworks
July 7 - 8 Local
July 14 - 29 Summer Cruise: New England's Islands.
- 7/14 Newport Anchorage
- 7/16 Fishers Island
- 7/18-21 New York City (Take in a show)
- 7/22 Depart New York
- 7/23 Arrive Nantucket
- 7/25 Dinner event in Nantucket
- 7/28 Cuttyhunk
- 7/29 Newport
Aug 4 - 5 Cuttyhunk Kids weekend
Aug 11 - 12 Local
Aug 14 - 27 France
Aug 31 - Sept 3 Fall Cruise
- Aug 31 To Shelter Island
- Sept 1 Shelter Is.
- Sept 2 Block Is. (? If open! ?)
- Sept 3 Home
Sept 7 - 9 Marthas Vineyard
Sept 13 - 16 Newport Boat Show
Sept 22 - 23 Local
Sept 29 - 30 Local
Oct 6 - 8 Columbus Day Menemsha Cruise
Due to a lousy weather forecast, we set about chores... Laurie did a marvelous job of Spring Cleaning - waxing and buffing the entire bathroom and cleaning all the headliners and floor. The place looks great!
I attempted to equalize the batteries - they were certainly all bubbling away and trying to gas us with hydrogen! - but the voltage didn't go up to 15+V - so I'm not entirely certain I've achieved anything. Anybody know anything about equalizing using a Prosine 2 Inverter? I also fiddle-farted around with other very important tasks but I can't remember what they were!
We were hoping to re-start work on the bimini, but the wind and rain prevented any action.
We were quite exhausted by Saturday evening - so it was nice to have Mike and Jane come over and give us a perfect reason to stop. We even managed to finish the evening in the cockpit - and noticed that a large ship was anchored outside of NEB. In the morning we saw that the ship was a boat transporter - apparently delivering about 30 boats from the Caribbean up to NEB for the summer.
Surprisingly, Saturday dawned bright and cloudless - not the forecast grey and grissly. We therefore set about waxing and buffing the cabin top. She gleams! Somehow I managed to stay focused on the polishing - but it was difficult in view of the marvelous sailing opportunity being missed - with winds at 15 - 20 almost constantly - but in the afternoon we managed a quick sail for a couple hours - up to Bristol and back again, in 12 - 15kts. The boat was sailing beautifully, and occasionally hitting over 8kts! Love it!