11/14/2012, Morehead City Yacht Basin
It's definitely time to head south!!!!
This past week has been another busy one. It's been much cooler than we prefer--- most days I need a jacket.
Robert has completed our new rigging for a spinnaker and we can hardly wait to try it!
We also have filled all our diesel fuel cans and strapped them on the lifelines with a new tie down system Robert devised.
We installed some gladiator shelving in both hulls, which has afforded is much more storage. It's also helped to make things more easily accessible.
We are the proud owners of the coolest hatch covers ever!!!! The guys at Outland Hatch Covers are remarkable. Fantastic customer service. The covers greatly improve the looks of our old gal, plus keep the glaring sun out of the saloon. We highly recommend them!
We secured our extra anchor to the lifeline on the starboard side--- no more need for digging to the bottom of the locker for it.
Had time for lots of fun as well. We shared several meals with our friends, Don and Judy ( Nemo's owners). Also had a visit from Joe Friday ( one if our dear friends from our Charlotte years). Our old neighbors, Terry and Debby Wilson spent the day with us -- great food, drink and fellowship.
Last weekend we celebrated our daughter's 30th birthday, as well as our grand daughter's 2nd birthday in Asheboro. Lots of fun.
We ran into some cruising friends . Al and Mary on Celestina are here at the marina for a few days. Great catching up with them!!!
We also ran into Keith and Terry on Cymric( we met them in Ft. Lauderdale earlier this year). One of my favorite things about cruising is reconnecting with folks we meet along the way, and sharing stories. It adds a lot of variety to life!
Of course, as it always happens, Robert is traveling all week with work. Once again, I'm readying the boat for our passage this weekend. I really think he plans it this way!!
We hope to depart Sat. Am. We had hoped to leave Friday and sail on the outside overnight, but the weather is not cooperating. Guess we'll hang out in the ICW for safety reasons. Hope to make Charleston by Sunday.
We are both ready for some warmer climate. Coats and gloves are not my favorite fashions!!!! Looking forward to shorts and flip flops again. Praying for improvement in the weather forecast --- the foul weather gear is ready, however. Maybe if we plan to need it, we won't. Ready for another adventure!!!!
11/02/2012, Morehead City Yacht Basin
This past week was just a bit crazy.
We were quite busy trying to prepare for Hurricane Sandy. We double tied all our dock lines and put out some extra fenders. Moved all the cockpit cushions and loose articles down low and secured them.
We did the same with Nemo-- Our friends' boat.
We pumped out both heads and filled the fuel tank on SeaQuell. Seems our fuel gauge was way off -- we only needed 53 gallons to fill our 100 gallon tank. All that worrying I did about running out of fuel this last trip was in vain.
We made a day trip to Little Washington to vote, get our winter gear and some sewing fabric and storage supplies out of storage, carry Maggie to the vet to get her yearly check-up and vaccines AND cancel the PO Box. WHEW!!!
We visited as many friends in Bath as time would allow, and had a lovely dinner with friends, Clay and Deb.
Mad dash back to Morehead City late Friday night to hunker down and ride out the storm.
We had a bumpy, rocky weekend. Winds were a sustained 30 knots with gusts to 60. It rained like crazy and we discovered a leak in one of our huge windows--- thought we had fixed that , but I guess not sufficiently. We just put down some towels to soak up the excess water. Thank God we suffered no damage --- just got a little stir crazy after 2 days cooped up inside. I was hesitant to get off the boat due to the dock rocking like a buckin' bronco and high winds. Robert and Maggie braved the elements though for daily walks.
I finally left the boat Sunday night to go out for pizza--- it was wonderful!!!
We have changed our address to a mail forwarding service in Florida, so we've been busy notifying all our businesses of the new address. It would seem one could do most of that on line, but I've not found that to be the case--- many phone calls later, I'm about half through with the list.
Today, I braved the unloading of the car (the trunk and the backseat were full). Don't know just yet where we will fit everything on board--- more reorganizing to do!!
Life continues to be very good, despite the storm--- Robert is not traveling with work this week, so we can relax a little. Planning to get some more minor projects done this weekend.
10/21/2012, Morehead City, NC
This past week has been a busy one----(what's new, right?). Robert installed our new tank monitors for the fuel, water, and holding tanks. Now we just have to calibrate each one.
He also found the problem (we think) with the GPS and has repaired it.
Several trips for parts -- Ace rigging and West Marine should love to see us come in.
We also replaced another hose from the head to the holding tank-- what a "crappy" job.
Robert has worked diligently on our sunshades-- installing tension rods to keep taut in an effort to reduce the "shower" we get each morning from dew that settled overnight.
In his spare time, Robert travelled to Denver , CO on a 2day business trip.
We squeezed in some family time-- went to see our grandson, Brett play his last soccer game of the season.
Dinner in New Bern with great friends last night. Thanks, Curt, Beckie, Jane and Michael.
Slowly getting ready for our next leg south. Planning to stay in Morehead a few more weeks, and hopefully make Charleston, SC on our next trip.
10/09/2012, Atlantic Ocean
Since returning from our California vacation, we have been crazy, busy trying to get ready for our first leg of our voyage south.
Upon our arrival to SeaQuell at 9:00 pm (after flying all day), we were greeted by a very happy girl-- Maggie was very glad for us to be home. However, we were not so happy with her. It seems she had a slight urge to
"play" with our electronics. Several of the wires were chewed into bits. She had helped herself to resting on the newly re-upholstered setee as well. This was evidenced by an abundance of beige fur and numerous "slobber spots" on the cushions.
So, the next day after work, we head to Kilmarnock to replace chargers,etc.
We also picked up the gift for our younger daughter's baby shower this weekend.
Becky left on Thursday , heading for Wilson for the shower. Dr.'s appointments/banking business/storage / post office stop all taken care of on Friday. Baby shower for our third grandchild was a lot of fun. Good to see family and friends. Mad dash back to Urbanna Saturday pm.
Now, to start getting ready for the trip. Don and Judy are moving their boat, Nemo, south as well, so we'll be buddying with them on this leg.
Don and Becky took both cars to Morehead City on Wednesday. Picked up our crew there too. Jane Messer Whitten and Scott Shepard are crewing on Nemo. Our friends, Dave and Cheryl Albert are crewing on SeaQuell.
We all returned to Urbanna together in a one way rental car -- long day, but one item checked off the preparation agenda.Delicious dinner prepared by Judy-- pasta salad, quinoa salad, pork roast, tossed salad, and homemade bread. Damn, we eat good.
Rental car was returned the next day, after a final grocery run. The ladies need to get the last minute provisions.
As cruisers often do, we pooled our resources for dinner Thursday night. We had lots of good food, drink, and fun. So much fun, in fact, that Scott slept in the new hammock couch on SeaQuell.
We departed from Urbanna, VA around 8 am on Friday, Oct. 5th. Motor sailed to Hampton, VA, where we anchored for the night. We had a little trouble setting our anchor, but finally got it to hold. Nemo pulled alongside and rafted up with us. After a great dinner of spagetti and meatballs, eggplant Parmesan, salad and homemade bread, we all crashed for the night.
Saturday brought clear skies, light winds. After a great breakfast of egg/sausage/cheese casserole and spinach omelets, we headed out again.
Motor sailed most of the day. We did set some fishing lines out, and Dave caught a tuna??--- too small to keep, but fun to reel in.
After a great dinner of Cheryl's famous clam chowder , we start getting ready for the night. We put 2reefs in the mainsail. Everyone dons their life jackets and tethers. Jack lines in place. Snacks in the cockpit for those late night "attacks".
Our overnight sail Saturday was great-- Dave and Cheryl took the first shift, 9-12. Robert took over around midnite and cut the engines. He had the 12-3am shift) and when Becky relieved him at 2am, we were still making about 6-7 knots steadily. We did lose our GPS once, but Robert got it working again quickly. At one point, it showed us making over 300 knots---- talk about jet propulsion!!! Everyone was able to sleep for several hours, the seas were relatively calm and the winds were wonderful. Perfect night . Cheryl awakened a little seasick-- took some Dramamine and went down for a nap.
Sunday morning was a little cloudy, and the winds died out-- we're back to motor sailing again! More fishing today for the guys. While attempting to fill our fuel tank with our last 5 gallons of fuel, Dave's line starts zingin' like crazy. He's having a great time reeling in what we think is another tuna(that's what it looks like when it jumps out of the water), when it just disappears and the line breaks. Now Robert's line starts zinging away. He has a SHARK on. It appears the shark ate Dave's tuna and jumped over onto Robert's line. It took quite a but of effort to reel this shark in-- he fought like the dickens. We brought him on board long enough for a photo op and back in the water he went. He was 4 ft. 10 in. Long!!!! Enough excitement for now-- it's back to fuel duty for the guys.
Sunday afternoon, Dave caught a beautiful Dorado. We think he may have been legal to keep, but no one wanted to mess with it, so we threw him back.
The weather is beginning to change-- clouds are rolling in and the wind picked up enough for us to sail a bit. We had a slight debacle with our fishing lines--- they got wrapped around the prop-- Robert jumps in to untangle the mess, and the boat starts to pull away from him. Becky is at the helm, trying to hold the wheel in a "brake" position. He did make it safely back on board, except for some scrapes from barnacles. ( we won't mention the numerous expletives).
Cheryl is still a little seasick, but tolerating it ok.
Sunday evening is spent getting ready for another overnighter. Same drill as last night. However, mother nature has a different, more exciting plan for tonight. The weather is beginning to get rough-- lumpy, bumpy waves while trying to cook dinner. Both Cheryl and Becky are now queasy. Around 10 pm, the lightening starts/winds pick up and the seas increase. Next comes the rain. Cheryl is getting worse-- hugging the rails-- for anyone who sails, you know the score. I' ll omit the details. Becky is maintaining as long as she stays very still and in the cockpit. Maggie is a nervous wreck-- we had to leash her to the table-- she's ready to abandon ship.Our fuel gauge shows we have 1/4 tank-- this is gonna be a long night.
This storm just WILL NOT LET UP!!!!! Overnight, the seas were 4-6 feet/ winds steady 22-25 knots. Rain and lightening persisted until the wee hours of the morning. We lost radio contact with Nemo hours ago. The damn GPS is acting up again!!! No one is getting any sleep tonight!!
Monday morning finally arrives, and the rain and lightening subside. The seas, however, just aren't ready to give it up!! Wave height is a little less, but now the interval is about 3 seconds. Despite a rough night, we're all in pretty good spirits-- still able to crack a few jokes about riding a bucking bronco and Cheryl chummin'. No one feels like breakfast and it's too rough to go down below-- no coffee--- this sucks!!
We were finally able to make contact with Nemo-- they went further offshore to try to improve their ride. They had a rough night too, but everyone is safe if not sound.
We finally made it to the Beaufort inlet and things start to settle down. Dave's sippin' sprite-- seems all the action finally got to him, too. Becky and Cheryl are feeling a little better, and Maggie has calmed significantly. Poor Robert is barnacled/ beaten/sleep deprived, but still not complaining (except about how sore his butt is from prolonged hours in the captain's seat).
We made it safely to the Morehead City Yacht Basin around 11am. Docked with the jib still up(we forgot). Our life sling snagged the piling and landed in the water, and one of our port visors was inadvertently removed by a fender. We are out of fuel and running low on energy, but as the Nordstrom's always say--"MAN, WHAT A RIDE!!!!"
Nemo arrived safely shortly afterwards. We had a short reunion/ celebratory cocktails, and everyone went on their way to begin recovery efforts. Dave and Cheryl have a condo at Emerald Isle for a few days. Jane is headin back to her boat at Matthews Point with her honey, Michael. Scott says he's heading back home to try and catch a second wind before going out with his buddies tonight( something about Monday night football). Guess now everyone knows who the youngest in the group is!!
Another adventure complete!!
|Out to Sea||
09/24/2012, California Coast
Robert had a business trip in Anaheim, CA, so I tagged along. He only had 3 workdays, so we added 7 more and turned it into a wonderful vacation.
We flew intoSan Francisco on Sept. 15th. Went to Yosemite National Park for a little hiking. Beautiful mountains/ scenery. Great hike, too!! Later that same day, we drove to Mariposa to see the great Sequoias. Wow!!! Very impressive !!
The next day, we travelled down the pacific coast highway to Half Moon Bay. Beautiful, breathtaking views of cliffs dropping straight down to the ocean!! A little intimidating for Becky at times ( keep in mind how Robert likes to drive.)
We headed south to Carmel--- lovely place. We liked it so well, we spent 2 nights here. We stayed at a cute little place called The Homestead. It is a sister property to Clint Eastwood's Mission Ranch. We had breakfast each morning at the ranch. Again, lovely views of ocean and mountain. Sheep grazed in the pasture right on the property.
Big Sur was our next stop. A little disappointing for us. The state park there was not very well maintained, but we did hike to one small waterfall.
On down the coast we went--- stopping along the way for photo ops and picnics.
we saw otters and sea lions/ jellyfish as big as Becky.
Next stop, Santa Barbera. Great city -- oceanfront room. Wonderful dinner with jalapeño martinis--- YUM!!!
On down the coast we drove, heading to Los Angeles. We went thru several lovely cities-- too many to name. In Ventura, we stopped at the Channel Islands visitor center. Next trip, we will definitely make time to see the islands,
The traffic in Los Angeles is wicked!! Finally made it to our hotel in Anaheim in about 2 hours- the GPS estimated it to be a 40 minute drive.
Having fun here-- Robert has worked a couple of days, but we have enjoyed it here. Great food/drinks and relaxation
We took the train to San Diego yesterday. Great trip. Very diverse population.
Today, Robert is working and Becky is catching up on correspondence and doing some reading by the pool.
Heading back to the boating life tomorrow. It's been fun, but we"'re both ready to get back on the water to our simple way of life. We really miss Maggie too!!!
09/11/2012, Urbanna, VA
We've had a pretty laid-back week. Robert didn't travel, so we have been able to relax a bit. We've been for bike rides and walks in the evenings.
We continue to try our hand at crabbing-- the Dockmaster loaned us a crab pot, so it's easier. By the end of the week, we had enough to steam for a dinner for 7 people.
Our friend Don is here, and he and Robert have completed several boat projects on both our boats. SeaQuell has a new clutch-- quite an involved project. Don's boat has a new stove/oven and a new refridgeration system.
We went to dinner at a brand new restaurant. The food was good, not great, but we had a nice evening out. Thanks Don!!
Becky has been busy trying new recipes-- the guys are good guinea pigs.
The weather is absolutely beautiful. We turned off both AC units, and opened all the hatches and portals. We actually need our comforter at night.
We are getting excited about our upcoming trip to California. Can't wait to see some more exciting places.
Dockmate Susan is going to dog sit little miss Maggie while we're away. I think she'll be much happier in her own environment than at a boarder.
Robert is in Richmond on business,so Maggie and Becky are just chillin' today. Haircut and brow wax for Becky today-- her first since June. Boat life doesn't require much in the way of "primping".
Time for a glass of wine and a little "food network" on TV. stay tuned for a full report on our California trip!!