We had hoped, and told everyone, that we were leaving Bert Jabin's Yacht Yard right after Labor Day. We moved aboard the boat on June 8th, and before we knew it the whole summer had passed while we struggled to get the boat ready to sail. We'd get within inches and then we'd discover another problem which would put us yards away from the goal line. Like the manual bilge pump (last resort if the boat was taking on water and the batteries shorted out) needed to be replaced. And the generator, which was so cranky and loud that Angie hated it anyway, was going to cost so much to repair that it wasn't worth while to keep it (I should take note!) We (Ted and his crew, that is) yanked it out.
|Ray, one of the crew|
But finally, on Wednesday, September 25, 2013, we took aboard all of our docklines, and with Ted and two other friends, Gord and Karen from Dancing in the Wind, giving a hand, we eased out of the slip for the last time.
|Ted giving a hand off|
|The Old Man at the helm|
But we do get most of the month of October, a beautiful time for cruising the Chesapeake with the trees turning color and the ducks and geese on the flyway south, before we head down the Intracoastal Waterway. That journey, stretching over a thousand miles from Norfolk, Virginia, to whatever spot in Florida we choose for our hopping off place to the Bahamas, takes a couple of months. And though most of it is motoring down canals, and rivers, there are some bays where you can sail. And lots of practice anchoring along the way. There are also places where you can "go outside" for a day trip or overnighter on the ocean before coming back on the waterway. Doing that depends on finding safe inlets along with a safe "weather window" for the trip. I think I'd like to do that, but we'll see.
After the gam we went over to St. Michaels, a picturesque little fishing village and tourist destination on the Eastern Shore, for a couple of days. No wind so we had to motor all of the way. Well, I said we learned some anchoring techniques at the gam. We got lots of practice. First we decided to anchor in a little bight that called Dobbs Bay.
|Tod, measuring mast height|
Back in Back Creek, but this time at a mooring, not a slip at Bert Jabin's Yacht Yard. We came into the creek from across the Bay, after two nights at St. Michaels. We were coming into Annapolis just before the big power boat and sail boat shows were about to begin.
|Rob, with wood plaque he made for us|
We took advantage of being back in Annapolis for a couple of routine appointments to get the new
anchor that Angie has been wanting. Choosing an anchor is a religious act, and no one can agree on which one is the right one. But the one we chose, called the Manson Supreme, one of the "new generation" anchors, seemed at least one step up from our plow. Ted helped us swap it out, not a simple task while we are at a mooring, since the anchor, which weighs 45 pounds, had to be attached to the anchor chain out in front of the bow pulpit. Twenty eight years ago, it was Angie who bought us the 33 pound Bruce anchor, considered the latest, best thing, for Escapade.
|Morning at St. Michaels|