I know. August is not even here yet and I say Fall in the title. When you get to be 60 you will understand. Nuff said.
I need to write more often as it is challenging to catch up and give the whole story. But it is also a challenge to write. And how do I know people want to read this stuff that often? (BTW thanks so much for the emails and comments to let us know that you actually DO read this stuff!)
Shelly and I are a week into our alone time without Ryan who is visiting his second (at least we think we are first) family in Atlanta. We got him off to the airport in Baltimore while anchored in Annapolis without a hitch.
He say he never has any fun on the boat. Pictures don’t lie. Just saying.
It has been fun for us – and interesting. We eat completely differently but other than that not much changes without Ryan. Well, there is no one complaining about stuff… We miss him though.
Last you heard we were headed for Tangiers Island. This is a really cool island out in the middle of the Chesapeake on the southern side. Historically the British built a naval base there and used it to launch attacks when they burnt Washington DC and tried to take Baltimore. The families have been here for generations and still fish and crab – although tourism is playing a part since it would seem the govt is trying to shut down any commercial crabbing and fishing.
People were super friendly and talked to us as we walked every road (3) on the island. When we asked one older lady about buying beer she laughed and said they don’t sell alcohol on the island as it would end up causing all kinds of problems. I guess that when your house is 5 feet from your neighbors (who you have known since birth and are probably related in some way) and all your immediate relatives are buried in your front yard, alcohol might become an issue…
Tangiers is the only place we have had to put our Verizon hotspot into a bag and hoist it up the mast to get a signal!
From Tangier we motorsailed 25 miles on a fairly rough bay to Solomon’s Island on the Patuxent River on the west side of the Bay. Actually it is the river just north of the Potomac… We liked Solomons a lot. Lots of boats and very low key. It seems like this is a place where people from all over inland Maryland keep their boats as there really isn’t a town to speak of for people to live! We hung out for a couple of days and then headed north to Deale Md about 30 more miles up the Bay.
BTW it takes us (depending on wind direction and wind speed and current direction) about 4.5 to 6 hours to go 30 miles. Last 30 miles we did completely under sail into the wind and took 10 hours!
Deale is the same deal. Hehe. This is a very small sleepy place crammed full of boats but no people. Strange. On the weekend the place comes alive, but during the week we seem to be the only ones around.
This is the only place Yume has been warned about speeding. I guess we were exceeding the 6 mph limit. I looked at the knotmeter and we were going 6.2 mph. No joke.
Then there was Annapolis. We made the mistake of coming in on a Sunday. Yowsa there are a LOT of boats in Annapolis. To get to Annapolis from the south, you have to go around Thomas Point Light. This is a really cool lighthouse!
We made our way in on a bumpy, breezy bay full of all kinds of boats coming and going. As we passed in front of the Naval Academy there were two different sailboat races going on and it was bedlam as they were in the channel.
Once in the harbor there are so many boats it boggles the mind. Like most cities, they have installed moorings in most of the anchoring spaces to create revenue and stop the lowlife type people who just put a junk boat on an anchor to live cheap. Their moorings are ridiculous at $35 night. We had the Spa Creek Bridge open up for us and unsuccessfully tried to find a place to anchor.
So we had them open it back up an hour later and left the harbor for Eastport which is the next river south and still part of Annapolis where we found a nice place to anchor with a couple of other boats.
It was time for Ryan’s 17th birthday bash which we celebrated by buying an ice cream cake and eating it all day as it melted. How much fun can you have? It is so hard to believe we have a 17 and a 23 year old son. (Remember what I said about Fall?)
Then quick as a wink he was gone on an airplane and we were alone for 18 days!
Shelly and I spent a few hours walking around Annapolis. As far as history goes this is awesome. The State House is where George Washington resigned his commission after the Revolutionary Way, and where the Treat of Paris was signed. Last year I had lunch in a tavern and sat in front of the same fireplace Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and many others would have sat and talked news of the day. In those days ships from England and France would come up the Bay to Annapolis and everybody got off there as it was much easier and faster by coach to the Capitol in Philadelphia or later DC than by boat.
We have been puttering around a bit. We made a trip across the Bay and south to visit Oxford Md. This is another old town (1662?) that we love to walk around in. Shelly’s parents kept a sailboat here when she was a little girl (last century) so it was sort of a homecoming for her.
With the wind behind us Yume sailed wing on wind for 3 hours back to Annapolis from Oxford.
Then we had some mechanical issues. The salt water pump for the main engine is acting up. I replaced the seal but then couldn’t get it to draw through the strainer, and had to bypass it to keep running until we can replace it.
Then the refrigerator started acting up again. I’m starting to think this thing does not like me! I am pretty sure there is a blockage of something in the tiny capillary tube and am waiting until we get someplace settled before I tackle that one.
We decided the hell with it, and left Annapolis headed towards St Micheal’s to explore. I realized the wind was on the nose and it was going to be an uncomfortable ride and had almost decided to head north under the Bay Bridge when we found the salt water pump was throwing a lot of water. Again. Crap.
With the refrig and the sw pump looking dicey, and waiting for payments due before attempting any major repairs, we decided to just start heading for DC and the marina we will be in for the next three months. We aren’t more than five days and maybe more if we sail and not motor. At least we are not in a hurry.
As soon as that decision was made I saw some baitfish in the water, threw in the fishing lure and a small striped bass grabbed it. He was tasty!
We turned back to the south and beat our way against a strong SW breeze for six hours the 18 miles to Deale. Instead of going all the way into the harbor and adding an hour each way to the trip, we anchored more out in the open for the breeze and an early start.
Unfortunately the swell from the bay curled around the point and rocked us badly all night. Neither of us got much sleep.
Then we sailed against the wind again the 30 miles to the Solomon’s, tacking all the way across the Bay at least six times and ended up sailing 62 miles in 10 hours. Yuk. At the end of the day this ugly storm front chased us into the harbor.
All is good though. With a nice supper, and a cool beverage or two we are cozy and comfortable anchored up in a creek and telling you the story!
In three months we will freezing our butts heading for the Fl Keys as fast as we can go!
So we enjoy today as it is given.