Sept/Oct 2015

Time flies when you’re having fun.

We keep looking at each other and saying, where did the time go? How is it we are at the end of October already and I haven’t done a blog post since August?

Well, for starters, we’ve had some limited internet along our way, but mostly our blog page has been broken and I need the administrator to fix it (P please and thankyou) so I can post something. At this point I’ll just get the post out and worry about pictures later. That would just take too much time given that we are on the verge of departing for our offshore passage in a few days from now.

To keep it brief here’s what we’ve done since the last post:
August 18-September 5 – Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard (yes we liked it there and we were also waiting for some of our mail, so we stayed longer than originally planned).
September 5-9 – Block Island, Rhode Island (in the harbour with hundreds of other boats for the Labour Day weekend)
September 9 – New Haven, Connecticut (overnight anchorage only – no going ashore)
September 10 – 16 – Port Washington, New York (took the train to NYC, had guests on board from NYC)
September 16 – Sandy Hook, New Jersey (overnight anchorage only – no going ashore)
September 17-18 – on route to Cape May, New Jersey
September 18-20 – Cape May, New Jersey (attended an outdoor Beer Fest/farmer’s market)
September 20 – Anchored just west of C&D canal
September 21-25 – Silary Bay, Maryland (we had the place to ourselves, enjoyed the peacefulness)
September 25-30 – South River, Edgewater, Maryland
October 1 – 26 – Lake Ogleton, Annapolis, Maryland (We stayed on our friend Jackie and Dan’s private dock, P used Jackie’s workshop and installed a freezer and some shelves. They lent us their car and we got provisions restocked for going south. We got Charlie to the vet for his paperwork. Jackie and Dan pet sat Charlie for 8 days while we went to Canada for Keith & Taryl’s wedding. We are super appreciative of all that our friends from Chill did for u., Thanks so much J & D)
October 26 – 27 – transit to Hampton, Virginia (overnight pleasant sail)
October 27 – 31 – in Hampton, Virginia attending seminars with the Salty Dawg Rally and getting the boat ready to depart for the British Virgin Islands (target date November 2nd weather permitting).

New England

Jus chillin in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard
Jus chillin in Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard
You’re probably wondering what we’ve been up to since we haven’t posted in a long while. Here’s a brief recap:

July 22 – Aug 6: Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard
Aug 6 – Aug 10: Hadley Harbor, Elizabeth Islands
Aug 10 – Aug 16: Provincetown, Mass.
Aug 16 – Aug 18: Hadley Harbor, Elizabeth Islands
Aug 18 – ?: Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard

We’ve done a bit of touring on foot, kayaking, walking, biking, running the dog at the beach. We’ve both been working on our various boat chores, things that just don’t seem to get done when we are busy cruising and enjoying ourselves in far away places.

There are a lot of shops and stores in Edgartown and Provincetown, but prices are through the roof, so we just window shop. Just as well as we don’t have a need for anything. I buy my stickers for the wall of places we’ve been to and that’s good enough as far as spending goes.

The only eating out we’ve done all summer is at a pizza by the slice place here in Edgartown (very close to the NY pizza P grew up with). We went there the other day and sadly they are closed for the season, not to re-open until 2016. I guess the season is over here. Everyone is heading back to school.

Through the summer we enjoyed watching the kids out learning to sail. Every week there would be races to watch as well. We found ourselves cheering them on at times and totally losing hours on end just watching and enjoying them and their laughter.

One young boy sailed by us one day and sang Oh Canada for us. Then he told us he was from Canada. Another person proud to be Canadian.

Martha’s Vineyard has a lot of room to anchor, good holding, nice bike paths and sidewalks, a good mile walk to a large grocery store, liquor store, and hardware store. They also have a launch to take you ashore if you don’t want to use your own dinghy (a bit pricey) and a pump out boat that comes to you (Channel 74). We’ve also discovered we can get our mail delivered here, so we’ve ordered it sent and will depart when it arrives in a few days from now. So this is why we’ve spent so many days here – it’s convenient for a cruiser.

Hadley Harbor is more out of the way and has a small anchorage where everyone squeezes in as best as possible. Holding is good once set, but getting set can be more challenging. We’ve watched many struggle and move about until they find a sweet spot. It’s quiet and only has one small island that you can take the dog for a walk. No beaches there for him. All of the area is privately owned, so we respect that. It’s great for kayaking and paddle boarding, and is well protected from the open seas. We enjoyed the serenity there.

Provincetown was really fun. It’s a colorful place with lots of quirky shops to browse. Best place ever to people watch. It’s so nice to see a place where gays and straights are all comfortable with each other. We were there just before Carnival so the place was very crowded and every Inn and Hotel had their No Vacancy signs out.

We anchored near the beach opposite the main town so the dinghy ride was a long one. But the walk to the grocery store was .7 miles instead the the 1 mile in Edgartown. They don’t allow plastic bags so if you don’t bring your own bags you’ll be hauling your load in brown paper bags. I always bring my own bags and we each carry a knapsack so didn’t have to worry about it. We also found a place to refill our propane tanks (Days Propane close to the grocery store)– it was a about 1.2 miles walk round trip and we used our wheelie thing to bring them to and fro.

On our Saturday there, we discovered a farmer’s market. I bought some nice Swiss chard, zucchinis, and heirloom tomatoes. They also had a stall selling Kettle Corn – which I can’t resist. It was so good I wish I’d bought two bags of it.

So that’s our summer. Next we head back to Cuttyhunk, then Block Island for labor day weekend. After that we’ll head to Port Washington and hope to figure out how to transit to NYC to see some family.
(internet is slow, so pics to follow)


We headed out of Bristol about 10 am on July 19th. When we got just past Newport we encountered fog. Paul turned on the radar only to discover it wasn’t working. So we about turned and headed into Newport harbour, anchored and set about to troubleshoot the problem. P checked everything while I heated up some leftovers for lunch.

After some food, Paul went back over the wires and sure enough while fixing something else a few days back he’d jiggled a wire out of place (P actually it is a Raymarine ethernet connector that is defective so I had to jury rig it to keep it connected). So two hours later we headed back out into the fog on route to Cuttyhunk. Lucky for us the fog mainly lifted and we could see at least a mile or two the whole trip. We had a pleasant sail and arrived to Cuttyhunk around 6pm.

Temporary anchorage while fixing the radar.  Very crowded and busy!
Temporary anchorage while fixing the radar. Very crowded and busy!

Upon arrival we were met by the Raw Bar boat, a boat that serves up locally grown oysters in the half shell to those who wish to pay for it. The people on the boat actually shuck the oysters right in front of you as they ready your plate. Of course, Paul wasn’t about to pass that up and he tells me they are the best he’s ever had.

We went ashore the following day for an explore. It’s a small island so a few hours of walking and you’ve seen most of it. While I really enjoyed the quiet here, after a few nights we were ready to head on. Paul had another serving of oysters the night before we left. We departed on the morning of July 22nd and made our way to Martha’s Vineyard.

Bristol, Rhode Island

We arrived to Bristol on June 30th from Hampton after two stops. The first stop was at Cape May and the second at Block Island. We didn’t go ashore at either stop as we’d done both last year and the weather wasn’t great for going ashore so we continued on each morning.

Along the way we saw 50-100 sharks all around the boat while we were about 20 miles off the coast near Atlantic City. Not sure what they were feeding on, but I can tell you I would not be swimming in that water. It was churned up in patches for quite a distance.

We rigged the parasailor three times during the trip and left it up overnight once. That was a bit frustrating because the winds picked up for an hour or so in the middle of the night, causing Paul to lose nearly a full sleep shift as he helped me get it down in the dark. We knew we were tired when we let one of the lines fall into the water and it ended up under one of our keels. Luckily we managed to get it out from under the boat without having to go into the water. We kept the motor off and I just kept working it until it released. Whew!

We debated whether to put it up again or not after all the frustrations getting it down in the dark. But we decided to go for it and we sailed all the way into the Bristol Harbour with it up. It’s clearly pretty rare to see a parasailor, as we had a lot of gawkers as we sailed in.

After arrival we readied the boat for house guests arriving on July 3rd for the 4th of July festivities. Leslie (our winter guest in the BVI) joined us for a couple evenings along with her 8 year old son, Jack, and on the evening of the 4th her friend Ben and his daughter Skylar joined us as well.

Leslie brought fresh lobsters along with a pot to cook them in. We had a feast on the evening of the 3rd with leftovers for a few sandwiches which we took to the parade with us on the 4th.

On Saturday we went to the parade (the longest running parade in the US, this was the 230th year). We adults enjoyed the marching bands and floats. Let’s just say Jack wasn’t himself and preferred to be on the boat. So about half way through the parade, P dinghy’d him and his mom back to Blue Sky then returned to me along with Charlie to watch the rest of the parade.

Later that evening we all headed to the Salty Dawg Rally clam boil event at Mary’s place (Mary is a lady in Bristol who has offered her place for these events for a few years now). After dinner Ben and Leslie took the kids to the carnival in town and we met up at the dinghy about 10 pm. A long and busy day.

On the 5th the kids helped to inflate the kayaks and took them for a paddle. Then they swam while we waited for enough wind to take them for a sail. After lunch the wind piped up and we had a lovely 3 hour sail down the bay towards Newport and back. It was perfect except for the fact that the electric winch we use to haul the mainsail up, wasn’t working. So we were happy for the extra help to crank it up by hand (thanks Ben).

We enjoyed beers after the sail and our guests packed up and left before dinner. It was lovely to have guests on board as it happens so rarely. Come on family, all you have to do is get yourself to the boat and we are happy to have you (hint, hint).

The following week we spent our days fixing things on board and doing some cleaning. We spent time with Bill and Linda (Sapphire) and their dog Zoe, who Charlie just adores. Many evenings we went over to Mary’s place and enjoyed her yard. Bill and Linda took us in their car to the market, the store, the vet, and pretty much anywhere we needed to go. Big thanks for all the rides and help hauling it back to the boat. It was so much fun having someone to hang out with. We also had a great time watching the races around our boat with racers from age 6 up!

So at last it was time to leave and we did it with mixed feelings. We tend to get comfortable in a place and have a hard time pulling up the anchor. But on the morning of July 19th we did just that and said our goodbyes to Bristol for now.