CHAPTER 17      AUGUST 25 to end of OCTOBER 2008



Well, we’re back on the waterways again after spending the summer mostly in CT.  Back to shopping with backpacks, bicycles or our shopping cart with the big wheels.  Sometimes we are able to borrow a courtesy car from a marina, and many times, kind strangers that live in the towns along the waterways are happy to help out boaters in exchange for a waterway tale or two!  Also, at least once in every state we have to remember to update our roaming cell towers on our cell phones.  But, the worst part is having to find yet another place to have my hair done (I really miss Valerie) every 5 or 6 weeks!  Mail isn’t really a problem, as we pay all our bills online, but I still need to have mail forwarded to wherever we are about every 3 to 4 weeks.  When we stay at a marina, we have all the power we need.  If we cruise all day, then anchor at night, we have plenty of power from the charged batteries, an inverter, and a generator if needed.  ‘SUMMERTIME” has heat, A/C, central vac, and a washer/dryer on board.  We have Verizon cell phones with broadband access, so we have internet wherever we are.  We actually have everything we need, or I wouldn’t have lasted this long living on a boat!

 On 8/25/08, we left CT to cruise Long Island Sound (LIS).  Visited friends in Southhold Long Island, and spent the night tied to their dock.  Toured Shelter Island, Long Island (one of our favorite places) and made stops in Mattituck, Port Jefferson, Northport, and Port Washington.  Last stop was Great Kills Yacht Club in Staten Island.  We left there on 9/1/08, and cruised outside the ICW on the ocean through New Jersey.  Nasty flies harassed us all day, even out on the ocean!  Next day on our way to Sunset Lake anchorage in Cape May NJ, we saw a big pod of dolphins heading south, and a very tired spring warbler hitched a ride with us for about ½ hour.

 9/3/08 brought us into Delaware Bay and C&D Canal.  We spent the next couple of months on the CHESAPEAKE BAY, thoroughly enjoying it!  Some stops were Chesapeake City and Havre de Grace in MD.  A side trip was a cruise up the Sassafras River to Georgetown.
9/8/09 – spent some time at Maryland Yacht Club (MYC) in Pasadena MD.  We visited Ray’s sister Jane and Paul in Derwood MD.  Then their son Paul and his kids Stephen and Sara, visited us at MYC.
9/15/08 – spent a few days in Baltimore at the Public Docks right in the middle of downtown.  We walked to the top of “Federal Hill” (see picture), and had lunch at the “Cross Street Market”.  Toured the circa 1930 Lightship “Chesapeake”, and the circa 1854 “USS Constellation”, the last Navy all sail warship.  Also toured the circa 1933 “Seven Foot Knoll Lighthouse” with unique construction – built with iron boilerplate and cast iron pilings screwed into soft mud of the sea floor.  Another day, we took the water taxi to “Fort McHenry”, most famous for the “Battle of Baltimore” during the “War of 1812”.  Later on, we took the water taxi to “Fell’s Point” and “Little Italy” where we enjoyed excellent crab cakes brushed with imperial sauce at “Mo’s Seafood”.
Rock Hall MD was our next stop, then cruised up the Chester River (side trip off the Chesapeake Bay) and stopped in the lovely town of Chestertown.  Next day, we went to Annapolis, then spent a few days in Saint Michaels where Jane and Paul visited us, and enjoyed the “Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum”.
9/27/08 – moved on to Oxford, then the next day to Cambridge the following day.
10/1/08 – arrived in Solomons MD for the “Krogen Rendezvous” – we were one of 59 Krogen boats that attended.  We had seminars, parties, feasts, happy hours and a “Krogen Krawl” where you tour each others boats.  We had a wonderful time, and made many new friends!  While in Solomons, we also found time to visit the cutest general store “Grandmother’s Store”, and tour the lovely “Annmarie Sculpture Gardens”.

 10/5/08 – started the 125 mile cruise up the Potomac River, anchoring two nights before arriving at Gangplank Marina in Washington DC.  Spent a fabulous week exploring museums, monuments and gardens (see pictures).  One day we even biked 7.5 miles each way to spend the day in Alexandria VA.
10/13/08 – while cruising back down the Potomac River we stopped at the dock of Washington’s Mt Vernon, and spent the day there.  It was fascinating!  George and Martha are buried in a tomb on the property.  The next two nights were spent at anchor before arriving at Norview Marina in Deltaville VA, near the bottom of the Chesapeake Bay.  We’re starting to see brown pelicans again.  It’s been cold and windy, so we are putting the heat on in the boat at night.  Our last stop in VA was the Tidewater Marina in Portsmouth.

 10/21/08 – we started the Dismal Swamp, and stopped for the night about half way through at the NORTH CAROLINA Welcome Station.  There’s a free dock that about six boats can tie too – then as many boats that arrive just keep rafting onto each other (see picture).  There can be 5 or 6 boats rafted to each boat tied on the dock!
After the Dismal Swamp, we crossed the Albemarle Sound in NC, which was nice and calm today, but can be a bear!  It was only about 60 degrees today, but we were snug and warm in the glass enclosed pilot house.
10/22/08 – we stopped at the “Alligator River Marina” in NC.  The marina office is also a Shell gas station on the main road.  There’s a BBQ Restaurant inside that serves delicious NC BBQ – we bought some for dinner and had a feast on the boat!  Down to 38 degrees tonight
We spent the next few days at the delightful “Bellhaven Marina” (the men’s room is decorated with WWII antiques and memorabilia!) in Bellhaven NC with our friends Dick and Lynne on “Lady Hawk”.  “Bellhaven Memorial Museum” was very interesting, and we feasted on shrimp and cornbread at “George’s Sport & Oyster Bar”.  Lynne and I also had fun at a local craft fair.
10/26/08 – In Oriental NC the owner of a local store insisted I borrow her car to go to grocery store.  When we returned, her dog was waiting in the parking lot.  What a confused look on his face – should I bark or not?  Who are these people in my car?  It really was funny!
Next was a side trip up the Neuse River to New Bern NC to the “Southern Cruisers Rendezvous”.  We’re stilling travelling with Dick and Lynne on “Lady Hawk”.  Between attending several good seminars, we found the local stores quite interesting (especially Carolina Creations & Mitchell’s Hardware and Gifts), as well as visiting “Tryon Palace” (originally built in 1767 as the seat of Royal Gov’t, completely restored now).
As we continued southward on the ICW, we passed through Camp LeJune (hearing Navy warships on the radio advising boats to stay clear as they conduct live firing exercises), and stopped at a few anchorages on our way to SC.

 We’ve traveled 6890 miles since 6/6/07, plus the previous 1000 miles when we brought SUMMERTIME up the Intracoastal Waterway from Charleston SC to Old Saybrook CT in 2005.  We look forward to hearing from friends and family – please keep the calls and emails coming!