Thursday, April 30, 2015

Possibilities ...

Odin the Wanderer. Photo property of Bonnie Cunningham
Fifteen days after departing the Cooper River, Kintala cleared the ICW, motored past the billions of dollars of Navy floating among a myriad of docks, and found her way to the anchorage off of Fort Monroe. It was a bit exposed but not bad, and there we met up with a newly departed cruising couple from our distant past. Bonnie and Craig were acquaintances from the St. Louis professional aviation scene, experienced pilots, Craig a mechanic. We had crossed paths now and again but none of us knew of the others intent to go cruising. Yet there we were, Kintala anchored just boat lengths away while we shared stories and sun-downers on their PDQ Cat, Odin the Wanderer. It was as unexpected and delightful a meet-up as I have ever had, one I would have never guessed would happen. The next morning they continued south for their first brush with the ICW. Kintala's bow pointed the other way. Once acquaintances but now good friends, I'm pretty sure we will catch up to them somewhere in some place that has clear water and warm, sunny skies.

The Marina and boatyard at Fishing Bay. (Sorry for the blur)

Since this is where we started our adventure, one might think that the Chesapeake would feel a bit like home. But the fact is we have sailed into Treasure Cay in the Abaco Islands many more times than we have into Fishing Bay, which is where we sit at the moment. We did visit here on our first trip south, but the place didn't look at all familiar as we motored in yesterday afternoon. I don't know why it didn't make more of impression since it is a very nice place. There is a boat yard that allows live-a-boards who are working on their boat, a nice marina that offers a loaner car to the little town nearby, and that little town has all the necessities of life; including jelly beans and rum. Kintala had run out of both.

Red sky in the morning...

There is some weather around so we are planning to spend a couple of days. Two days ago “the weather” was a massive low pressure area that was due to spin up and lash the Bay with 40 knot winds, heavy rain and thunderstorms. The fun was due to start tonight and last into tomorrow. We made our way here to sit it out. Now the weather is a band of rain and 20 knot winds, stuff we would easily sail in if there was need. But we have some room in the schedule, I am still far from operable, the boat needed provisions (Jelly Beans and Rum!), a pump-out would be a good idea before we go much further, and there is no need. Besides, if the weather changes its mind again, it would be much better to be solidly anchored here in NE winds of 40 knots, rather than having my busted-up self out wrestling with sails in the middle of the Chesapeake.

The last time the Dink was in the water was back in Fox Town. That was, of course, the last time the Merc did any work as well. Since then it has been perched on the stern pulpit, so I had my doubts about it waking up this morning. Such doubts were completely out of place. Second pull. That little motor is officially on my “glad I have this thing on board” list. Though the WesterBeast and I have settled into an uneasy relationship, and it has performed flawlessly since leaving the Bahamas, the chances of The Beast making that list are still in doubt. Still, it just clicked over 3100 hours of operation (though there is no real reason to believe the hour meter – it could be far more) and has been laboring without complaint. So, who knows? If bare acquaintances from long ago can turn up as good friends just starting out, met years and thousands of miles later at an anchorage at the base of the Chesapeake, I guess just about anything is possible.

All of my grandsons would love this stretch of the ICW. So many huge machines and cranes and ships.

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