Monday, November 26, 2012

Catching up !

Finally, I get some time to catch up. Not that there is much to say about this ICW that I have sailed so many  times. But there are the friends that you meet along the way and this  is what makes it so special.
In Georgetown, it was Monday and the Big Tuna was closed. So we went to the only place on the water that was open and had a very decent dinner there before going back to the  boat and some heat.
Next day, we left relatively early (6:45) heading for Charleston with only one bridge to go through (the  Ben Sawyer Bridge) and some very  shallow water before the  bridge, I did not miss the  opportunity to touch ground and even to get stuck for a little while.
In Charleston, we could not get to the Municipal  marina and we went to Patriots Point to a place called "Charleston Harbour Marina", with as usual a fair amount of  current in the marina, and a cold and rainy day.
The next day, we were lucky enough  that the  rain never materialized and we were able to go downtown, have lunch at Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. (I could not resist the Shrimps and Grits), take a motorized tour, have some hot chocolate and pecan pie and take the shuttle back to the marina.
The problem when you are in Charleston is that unless you are willing to go outside, you have to wait for the Whapoo bridge to open at 09:00 (it starts being restricted at 06:00 which is too early). So we did, with torrential rain and very cold northerly wind. Having such a late start ruled out Beaufort, SC and the only marina I could find was Dataw Island, almost 5 miles off the ICW. We got there at 4:00 p.m. and although we had promises that we were going to be helped with the lines, everybody had gone home and after two failed attemps to tie up at the face dock with wind and current taking us away from the  dock, we had to settled for a slip where we were stuck until 11:00 a.m. the next morning. I did try to leave early and found myself resting against two piles across one of the empty slips (no damage fortunately) waiting for the  tide to turn around. That marina has a very interesting restaurant with an unusual menu.
Again, having left so late ruled out Savannah and we went to a marina named Skull Creek. OK marina, also with a lot of tide and you have to time your departure just right. We were very lucky and were able to leave at 7:40 which got us at the Isle of Hope marina at 12:45 on Saturday, in time to join the party organized by the brothers of Savannah.
Patrick had graciously lent us his car which enabled us to go to Albert's home in time for a very pleasant reunion of brothers, with Albert and Alise, Mike and  Karen, Tony and Jill, Joe and Maureen, Rigel and Ariel. Unfortunately Patrick and Wren could not join as they had to take care of Erin who had bronchitis.
Next day, we did shopping, lunch  and walk on the river front and had dinner with Patrick before preparing to leave next morning.
Our next stop was Kilkenny Marina, only 2 miles off the ICW. It is an old fishing camp, but had all the amenities that we wanted short of Internet. Good fuel price and quiet night as there is no passing boat to cause any wake.
Next was Hidden Harbor, also off the ICW and better equipped with modern docks. But of course what mattered is that Stew and Diana were there to welcome us and we had a very pleasant evening aboard Papy Jovial with meat balls prepared by Karen, Excellent meal in excellent company. Diana is having excruciating back pain (I am very familiar with that) and I hope  she will be able to take care of that soon.
We then took a mooring at Fernandina Harbor as it would have been too much of a long day to try and make it all the way to Jacksonville, which we did the next day, tying up at Palm Cove marina on Thanksgiving day, with 25 mph wind, Thom there to help with the lines and the  marina closed. Early afternoon, Thom was there to pick us up and take us to his home where Sarah had prepared a fantastic Thanksgiving dinner. Lots and lots of excellent food, so much that of course we could not eat it all and we ended up with more than enough to feed us the following day. Thom has lost more than 30 pounds, on doctor's orders and looked to be in great shape and so was Sarah. We had a lot of catching up to do and the afternoon went too quickly.
Then Marineland Marina, nice stop in a quasi desert, and New Smyrna Beach with an excellent lunch place called the Dolphin View, on the waterway and a show in the main street, Canal Street, where we took a casual walk before returning to the  boat.
We finally arrived at Harbortown Marina, close to Cocoa Beach and we will spend again some quality time with Gary.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

GPS is on the way...Tom/NC