Saturday, October 6, 2012

Charleston, SC

Having some tea in the cockpit this morning, surrounded by dolphins having their breakfast. Meanwhile, the snapping shrimp continue to feed on the bottom of our boat. They never stop.
We are docked at the Charleston Harbor resort Marina, out on the long floating pier. Nice place. It's across the river from the city, but we can take the water taxi over in minutes. Along this pier, the dolphins feed, and seem to play around. They gave us a show yesterday, swimming by us upside down, watching us try to take a photo. So, can I tell you how bizarre this feels?

Two weeks ago I was sitting in my office, overwhelmed with work and trying to get it all done before I left for the second half of our four week cruise down the coast. Today I'm having breakfast with Dolphins!

Because we have been on the go constantly, and seeing nothing but intracoastal waterway marks and the depth sounder, we have not had time to stop and smell the roses. Most of our town visits were for dinner, and a quick tour, and that's OK, but nothing like a few days of not thinking about your course to make you feel like you're on vacation. So, today is our day off, and it feels great. We went into town last night and had a great meal and a few brews, and looked around a bit at some of the cool old French styled buildings they have here. I had been up basically for twenty four hours, so two beers did me in. Today we'll pop over to town and sight see, and relax.

Our offshore went as well as can be expected I guess, with the exception of wind constantly on the nose and the diesel running all the time. We're hoping we get some wind to move us a long for the next hop. Not too much though.

As the sun started to set on our night out on the Atlantic, we saw this large object floating in the water, and could not figure out what it was. As we got closer we saw it was a Turtle! A huge turtle. It popped it's head up to nod at us when we went by. I had no idea they could get that big. Later on in the dark we heard a loud bump on the hull, as I was finally about to nod off, and I ran below to check everything. No water intrusion, except my leaky stuffing box, so I wonder if maybe we knocked a turtle on the shell possibly. They like to float around on top of the water at night?
As we got into the morning hours, some lightning appeared to the east. We still had stars above us, but the storms out on the ocean were a sight to see. They got closer for a bit, and then seemed to move away, which was a relief. A bright orange light appeared behind us, and it looked like the bright lights of a huge ship, and  Deb looked at it with binoculars and thought it looked like a cruise ship all lit up. I couldn't make out any nav lights, so I watched it some more before I realized it was a rising moon. I think you get a little goofy out there at night sometimes. Once I saw a light in the sky race by across our bow, and wondered what the hell that thing is. Deb then asked why I was turning. It was a light onshore, and I was unknowingly turning to starboard, after looking at the chartplotter for too long. Oy.

So, we continue on tomorrow, after dealing with some work issues regarding my absence. They are none too happy, but after thirty years are cutting me some slack. It is appreciated.

I really wish we were cruising at this point, as even our little vacation has been amazingly fun, and I can imagine how nice cruising will be. Economic realities, and the fact that my pension was stolen from me by Wall Street assholes makes cruising unattainable for us at this point. Another year? Still 2013? Not sure, but taking the boat south seemed like a good plan for us at this point. Leaving Kelly Nicole frozen under a tarp for eight months just seems like a bad idea now. How will you ever get her ready to go, if you can't work on her for that whole time?
Other potential cruisers take note. We did not feel our boat was cruise ready for heading offshore, as in the Islands and beyond, but for coastal cruising we feel she is fine. Safety, power independence, and a good powertrain and sails will be fine. We can now jump to the Bahamas for our vacation time, and get some good experience before we can finally untie the lines. It's been fun, and the stress we've felt has been good stress. I know you've heard it a million times, but if you can afford it now, just go. It really is fun. We will go as soon as we can.


Oops. This one has been there for some time.

Nice homes along the way

Coasties parked behind us, then ran the engine for an hour, trying to asphyxiate us

No words

Parked in Southport


Sun getting low on the way to Charleston

Red sky at night

I think the camera enhanced this one

Fort Sumter. Looks boring.

My only Architectural shot, and not a very good one.
Time to refuel and other activities. Next stop Florida??



  1. Had to laugh at your reflections on being on the water at night. Everything looks so strange at night: distances are hard to determine, can't tell what lights are stationary or moving, etc. Once we were sailing across a strait at night in heavy wind and did an accidental jibe so fast that I didn't realize what happened until I looked at the compass and realized we were going back the way we came.
    The pink house? Exactly. No words.

  2. I hear Charleston is a great place ... enjoy! Having breakfast with dolphin and later enjoying a visit from a turtle ... so nice! I bet it's a little surreal, and won't it be great when it's a more permanent way of life for both of us?! We've been enjoying your "taste of freedom" ... makes us antsy to get out there.