Saturday, August 6, 2016

Four Aboard

Sorry folks for the elapsed time since the last blog. We are officially declaring blog bankruptcy as we have been enjoying Shelby and David's visit the past 5 days, and making the best of our car trips to Portland and back picking them up and dropping them off (hiking the Camden Hills State Park, visiting Lie-Nielsen "heirloom quality" tools work shop and falling in love with Bath, ME with its Maine Maritime museum, volunteer reconstitution of the first Maine ship (the Virginia), and its adorable downtown shops and eateries).

Obligatory picture by the LL Bean boot
Shelby and David were kind enough to bring wind and sun with them so we just enjoyed every minute of it - starting with a short visit of Portland, ME, the obligatory LLBean visit (they can now say they have visited Maine!), and Belfast.
Enjoying Belfast artistic benches

3 day sailing itinerary with steady 15 kt winds 
They only had 3 full days to sail so we just got going even though the forecast called for light and variable wind again on day 1. We planned for a short trip expecting high frustration with boat bobbing, but low and behold, the wind picked up so we just kept going as far as we could, going to Eggemoggin Reach at a good 6 its of speed to moor at Benjamin River the first night after an exhilarating sail. We did have our first lobster pot snagging - despite the 4 pairs of eyes watching for them. Definitely had a sinking feeling when Alizée slowed to a halt and we saw a trio of lobster buoys dragging behind us. In retrospect, this odd combination, obviously previously tangled up, should have given us a hint, but we just are not used to them yet. Cursing was temporarily allowed as we watched in disbelief. Prompt reaction from Captain - "roll up the jib and let out the main" - allowed us to disentangled ourselves quickly. Luckily the line was not caught in our prop and the experience served us as a reminder to stay as far away from these creatures as we could, which often isn't as far as we'd like given the water sometimes looks like it rained confetti for all the colorful buoys floating on the surface (and some really nasty ones floating just below).

Stellar anchorage at McGlathery
Island in Merchant Row
Turned out to be a real challenge going through Jericho Bay, appropriately referred to "the lobster buoy highway". Trying to tack upwind in choppy seas with all those lobster pots; we finally gave up, threw in the towel, and slowly, carefully motored up into the anchorage at McGlathery Island. What a delightful anchorage (until about 4am when the lobster boats decide to make their rounds throwing huge wakes into the bay).
David dodging lobster pots -
no issue with tiller!
On the last day we had a long haul to come back to Belfast on time to shower and go to a goodbye dinner before the skeeters came out. 20 kts of wind with some 25 kts gusts made for boisterous sailing day with David trying his hands at the helm.

It was so much fun to see Shelby remembering how to sail like she did it yesterday and David picking it up quickly. Tiller sailing was a non issue for them. I declared myself a passenger on the trip - the type of folks that don't actually have any task on board - other than feeding the crew (Shelby and David) and the captain (Bill).

Yep 67F water takes your
breath away!

Puff even transported the 4 of us at
once (without luggage!)
They both jumped in the balmy 67F water and swam around the boat, David a bit easier than Shelby but not by much! They rowed Puff around the anchorages.

We dropped them off at the Portland airport with a bit of a heavy heart reflecting fondly on the memories we had just built together.

In the end, mosquitoes who tend to dine on Shelby anytime she is around (if anyone needs a bug repellent, just invite her over) stayed away.  I think Maine was starting to grow on them - trying lobster and haddock - the way it is growing on us.

Demanding lobster on her last day!
Thanks Shelby and David for being such grateful and easy guests to test our Alizée guest-on-board ability - other than the holding tank (geesh you guys poop a lot in the morning) which about overflowed in the end, water consumption (ok we cheated taking cold showers which felt warm after jumping in 67F water!), cooking for four (sorry David if I left you hungry often), two people sleeping in the aft berth (another cheat given your cuddling as recently married couple!), I think we are ready for our next guests next week! Now we have to figure out what we will do with Howie's guitar! it will feel like 5 guests. We are ready for the challenge!

1 comment:

  1. Another great week of memories in the books!! The weather gods new to behave for our short but fantastic stay!!


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