Tuesday, 24 July 2012

No 24 Long Island Sound

Hi from Clare, Monday 23rd July 2012

This week we have been running at a much slower pace. The main objective has been to buy a new dinghy. Our eight year old PVC dinghy gave up the ghost and split a seam in the 40 degrees plus temperatures we experienced a few weeks ago in Virginia. Since then we have been reglueing and pumping it up nearly every day. Our greatest fear being that we might leave it on a dock, go shopping and return to find that the dinghy has deflated and sunk taking the outboard motor with it.

We made a number of short hops this week travelling along Long Island Sound stopping off at Northport, Port Jefferson, Duck Island, New London and Fishers Island. We had the company of Innamorata and Egret until Saturday so we were in good company having a few laughs. There is a noticeable increase in the number to pleasure boats on the water. This is because Long Island Sound is sheltered water and mostly pleasant sailing and it was the weekend. Many of the houses around the bays look expensive. Quite often the properties extend to the waterfront and so we can't take the dinghy ashore and walk along the beach. The towns have beautifully restored houses dating back to the early 18 hundreds shaded by magnificent old trees and surrounded by period gardens.


Houses along Long Island Sound

The weather has been very changeable. Some days have been very hot and others have been freezing. We have been wearing fleecy jackets and long pants at times. We have put a blanket on the bed and one night I even had a hot water bottle. About the only upside was a big pot of soup, roast vegetables for dinner and the welcomed heat from the oven. Today the weather is very unsettled with thunder, lightning and forty knot winds forecast. So far, at 12.30pm we have only seen a slight drizzle. The USA weather station is warning the public to stay indoors and that lightning can kill. I guess they have seen some bad weather patterns but for us it seems a little over the top - but who's going to argue?

The east coast of America is no place to swim. The waters have been relatively shallow and there is a lot of run off from the land and so the water clarity is poor. We can't see the ocean floor or our anchor in 3 metres of water and the water colour has ranged from brown, black/brown to murky green. Last Monday we had our first swim since 10th June (in the Abacos). The water was of the murky green variety but at least we could see down to our feet. However at our next destination Andrew decided to scrub the slime off the propeller and earth plate. He ended up covered in sea lice and some other little worm like creature that attached itself by a sucker. So considering this and a sea temperature that is currently 20.2 degrees, I think we will give swimming a miss for a while. But the anodes do need changing soon.

Yesterday we went to the Defender store in New London, Connecticut which is an online ship chandler. Andrew has been in contact with them ever since the dinghy split its seam. In fact we have been hoping that the dinghy would last long enough for us to get to Connecticut. What a terrific shop, it had a huge range of boat gear and very attentive and knowledgeable staff. We bought an aluminium/Hypalon RIB which has a hard bottom and inflated sides so sits out of the water a lot higher than our previous dinghy. Andrew says it goes faster than the old dinghy because of the hard hull. It is only 4 kilograms heavier and a little bigger so it is no problems on the davits or on the foredeck - we just have to keep the hard bits from damaging Eye Candy. But the best part is that we have been for two rides I haven't got wet - hurray!!

The Old and the New

We gave our old dinghy away to the young guy who operates the town dock taxi boat, he was thrilled and so were we - we didn't have to lug it to the bin.
We told him all about the split seam but he was unperturbed - I hope he is a good swimmer!

We will continue heading towards Maine.

Love Candy xx

At 2:53 PM20/07/2012 (utc) our position was 41°15.59'N 072°28.79'W

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