Friday, 25 October 2013

No 25/13 Freezing our Butts off

Hi from Clare,                                        Thursday 24th October 2013

For the first few days back on the water we anchored in Fishing Bay, Deltaville and caught up with our friends. Deb was introduced to the tradition of Sundowners meeting American friends Burt and Prue on Exuberant, Kiwi friends David and Brenda on Bandit and Aussie friends Peter and Carol on Jack Tar. After two weeks of isolation on the hard Deb was looking forward to meeting some people. However on day five of being in the water she said to me with a startled look "we've had drinks the last four nights running". It was a bit of a baptism of fire as Sundowners lasted for three or four hours each night. I'm happy to say that we haven't turned into alcoholics and since then we have quietened down and our nights are spent watching DVDs and playing on the computers.

Friends Burt & Prue, Carol & Peter

David & Brenda
We left Fishing Bay and sailed 30 miles south to show Deb Historical Yorktown and Colonial Williamsburg. Andrew and I went to Yorktown in May but we didn't get to see Williamsburg on that trip.


Scenes from Yorktown
Yorktown is famous for the siege led by General George Washington in the 18th Century which was the final battle in the War of Independence. The Americans joined forces with the French and kicked the Brits out. Unfortunately at the time 80% of the town was destroyed but it is still a very interesting place to see.

Around Williamsburg

Williamsburg is thirteen miles away and was the Capital of Virginia at that time. It is the largest and oldest interactive history experience and is know as Colonial Williamsburg's Revolutionary City. We spent an afternoon in Williamsburg with hundreds of other tourists. We really only scratched the surface as there is much to see and do.
More around Williamsburg

The weather is fairly cool. The days are sunny and around 16 degrees, at night the temperature drops to around 8 degrees; not much fun as we don't have any heating. We will leave the US around the 4th November and travel 1300 miles south to the BVIs in search of warmer conditions. We can't leave before that as the Hurricane Season officially finishes at the end of October. We have joined the Salty Dawg Rally and will travel the 1300 miles in company with more than 100 yachts. There are a few functions and some fun to be had before and after the Rally. Before we leave there are a number of interesting talks to prepare and organize such a large group. Social functions include a Halloween Party on the 31st October, some dinner and of course the always popular cocktail parties with drinks like Dark and Stormy and Pain Killers. We went shopping yesterday and bought rubber spiders, bats, skeletons and gear to make our Halloween costumes.

Tomorrow we will sail eight miles to Portsmouth. We want to catch up with our American friend Bob Mc Bride once more before leaving the country. You may recall that when we first arrived in the States Bob lavished us with southern hospitality taking us into his home and spoiling us. Personally I am looking forward to another one of Bob's big bear hugs - what a guy; we will always remember him fondly.

Love Candy and Deb xxx

At 4:09 PM24/10/2013 (utc) our position was 37°01.36'N 076°20.51'W

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Wednesday, 16 October 2013

No 24/13 Back in the Water

Hi from Clare,                                                            15th October 2013

When I wrote last Wednesday I said that the weather had been good for working, sunny but not too hot. I also mentioned that it had started to rain and so we were doing inside jobs. Little did we know that it would rain non-stop for a solid week. As you can see by the photos the boat yard is awash. Yesterday we saw sun again and we worked diligently to complete the painting and polishing. We were put back in the water this morning and although it is cold and threatening rain we hope to get the sails fitted and the last minute provisioning done so we can get out of here and perhaps even enjoy some cruising.

Wet, wet and wetter

So staying at Chesapeake Boat Works has been a very pleasant experience. The brothers who own and run the place are knowledgeable, helpful and very laid-back. Unlike many such establishments there are few rules; people tend to just get on with the job. The local traders have also been good. We had work done while we were at home by the local sail maker and canvas makers. They kept us informed by email and when we returned all the work was completed and to a high standard. A much better result than Turkey where they took our deposit, promised the earth and delivered very little.

Since our return, the highlight for us has once again been the generosity of the American people. We have been offered the use of a car by two people. The Americans working on their boats in the boat yard have offered the use of any tools we may need and the guy next to us lent us his power washer. This saved us hours and hours of scrubbing the deck and the power washer has done an excellent job. The deck is now a dazzling white and squeaky clean.

In the slings and hard work on the mainsail

As you can see Andrew and Deb are fitting the sails. We have also done the shopping and so tomorrow we will move off the dock and anchor out in Fishing Bay. We will stay there for a few days as our friends on sailing yachts Balvenie, Bandit and Exuberant are heading this way. It will be good to catch up and hear of their sailing experiences while we have been at home. Jack Tar and Koza are also in our boat yard and will soon return from Australia to relaunch their boats.

Love Candy and Deb xxx

At 9:02 PM10/10/2013 (utc) our position was 37°32.48'N 076°20.62'W

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Friday, 11 October 2013

No 23/13 WE"RE BACK

Hi from Clare,                                                            9th September 2013

We arrived back in New York late Thursday 26th and spent three days with Andrew's son Matthew and wife Mim showing the city sights to Andrew's sister Deb who is holidaying with us for three months. It was lovely to catch up with Matt and Mim and see them so well settled in the Big Apple. Suffering from Jet Lag the pace was challenging as we walked for 5 hours on day one, six hours on day two and 7 hours on day three taking in some of the major tourist attractions; good thing New York is flat ground.

The new World Trade Centre building and Deb, Clare and Matthew

We visited Central Park, Time Square, the Rockefeller Centre, Grand Central Station, Ground Zero, Wall Street and Stock Exchange building, Staten Island, Ellis Island, the Statue of Liberty and Fifth Ave shopping. We went into a number of shops including Tiffany's. The staff and lift operators were very courteous. Clearly we were just looking; apart from being agog both Deb and I were carrying plastic bags for handbags, not exactly kosher for such an exclusive shop but we hadn't unpacked our bag yet. The jewellery is something else but the fourth floor displaying gold edged crockery, silver service and crystal was our favourite. There was a dining table on display with the best to offer. Ever practical Andrew was wondering if we were too late for breakfast.
Memorial Pool and the Names

Wall St Bull and the Manhattan skyline

We went to Ground Zero and saw the 9/11 Memorial which consists of two pools set in the footprints of the two original Twin Towers. Thirty-foot waterfalls cascade into the pools, each then descending into a centre void. The 2983 names of the victims are inscribed in the bronze parapets around the pools. If it is at all possible to bring a sense of peace to this area, I think the waterfalls help to achieved this.
We went to Central Park twice. There is so much to see there and it is well patronised at the weekend. The roller skating area was pumping with people of all ages and colour joining in the dancing. The older chap wearing a T-shirt "79 and Still Skating" caught our attention; he was pretty good too. There were lots of picnics in the park and model boats being sailed on the ponds. The Strawberry Fields area dedicated to John Lennon had the usual gathering of guitarists strumming Beatle numbers. Matt said on the anniversary of Lennon's death the place is packed. The 2.5 acre tear-drop shaped parcel of land is overlooked by Yoko Ono's apartment where Lennon lived and was shot outside on the footpath in 1980.

Statue of Liberty with Deb and lunch out with Mim

Strawberry Fields and line dancing on skates in Central Park 

79 and still skating

Monday 30th we flew to Richmond Virginia and arrived at the boat late afternoon. Since then we have been working to get it back in the water. Deb's 'holiday' has been interrupted with scrubbing and polishing. We did manage however to take a few hours off to celebrate her birthday with dinner out.
Sanding and Polishing

We have had good weather for working, sunny and not too hot. We are nearly finished but today it is cold and raining. We have turned our attention to inside jobs and it has given me a chance to write to you.
 Clare, Deb and Andrew out for Deb's birthday

We hope to be in the water in a couple of days and then the holiday will begin in earnest.

Love Candy and Deb xxx

At 1:12 PM2/07/2013 (utc) our position was 37°32.48'N 076°20.62'W

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