28 November 2011

Thar She Blows!

Jed (left) and Craig of EMD Fuels
Ok, only about 200 feet or so, but, hey, it's something.  We moved from our dockage at the end of the pier to the prime real estate by the boardwalk, spots usually reserved for boats that go for way north of seven figures.  It's actually only so that Craig and Jed, the mechanics healing our boo-bood engines, can have easier access to them.  But we're closer to the bathrooms for which we are grateful.  If all goes well,  we might be underway once again by early afternoon tomorrow...yeah, what are the odds?

We spent part of the weekend in Savannah (and the rest of it driving to and from Savannah).  To give you a sense of how slowly boats go, Savannah is roughly 400 miles south of Beaufort, NC which is 6 hours by car or 8 days by boat (albeit 8 sun up to sundown days, not 8 24-hour days).

If you've never been to Savannah, fix that.  Savannah, the old, historic part, is proudly, even defiantly suspended in time, at least from the standpoint of architecture and civic planning.  No, you will not find many things (anything) named after our 16th president like you do north of the Mason-Dixon line.  Rather, it has an ethos similar to that of Boston (not coincidentally, its one time sister city); the bedrock  of Savannah's identity is predicated on its role in the American Revolution.  Founded in 1733, its preservationists lovingly maintain the remaining 22 of the city's 24 original historic squares as well as its housing stock, some of which is nearly as old as the city itself.  Savannah seems to know that its lush history is its heart and soul and nurtures it accordingly.

So we spent Saturday walking and eating our way through downtown Savannah.  Jane found an e-book of walking tours that threaded past more than 100 of the city's historic sites.  By the end of the first of the three walking tours in the book, we were starved.  Fortuitously, we stumbled onto (technically into) a Scottish bar called Molly Macpherson's.  Authentic Scottish pub fare and guys in kilts. Too fun.  I ordered a stout called "Old Engine Oil" (in the hopes of becoming more one-ish with our diesel engines), scotch eggs, a meat pie, and neeps and tatties.  All good, hearty fare and not a green vegetable in to be seen.

Dinner, though, dinner at the Olde Pink House was one of the best meals I've had since I can remember.  Jane agrees.  Better you should just go there and find our for yourself.  You won't be disappointed (and if you're a foodie, you'll especially appreciate that they describe their dishes using phrases such as "finished with" and "married to.")

Jim and Ean not wearing winter coats
Today, we met up with a friend from the church we attended in Milwaukee who moved to Durham a few years back.  Lucky for us he just happened to see my facebook post about being in Beaufort.  Thanks, Jim, for driving the three hours each way to have lunch with us.  It was great to see a familiar face and a fellow sailor on top of that.

The numerous delays getting this far down the ICW have taken their toll and we're about 90% of the way to deciding to bag our original plan to cruise "the ditch" all the way down.  By shooting out from about a hundred miles south of here, at Southport, NC, we can make the Bahamas in 3 to 4 days.  Much better than the near month it will take at our 50-or-so-miles-a-day current rate.  Now, we know what you're thinking.  It's the Atlantic Ocean for Christsake!  Are you mad?  Well, as I said to Craig, we're either brave or stupid depending on how all this turns out.  The upside is the greatly reduced travel time involved in the offshore route.  The downside is that internet access is non-existent out there.  So, we'll be "radio silent" until we arrive.  And this, we know, will worry you.  But we have purchased a solution.  It's called "The Spot." It's a GPS tracking device that will enable you to find out where we are anytime by going to the map I've embedded in the "we are here" page.  I know, technology, huh?

We'll be stateside for about another week working our way down to Southport.  After that, our next communique should be from our new home base in Treasure Cay, Abaco, The Bahamas.  Stay tuned.

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