Thursday, April 26, 2018

In to Marsh Harbor

We knew we had to get going early to leave the May River and Bluffton with the current and not against it, so after a lite pre-breakfast of pop tarts and coffee, we pulled up the anchor and headed back for the intracoastal. Later, over eggs and ham, we pondered our next destination.

We had another day to enjoy, however the starter motor for the diesel was becoming an increasing concern. When we started our trip, the engine would start right up when cold, however when it was hot, it required a couple of taps on the starter motor to get going. By Wednesday, we always had to tap the starter motor,  hot or cold. So it was getting worse. We made a decision to get it to Marsh Harbor a little early, before the starter motor had its last start.
We had a leisurely motor up north. Once again, the wind was against us. We had a near miss at a fixed bridge just south of Beaufort that took a little of my confidence away at the helm, but Bob made me get back on the horse, and take the helm over for entering and tying up at Marsh Harbor.

We got in without major incident. We got stuck in the mud while tying up along side another boat, but that was because we misunderstood them on the phone about when the lowest tide would be.  However we floated free very quickly.  The boat will remain in Marsh Harbor for a while receiving much deserved maintenance.

Bob's father, Clive,  picked us up and took us to pick up a rental car, and we then retreated to the Greaves Residence to clean up a bit.  While there I enjoyed one of Clive s famous martinis, complete with lemon from their own garden! We would all do well to remember the maxim "a proper martini starts with a well chilled glass".

We shared a nice dinner with Clive and Jennifer at Fuji, a little Japanese place in Beaufort that they enjoy.  The food was good, and the company beyond compare. Sadly it had to end, and Bob and I set out back for Charleston. 

The trip went by quickly,  and upon our return, we were greeted by our adoring public (you know who you are). We enjoyed some refreshment and played with the cats for a bit. I wowed the crowd with pictures of my sister's new foster,  Prince. Everyone thought he was cute,  and speculated on his breed. Ronda made a wonderful concoction out of Chambord and other items, which she is calling Jay''s delight until  someone tells her different.  This could be the next Thanksgiving cocktail.

We have a few minor boat related projects tomorrow, and I am looking forward to having some time on Saturday to bum around Charleston with Ronda (Lost Dog here we come), but sadly, we close the log on another Black Dog adventure.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018


We managed to get underway by 8:20 this morning after a good night's sleep. We had extra steaks which we put towards an underway steak and egg breakfast, with whole grain toast. It was a good day for eating breakfast outside in the cockpit.

Once again, the winds and currents were against us, and we missed our Ladies Island Bridge opening by five minutes! So we had to wait by the bridge for a half hour for the next opening. While we were waiting, the masters mate, with great skill and dexterity, ran us aground. However with some quick thinking, and use of the jib, we were free in the water again.

We continued down the intracoastal, enjoying the view of many beautiful homes until we got to Bluffton, where we anchored for the night. Because we had no fuel line for the dinghy, motor, we were reduced to rowing ashore.

Bluffton is a nice little walking around town, and we found a nice little bar to enjoy some refreshment while we waited for Matt to join us. 

With Matt now in company, we headed back to the Black Dog. While I was rowing our merry band back to the boat, some concerned Bluffton citizen felt I was doing a pathetic job of it, and brought his boat out to tow us to the Black Dog. Matt and Bob staunchly refuse to believe this was part of my master plan.

We enjoyed a pasta dinner and some drinks before rising Matt back to get his tooth fixed early tomorrow. Our destination tomorrow is a bit of a question mark. We will see when we get up where things will take us.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Off to Morgan Island!

We set out at 8:20 this morning, and successfully made the 9 AM bridge opening, but not much else went our way. We were fighting strong currents most of the day, and the wind was typically right on our nose. However we did make decent time to anchorage at Morgan Island, and we even managed to run out the jib and be under sail for a while.

We always enjoy the stretch of the Intracoastal between Charleston and Beaufort (we've certainly traveled it enough times). On certain parts you can forget you are near civilization. We saw dolphins, pelicans, and other types of birds I could not identify.

Bob out did himself today. He made a new cocktail with various types of beverages we had on the boat which could very well become Magic Elixir 2.0. He also made a steak marinade out of items from the galley which turned out great, and we had a steak and sweet potato dinner at anchor.

We were discussing Morgan Island, and it turns out it is also known as Monkey Island. Bob was mentioning that there used to be monkeys kept out there that were used for research. According to Wikipedia, there is still a colony out there that they use to research the effects the monkeys have on the ecosystem. It is our fervent hope that when we get up to set out for Bluffton tomorrow morning, we don't awake to find that out vessel has been commandeered by rhesus monkeys.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Boat Maintenance and Cat Slings

We are finally ready! We spent more time at the Black Dog today getting her ready to go, and successfully completed our punch down list. Most notably completing the electronic work to get the chart plotter fully operational. We also got gasoline for the generator and took on freshwater.

Unfortunately Matt will not be joining us tomorrow, but we hope he will be recovered enough from his bum tooth (been there and it is not fun) to join us for a day sail when we get to his area.
We did have time for a nice lunch at the East Bay Deli. The food was great, and I am only sorry that I could only pick one sandwich, because there were so many good looking choices. That is definitely a place for a second trip.

We also got in a training session with Cody from Gritbox Fitness. Bob held in there much better than I did, but it was great to get a workout in. Cody seems to be a top notch trainer who knows how much you can take and brings you right to there.

We finished off the day with dinner and a sewing project. Sullivan the Cat has been having some issues with his back legs, so Bob and I sewed a sling for Ronda to help him walk around.

Tomorrow promises to be a good day. We will set off early to make the first Folly Bridge opening, and then head for ports south.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

We Stayed Up Late Swapping Manly Stories, and in the Morning We Made Waffles!

Another early start, this time on a mission to make brunch. A quick trip to Harris Teeter yielded all the ingredients needed to produce an excellent brunch of waffles (of course), fruit, assorted meats, and mimosa.

After a quick clean up and strategy session, Bob and I were back at Harris Teeter buying provisions for the boat. And no boating trip would be complete without a trip to West Marine, where we acquired propane for the gas grill.

Upon arriving at the Black Dog, we were disappointed tofind that the bottom had not been cleaned. This will delay us until Tuesday for departure. However we did get the bimini set up,  andt made good progress in getting her ship shape. We were out for a short shake down cruise, and got her all fueled up.

While at the fueling dock, we meet another local Island Packet owner, who owns a 350 christened Hawk Spirit. It is always good to know a fellow IP owner, so as to compare notes on different things.

Returning to the Greaves residence, we enjoyed dinner with friends Martha, Peyton, and Ashley. Martha made a delicious stuffed pepper appetizer, and Ashley had cheese that was made by an Uncle of her and Ronda. Ronda made pasta with pesto and tomatoes,  along with veggies. Who knew meatless meals could taste so good.

Matt will join us tomorrow, and we will get the Black Dog ready for departure. An added bonus might be a class at Gritbox.

Always Something to be Done

It's always good to be getting ready to head to sea, but it looks like this time there will be some extra exertion.

Bob and I had a good start this morning. We got up early and went to a gym run by Bob's friend Cody. He is a pretty nice guy who runs the Grit Box Fitness Center in Charleston where we did a kickboxing class. It was hard but fun, and Cody was good about pushing a little, but not too the point where I broke.
After that, we set down at the sewing machine to make some repairs in the bimini and the dodger got the boat. The dodger was taking longer than we thought, and since it wasn't needed for this trip, we focused on the bimini, and getting supplies for the boat.

Layer in the evening, we were joined by two favorite Waffler cheerleaders Ronda Greaves and her sister Ashley for dinner at Basil, a Tai restaurant in the heart of Charleston. We got seated very quickly for a Saturday evening. The food was awesome, as was the company.
After dinner, we crossed the street to the Cocktail Club for a drink. The atmosphere was very nice, and it was nice (although a bit chilly) to sit outside. Definitely a place to go back to.

Tomorrow Matt will join us, and we will continue prepping the boat. We would like to get underway tomorrow, but it will hinge on the weather and other variables.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Riding the ICW

It was an all around good day. We started out having breakfast at Blackstone's with Bob's parents. That was a pleasant benefit of going to Beaufort instead of Savanah. I had not seen them for a good long while.,so it was nice to catch up with them. And Blackstone's is a long time Waffler favorite breakfast spot.

We pulled out of the marina at about 10:30 this morning, in time for the 11:00 opening of the Lady's Island Bridge. And Tom's Point Creek. We had the anchor down by 5:30 (motoring the whole way). We are just over halfway back to Charleston. Leaving here tomorrow by eight gets us back to Charleston with plenty of time to spare.

One notable item for the day, for the first time Bob did no time at the helm. A milestone for us!