March 19, 2010
I will try once again to post our final blog for Cool Breeze Sails South. In spite of working on it last night and trying to upload photos I made the mistake of hitting the back button which wiped out all my carefully chosen words, and since it was late, I gave up and went to bed. So here we go again . . ..
I rose early on our last day on the water and witnessed a beautiful sunrise over our beloved marshes. A photographer with lots better equipment than I had was on the Isle of Hope docks taking probably much more memorable photos. A single dolphin silently worked the waters around the docks, but, of course, it was impossible to get a picture of it. The morning was typically cold, but the clouds dispersed as we set out for home. We returned to Hilton Head as we began, with heavy jackets and long underwear. Bill had on the most layers – 6 or 7.
The landscape became more and more familiar. We passed by the Memorial Cemetery and came upon the U.S. Coast Guard refurbishing a flashing day marker, and we asked – “How many Coast Guard personnel are necessary to change a lightbulb?” Soon we passed under our last bridge, the Causton Bluff Bridge which was open on request. We traversed the Savannah River, negotiated Field’s Cut with no problem since it had been dredged, and then I took the helm to relieve Bill who was chilled to the bone in spite of the sun and his layers of clothing. Soon Daufuskie Island appeared and we passed the infamous Marshside Mama’s where we’d dined with an outing of the HHPYC. The Harbourtown Lighthouse came into view and we turned into Calibogue Sound. We passed Broad Creek, the May River and called Windmill Harbour. We entered the lock where we were greeted by Harbourmaster Mike and friend Gene. Soon we exited the lock into the harbour and had a safe docking in our good slip B-21.
It has been a long journey – 75 days – and as I quipped to the guys at the lock when we were coming through – 2 of them good! Well, maybe a few more than two, but with the cold and wind it has not been the voyage that we anticipated. We have learned several things from this trip that I’d like to pass on. Don’t go anywhere on a schedule because the weather gods will ensure that the elements will be against you. Don’t leave in January unless the Farmer’s Almanac tells you this is going to be a mild winter. If you see swarms of dead fish floating in the water that is your cue to turn around.
As a positive, we met so many nice sailors on this trip, many of which we wish will visit us in Hilton Head. One of them said “The world is only as wide as the waterway,” and I have to agree with her. If any of you are reading this, please stop by Hilton Head on your journey and we will renew our friendship and give you a guided tour of paradise.
I’m happy to report that the Penguin Coco is happy in her new home. She hasn’t found a final resting place yet, but moves from perch to perch and will eventually find a place she loves. She is certainly one of the positives of this trip and I’m glad she made it unscathed in spite of tossing and turning in the V-berth.
We have spent today unloading Cool Breeze. My laundry room is stacked to the ceiling, but this laundromat doesn’t need any quarters. Cassie, our Ragdoll cat, has performed so well on the boat, but is overjoyed to be back home. And so are we! We can’t wait to visit with friends, play golf, go to Grandparents’ Day in Tennessee, and have many enjoyable days day sailing here in Hilton Head. And to our good pardners, Betty and Ed whom we love and wish them only the best, we hope to see you soon.