Comings and Goings
Moonshadow is in Annapolis mainly because we needed to be somewhere near an airport in July so Deb could fly back to San Diego to see family and friends.
We picked Baltimore and booked her flights in and out of there while we were way down south and didn't realize that move committed us to living in the heat this area experiences in July! Whew it gets hot here. Today, for example, it's 92 degrees, but the heat index is 101.
John's high school buddy Jamie Cooper flew out to join Moonshadow while Deb was back west. While he was here, we sailed back to San Domingo Creek (near St. Michaels).
On the way there, we received a call from Alli Bell and Trisha McCanna who were in Annapolis looking for Moonshadow. We arranged to meet at the dinghy pier at the end of Chew Avenue in St. Michaels.
We had some rum drinks and a good laugh at other cruisers probable view of Moonshadow's arrival to the anchorage:
Two sixty year old men steam up the creek and drop the hook; then one hops into the dinghy and returns 10 minutes later with two thirty year old chicks!
One of the boatyards in Oxford, Cutts & Case, specializes in wood boat restoration and has a bit of a museum of old boats and these fascinating old gasoline marine engines.
...she just cruised up at about 5 knots, came about alongside Moonshadow and started to demand food.
We gave her some and soon she was eating out of the Captain's hand.
We left Oxford, for an overnight at Dun Cove on Tilghman Island. Tilghman Island sits right in the way between Oxford, up the Choptank River, and Annapolis, across the Chesapeake, where we needed to be to pick up our son Ryan the next day.
Dun Cove is a couple of miles north of the town of Tilghman and Knapp Narrows, which provides a channel across the island, saving about ten miles for anybody headed to Annapolis with a boat that draws less than Moonshadow (like 5 feet or less - we draw six ). The cove was beautiful with dozens of Osprey fishing from the 65' pine trees on one side of Moonshadow and rolling farm land with acres of corn fields on the other.
While there, Jamie and John took a ten mile dinghy ride looking for the town of Tilghman about two miles away.
Yes, you read that right. We somehow motored right past the entrance to Knapp Narrows where the guide book talks about some of the few remaining active skipjack fishing sloops. "It must be just around that point", we agreed, neither of us looked over our shoulder to see the channel markers we'd just past by. That point was practically the end of the island so we turned around and backtracked, finally entering Knapp Narrows and motored through the middle of town... It all wouldn't have been so bad except for the thoroughly wet butts and the whole ego thing. (Farmer Flag!)
The next day was a busy day. We had to make the 1300 hrs opening of the Spa Creek Bridge in Annapolis (we missed it by 5 minutes); moor Moonshadow once again at Annapolis Yacht Club; rent a car so we'd be ready to pick up Ryan the next morning; find a good restaurant... I'm telling you: we were busy!
Immediately after picking Ryan up at the airport, we found a waterfront table at Pusser's in downtown Annapolis and ordered Painkillers.
After that, things were kind of hazy, but the next day we did have a great sail with Ryan driving Moonshadow with her new Spectra Genoa at 9 knots up the Chesapeake to the Chester River for dinner and an overnight.
Ryan, Jamie and John toured Chestertown on foot and shopped at the Saturday Farmer's Market, picking up some sweet corn, fresh veggies and gifts for the folks back home.
As a stopover on the way to Annapolis where Jamie had to catch his flight home, we stopped in a really, really pretty cove on the Chester River, called Wright's Neck. We anchored near a raft-up of twenty or so sailboats arranged in a circle with sterns to the center. At night their anchor lights made a bizarre constellation low on the horizon.
The wind had gone completely still and since we couldn't see any jellyfish, including the one that stung Ryan on his foot, we all jumped in for a swim.
The next day was a "work day" requiring our motoring back to Annapolis, negotiating the bridge and dock under the bridge at Annapolis Yacht Club; hiring a rental car; last minute shopping for folks back home; and getting Jamie off to the airport for his evening flight back to San Diego.
Finally, Deb was sitting right where she belongs, in Moonshadow's salon! All is right with the world!!
What to do now...?!!
No, not him... Alli Bell, of course!
Alli met us at this really awesome spot just two blocks from the white house where everybody wears shorts and flip-flops (if they're cruisers).
One day in DC just isn't enough, so we returned for a second day and spent the whole day touring the Capitol building then sitting in on both the House of Representatives and the Senate galleries.
We were lucky to witness debates and actual voting, even if the voting was on bills that will never pass and only serve the purpose of getting election candidates to take a stand on issues...but that's politics, and we don't discuss politics here. But it was pretty cool to see 99 actual living Senators in living color on the floor of the Senate.
Our time in Annapolis has been long enough that we're ready to move on, and in a day or two, that's just what we'll do. But we accomplished all we hoped for our stay here. Deb got some time with family and friends, John had guy time with his buddies, and we've made still more improvements to Moonshadow: All new batteries, a new dodger, picked up our new genoa, made some sail repairs (to the new genoa), and some other minor chores are now behind us. From here, we head north but how far we haven't decided. One option is to sail to New York, then take small hops north. The other is to leapfrog further north to Nantucket or Massachusetts and catch New York and Long Island Sound on the way south.