Voyage 2009-2010: Chapter 2

Holiday Break

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18 Nov 2009, Heading for Wilmington for maintenance, 34 13.60 N/ 077 57.23 W

    Weather forecast for today is NNE@15-20 and of course we were heading North. With the tide with us most of the time, we were concerned about short and choppy seas. All we saw were a bunch of dredges, more ranges than an old western movie, and a very enjoyable motoring trip to Specialty Boat Yard in Wilmington NC. We (Ann, Bob, and Lilli) left Mona Black at 0645 and had a favorable current all the way to Specialty. Seas were less than 1 foot. Not bad.

    Swab Lilli was having fun as crew on Jule III. She was an able lookout, reviewed some movies in the cabin, ate, and talked, and talked, and talked. Didn't know a little girl could talk so much for so long. She did not like her life jacket so she spent much of time below. Still, it was good to have her on board.

    With the current, it only took a little over two hours to go the 16 nm. The current was still with us as we approached the Specialty pier. Two workers in the area were kind enough to take our lines as we crabbed our way to the dock. Safely tied up, we chatted with Tony and thanked the other gentleman. Alan indicated that we would be hauled at slack water and Eric said that the shaft should be at the prop shop after lunch (both true). We will see what they find.

    On a sad note, we heard that there was a sailboat "on the hill" that was in foreclosure and might soon be sold. While we were waiting, we decided to take a 'look see' at the boat. We were shocked to find that the boat was SV Charbonneau, a boat that we shared many an anchorage over the last 10 years. Maybe this is another reminder that this country has a way to go towards recovery. --

19 Nov 2009, Returning from Specialty Boat Yard, 34 02.549 N/ 077 53.504 W

    Nearly a boat unit ($$) and nothing serious was found. The shaft, coupler, prop, alignment were all in tolerances. So reluctantly we had Jule III splashed for the 4th time this season and waited for the tidal current to change in our favor. At 1430, the current was sufficient to ensure a successful departure so off we went. The vibration was noticeably less than before and quieter than we can remember for a long time. We only noticed the vibration when we approached 3,000 rpm and it was not excessive. Not bad!

    Lilli was still excited about her sailing adventures but she was experiencing a hearing problem; nothing we said had much of an influence. However, we persevered and she started acting as an able bodied swab again. Current down the Cape Fear was definitely in the favorable category with as much as 3 kts of a push much of the way. We even had a push in Snows Cut. We arrived at Mona Black at 1600 and docked without incident with the help of Randy and Denis. Good to have the boat back in her berth. After Thanksgiving, we will prepare Jule for her January departure.

26 Nov 2009, Thanksgiving in Wilmington, 34 02.814 N/ 077 53.46 W

    We were fortunate to have most of the Todd's in Wilmington for the Thanksgiving Holiday. Only Collin could not be there as he was visiting his father in Blacksburg VA. Ann out did herself with much help from a few of the other family members. Of course, Bob did absolutely nothing but eat his turkey dinner. Afterwards, we packed up the kids and headed for the second annual Todd bowl-a-thon where Bob was happy to beat the 3 year old Lilli. Not bad! --

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