We went to sleep Sunday night as Liveaboards and woke up Monday as Cruisers. Just like that. But this past week has been anything but simple! I need to jot the first half down, because I feel certain the 2nd half will be at least as crazy, and I don’t want to forget anything!
Wednesday: We prepped the boat for paint and agreed to meet friends for dinner. I showered in the evening, then walked the dogs. Libby, blind cranky Libby, walked herself right off the dock. I called her. I yelled at her. I strongly encouraged her to STOP SWIMMING TOWARD THE RIVER AND TURN HER A$$ AROUND AND GETBACKOVERHERE. Nothing worked. I took off my sunglasses and flip flops and hopped in to rescue the very old girl. She was not impressed. I climbed out on someone else’s boat and hiked it back to take shower #2…
Thursday – Saturday: We painted the decks of the boat with non-skid paint. I spent months researching options, and know entirely too much about non-skid deck paints. We went with Tuff Coat. I love it, mostly. More on that later. We also spent Friday painting decks with Tuff Coat. Saturday we painted the cockpit with gray Interlux Interdeck paint. We had run out of Tuff Coat – and we had the Interdeck onboard. Plus, to be fair, I really want to compare the two. They are two completely different animals.
Sunday: We wrapped up the projects, loaded the boat and visited with a couple of friends that drove waaaay out to the marina from Pooler. We hadn’t seen them in ages, so it was fun to catch up. Then we showered and hung out with friends at Picnic in the Park. An inordinate number of people came up to say “I thought you were gone already.” And then we said our goodbye’s all over again.
Monday: We worked our butts off until 2:30p. We were completely exhausted by this point – working in the sun for long hours, and not really getting much sleep due to brains refusing to shut off. After finally getting everything on board, we wrapped up silly loose ends and shoved off. Just like that we were gone.
We motored for about 20 minutes over to the Herb River. Yes. We finally left the dock and just went around a bend or two in the river and dropped anchor. Exhausted as we were, we still had much more serious planning to do.
The part I have yet to mention is that during ALL of this, Hurricane Matthew was brewing. At the time we left, Matthew was a cat 5. Planning of our hurricane hideout was at the top of our To Do list on Monday. Why didn’t we just stay at the marina? They, like many marinas in the area, don’t let boats over 35′ stay at the docks during a major storm. So rather than stay tied up and wait to see if we were going to get kicked out, we high tailed it to a safe anchorage. It’s much easier to get prime anchoring real estate when you are the first one to the anchorage.
We spent Tuesday motoring up the Herb River, deciding it wasn’t the right spot for us, then working our way up the ICW and into the Vernon River. Here’s were we landed:
We’ve met the owners of a couple of the houses we are anchored behind. All very nice people. And they assure us that we are in a secure, protected area. Tropical Storm Hermine came through a few weeks back, and we were able to discuss wind direction, wave height etc. They’ve also very kindly offered us the use of their guest house if we feel like the boat is not a safe place to be. It’s always nice to have a Plan B.
So here we are, riding out a potential hurricane during our first week of cruising. We have been posting fairly regular updates on our safety/prep/location/shenanigans via Instagram/FB/Twitter if you want more frequent reassurances that we are still alive. And I will undoubtedly post about the 2nd half of this first week as cruisers, as soon as we’ve lived through it. I’m pretty sure Mother Nature is just messing with us to see if we are cut out for this watery life. Well played, Mother Nature, well played.