Sunday, October 16, 2011


Portsmouth, VA 36º50.7N | 76º18W

East River of Mobjack Bay.
Fall makes me wistful, with its mushy, warm sunlight and trees dressed to kill, all wafting a reminder that cold weather and winter holidays are almost at hand. But for folks who don't even own winter clothing, fall means it's time to fly south like a bunch of cold duck.

And so, this morning, with the summer's chores done, we pulled in the lines, waved goodbye to Mobjack Bay, and sailed into the Chesapeake, the beginning of our second annual plod south.

Cara Mia is tricked out in a new outfit of beige canvas, complete with a screened-in cockpit. She has shiny wax on deck and on the hull, a new coat of bottom paint -- all planned. Unfortunately, she also has an unplanned and very expensive new shaft and cutlass bearing.

We've whiled away the last few months visiting friends and family around the country by plane, car, train, boat and bus, charging straight through an earthquake, a hurricane, flooding and a right wicked desert hailstorm.

On a visit to New Mexico I discovered that I'm a direct descendant of William "The Lion King" of Scotland and that my mother is surely and steadily succumbing to the heartbreaking symptoms of memory loss.

There is so much more to tell, but consider this an introduction to the backblogging I will be doing in the next few weeks, filling in the rich detail of four-and-a-half months near land.

After six weeks with the boat out of the water, we are afloat and underway, already happily falling into the pack of fellow cruisers and dear friends discovered on the ICW last year, our inaugural season.

What different people we seem this new October, more confident in our boat and increasingly secure in our ever-developing skills, utterly relaxed into the pace of life on the water, truly manifesting the Zen counsel of Ming that seemed so trite last October: I'll get there when I get there.

Along the way, we realized that we have pitiful imaginations. How else could we have so underestimated the rewards of life on the water? Now I can add one more thing unimaginable: a life without cruising.

It has already been said that in retrospect we will surely regret more the things we didn't do rather than those we did, and I'm thankful every day that cruising is duly checked off on our list.

And what next? As our friend Jen said about cruising a few months ago, "I don't think I can afford not to do this."

Onward. South to somewhere.


  1. I am so excited for you guys!! I hope I"m around here when you come through. I REALLY, like the 'real-time' blogging and hope you do more of it!

  2. Tammy well said! We will be looking forward to your every entertaining posts and an eventual reunion. Fair Winds my friends. Debi & Joe(KAJON)