June 24, 2016

Onward to Charleston!

Scarlett:  Rhett!  Rhett, where are you going?
Rhett Butler:  I'm going back to Charleston, back where I belong.
Scarlett:  Please, please take me with you!
Rhett Butler:  No, I'm through with everything here.  I want peace.  I want to see if somewhere there isn't something left in life of charm and grace.  Do you know what I'm talking about?
Scarlett:  No!  I only know that I love you.
Rhett Butler:  That's your misfortune.
Scarlett:  Oh Rhett! Rhett! Rhett! If you go, where should I go?  
What shall I do?
Rhett Butler:  Frankly my dear, ..... 
(and then Clark Gable delivers the most famous line in cinema history as he leaves for Charleston!)

Ahhh Charleston, the infamous home of Rhett Butler.
Established in 1670 and so rich in history, one would need weeks or possibly a lifetime, to truly explore it properly.

Time sure flies. As I post this entry, Glory Days has moved further north beyond the Cape Fear River.  Please allow me to reminisce and gaze over my shoulder as I recall some Glory Days adventures from last month primarily for my own record keeping.

Thanks for visiting.  Come aboard as Glory Days continues her northern path during the summer of 2016!

May 17, 2016.  So long Savannah.  We are outta here!!
After two days in Savannah, it was time to move on.  Here we are departing on what soon developed into an overcast day.  The weather looked like something was brewing which we would soon discover.

Goodbye Savannah and your industrial port with grey skies poised above you.

Just outside of Savannah we encountered this curious dog who seemed to have some Unlikely Playmates.  Click the red link below to see what I'm talking about:

50 second video: "Unlikely Playmates!"

Soon after clearing Hilton Head Island the rain clouds unleashed upon us.  It came down in buckets.  We sailed through it for a couple hours before finally deciding to just drop the anchor and wait it out.  The rain was soon blowing sideways, so I had another opportunity to use my special super duper rain curtains as seen here.  Thank you Lowes, for these clamp-on shower curtains.  They may look tacky but they sure keep out the wind and rain.

30 second video - Glory Days Waiting Out the Rain

But like all great storms, it eventually ended. As was the case on this 17th day of May, 2016.  Toes soon snuggled as the air cleared for a tranquil sunset capping off another great day of travel on the ICW.  We anchored a couple miles up the road and waited for the morning to cross a large open water known as Port Royal Sound.

Rain storms always provide a good fresh water rinse to the topsides.  Sparkling again!

The calm after the storm.  
God is looking after us. 
What a great day on the water from Savannah to 
the mouth of Port Royal Sound.
The following day we were up at dawn and easily made it to Beaufort, SC by 2 pm.  About an hour out of Beaufort I threw a zinger at Sherry just to keep her on her toes. Tossing a boat cushion overboard, I screamed "MAN OVERBOARD!" 

I then sat down offering no assistance as if I were actually overboard.  To her credit, she handled it well, first marking the exact spot of the incident on the chart plotter, next dropping the main sail, cranking the engine, and cautiously doubling back to retrieve the 'man overboard'.  The drill went south when Sherry almost ran over the boat cushion. Of course it would be far worse had it occurred in heavy seas, blowing rain or at night. More practice for this ahead I told myself. 
Ah! Beaufort, South Carolina! 
We opted for a marina the first night, then moved to a mooring ball, then on to an anchor for our fourth night in this quaint little town on the ICW. A lovely waterfront park charms visitors and locals who stroll along or enjoy the dozen or so porch swings overlooking the waterway.

Some magnificent older homes in Beaufort as seen on this evening stroll.

Sherry made plans in advance to rent studio space from a local artist co-op so she could continue her work as a painter while in town.  She painted for three days and created some nice pieces for one of the many galleries that shows her work in the SE. Way to go girl! 

As for me, I tinkered on the boat, took photos, stared at the sky, and lolli-gagged around the town.  Later I enjoyed some bluegrass picking with a great group of musicians seen here.

From the city bridge one can look directly down into the home of a mother osprey nesting on top of the pilings. I was mesmerized for the afternoon here.

An electrical storm from the south provided some nice evening fireworks as the full moon slipped in just  above the horizon on this May evening.

After 4 nights in Beaufort, SC, we are "on the road again" departing at 0600 through the swing bridge.  This would be a long travel day to Charleston.
Sights along the way... oh what a Glory Day it was...
Hello Mr. Trimaran, aptly named "Blew By You."
After a long 55 mile day, we cleared the final bridge to enter the bustling Charleston Harbor late in the day.

Darkness was setting in and I was not exactly sure of the marina's location. Arriving at the boat slip of Charleston Maritime Center at dusk was a little too close for comfort.  We found it just in time and landed without a glitch. In no time we were kicked back in this fine town for a full week, walking many miles exploring the historical sites.  Glory Days would rest here for a whole month while I dashed back home to close on my house sale.

THANK YOU to friends Carolyn and Jack for sharing your lovely beach home at Isle of Palms for a couple nights.

Charleston is host to countless cargo ships and tourist cruise ships.

With fellow cruisers and old friends Dick and May, we toured a local craft beer brewery one afternoon.  They own this beautiful Ta Shing 42 ketch, named Peregrine

The Arthur Ravenal Bridge crosses the beautiful Cooper River in Charleston.

Most excellent trio at Folly Beach

Street scenes around Charleston

Tears welled up inside of me as we walked past the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church where the tragic shooting had occurred just weeks earlier.

Our dock neighbors at the Charleston Maritime Center were a lovely Canadian Couple, Gwen and Guillaume.   They were on their final leg back to Canada after three years of cruising all through the Caribbean Seas.
We were in town on Day 1 of the Atlantic Cup, and witnessed the boats crossing the start line.  It was an interesting mix of high tech sailboats racing from Charleston all the way to New York Harbor. 

Here are a few shots as they left Charleston Harbor on a rainy morning with tropical storm Bonnie brewing just offshore.

The sailors can view these red flags from afar which indicate the exact start time.  All the boats began to line up in position eager to get underway.  And then in no time, they were gone!

 The whimsical Seed and Feed Marching Band from Atlanta prepared to play a feisty concert in the park as the rain continued to come down.

With tropical storm Bonnie in the forecast, I added several extra dock lines just in case she hit shore while I was away in Atlanta the next 3-4 weeks.
Oh, what a tangled web we weave!
So long Charleston!

Stay tuned for the next leg when Glory Days continues on her northern path towards Georgetown and my old friend Jay Scholfield joins me for a few days.... 
Then it's on to the Waccamah River, the great Cypress Swamps, Cape Fear and beyond!

Excerpt from Nelson Mandela, 1994, inaugural speech.

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, talented, gorgeous, and famous?
Actually, who are NOT to be?
You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightening about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone
And, as we let our light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."