The Washington DC area was saturated after 15 continuous days of misty and drizzling rain, enveloped in chilled air and leaded skies. Combined with continued delays in Dolce Vento’s drive shaft and engine alignment repairs, I found myself hallucinating that the boat would be perched on the gravel boat yard forever. I paced, I exercised, I took more of my online writing classes, and I read, but nothing would divert my attention. I needed to get outdoors and have sun kissed wind in my hair; staying cooped up in our apartment was morphing me into the Wicked Witch of the West as I deluged John every 10 minutes with questions, interrupting his computer work. After he growled, “Leave me alone,” for the umpteenth time, I knew something had to be done and done quickly. Duh! Escape, a change of scenery, was the solution to restore my sanity and his patience. He immediately grabbed the suitcases from the shelf.
We drove south on US Interstate 95 in search of Low Country, visiting Charleston, SC for two walk around days and a ferry ride to Fort Sumter, then headed to our friend Judy’s place in Bluffton where we continued with a day trip Beaufort and another to Savannah, riding carriages and trollies and eating she crab soup, fried oysters, shrimp and grits, and juicy fish sandwiches before moving to her ocean front Hilton Head time share condo. For two days, there was steak grilling, jigsaw puzzle solving, star gazing, beach running, pool lounging, shopping, and marina finding, all in clear skies with sun drenched palm trees and humidity low enough to think we were in southern California. We popped ourselves out of bed at 5:30 AM on the last day, joining Judy on one of her sunrise beach walks. We were restored.
Yesterday, after our return, we immediately went to see Dolce Vento. The new part through which the drive shaft enters the hull was fabricated in New Zealand and is due to arrive this Friday; our new anchor was delivered and we had successful discussions with our contractor on how the primary and secondary anchors and chained rode will be configured on the pulpit (pointy end) and stowed in the anchor locker (also at the pointy end). We heard from the Etsy guy that our custom wood riser, a small step about 6” high, 10” deep and 18” inches long, has been shipped. Placed on the cockpit sole (floor) behind the helm, I’m now able to see over the 4’ 8” diameter wheel used to steer this 46’ mother ship. Even the EPIRB, an emergency notification beacon, and smoke detectors arrived. Forward movement has been restored.
How does all this relate to our sailing adventure? It’s a lesson learned – all plans, even those to get ready, will be delayed due to circumstances beyond our control when it involves weather, water, or boat repairs. Either we live with it or leave it. We choose to live with it.