The Treasures of the Outer Banks

March 28. 2023

Another storm is approaching with winds up to 50 miles per hour. I read amazing things about the town Ocracoke, NC and insisted we head there. Steve, on Coda, has been watching the Outer Banks and was eager to visit one of the islands.

We departed early in the morning for a 5 hour crossing. It was a choppy ride over a large body of water, but as the waves were head on, my stomach didn’t protest. I still had to secure the cabinets and glassware, but thankfully the door has been repaired.

Upon our approach to Ocracoke Island, we discover there was conflicting information on two of the charts we use. One chart showed acceptable depth while another showed it to be extremely shallow. Added to that is a ferry coming at us and large waves from the wind. What could possibly happen?

We hit the ground hard! Side waves start rocking us and everything in the boat is moving. Annette shouts “Mom! The TV.” Thankfully I was standing in just the right spot. The TV fell, ripping the bolts that once held it out, and landed in my arms. Boris is able to get the boat off the ground; however, the vibrations of the engine are different. We think either the propeller or shaft may be bent. A few minutes later, Coda also hits ground, but manages to also get off.

We all arrive safely into the harbor and find space on the docks just in time for the wind storm.

We attempted to use Steve’s underwater drone to check the propellers, but it was too murky to see anything.

In the evening, you could hear the wind ripping through. It maintained 40 mph winds with gusts up to 50 mph. Prior to going to bed, we secured all items. At 4 am, Boris and I are woken up with banging and a loud splash.

Rushing out to see what it could be, I discover the source of the banging (kayak handle hitting the kayak), but never figured out the source of the splash. Everything except one small pillow is accounted for, but the pillow wouldn’t have produced that loud of a splash.

March 29, 2023

Ocracoke Island was settled in the 1730’s and is now a vacation town during the on season (unfortunately we were there during the off season). It is also the location of the defeat of the pirate Blackbeard. Only accessible by ferry, the town is small with a long stretch of beach that is a national park. With the exception of some shops being closed, we enjoyed a stroll around town.

Ocracoke is also home to a British Cemetery. While out patrolling for German submarines during WWII, the British ship HMT Bedfordshire was torpedoed, causing it to sink. All 37 British Royal Navy sailors were killed with only 4 washing ashore on Ocracoke Island. The bodies were buried in local cemetery plots by residents. In 1976, the land was leased in perpetuity to the British government while the US Coast Guard maintains it. Every year, there is a ceremony honoring those men by the National Park Service, US Coast Guard, and British Royal Navy.

Another looper, Dawn Watch, was on the docks. We keep running into them, first spotting in Beaufort SC, then Georgetown, then they left Oriental as we were arriving, and now in Ocracoke. We enjoyed docktales together and shared stories and tips. Matt flew his drone and caught some nice photos of the boats.

March 30, 2023

While shopping the other day, I discovered the island offered Kitesurfing lessons. Barb, an experienced adventurer, and I signed up for a lesson.

It’s a bit cold and windy, but that doesn’t stop us. The instructor, Keith, picks us up in his truck and we mosey down to the Sound. Donning wet suits, we receive a lesson on safety, wind, and mechanics. Then we stroll into the water. I’m the first to be strapped in. The main focus is to stand there and learn how to control the kite. The smallest movements will send it sailing. I was pulled into the water a fair number of times, but quickly got the hang of it. Barb was also a rockstar and able to quickly control the kite. By the end of the lesson, I was able to get a few jumps in and get airborne as well as receive a few face plants in the water. Hopefully, I’ll be able to find additional lessons along the loop.

After kitesurfing, Boris picked me up in a rented golf cart and took me to the lighthouse for a quick tour. The rest of the day included a scheduled massage appointment followed by a drink at 1718 Brewing and dinner at Howard’s Pub.

While on the beach, we found tribbles! Actually they’re balls of seaweed, sand, and pine needles or something but they look like tribbles

The Land of Dragons

March 26, 2023

It’s finally time to leave Beaufort. The original plan was to visit New Bern, but that requires a little backtracking. Instead, we decide to hit Oriental.

During our voyage, a storm rolled in. Lighting struck, thunder roared, and the rain was pouring. We were in a small channel with nowhere to stop. Our only course was to push through. The Coast Guard announced that the storm would pass in another 20 minutes so we kept trudging. As we approach our destination, a bolt of lightning strikes between us and Coda, so close you could feel it. Thankfully, the storm passed just as we were preparing to dock in the town of Oriental.

Oriental, NC is known as the sailing capital of North Carolina. It was settled in the 1870’s by Louis Midyette “Uncle Lou.” The United States Post Office Department established a post office and Lou was named postmaster of what was then known as Smith’s Creek. Lou’s wife Rebecca thought the town needed a better name and found the nameplate from a sunken ship “Oriental” on the beaches.

March 27, 2023

The town is small, yet quaint. There is one major road that houses small shops. The local marina has a small hotel with an unheated pool. That was a hard pass as it was already cold. No need to jump into a cold pool. There’s also a small tiki bar and restaurant nearby. We arrived a day too late and missed a dragon burning, bluegrass live music, and Shrimparoo-fest.

We strolled the streets, played at the park, entered the shops, and just enjoyed the scenery. In the evening, we had a Chinese feast in honor of the town’s name.

One thing I do enjoy are the Wisteria flowers that are in bloom. When the wind blows, you can smell them in the air. The sunrises over the water are also lovely. I’ve been able to go jogging in the morning and was fortunate to catch the sunrise.

I also love how the town embraces their name and decorates everything with dragons.

Blackbeard the Pirate’s Hometown

March 22, 2023

A storm is approaching and we will need to stay put for 4 days causing us to get behind schedule and our plans in April (we are flying home in April). It is decided that we will bypass a few stops and head as far north as possible by making a straight run to Beaufort via the Atlantic instead of the ICW. It will be a long 11-hour day.

We’ve traveled in the ocean before and usually prefer it. You don’t have to worry about narrow channels, shallow depths, or oncoming vessels. But this trip wasn’t as enjoyable as usual.

At first light, we get up and set sail, exiting into the ocean at Carolina Beach. Crossing the bar was not fun and reminded me of the Columbia River. I button down the hatches, secure all cabinets, place all glassware in the sink, and hold tight. One large wave caused our back door to slam and broke a latch, now the door won’t lock shut and I have to prop it open to prevent further damage.

We finally enter the calmer seas, but the waves are hitting our beam, resulting in a rolling effect that my stomach doesn’t appreciate. There goes my plans to homeschool. I can’t even read a book or play a game. Instead, I can only sit on the fly bridge for fresh air and stare at the horizon. After squeezing in a nap, I was able to pass some time by watching Boy Meets World with Annette. The 11 hours finally come to an end and we pull into Beaufort, NC.

March 23, 2023

I’ve recovered from the ocean excursion and am ready to hit the town. We are staying at the Town Creek Marina, which is a 1-mile walk from the historic old town. The Marina also offers a courtesy car and wonderful staff who help with lines ensuring our boats are secured and prepared for the storm.

There is a Beaufort, South Carolina and a Beaufort, North Carolina. The spelling is the same, but pronounced differently. It’s a small fishing town established in 1713 and is known as home to Blackbeard the pirate. In 1718, Blackbeard the pirate ran his flagship, the Queen Anne’s Revenge and his sloop Adventure, aground near the Beaufort Inlet.

It’s the off season. Many shops and tours are not operating, but we did manage to visit the Visitor’s Center and toured the grounds of some historic buildings and cemetery. We continued our stroll with visiting a few shops and found ice cream. I do enjoy seeing all the rocking chairs on porches.

The storm is blowing in. We find shelter in a brewery with tasty brews and games on the table for entertainment.

March 24, 2023

It’s a lazy, windy day. We all meander to Moonrakers for lunch. The drinks were wonderful. Steve had a Manhattan with an ice ball that contained an orange peel, star anise, and cherries. I enjoyed some cheesy grits and a pineapple beverage. I’ve been taste testing grits all along the South. My favorite so far has been in Savannah, GA.

The Maritime Museum was nearby, and free! It is one of the best that I’ve seen with numerous displays. Their main focuses was on whale hunting and Blackbeard’s Queen Anne’s Revenge. If you notice the photo below of a large syringe and the number 3, it is a Urethral Syringe used for treating venereal diseases. Traces of mercury can still be found inside.

In the evening, we enjoyed a show of a bunch of dolphins swimming around. It never gets old seeing dolphins.

March 25, 2023

The boys and kids took the courtesy car into the neighboring town, Moorehead, to play at an arcade. After their return, Tonia and I went to Fort Macon.

Fort Macon is a restored fort that was built after the War of 1812. The Visitor’s Center houses numerous exhibits about the area and history. Just after the Visitor’s Center is the Fort. Half of it is empty and designed for wandering while the other half has been refurbished with separate rooms showcasing different topics including the Civil War, what soldier life was like, and WWII. The fort went into disrepair and was later renovated into a state park.

Surrounding the fort is a 3.2 mile hiking trail through the woods and over sand dunes. While on the hike, it started to rain, but us Washingtonians won’t let a little sprinkle stop us. Besides, our only option of returning was to continue walking.

While hiking around, there were many dead Christmas Trees piled along the trail. We figured as it’s the off season for everything else, it must also be Christmas in the off season.

I was pleasantly surprised at how much fun Fort Macon was and actually preferred it over Fort Sumter. I highly recommend a visit if you’re ever in the area.

Bridge Damage May Cause Us to Change Course

March 19, 2023

While hanging in Georgetown, we received news last Friday that made us stay for a few extra days.

Our original plan was to continue along the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW) and stop at Barefoot Landing (North Myrtle Beach) and then to Southport, NC. This route would take us under a few small bridges, including the Little River Swing Bridge.

Unfortunately, this bridge was hit by a tractor trailer and was structurally damaged with no date of reopening.

Our options:

  • Waiting: Wait until it is repaired
  • Going onward: Venture north in hopes it will be repaired by the time we arrive
  • The Atlantic: Go out on the Atlantic

The issues:

  • Waiting: We don’t know how long the wait would be and we have to get to Norfolk, VA in early April.
  • Going onward: If we venture north and it remains closed, we have to backtrack back to where we are as it’s the opening to the Atlantic. This wastes time and fuel.
  • The Atlantic: There’s a storm coming. The best weather window days to enter the Atlantic is Sunday and Wednesday, otherwise it will be too rough. Additionally, we would have to travel for 9 hours and if the weather turns, we would have to turn around or push through.

We decided to wait through the weekend and see if there would be any news as we couldn’t leave until Sunday. Thankfully, by Saturday, they announced that they would offer marine traffic time slot openings for passage.

Sunday, we depart Georgetown and head north towards Myrtle Beach, stopping at Bucksport Marina for the night. On the way, we’ve entered fresh water on the Waccamaw River. The trip is scenic, surrounded by bald cypresses and wildlife.

The marina was a combination of marina and campground with RVs. The people were extremely friendly. In the area, there were also a bunch of kids; Michael quickly made friends and we didn’t see him until the evening while Annette joined me in some kayaking.

March 20, 2023

It’s another day of travel. Boris is working and asked that I take the helm for a bit. I’m ok with driving if it’s a wider channel with no bridges, but I’m not so fortunate this time. We are the lead boat. As I’m cruising along, I notice that there’s a small blue bridge in the distance (it’s not the Little River Swing Bridge). Peering through my binoculars, I can tell with certainty that we will not fit underneath it.

I promptly stop the boat so as to not get any closer to THAT bridge and radio my buddy line Matt on how to contact the bridge. Thankfully, Boris sensed the stop in motion and came up to assist and we made it through. Now I know how to call bridges on the radio and request openings.

We continue cruising until we reach Grand Dunes Marina in Myrtle Beach.

With just the afternoon available for exploration, I take the kids and Barb to the Boardwalk to explore. It’s off season, which means the amusement parks are closed, but the Sky Wheel and shops are open. We found an ice cream shop that made rolled ice cream and dragon’s breath balls.

One benefit to doing the Great Loop is running into other Loopers. The Great Loop Association also has Harbor Hosts, volunteers who provide information or services in specific areas. We met the Myrtle Beach Harbor Host and was delighted to get more information on the surrounding areas.

March 21, 2023

We left Myrtle Beach and continued our journey north, stopping for lunch in Barefoot Landing.

Barefoot Landing is a shopping village along the ICW with restaurants, shops, and a boardwalk. We braved a trip to Dick’s Last Resort, a restaurant where the service is rude and not politically correct. It was an entertaining meal. Afterwards, we continued our journey north, passing through the now open Little River Swing Bridge, crossed into North Carolina, and stopped for the night in Southport, NC.

Sip and Shop in Georgetown, SC

We arrive in Georgetown in the evening of the 16th. Michael rode with Lil Sudden with Tonia’s nephews while Annette enjoyed some peace and quiet on Saga. Shortly after our arrival, the men found themselves at a restaurant, So Co, for drinks and food while us women learned that it was a Sip and Stroll night. Their goal was to be considered “local” by the end of our stay.

Every third Thursday of the month, 26 shops and art galleries provide wine and snacks while you shop along the Historic Front Street of Georgetown. Unfortunately we only had one hour to take advantage of this extravaganza.

The charming little shops offered all sorts of delicious wine and snacks from lemon bars to pecan pie bars. We started at the Harbor Shop, which is how we learned about the Sip and Shop. We then slowly made our way forward. I found the cutest napkins at Rice Birds, fuzzy socks and puzzle at Whimsy Roost.

The next thing we knew, the clock bell was chiming 7:00, which signaled the end of the event; however, we weren’t ready to be done. With our hopes high, we quickly walked down the street, trying each door and hoping they were still open.

As we rounded the 900 block, we noticed the Art Harbor Gallery door was still unlocked. Opening the door, we politely asked if they were still open despite it being just past 7:00 and were greeted by Deborah Smith and Alan Sherlock, two artists, who said they were happy to remain open for us. As we sipped wine, we admired the work of various artists and Tonia walked away purchasing a collection of beautiful cards.

March 17, 2023

It’s Saint Patrick’s Day!

I sported a lovely green tutu and colorful headband to get into the spirit. Can’t pinch me!

The day started with a trip to the playground for the kids to burn energy followed by an appointment at the Purr and Pour (a cat café) and finished with a tour of the Maritime Museum.

I also visited The Harbor Shop where they custom embroider items. KK Nicholson was wonderful and helped me design a new hat that says Saga on the front and Just A Bit Loopy on the back.

The Cat Cafe:

There’s a Purr and Pour Cat Cafe in town that fosters cats in hopes that they will be adopted. By appointment, you can spend time with cats while enjoying a beverage. The kids heard about this and seemed interested.

But, before I tell you more about this café, I want to tell you about high tea.

During COVID, we homeschooled. For lunches, I’d make tea, serve little sandwiches with fruit and veggies, and we’d do poetry or reading. The kids loved it and they will occasionally ask for me to set one up. Well, here I am in Georgetown and discover the Hopsewee Plantation (owned by one of the original signers of the Declaration of Independence) has a reasonably priced High Tea. I thought for sure the kids would love it. I also noticed they had a Bellini flight sampler that sounded right up my alley.

I excitedly tell the kids about this and asked if they wanted to participate. Annette looks at me and says “I’d rather see cats.”

So here we are with the cats.

I’m not big into cats as they make my eyes itch and I can’t stop sneezing. Armed with an extra dose of allergy medicine, I decide to get into it. Sitting with the cats, I try to pet one, but it promptly saunters away. I try playing with one, but it’s having more fun with the kids. I admit defeat and decide to take a seat while sipping my wine.

The Maritime Museum was impressive…and it was free! They had a scavenger hunt that Annette took very seriously. We couldn’t leave until she found the answers to all questions (there were two sides to the page).

March 18, 2023

It’s a wet one! The wind picked up and rain fell for most of the day. Lil Sudden’s family visitors also left in the morning so we slowly returned back to normal. We concluded our stay in Georgetown with lunch at the Big Tuna and a final stroll around the town.

A New (for us) Anchoring Maneuver in McClennanville, SC

March 15, 2023

Leaving Charleston, our objective was to head to Georgetown, SC. When planning the Great Loop, I was interested in stopping in McClellanville, but was outvoted due to the lack of places to anchor. Sad face emoji, crying emoji. Oh well, life goes on. Right? WRONG!

The morning of our departure, Captain Matt of Lil Sudden expresses concern that they are low on fuel (happens to all of us, but more often to them as they have 300 gallon tanks vs. 600 gallons of Coda and Saga). Matt says that he found cheap fuel for $4.90/gallon, to which Captain Steve of Coda happily said “I’m in. It’s almost a $1 cheaper than the last time I filled up here.”

So, we’re happily cruising along but it is taking us more than usual due to strong currents and Coda needing to slow down in some areas due to draft, and people start voicing their concern that Georgetown may be too far and that we may not make it. What are we going to do??

To the rescue comes First Mate/ School Teacher/Entertainment Coordinator/General Badass Mayli to inform the fleet that McClennanville is on the way and it has a marina (not sure about anchorages). Captain Boris quickly calls the marina to ask for Dockage but the marina was full.

The next thing I know, we are stopping in McClennanville, not for the marina, but for the cheap fuel. In the ultimate act of “hold my beer” Captain Boris negotiated a discount rate for bulk fuel… $3.75/gallon. All three boats quickly topped off and we performed a new anchoring maneuver in the rivers. Big shoutout to Donny at Leland Oil Company in McClellanville, SC.


Almost everyday we learn something new, the lessons are generally good ones. Today was a new anchoring method and how not to do it. Or better, how to do it wrong and then get it right by sheer luck.

Coda dropped one anchor and we dropped another which happened to put both boats about 90 feet apart and side by side. Captain Boris and Steve have a brilliant and Sudden idea to make a Lil boat sandwich with Lil Sudden coming in between and then pulling the two boats to it like a zipper. Great idea right? Let’s just say that our execution was a bit off. Somehow in this process Lil Sudden is diagonal in between us (like the letter N) with the current pushing their bow into Coda. Captain Steve is sitting on his boat using his feet to keep Lil Sudden off his boat while Captain Boris is trying to pull Lil Sudden over by a bow line. If someone could have taken a picture of the whole thing (but I have a partial video).

Using lots of muscles, lines, fenders, and more importantly brains, we were able to get Lil Sudden properly placed by releasing the stern line and using two bow lines on each side to situate the boats just right. now all bows are pointing in the right direction.

For those who saw the problem immediately… hindsight is always 20/20.

As a reward for a job well done, we threw some lines out to try and catch fish. We caught lots of redfish (which is NOT red) and Annette caught a couple of baby stingrays.

Dinghy Queen (McClennanville, SC)

March 16, 2023

In the morning, I’m looking for things to do in town and stumble upon a restaurant (TW Graham and Co) that just posted they have fresh softshell crab. Guess what I’m eating for lunch?

Only problem is, we need two dinghies. For safety sake, Captain Boris and Matt are staying with the fleet while everyone else goes to town, which means I have to drive the dinghy. Sad emoji. Crying emoji.

I haven’t mentioned it before, but I’m a bit wary of driving the boat and dinghy by myself. My primary concerns are if something happens or I get lost. Before you think that these fears are irrational…Have you met me? I get lost going around the block. This is my superhero skill: if you ever want to get lost, take me along and I will make it happen!

Well, if I want crab, I have to get over my fear and make this happen. I pile all the kids into the dinghy and we head to the dock. Anxious and nervous, we make it there in one piece. Looking back, I don’t think that it was that bad, but don’t tell anyone.

Some interesting things about McClennanville: it’s a small shrimping town with VERY CHEAP FUEL, a small street of shops, old churches, and a 1,000 year-old oak tree. There’s even little plaques around town with planets spaced to scale of the solar system.

Michael Tree-Climber Hodak races for the tree to see how high he can get while I’m threatening him to not go any higher as we don’t have time for an ER visit. I swear, that boy loves climbing trees more than he likes eating cereal, and he LOVES cereal.

We stop for lunch and I get my crab. In all my excitement, I forgot to take a photo of my food. You’ll just have to image two delicious fried soft shell crabs and a very happy me.

It’s finally time to head back. The kids returned earlier with Steve so it’s just Barb, Tonia, and myself. I’m feeling a bit more confident in my dinghy driving abilities and we head back to the boat.

The boat comes into view and the kids are having fun kayaking around. I slow the dinghy down and move towards them so Tonia can take a few photos.

I’m getting closer to our boats and see the men shouting and waiving at us. They must be cheering for me. Yea me! I’m making it back in one piece and feeling good. I can drive a dinghy!

But I guess that’s not what they were shouting about. I’m getting too close to land and it’s shallow. Boris is already known for his sandbar landing skills and I don’t need to follow i his footsteps. I quickly veer to the right and safely get the dinghy back.

Next time I should stay in between the red and green stick thingies (yes, I know they are channel markers).

Friends, Food, and History in Charleston, SC

March 10, 2023

We’ve arrived in Charleston and anchored near the Harborage at Ashley Marina. Our first objective: to figure out dinner. Across the way was a lovely building called California Dream that offered a variety of tasty food, but more importantly, a dinghy dock.

I love crab. Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, I was spoiled with delicious, fresh Dungeness Crab that we’d catch. I heard Blue Crab was the equivalent on the East Coast, so I’ve been searching for crab at the local fish shops, restaurants, and even bought a small ring trap to try catching them myself. But all I’ve found is Snow Crab. Fortunately, California Dream offered fried crab claws. I had to order two servings just to get my crab craving under control.

March 11-12, 2023

We have company. So far it’s been Lil Sudden with people coming to visit. This time it’s our turn.

When I was a teenager, I was part of the Civil Air Patrol. Through that organization, I made many friends including Troy. Troy and his family moved to North Carolina a couple of years ago and we were excited that they are driving down to spend the weekend with us. We spent some time catching up, celebrating Sangria Saturday, and explored the historic town of Charleston.

March 13, 2023

It’s a very cold day. There’s a cold front hitting the East Coast and the temperature is in the mid 30’s to 40’s.

But I’m from the Pacific Northwest and won’t let this weather deter me from exploring.

Today’s adventure took us to where it all started: the first shot of the Civil War. Coda and our family took a ferry from Patriot’s Point to Fort Sumter where we had an hour to tour the grounds. The park ranger did an excellent explanation of the historical significance of the fort and what it meant then and what it means now. I was impressed that Michael even listened intently.

After returning from the fort to Patriot’s Point, we toured the aircraft carrier USS Yorktown and Destroyer USS Laffey.

The USS Yorktown was like a maze: we kept climbing lower and lower into the bowels of the ship, wandering the narrow halls, and peering into the old living quarters. The constant smell of machinery filled my nose while the subtle clang of feet on metal rang in my ears. After a couple of hours wandering the lower decks, we headed to the flight deck to view the jets and the upper tower. It’s amazing people lived on these for years. I’m amazed I didn’t get lost.

The USS Laffey was also interesting. The ship was damaged in WWII by Kamikazes, but survived. Inside, there was a History Channel episode on the attack on Laffey. It was surreal sitting there and watching the damage, amazed that she survived.

That evening, Lil Sudden had family coming into town to visit for a few days, bringing two boys to play with my kids. It’s going to be a busy week.

March 14, 2023

It’s another cold day measuring at 36 degrees. The ground is even frozen!! Again, not going to let this cold stop us.

Our family took an Uber to the McLeod Plantation for a tour. Our guide was Gullah Geechee and brought a great deal of insight and education into the tour, even providing an example of the language.

We walked the grounds of the plantation and saw the different uses through history. The small slave shacks have been used as a church, school, and even homes until the 1990’s. The plantation house has also served as a Confederate headquarter during the Civil War.

After returning from the tour, we meet up with Lil Sudden’s guests at a trampoline house so the kids could burn some energy.

The day was concluded at the historic downtown. While the kids played near Pineapple Fountain, a few of us ran to Pearlz for an Oyster Shooter that a friend recommended. So Good!

Disaster Strikes at Monkey Island

March 9, 2023

As mentioned in my previous post, there’s an island near Beaufort, SC called Morgan Island, but is better known as Monkey Island.

4,000 rhesus monkeys infected with Herpes B inhabit this small space. Even though we aren’t able to set foot on the island, we wanted to cruise by in hopes to catch a glimpse of a monkey.

Coda went ahead to the next destination (he didn’t want to get bit by a monkey and turn into a zombie) while Lil Sudden and Saga took a small detour to try and spot some monkeys. I was pretty confident we wouldn’t become zombies.

Boris manned the helm while I searched the coastline with binoculars; however, the lush vegetation made it difficult to spot anything. Just as I was about to give up, I noticed a mamma and her baby high up on a tree branch close to the beach. Boris radioed over to Lil Sudden so they could see it too.

There we sat, letting the current slowly carry us while we watched the monkey in the tree. When we were finally ready to continue on our trip, Lil Sudden calls over: their dinghy tow line got sucked under and is now tangled around their propeller and shaft.

Both boats quickly drop anchor and Boris gathers his dive gear to swim over, hoping to untangle the line and be on our way. Unfortunately, Lil Sudden informs us that there may be damage as there is water inside.

Boris dives down, discovers that not only is the dinghy line caught, but there is also a line from a former crab trap wrapped around. The current is picking up and he is unable to untangle the lines.

Current continues to pick up and Boris is unable to swim back. I lower the dinghy and head out to tow him back. He grabs onto the side, but is too heavy and I am unable to return to the boat. I continue to veer left with the current while the boat is on our right. He tries to switch sides, but are unsuccessful. Finally, he removes the gear and throw it into the dinghy and I finally manage to get us back to Saga.

It is decided that Lil Sudden will operate on one engine (with Saga following) to a local marina and see if a mechanic can assess the damages. While at the marina, Boris does one final dive and has success! He is unravels the tangled lines from the shaft, but Lil Sudden still has needed repairs, but I’ll let Lil Sudden continue their story on their blog.

While we waited for a decision on what to do, the Hodaks had a paper airplane flying contest.

We are able to finally leave, but not able to catch up to Coda and decide to anchor for the night. We will catch up tomorrow and hopefully reach Charleston.

Life is Like a Box of Chocolates in Beaufort, SC

March 7, 2023

Beaufort is a small historic town known for its mansions and history; it is also known as the filming location of Forrest Gump.

We anchored and found a small public day use dock. As soon as the boat was secured to the dock, both kids spotted a playground and abandoned ship. Adjacent to the playground is a boardwalk lined with swinging benches. Their fun was cut short as we were hungry and needed to find lunch.

Blackstone’s Café is where we settled on for food. Upon entering, our eyes were met with a plethora of school pennants and flags. This started a scavenger hunt of searching for the University of WA pennant. Unfortunately I only found WSU, but then Tonia came by and announced that she found the University of WA pennant upstairs. Sure enough, there she was in all her glory! The food was also tasty and the service was wonderful. I am enjoying the south.

After lunch, we began our exploration of town with our next mission in finding the Chocolate Tree. The Chocolate Tree is where the chocolates Forrest gave to Jenny were purchased. We bought a few ourselves to enjoy.

With chocolaty-goodness in our hands (and stomachs), we continued our stroll, passing by the Arsenal, which was built in 1798 to house the Beaufort Volunteer Artillery (fifth oldest military unit in the US) who fought along with the Continental Army during the American Revolution. After the Civil War, the Beaufort Volunteer Artillery disbanded and later became the National Guard.