Onward’s Cruise Journal 2014
Chesapeake & New England Cruise

Updated: 15 July 2014

June 2014

1 June 14; Sunday; Annapolis Harbor

  • Ed Brown & Nancy Yanofsky drove down to Annapolis for lunch and we met them at Pussers. I was a bit annoyed that they charged $7 to tie a dinghy up to eat lunch! To make it worse, we were told to seat ourselves at any table then told we had to move and go inside to request a table and go to the end of the list in spite of having been at the "wrong" table for 20 min. If Ed and Nancy hadn't just arrived, I would have left and gone elsewhere. Our meals were OK but didn't quite make up for my pique. But having good friends at the table with us made it a very nice occasion. Before Ed and Nancy departed, we took a walk through town were Peg and I showed Ed a laser-cut relief map of Nantucket and surrounding waters. He, of course, snapped it up.

2 June 14; Monday; Annapolis Harbor
  • This was a veg day where we just hung about aboard and read and did a few boat chores. These days are very welcome after periods with a lot of social activity.

3 June 14; Tuesday; Mill Ck
  • I continued straightening up the boat in preparation for guests and Peg took the water taxi in to an appointment at the Hudson and Fouquet hair salon. Unfortunately, my luck hadn't held and Luc had no opening for me. When she was done, I took Venture in to the Lafayette Street pier on Spa Creek to fetch her. Once aboard we quickly got underway and headed to Mill Creek and Dick's pier.

4 June 14; Wednesday; Mill Ck

  • This morning I actually did it! I managed to organize and stow all the gear that had been plaguing me by hanging out on the forward berth. Now the berth could be properly prepared for our guests to arrive Thursday.
  • Today was time for weekly Davis' Pub Yacht Club meeting of The Guys -- mostly Corinthians. So Dick and I headed over at 1130 and Peg was left to enjoy the quiet of Mill Ck. A great lunch ensued as always and I got to catch up with many friends I only get to see when I flit into town.
  • Dick took me by the hardware store to fill the empty propane tank. I got back in time to rest up and clean up before Ed Burke picked up Peg and I and we headed back to Eastport to attend a gathering of the "Southbound Cruisers" group hosted by JoAnne Norton and Tom Butts. We got to reconnect with many of the gaggle of Chessapeakeians who we got to play with on our sojourn S and back. Several will be heading to New England for the summer so there will be an opportunity to continue the fun.

5 June 14; Thursday; Mill Ck
  • Laundry Day! A lazy morning evolved as Peg and I gathered up laundry and went off to use Dick's facilities. I got to see his workshop and immediately had envy for one of the few aspects of land-life that I miss.
  • Disaster! The SodaStream carbonizer couldn't fully carbonize a bottle of diet cola for Peg. I had just replaced the gas cylinder and it should have been good for > 6 months! Can't cruise without a working carbonizer -- how could there be Cocktail Hour?
  • Ed Burke had a diver over to his boat to install a new MaxProp. Unfortunately I missed the diver by a few minutes but was able to schedule a visit for later in the afternoon to install replacement shaft zincs.
  • Ed picked Peg and I up and we headed off to lunch. We attempted to buy a replacement Sodastream but could not find one at Sam's Club or Sears. But Ed introduced us to a new chain restaurant that specializes in grilled chicken. He had first found Nando while in London and was pleased to find one at the Annapolis Mall. Well, the food was great!
  • We returned to Onward where Peg & I continued to clean up in preparation for our guests. Mike and Maureen arrived about 1730 and we quickly got them settled aboard. Then we headed off to dinner at Cantler's crab house with Dick and Valerie Tudan. We had a great time and Mike and Maureen got to experience the local flavor of a real Maryland crab house.

6 June 14; Friday; Mill Ck to Dividing Ck, Wye River; C470 2014 Chesapeake Rendezvous
  • Mike and I were off ago 0730 to do some provisioning. I took along a diesel jerrycan to get 5 gal of diesel as a backup so I wouldn't have to go to the fuel pier on the way to the Rendezvous. Unfortunately we couldn't find a nearby station that sold diesel. We hit the major food groups: groceries, liquors, bagels and headed back. We were underway from Dick pier by 0930. As we were ahead of the schedule we didn't have, I put into Annapolis Landing Marina to top off all the fuel tanks. We were underway for the eastern shore by 1030 and had a nice sail across the bay to Bloody Point. The wind was on our nose as we motored up Eastern Bay and thence into the Miles and Wye rivers. As we moved, other C470s began converging on Dividing Creek on Wye Island. We found Southerly II with Fred and Karen already at anchor and Onward rafted to their starboard.
  • Before the end of the afternoon, there were eight C-470s rafted up together. John and Colleen on Dulcinea, hosted a fish fry with fresh water perch. I don't know how they managed to get so much fish perfectly fried up on the boat. But they are old hands at this and watching the fish dipping, dredging and crumbing assembly line they set up was impressive. John, the french fry master, topped it off with fries that while they may not have met his usual standards were great!
  • Late that evening, Dark n Stormy, arrived from Baltimore and joined the raft.

7 June 14; Saturday; Dividing Ck, Wye River; C470 2014 Chesapeake Rendezvous
  • A gorgeous day dawned and the Onwards were up early and breakfasted before most of the fleet were up and about. As the morning wore on, impromptu brunches began to breakout on various boats. I still had the June 2014 Mainsheet C-470 Tech Note to write. I began wandering about with my Nikon D40 to check out the innovations on sisterships as fodder for future Tech Notes.
  • Later in the afternoon, Mike and Becca from Dark n Stormy asked if I'd like to take photos for a very interesting event. He and Becca were both very secretive and they asked me to show up in about half an hour. When I came aboard, they politely asked me to get off the boat!??? I moved next boat and they proceeded to cast off and get underway toward the mouth of the river. A bit later, I heard a VHF message to get the camera ready. Of course, right at this time, the Nikon D40 started acting up and would not recognize the digital lens for autofocus. It took me a bit to remember how to go to manual operation for focus. This was complicated by the fact that I had my reading contact in the right eye and I had to remember to use the left eye to focus the lens. As Dark n Stormy approached the rafted fleet, it became apparent that Mike was towing Becca on her wakeboard behind Dark n Stormy!!!
  • I managed to get to get a good number of still shots, most of them focused correctly as Dark n Stormy with the bone of a wake in her mouth came flying by with Becca crossing back and forth across the stern. Nice. The good thing was that Peggy had the very good sense (which I very much lacked) to get out her iPad mini and video the show! Double Neat!

8 June 14; Sunday; Dividing Ck, Wye River; C470 2014 Chesapeake Rendezvous to Mill Ck via St. Michaels
  • A gorgeous and leisurely morning provided a great backdrop for more socialization and camaraderie. Irish Mist was the first boat to depart as Peter and Audrey needed to get back S. They still have Irish Mist up for sale and they will be greatly missed as part of the Fleet when it is sold -- but maybe they will change their minds.
  • Onward re-rafted to Dulcinea for a bit so I could look more closely at the electric winches John has installed on his arch. Soon Onward was one of the last boats left in the area. On the sail over, Mike and Maureen told me that they had never really had the opportunity to cruise on the Chesapeake and were thus really enthralled with Eastern Bay, Miles and Wye Rivers and Dividing Creek.
  • Peg and I decided to return them to their car by taking them further up the Miles River to St. Michaels for lunch before heading back across the Bay to Mill Creek. We found the harbor fairly empty and after anchoring we took the water taxi in. I took them on a walking tour of St. Michaels with several opportunities for shopping. We selected a place for lunch where we could sit on a deck in the shade umbrellas for lunch. Mike treated us to a tasty lunch with cold beers to make it even better.
  • We headed back to Mill Ck and all too soon were berthed back at Dick Tudan's pier. Mike and Maureen headed back to Long Island and Peg and I were about to settle in for a quiet night when Valerie came down to say that we had to come up and have a glass of wine with them. Ah well, one must do what one must do. We had a pleasant evening sitting in the gorgeous salon overlooking the creek chatting about this and thats.

9 June 14; Monday; Mill Ck to Reedy I
  • Onward was underway from Dick's pier by 0530. We made good time and reached the C&D canal by 1230 and had the current with us. On exit, we decided the trip to Cape May was too long and the anchorages at Cohancy R or the Lewes harbor of refuge didn't really add much benefit. So, we put into the anchorage at Reedy I and were settled down by 1530. It was a very quiet night. Nice.

10 June 14; Tuesday; Reedy I to Atlantic City
  • Onward was again underway by 0530. Along the way, we encountered a sailboat that apparently had just exited the Cohancy River anchorage. I called them on VHF and found out it was a Dutch vessel also headed for summer in New England. They said the had taken the dredged channel somewhat cryptically shown on charts with its single green day mark in the middle. They had good depths along this route and said Onward's 6.2' shouldn't be an issue in the transit and there was plenty of depth in the river at the first bend. Perhaps some day I will try this anchorage.
  • We rounded Cape May about 1230 and pressed on for Atlantic City. About an hour before reaching the inlet, fog set in and we made the approach using radar. We had a sleigh ride into the harbor on the incoming tide that added > 3.5 kts to our speed, At the usual anchorage off the USCG station the current was much reduced and we anchored for the night. The fog had lifted once we were in the anchorage but it quickly thickened and remained so for the rest of the night. No light shows from Harrah's due to the fog.

11 June 14; Wednesday; Atlantic City to Atlantic Highlands
  • Onward was again underway by 0530, the fog had lifted somewhat so we could see the inlet but we never did see the immense Revel casino. I made a Securite call on VHF as we were exiting. I got a call back from Dennis Lane who had left Annapolis on Aliva a day ahead of us. It seems they had spent the previous night at Cape May and had gotten in to Atlantic City a few hours before us. He had to put into a marina because the control for his windlass was not working. They had decided not to travel today because of the E wind forecast.
  • I had looked at the forecast and seen that 10 to 12 kts from the E and seas ~ 4' were forecast for the Atlantic between Atlantic City and Sandy Hook. This while not preferred didn't look too bad to Peg and I. Also, it was dead calm in the anchorage and inlet so I thought I could make it to Barnagat before the winds picked up and would have a better wind angle from there on. So, I told Dennis that I would have stayed if I know he and Vivian were there but would now press on.
  • Onward made the turn to the N and we made good speed in the light wind and calm seas. After about an hour, the wind began to build from the E as did the seas. I deployed the mainsail ~ 50% and this steadied the motion. With the traveler full to windward, it actually helped drive us forward with an apparent wind angle of ~ 30º.
  • By ~ 1030, the wind was ~ 14-20 apparent and seas were ~ 3'+. Then, a rogue wave came over the starboard bow and rolled up the cabin top to the dodger where a lot of water managed to get through line access slots at the base of the dodger. There was enough water it slopped over into the open companionway. Peg and I were both astounded but she quickly said she would go below to clean up. Less than a minute later she was back up saying the hatch over the galley had come open and there was a real flood below it.
  • We had missed this happening when the wave came aboard as we were focused on the starboard side. But now I saw the hatch was fully aback. I asked Peg to run the boat while I tried to close the hatch from below. The swivel latch for this hatch had come unglued from the glazing about a month ago. It was closed so well, I had forgotten it was not latched. I had to use the handle of a flyswatter bent into a hook to grab the hatch and pull it closed. I then tied a piece of light line around it to pull it closed and hold it. I pushed some towels into the gap to prevent water from rushing in. That done, I went back to run the boat while Peg went below to do a bit of clean up.
  • This temporary fix didn't hold past the next wave that came over the bow. I realized I had to rig a way to hold it tightly closed and to do this I had to go on deck. So, I put Onward about 180º and donned PFD and clipped on my harness. I cleaned and dried the lip of the hatch and then used strapping tape to seal the gap. I then took a dock line and used it between the handrails on each side of the cabin top to hold the hatch tightly closed. I tied this off to the deck cleat and came back in. It took us more than 45 min to regain the distance lost. But now the hatches were secure.
  • The wind continued to build until we had gusts to ~ 28 kts. But the seas were less confused and we continued to make good if not comfortable progress. Peg was a champ and handled all this with aplomb and strong moral support. Frankly, I would never have done this alone. Maybe I need to be more reticent and not more confident due to her capable presence.
  • We finally got to Barnagatt by ~ 1530 and could bear off 20º to port for a better wind angle and help from the genoa. We set about 50% of the genoa and learned that the wind had also backed so we didn't get much of an improvement in wind angle. Also, I had managed to foul the genoa sheet with the dock line holding down the hatches so I was afraid to put too much tension on it. As the wind backed more, we furled the genoa.
  • It wasn't until we reached sandy hook about 1900 that we coiuld finally bear off enough to get a boost from the main. We flew up the channel and rounded the inner hook just at sunset ~2020. We entered the anchorage behind the breakwater and anchored just before full darkness fell. Whew! This will go to the head of my list of: Do Not Do Agains! I hate that section of the trip the most of any from the Bahamas to Maine. And here I managed to do it under poor conditions. It was good to know that Onward didn't seem to mind.
  • We made some stumphy soup for dinner and crashed.

12 June 14; Thursday; Atlantic Highlands to Manhasset Bay
  • I managed to get up at 0500 to check the tides for the trip up the East River and learned we needed to be underway at 0600. Once we weighed anchor and exited the breakwater, the wind was still out of the E at > 15 kts. So, we set the genoa and had a nice sail across the harbor and under the Verrazanno Bridge in the fog. Luckily ship traffic was low and we had good visibility by the time we had to cross the ship channel. We had to furl the genoa before we got to Governors Island. The fog was still heavy enough that we never were able to see more than the buildings along the shore. NYC looked shorn of its skyscrapers.
  • We reached Hell Gate just about at slack current and had an uneventful transit. We entered Manhasset Bay and anchored in Onward's usual spot. Dyad, the big aluminum motor cat was anchored nearby. While we were below, I heard tapping on the hull and peeked out to see Greg and his son Honis alongside in their dinghy. It turned out they were anchored nearby. I hadn't seen them since last July in Annapolis before they headed to Maine, the Caribbean, and Bahamas on a year's cruise with their two young children. We made plans to get together in the next few days.

13 June 14; Friday; Manhasset Bay
  • We met Mike Yorke at the MBYC for lunch and caught up a bit since they cruised with us in Annapolis.
  • In the evening, we took the water taxi in to the main pier and walked up the hill to the restaurant where Peg's friends were to meet us. These included Leslie and David Wollin. We were early so we sat on a bench in front and enjoyed a glass of whet wine while we watched an approaching thunderstorm. We had a great time over dinner and I got to meet folks who were Peg's neighbors when she lived in Port Washington. The storm had passed by while we were having a good time and David and Leslie drove us back to get the water taxi home to Onward.

14 June 14; Saturday; Manhasset Bay
  • We took the launch in to have lunch with Peg's friends at Lamotta's restaurant. After lunch we did some shopping at the Stop & Shop and headed back to Onward. I decided to take a nap so I would be well rested before going over to the MBYC as guests of the Yorkes for the Sprig Raft Up - where members raft up to the pier and the club provides hors douvres and drinks as well as a buffet dinner. I was woken up from by nap by a voice on VHF saying "help me, help me". Someone then asked what the problem was and the response was that the person was on a boat that had broken away from its mooring and was being carried by the ~15 kt wind through a mooring field. The person calling was most uninformative and it took a while to learn it was right here in Manhasset Bay. The the voice said it was on a 65' motor yacht. Peg then said, there it is, in the MBYC mooring field hung up on another boat. By this time, the MBYC launch and one of the water taxi boats were trying to help. Someone suggested on the radio that the voice put down the anchor and it did. By this time the local patrol boat, Marine 5, was on the way and asking for the exact position. The voice said 200 yards off shore, in the middle. I was a bit exasperated by the voice by this time and got on VHF to tell Marine 5 to head for the MBYC pier and look for a huge power boat with its stern into the wind and obviously not where it should be.
  • We took the water taxi in to MBYC and got to watch the denouement. It seems the yacht had used a single line to tie off to one of the town moorings and in the rising wind, the line had been chafed through by the anchor.
  • Certa Cito was at the pier and we joined Mike and Marueen aboard. I thanked Maureen for the entertainment provided and then learned that the woman sitting next to her was the wife of the MBYC Commodore whose boat and mooring the motor yacht was hung up on. Well, I scraped egg off my face for a while. But Bill, the Commodore, soon arrived to say that damage to his boat was limited to some scuffing of the rub rail but his anchor had carved up the intruder quite a bit. The eventually got the intruder moving under its own power over to the Brewers marina.
  • We had another delightful evening with Mike and Maureen and their friends from MBYC.

15 June 14; Sunday; Manhasset Bay
  • Peg and I took the water taxi ashore to the town pier where her daughter, Lori awaited with grandchildren, Ethan, Madeline, and Christian. We were soon off to their home in Sea Cliff where I got to meet son-in-law Joe (obviously a really good guy, with that name). We had a nice Fathers Day with them and Joe's mom who came over for the cookout. During the visit, we managed to get laundry done.
  • I got to have nice Fathers Day phone conversations with Laura and Joseph.
  • Peg also took me on a driving tour of Sea Cliff -- a charming New England town with a lot of handsome colonial homes and a nice public beach area. I am continually struck by how verdant and lush the area is back East -- so different from the West Coast (and so cold and snowy in the winter to boot). Watching Lori and Joe handle the three children brought back a lot of memories of those years when my family was young and I was much more energetic. Lori returned us to Port Washington where we had an early night in preparation for the excursion to the city in the morning.

16 June 14; Monday; Manhasset Bay
  • We were off on the launch early for our excursion to Manhattan. We walked to the LIRR station where we caught the 9:11 train to Penn Station and then the 2 subway N to the Museum of Natural History. We spent a delightful day in the dinosaur exhibit where I took a number of photos and videos for Elena who is currently enthralled with dinosaurs. We went to the special exhibit on Pterosaurs where I had great fun in an interactive exhibit where they use a Kinetic motion controller to control a CGI visual of a pterosaur flying a diving. Great fun but I didn't manage to catch a fish.
  • After lunch and a bit more exploration we took a taxi so Peg could visit her ophthalmologist where I got to take a nap while waiting. I had hoped to nap a bit on the lawn of Central Park but they had the grass fenced off at the 61st Street area. After the appointment, we walked Lexington Avenue S for a bit to window shop. We stopped in to see the new shop for an Italian yachting sportswear line. I'll have to get son Joseph to take me shopping here so I can better meet his sartorial standards aboard Onward.
  • We took the N train S and at 42nd Street station had a devil of a time in the maze trying to find our way to a connecting line to Penn Station. But we managed. I certainly can't give the NY Metro high marks for ease of navigation. We caught the 1711 train back to Port Washington and were back aboard Onward by 1830
  • I gave the Hurrahs a hail and Tracy, Greg, Honus and Anna came over for a visit. We spent a delightful couple of hours catching up on their cruise: Annapolis - Maine - Norfolk - Salty Dawg to the BVI - then up the island chain to the Bahamas and then back to the E Coast. Their two children have obviously thrived on the experience. Neat!

17 June 14; Tuesday; Manhasset Bay to Oyster Bay
  • It was time to get Venture back in operation before we departed. I had started the outboard soon after we first got here but it ran only a minute or two and would not restart. I noticed the fuel / water separator bowl had a lot of water in it so I thought that might be the problem. So this morning I drained the bowl but I was a bit mystified to find less water in it than I recalled seeing. Then I noticed a pool of fuel and oil in the sump of the dinghy. When I tried to unscrew the rancor fuel filter, it all became clear. The wall of the fuel filter had rusted through causing the fuel leak I had seen in the sump. This also accounted for the motor not starting because the air leak prevented it from being able to suck fuel through the feed hose from the filter. I managed to remove the old filter with my huge channel-lock pliers and after cleaning everything up installed the new filter. The motor started immediately once it had fuel.
  • I cleaned up and then Peg and I Ventured in to get more lemon juice and a rotisserie chicken for dinner. We then headed over to MBYC where Mike and Maureen were waiting in their car to whisk us off to Finn McCool's Pub for a very nice lunch where we got to thank them for their wonderful hospitality and great friendship.
  • As soon as we were back aboard Onward, we decided to get underway as the heat was still oppressive. Once out of Manhasset Bay and heading E on the Sound, the afternoon SW wind came up and we had a very pleasant sail under the genoa E along the Sound and then into the entrance to Oyster Bay where we were headed. We motored in and anchored in the usual spot at the NW corner of the mooring field below unseen Sagamore Hill.
  • I had forgotten the rotisserie chicken we had bought but Peg reminded me of it and we enjoyed it for dinner. We moved on to episode one of Downton Abbey season 2. I very enjoyable way to end a day.

18 June 14; Wednesday; Oyster Bay
  • A beautiful day dawned but warm and still. We Ventured ashore after 1100 to explore the town. This is a place familiar to Peg but only from the aspect of running errands there over the years. I brought Venture into the boat yard dock where we landed last year with the Merlins. I had just read a story about the 50'+ motor yacht, Vendetta, that Billy Joel helped design and had built so he could zip into Manhattan and back at 44 kts -- just the way the Morgans and Vanderbilts used to do in the hay days of the Gold Coast. I took a photo to send to Joseph. As Vendetta is decked out in Raymarine equipment, he has a dream of having a trip aboard with Billy Joel himself.
  • The town was very quiet and very warm. Interestingly they have decorated all trees and poles along the town center streets with rainbow hued fish netting "cozies". We stumbled on a pizzeria that offered the most visually attractive food I've seen in a while. This attracted Peg and I to stop for a lunch of chicken parmigiana sandwiches and a spinach and cheese pinwheel. Delish.
  • We found the R- Hall Museum. This is a colonial era home that belonged to the Townsend family -- of Washington's spy ring fame. In the late 1800s, the original colonial era farm house had been extended and converted into a Victorian mini-mansion. Then, in the 1950s the local DAR had led its conversion (on the street front side) back into the colonial era design.
  • With lunch and our tour done, we went back to Onward where the heat and heavy air induced both of us to sack out in the cockpit. We didn't feel like eating until after 2000 when I sautéed the leftover chicken breasts from last night in olive oil and garlic. When these were done, I then added a can of french style green beans and a can of mushroom caps and sautéed those. Delish. We ate dinner while watching Downton Abbey.

19 June 14; Thursday; Oyster Bay to Cold Spring Harbor
  • The morning was cool and heavily overcast with rain on the way. At 0830, I got Onward underway to make the short move from Oyster Bay to Cold Stream Harbor. By 0930, we had rounded he peninsula and passed close by the sandy beach that is part of the Sagamore Hill National Park. I noticed the boardwalk to the nature trail that leads up to the Teddy Roosevelt house was back in operation after being rebuilt last year. Unfortunately the house is still undergoing renovation and is not open for tours. I had considered taking the dinghy ashore to the beach and hiking to the house. It would be nice if they were to put in a dock for us cruisers.
  • I have never visited Cold Spring Harbor although I believe I have visited the fish hatchery. I anchored Onward at the head of the outer harbor outside of the Beach Club mooring area. Peggy made plans for us to have dinner with friends who live nearby this evening. The rain came and went and there was a good possibility for a dry afternoon to go ashore to visit the historical society and whaling museums.
  • We Ventured ashore and tied up at Pools Marina fuel pier for $5. We walked into the picturesque town and soon stumbled upon a coffee shop where a cappuccino beckoned. While waiting for the barista, a mini blueberry cobbler pie captured me. Peg shared some to help assuage my guilt. Delish. We walked through the town and eventually came upon the Cold Spring Harbor Whaling Museum. We took the audio tour and then watched a video on the whaling ship Charles Morgan produced by Mystic Seaport. A couple of hours later we headed back into town in search of the museum operated by the Long Island Society for the Preservation of Antiquities. We almost missed it as it is located in a former church which looks very much like it is still operating. The current exhibit included furniture and paintings from the early colonial era.
  • As we walked on, we did some window shopping and came across a local boutique that was having a customer appreciation party of sorts. We walked by to visit the park and sit for a while then returned and were greeted with designer martinis. I enjoyed a lavender-infused vodka martin and Peg had a pear nectar based martini. I got involved to help them get a stuck shaker open and we had a fun time.
  • Peg's friends Margaret and Jeff Rueb arrived at 1730 at the restaurant across the road and we walked over to join them. The meeting proved to be convivial from the outset and we enjoyed good conversation along with good food and drink.
  • In the course of dinner, I started talking about my inability to find any remnant of the Louis Comfort Tiffany estate during my visit with the Merlins last year. It turned out that Margaret and Jeff had a home located on land that had been part of the estate. After dinner, they took us on a drive to their home and along the way they showed us what was left of the estate buildings. The original manor house was destroyed in a fire. We got to see the remaining tower that had been part of the power house hidden away in the woods and now incorporated into another estate. Close to the shore, we got to see the minaret that was part of the manor house and its Tiffany windows could be seen gleaming in the sunset. Jeff then drove us by buildings that had been staff quarters and were now part of another estate. We were unable to find int the dark and dense vegetation the still standing arches that marked the path between the manor house and Tiffany's mistress's home nearby. Neat.
  • Margaret and Jeff have a marvelous home with huge rooms overlooking a very private garden and pool. They have a fox whom they feed and he helps managed the squirrel and chipmunk population. We enjoyed more good conversation as we sampled a Goslings sipping rum -- Delish. Jeff delivered us back to Venture and we managed to make our way back to Onward for the completion of a delightful day.
  • 20 June 14; Friday; Cold Spring Harbor to Fishers Island
  • I managed to get up at 0500 and had Onward underway by 0530 heading E toward the E tip of Long Island. Once we rounded Lloyd Neck, we were able to sail on a favorable N wind at 7 - 8 kts. With Peg in charge, my carousing yesterday caught up with me and it was time for an early morning recuperative nap. By 1000, I was moving again and the wind wasn't so it was the iron jenny for the balance of the trip.
  • We put off making a decision on our final destination until we were well down the Sound. One option was Gardiners Bay but we discussed this and decided to go to Fishers Island to anchor for the night in my usual place NE of the entrance to the inner harbor. We anchored about 1900 and enjoyed a nice cool evening.

21 June 14; Saturday; Fishers Island to Greenwich Bay
  • During the night, I came to the realization that I didn't now if my sister, Kathy, was finished with school teaching yet. In any case, I decided that getting to RI on the weekend would give me an opportunity to see my family that I would miss if I headed to Block Island first. So, on waking up I discussed the proposed change in plans with Peg. We weighed anchor on a beautiful crisp morning at ~ 0700 and headed E through Fishers Island Sound. It was so clear, Block Island had never looked so close and large before and we could see Montauk at the same time. As usual, the wind was on the nose. We headed up the West Passage and were anchored in Greenwich Bay off of Godard Park by 1230. I decided to anchor out here until I went in to arrange for a mooring for Onward for the coming weekend when Peg and I were to drive to Lake George for her family reunion.
  • We had a lazy afternoon recovering from our travels, Ha! I provided warnings to friends and family that I'd returned. In late afternoon we Ventured in and took Peg on a walking tour of East Greenwich's Main St. I then took her to Pal's, my favorite local restaurant where both of us had meals we really enjoyed.

22 June 14; Sunday; Greenwich Bay
  • Niece Linda and her husband Leo, picked Peg and I up at 0945 and we headed over to her mom's house where her other sibs were meeting for breakfast. Mary Ann, as always, had whipped up quite a spread for brunch. Peg got inundated with my nieces, nephews, and their children and then filled up with good food. We were really luck that we arrived at the right time and it was a wonderful way to come home and reconnect with my family.
  • We returned to Onward and had a relaxing afternoon until 1630 when we Ventured ashore to meet Kathy and Andy. Then it was off to dinner at Sienna, one of my favorite restaurants here. Peg and I were still recovering from brunch, but had no trouble making short work of our meals. We had a lot of fun talking with Andy about his experiences in writing his book, "My Delusional Mom" for Kindel. Both Peg and I had read it on the trip down LI Sound and quite enjoyed it. We recovered from our meals by driving to Wickford where we took a walking tour.

23 June 14; Monday; Greenwich Cove / EGYC
  • Around 1100, I moved Onward in to EGYC to get a pump-out and also fill all the water tanks. As we tied up, Peter Hayden, a member and friend who was an immense help to me with cursing advice during my first year (2007) came out to the pier to say hello. He is now the Fleet Captain -- I seem to be collecting Fleet Captain friends -- a good thing! We moved onto mooring G44 where Onward will stay for the next week.
  • I spent time looking at options for purchase of a new dinghy. Venture now has so many leaks both new and where old patches are leaking anew I have to re-inflate it every time I get in it. The Hypalon that Apex used was substandard to begin with and so it has just been peeling off and now large sections are just turning into slow leaks. The only way to truly fix it would be to replace the tubes completely. Not a viable option. As much as I hate to do it, it looks like the new dingy route will have to be followed.
  • The morning of activity was followed by lunch, a beer, and then a nap. By ~ 1800 we realized we hadn't taken anything out of the freezer for dinner so we took the launch ashore to have beers at EGYC.
  • We had a delightful time talking to members on the deck as we sipped our beer. First it was Bill who is living aboard his power boat: Black Powder. It turns out he and his wife own a company that makes signaling cannons for yacht clubs. Neat. Peter Hayden then joined us and we got to discuss our cruising plans for a bit. Peg and I walked into town to have a light dinner at the Main Street Grill -- Delish. The launch is now closing down at 2100 now instead of 2200.

24 June 14; Tuesday; Greenwich Cove / EGYC
  • Peg and I had a lazy morning before taking the launch ashore and then walking into town to explore and have lunch.
  • Venture has become much harder to keep inflated. Both the bow and port stern tubes have slow leaks coming from where the surface layer of hypalon has become detached or from around the edges of previous patches. I found that by smearing on a coating of a hypalon compatible adhesive I could significantly reduce but not eliminate the leaks. Taking it to the local inflatable repair guy who fixed the puncture of the bow tube a few years ago isn't a viable idea because the hypalon fabric which apparently was a bad batch to begin with has further degraded to the point I would not feel safe with it another year with my pattern of use and the exposure to ocean conditions. So the economy will get a boost in the near future. Drat!

25 June 14; Wednesday; Greenwich Cove / EGYC
  • We picked up a rental car for a week and then the first order of business was shopping. Peg wanted to get items to take to her family reunion. So we hit Sam's, Target, Harbor Freight, Home Goods, Bed Bath & Beyond, West Marine's relocated store. I bought a new SodaStream carbonator to replace the one that had begun to work unreliably.
  • I took the launch ashore and walked over to the East Greenwich Firemen's Association Club for the monthly dinner of my Chi Phi fraternity brothers. It was great to see a number of good friends from days of yore. One of the many blessings I've gotten to enjoy in my cruising retirement has been these get togethers. This year one of our regular number, Paul Turcotte, died just recently reminding us all of the passage of our lives. Richard Garzilli was also missing as his brother Frank had also just died of a long illness.

26 June 14; Thursday; Greenwich Cove / EGYC; Lake George
  • We decided to get on the road at 0900 to make it a leisurely trip to Lake George. Before departing Onward on the launch, I wanted raise Venture on the arch. I leaned over its starboard stern tube to open the drain plugs and as I stood up, I heard a funny noise. I looked down to see that at the point where my hand had rested, the hypalon fabric had disintegrated and the rubber membrane was bulging out and had many small holes in it. This had been the only one of the 3 tubes that had never had a leak! Now it had failed big time. This confirmed my suspicion that the infamous Apex hypalon fabric had deteriorated to the point where it was not prudent to repair it and use it in open waters.
  • We had a relaxing drive to Lake George. The I remembered that I'd forgotten to pack my meds. It was time for a refill so I was able to get that done at the CVS along the way. We were early so we took a quick driving tour of Lake George Village.
  • Peg rented a huge house overlooking the lake. It didn't have lake access but even better it had a beautiful swimming pool with an observation deck with a bar! After moving our stuff in we check out the general store nearby and were rewarded with the ability to order a fresh-baked blueberry pie for the morning. Peg's sister was next to arrive and we had nice relaxing evening.

27 June 14; Friday; ; Lake George
  • A beautiful sunny morning overlooking Lake George. In the afternoon, the rest of Peg's family began to arrive. By the end of the day there were 11 adults and 8 children in the house with out being crowded. The day was capped off with food, lots of food, including lasagna and eggplant parmigan.

28 June 14; Saturday; Lake George
  • Another fantastic day! We spent it sitting around the pool, swimming, drinking, eating, talking. Peg and I worked in a short tour of the E side of the lake. A steak, burger, and hotdog barbecue finished a great day.

29 June 14; Sunday; Lake George; Greenwich Cove / EGYC
  • It was another gorgeous day! I was up at 0500 and started the task of getting things organized to "check out" at 1000. With 9 adults and 8 children, cleaning up and "moving out" looked to be a herculean task. I started organizing the pool area and soon the mom-squad was in action. It was amazing that by 0945, it was hard to tell that anyone had been in the place. We were ready for inspection when the owners showed up. It went well and I managed to make friends with Marty by offering him the last piece of the blueberry pie. I was able to give Robin some advice on how to treat the counter of their beautiful outdoor bar. So we finished up on very good terms.
  • Before departing I herded cats to get a group family photo for Peg. I had a wonderful time with a group of really great people. It was a joy to see how much joy Peg took in orchestrating the event.
  • On the return trip, we visited the local historical society museum and then went on to drive up Prospect Mountain for an overview of S Lake George. As we drove through Warwick on our return to EGYC, we stopped at my sister's home to say hello and ended up having a relaxing dinner with them.

30 June 14; Monday; Greenwich Cove / EGYC
  • Today was dinghy replacement day. If I had doubts about having to replace Venture, they were removed when I put a hole in the one good tube just by leaning on it. We drove to Defender near New London CT and looked at the large selection of dinghies they had in stock. Given my usage pattern, I wanted another RIB with a bow compartment for stowage of all my misc gear and as a bow step / seat. All of the fiberglass RIBs had much smaller bow compartments that the one on the APEX I needed to replace -- so small as to make they useless for stowage of anything I need for tooling about the Bahamas. The only RIB with a usable bow locker turned out to be the AB 10AL, an aluminum-hulled RIB. Ed Burke told me the Comos had bought one for Comocean and loved it but I didn't think I needed the aluminum hull and its higher cost -- even with the benefit of lighter weight.
  • I still was not happy about the whole idea. Some of it was due to a rather deep affection for Venture and all the adventures we had together. Part was due to paying more for a dinghy than for my first two cars. Having Peg to discuss all this with was very helpful and encouraging.
  • There was no real choice but to buy the AB 10AL. It then became apparent that any idea I had of hauling it back to EGYC by putting it on top of the rental car was clearly delusional. I called Matt from EGYC who had volunteered to help me and he was free to come pick it up in his truck. He soon turned up and we loaded the huge box on his truck and headed back to EGYC. There we slid it off under the EGYC chain hoist. Peg & I then unboxed it and I used my 12V air pump to inflate it to the point where I could easily finish it with the hand pump. After carting the cardboard to the dumpsters, we headed out to get lunch. By this time I was beat so we returned to Onward where I took a nap.
  • A very cranky post-nap Joe, headed off to shore in a temporarily re-inflated Venture. Peg followed by launch. After we launched the new RIB with the chain hoist, I towed it with Venture to the launching ramp where we cleaned all the stuff aboard and transferred it to the new RIB. All of this was a big pain in the back. Having Peg's help was a godsend. We were able to use one of the sailing club's handcarts to take Venture out of the water and deposit it near the dinghy rack to await further disposition. It was after 1800 before we took Venture 2 out for a spin and found it handled nicely. Then it was back to Onward for cocktail hour and an end-of-day crash.