16 November 2021: Carolina On My Mind
16 November 2021
Great Bridge Bridge, VA, USA
North River, NC, USA
Cumulative Mileage (NM)
Crew on Board
Skipper, first mate, chef, entertainment and more; I guess that is solo sailing for you!
GENERAL WEATHER OBSERVATIONS
15 knots off the port forward quarter
Sun, glorious sun!
Balmy for this time of year
Dry, thank goodness!
After spending a few days at Great Bridge Bridge while some windy weather passed, it was time to keep moving.
I had gotten to spend a few days with Michael and Amber and family. And it was so relaxing to be tied to a dock and get to step off the boat any time you wanted. We also had SV Windy, with Jay and Jialin, tie up behind me so it was a really social couple of days. A big change for me who normally stayed confined on the boat and could not justify time for many fun activities while the mere sight of my to do list overwhelmed me.
I pushed off the dock ten minutes before the scheduled bridge opening and radioed the operator to let him know. The reviews on Active Captain made it clear that they would not open for boats ‘queuing’ while tied to the dock. It was very easy to hold position while I waited as a light current opposed me, so idling just barely in gear help me nearly perfectly in place while I put away lines and fenders.
Both me and SV Islay were headed for the North River anchorage.
I hoped it would be another uneventful engine day as this was a much further distance to check our fuel lift pump fix. And much to my pleasant surprise, I had no dramas. What could have been a huge stressor and long-term fix staying in one place, ordering parts, finding out they were wrong or that you had no correctly diagnosed the problem, and trying again – instead, was a swift fix with my incredible team. I was so lucky to have Mike, the old owner, who knew this boat inside and out. And while normally I listen to other cruisers opinions with a grain of salt (there are a lot who just talk to talk and do not actually have any expertise in the topic), with Michael getting the Jamie seal of approval, I was happy to place my trust in his opinion. And I certainly benefited from trusting the right source. Not to mention, he did not just fix my engine but made sure I was a part of it. He taught me a few other things too as he poked through the boat while I worked on the engine. I was unendingly grateful!
As I neared the anchorage, I got a text message from old owner – Mike – sending me a link to a song called ‘Carolina On My Mind‘. He must have been looking at the AIS, but I explained that I was not yet crossing the border, maybe tomorrow. And he confirmed that the anchorage I was headed to was in fact in North Carolina. I guess I’d be knocking off my 7th state very shortly! Some passage planning, my Garmin and OpenCPN maps sure do not emphasize state lines. I sure did love though how Mike got to be a part of the adventure and I put the song he sent me on blast on the Bluetooth speakers.
A perfect soundtrack as I pulled up next to SV Islay to drop the anchor and spend the night before departing the next morning!
“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
– Albert Einstein