Thursday morning we filled our water tanks and dropped off our Garbage at Brewer’s Marina before leaving South Freeport in a little fog, and had a good trip over to Jewell Island, beating the predicted rain. There were 5 other boats there already, so we anchored at the back of the line, still sheltered in the little cove, with only a little wrap-around swell from the point to the west. To the east it was blue sky with a few clouds. To our west, coming from the mainland (off Portland), there was fog and rain heading toward us. It finally reached us in the afternoon, but then it cleared again, stuff dried out, and we were able to eat out in the cockpit. We watched the sun set and the full moon rise, and Dave pointed out Venus, Jupiter and Mars on the ecliptic with the moon.
Friday morning was beautiful and I even got to do yoga on the bow walkway. We set out for Saco mid morning. There were some 6 foot ocean swells, but the weather stayed clear and we picked up a mooring at Saco mid afternoon. We did a little cleaning inside and out then enjoyed the warm weather (no overshirts needed!) and nice breeze up in the tramp. My friend Heidi was able to join us aboard for an early evening drink before heading out to a friend’s birthday dinner. The four of us took her ashore and headed to dinner ourselves at Huot’s. The rain even held off until after our return, and the thunderstorms stayed away from us.
This morning was another beautiful morning (Saturday). With a long ride ahead of us to our home dock, and thunderstorms forecast for this afternoon, we dropped the mooring and set off by 8am, having breakfast while underway. Initially we had 4-5 foot swells, but those have since dropped to 2-3 feet, and we’ve had mostly sunny skies. At one point we briefly entered a low fog bank, so our driving visibility was limited, but the sun was shining overhead!
In about an hour we should make Pepperel Cove where Mom & I will go ashore to get the car and bring it around to the boat launch at Traip Academy to meet the boys. Then we’ll start the business of sorting stuff and going ashore.
Or maybe we’ll leave the sorting for tomorrow and go get dinner at Warren’s 😉
This trip may be coming to and end, but I’m not done blogging. There will be more (shorter) excursions on Lady this season. I will also continue posting at least weekly while we’re ashore over the fall and winter months. There’s more to ‘life on Lady’ than actually being aboard her 😊.
When the weather is nice I want to share the amazing scenery and our fabulous experiences. However, I hope I’ve been reasonably representing some of the challenges of being aboard for 3+ weeks, which is easier to do when the weather is less than ideal.
My friend Courtney posted some ‘reality’ pictures on Facebook the other day- no makeup, clutter, crying child- the stuff we rarely see on FB. It inspired me to do the same here in pictures. Unfortunately, I cleaned just a couple of days ago, so Lady’s looked worse than what follows. It’s challenging to capture how dirty and cluttered this boat can get with four people aboard. Just keep in mind that (a) the exterior is bright white when she’s clean, (b) the interior salon/galley space is about 15′ x 8′, and (c) the cabins are 7.5′ x 8.5′.
I mentioned in another post that we hold 160 gallons of water on board. We have purchased a water maker which Dave will install when we return. So until then we have what we have and fill up when we can. So we are frugal in a couple of ways (sometimes more than we need to be; I worry about running out). Our galley sink has a valve to run either salt water or fresh water. So we wash our dishes with salt water and dish soap, then give them a final rinse with fresh water. Sometimes we do that for our ‘showers’ if we know we can’t refill our fresh water for a while. Our heads (boat word for bathrooms) only have fresh water, so if the ocean water temp is 65F or more (that’s warm for Maine) we’ll don our swimsuits, jump in and soap up with an ocean-friendly soap, rinse it off, then use the fresh water rinse hose on our starboard stern. Fortunately we have water heaters, so the rinse is warm!
Which leads me to electricity…
One thing I like about living on a boat is the reduced footprint. We are solar electric, which greatly reduces our use of fossil fuels. We only have to run the diesel generators (which charge the batteries that run the electric motors) when we travel more than 20-30 miles at a pop, or if we want to go faster than 5 knots, or if we’re traveling into head seas (waves & wind in our face). When we’re stationary, the solar panels keep the batteries charged nicely. We can run a coffee maker, a bread maker, an instant pot, a microwave, charge our electronics, run power tools, etc.- just not all at once 😉.
At least when it rains in the Caribbean, it’s still warm. Not so in Maine. The air temp might be 62F right now, with rain and an easterly wind (so coming across the even cooler ocean). Dave and Dad don’t seem to mind so much. Mom & I are holed up inside with all hatches & portholes closed save one small one that, for now, the rain isn’t coming through. It feels more like April or early May rather than July.
I know I’ve posted a bunch of idyllic pictures of the Maine coast and islands with the sun shining. And I know there has been a long hot and humid stretch for you all back on land. But we’ve been in long pants and chamois or fleece almost every day, especially when we’re underway, and certainly every evening. Our on-the-water temps have averaged high 60s-low 70s. When we go ashore on the mainland we can feel the heat, and we shed layers quickly. Even the interior of an island is a little warmer, but as soon as we’re back aboard we break out the warm clothes.
Wow, it’s been four days since I last posted. That’s because of the poor to zero cell coverage areas we’ve been in. Last post, we were passing a rainy day in Pulpit Harbor. From there we went back to Tenants Harbor for Wednesday night. This was our last stop that would allow us to refill our water tanks, so we did a few loads of laundry again. We sprung the $30 mooring fee that also bought us the right to use their on-shore showers. Oh luxury! We now have 160 gallons of water to last the four of us 11 days. I’ll leave you to do the math on that one. (Dave says that’s a luxury for most boats, or as my Mom said a luxury in some countries. Perspective.)
From Tenants we went to Monhegan Island, meeting up with our cousins from Bremen who came in on their sailboat. Gorgeous! Amazing! Beautiful! Unexpected! I expected a rougher lobstering community, and what I found was a community of lobstering/artististry/summer folk, with a lot of pride in their history. They have a fabulous little museum that documents the thousands-year history of the island, and they had an art display in honor of the 50th anniversary of their art association (although artists have been coming to Monhegan for about 150 years). We walked around a bit, enjoying the phenomenal landscapes, stopping into the little shops and a couple of galleries. The guy who bought Dave’s old boat, Michael Brossard, owns the Island Inn there. He met us when we arrived, and spent some time talking with us about the island, island life, the inn, etc. We had dinner at the inn- splendid (and Michael covered our desserts)! We (minus me) spent Friday morning walking some more (I was not feeling well). We set out for our next stop around lunch time, having lunch underway.
Manana Island from the lighthouse/museum
Museum (formerly the lighthouse keeper’s house)
Town from the harbor
Town from Fish Beach
Friday night we pulled into Damariscove Island and even found a mooring. This is a popular, narrow cove, with dicey anchoring, so we got lucky with the mooring. I stopped counting at 8 boats in this little area. My folks and Dave went for a walk while I snoozed in the hammock, catching the breeze to help reduce my fever (that and ibuprofen did the trick). We all slept soundly last night, and here we are on Saturday morning, watching the sun try to break through the morning fog and start to dry out the heavy, rain-like dew that covered the boat last night.