Day 186, Year 10: We Made It
Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Weather: Overcast, 70’s F, Winds SE to SW 10
Latitude: 33 51.735 N
Longitude: 078 38.287 W
Location: Lightkeepers Marina, Little River, SC
Miles Traveled: 82 nm

There was some question yesterday as to whether or not the wind would come around and allow us to make the speed necessary to come in today. But it did and we are here. Hurray! Little River has become our second home and it feels great to be here. It is still totally overcast, but the rain we had overnight and into the morning is now gone. At least Windbird got washed off before coming into port. When we called James here at the marina this morning, he told us we would be in the slip next to Sea Turtle. Lynda and Lee will arrive tomorrow after what I’m sure feels like an eternity in the Waterway. It took us 5 days to the minute from Palm Beach to here offshore and that included going into Cumberland Island to duck out of the weather on Saturday night. Sea Turtle left Palm Beach a week before us and it will be 13 days by the time they get here tomorrow. It is a much longer trip, but at least in the Waterway, you can continue when the weather turns against you and know that you will be safe. We’re already thinking about our departure from here going home to Cape Cod, and we’re pretty sure we’ll do the 7 days in the Intracoastal from here to Norfolk just to avoid Cape Hatteras. Hopefully we will then get to go outside at Norfolk. But, no worries about that just yet. My sister Patsy is coming to get us in just a few minutes and we’ll have dinner together and catch up on what has been happening in their lives over the past three and a half months since we left here. We can’t wait to spend time with Patsy and Joe.

I spent much of my day recording trip statistics for our “Winter 2015 Adventure”. We traveled a little more than 2,250 miles from here to Florida to the Bahamas and back to here. The downside is that we were only able to sail 20 percent of the time. That is an all-time low for us. And our overall speed was only 5.2 knots. This is also an all-time low for Windbird. Our average speed is almost always 5.5 knots and we usually sail at least 50 per cent of the time. Highlights for the winter all involved getting together with family and friends in warm and beautiful places. We enjoyed our visits with Sue and Brad in Boynton Beach and our visit to the West Coast of Florida to visit with Mark’s family. We also got to visit with some of our New Hampshire friends. We had lunch with Alan and Helaine Kanegsberg in Fort Myers and we had a great time with Tom and Detta Porat when they visited us in Coconut Grove. And then there were those ‘Fab Five’ days we spent with our friends Kevin and Claire aboard in the Exumas. Everything was just perfect for the entire time they were with us and it was by far the best week we had in the Bahamas. One of the grandest treats of all was getting to be in anchorages with Constance once again. The last time we cruised together was in Madagascar in 2010, so it was a real treat when we sailed into Black Point and anchored next to Ed and Lynne and then sailed to Cambridge Cay with them. All glorious and fun times. There were definitely battles with the weather, battles with boat issues, and battles with trying to meet time deadlines with Mark’s cancer treatment schedule. But when I close my eyes and think about the winter, all I can see is the clear, blue water of the Bahamas and fantastic fish that we saw while snorkeling. So it was well worth the 2,250 miles and untold gallons of diesel.

150414 Day 186 Little River, USA–Windbird Returns to Lightkeepers, Turtles
Day 187, Year 10: Boat Work Day
Day 185, Year 10: Slow Go with a Late Day Ray of Hope