Wanderlust Home and Pet Care
State #3 South Carolina
April 30: We arrive at Beaufort (pronounced Bewfort) shortly after lunch. We find an anchorage close to town. The dinghy drove like a champ. It took a couple of tries to tie up the dinghy- the current just wouldn’t cooperate. We ambled into town with no particular place to go. We sat at the harbor park to watch the swing bridge open for a sail boat. Many of the home date back to the 1800’s. Most are in excellent condition. The gardens are amazing and yet some are a jungle without proper supervision. Many of the front steps were no longer flat due to the moisture content of the soil. We also saw a home where the whole first floor leaned to the left. Wouldn’t do to play marbles in that house. The area was first settled by the spanish in the 1500’s. Rice was the commodity up to the Revolutionary War. That war brought about a change to cotton which in-turn required slavery for profitability.
May 1: We left early in the morning to get to our anchorage in the Church Creek. The 50 miles passed quickly while we listened to Jim Dale’s reading of Harry Potter. We decided to begin with the Harry Potter series because we are familiar with the story line. If the radio starts squawking or Gary and I are discussing the location of the next marker or no wake zone, it is easy to pick up the story. Gary decided to try out the gas grill located at the aft deck. The pizza dough has been in the refrigerator just waiting to be called upon for a glorious meal. He made a regular pepperoni pizza and experimented with a Greek chicken pizza. Both were delicious.
May 2: The weather report showed high winds so we decided to stay put at the anchorage. I was cleaning the mold from the cockpit ceiling and Gary was on the computer when he saw the “crab man” checking on his traps. Gary flagged him down and asked about buying some crabs. For $25 dollars we ended up with half a bushel of blue shelled crabs. He cooked them in batches of 5 and worked diligently to get every piece of crab meat from the shells. He prepared the best crab cakes I have ever had. We have enough for four more meals or $2.50 per serving - not bad!
May 3: We were forced to stay another day. We had to conserve water since we are below half a tank (our tank holds 80 gallons). Between the tides and the wind, the boat was constantly in motion. It was tough sleeping with the crashing of the waves and the howling of the wind. I prayed that the wind would calm down so we could get to Charleston, fill up the water tank, take a hot shower and do some sightseeing while the storm blows out to sea.
May 4: Neither one of us slept well. That’s ok as the wind did calm down enough for us to feel comfortable moving on. The tide was going out which helped improve our travel time. We tried to time our arrival with the 11 am slack tide but we were too anxious to take advantage of 10-15 miles per hour winds. The harbor waves were giving us our rodeo ride but we were experienced boaters and moved through the rough waters with confidence. I washed two days worth of dishes and got a load of clothes in the washer while Gary took his shower up at the office. Then it was my turn to wash away the “camping” grim.
May 5: It’s great weather for ducks. Due to rain we didn’t get off the boat until 11 am. The carrier USS Yorktown is right next door to the marina. We paid for one senior and one adult. HA HA I’ll be a senior soon. We spent 3 hours in the rabbits hole of the ship. It was built in 1943 and named for the Yorktown carrier that was lost while repelling the Japanese fleet at the Battle of Midway in 1942. The ship made it’s picture debuted in the movie Tora! Tora! Tora! We also visited the submarine USS Clamagore. The hatchways were tiny, the rooms were cramped but the torpedoes were huge. We got home just as the rain started. We plotted our course north to the Chesapeake Bay and decided to leave the ICW for the optional route called the Dismal Swamp in North Carolina. The swamp came highly recommended.
May 6: The sun is shining, Yeah! We were at the Fort Sumter tour office at 9 am. We purchased tickets for the 10:45 am tour. We went back to the boat and made lunch to take with us. The ferry ride over was calm compared to our arrival crossing. Construction on the fort began in 1829 due to the War of 1812. The fort was unfinished when the Federal garrison secretly moved in after South Carolina seceded from the Union in December 1860. By March 2, 1861, nearly al Federal forts in the seven seceding states had been seized by the Confederated States of America. General Beauregard demanded the surrender of the fort which was refused. The cannonade began and continued through the next day when General Anderson surrendered. Not one soldier was wounded by enemy fire but this event began a conflict which would end with the deaths of 625,000 U.S. Citizens. After the tour we caught the trolley into Charleston. We enjoyed walking the cobbled stoned streets with some of the building dating back to 1670. We sat in the shade of the Magnolia trees at the boardwalk park. Before heading back we stopped to partake of southern cuisine. I had a glass of wine and hush puppies while Gary ordered a dozen raw oysters, hush puppies and beer. We also came across a candy store selling pralines which we purchased for later. Yummmmmmmm.
Captain’s Log: Candy has learned so much in the last few weeks that I can say her learning curve has finally flattened out. We both now enjoy the boating experience. The hands-free headsets really help communications. We still refer to our checklists. However, we now listen to books on tape - something impossible a few ports ago. We are still getting used to climbing into bed, rationing water at anchor, and watching for the red light that says we need to pump out the holding tank. However, now we get to tour the various towns and take some snapshots. This is more like what we expected to do. I still need practice with the winds and current. I’m sure I’ll get the hang of it soon.
May 7: We left Charleston about 7 am on slack tide and calm winds. We have a longer traveling day (63 miles) to make up for time lost with repairs and weather. The route is very straight and we meet very few boaters. I don’t think we ever have a day when we don’t see dolphins. Today was special. One came along side the boat for a massage and stayed there long enough to have his or her picture taken. I didn’t remember to use the sport setting so the focus isn’t as good as it could have been. I was just too excited. We anchored at Georgetown S.C. A small storm came through to wash the boat.
May 8: It was another beautiful but cool morning. It’s been good sleeping weather. The flora along the water has changed from the marsh & grass landscape to large/tall pine and deciduous trees. Myrtle Beach and the surrounding areas were very commercial similar to Florida. We anchored just off the ICW with two other boats. We are very close to the border of North and South Carolina according to the chart. By dinner time we had accumulated three more boats plus plenty of traffic.