August Visitations

August was a social month full of visits with family and friends. Sundance and her crew enjoyed a lively New England farewell tour.

In Cushing Maine our friends Deb and Doug Morgan hosted us once again to a delicious dinner on their deck while Sundance bobbed below on their mooring in beautiful Davis Cove. As luck would have it, the family we purchased Sundance from nine years ago happen to live two doors down from the Morgans. Deb somehow managed to figure this fact out and organized a visit for us all on her deck. We were total strangers to each other, but the one boat we had in common was hugely important to all of us and and that provided a powerful bond. Sitting there looking out at her and trading stories of our formative experiences aboard was pretty intense. Something like meeting long lost siblings that we never knew we had.

Meeting the Wood family, previous owners of Sundance.

Soon after Cushing, we made a stop in Portsmouth, NH to attend a family wedding. (Congratulations William and Christina!) The wedding venue, The Wentworth Hotel, also has a marina where we tied up. How convenient! The wedding had been delayed for two years by the pandemic and it was great to finally catch up with family that we hadn’t seen in a long while. While in Portsmouth, we rented a car for some provisioning and logistics. Booze, propane, food, we bought it all.

The rental car also kept us from looking like boat-bums at the wedding. We don’t have room aboard for appropriate wedding clothes and shoes. Luckily, dear friends Alex and Josh have agreed to hold a bag of wedding/funeral clothes for us. The idea is that we’ll return from wherever we are, presumably by plane to Logan, go to their place in Boston, bathe, dress in our finery, and then make our way to whatever local wedding or funeral we want to attend. The best part is that in addition to the wedding and the funeral, we also get a built in bonus visit with Alex and Josh! This was our trial run and it went swimmingly. We ended up meeting them at their house in Cape Elizabeth Maine instead of Boston on this occasion, and our bag of clothes was there waiting for us. (Unfortunately, I forgot to put my dress shirt back in that bag. That’s going to be a problem at the next wedding/funeral.)

That car also enabled a day trip to Mt. Monadnock for my annual climb and a visit with my parents and a swim in Dublin Lake. Then the car took us back to Maine to catch up with old Brookline friends and check out their new places, both in Kittery. Next the car became a storage locker. Son, Nate, happened to be passing through Portsmouth and stayed overnight aboard the boat with us. We made a place for him to sleep by moving half our gear out of the forward cabin and into the truck of the rental car.

Somehow, my camera stayed stuck in my pocket during all this time and I have no photos to share.

From Portsmouth, we sailed straight to P-town. I took a ferry from there to Boston to see my friend Anna become a US Citizen in Faneuil Hall. What a cool ceremony. Welcome to America, Anna. (And thank you to old friend Lewis for hosting me in town for this visit.)

After Anna’s big milestone, we had one of our own: Our final transit of the Cape Cod Canal. Along the route from Canada to The Bahamas, I’d say there is no more significant milestone than the Cape Cod Canal. The water and sea and landscape are just so different on either side of that short canal.

Alex in command

Lots of friends welcomed us on the other side of the canal. During our week in Cuttyhunk, Adam and Cindy stopped by. As did Ben & Kat. We saw the smoke from the Mattapoisett Boatyard Fire while on Cuttyhunk and that made for both a figurative and literal dark cloud. The Mattapoisett Boatyard was was home to Sundance for 7 years. (And home to Fearless for many years as well.) Our heart goes out to all of the Mattapoisett Boatyard community.

Ben and Kat on S/Y Balara enjoyed a beach day (or two?) with us on Cuttyhunk. We’re all smiles before the cause of the smoke on the horizon was identified.

In Edgartown, we visited with Nick & Victoria, and then later with Emily & Ryan, all from Alex’s professional past.

E & R’s daughters, Ellie and Sidney, enjoyed rowing lessons, and a boat tour. Of particular interest was the foot pump at the galley sink.

And then on to Naushon

The new American and her family aboard the S/Y Tyee hustled down through the canal after us for a meet up in Kettle Cove
Sailing Red Stripe in Kettle Cove. Photo credit to Anna, the new American
I once wrote a school application essay about the schooner Shenandoah, and I consider her a friend too. She also came to visit in Kettle Cove.

Then Menemsha

Finally, it was the Hogans: Jenny, Jo, Max and Mabel. Jenny delivered twins two years ago and we had yet to meet these children. We tried to see them in Oregon–twice. But both times the pandemic blocked us. In a parallel to the family wedding earlier in the month, the pandemic had caused a two year delay. But also like the wedding, this time, family won. We met in Menemsha.

The Hogans found us in Menemsha and together we made a trip out to Gay Head Light.

June, July and August were the prologue. We slowly visited familiar spots in Southern New England, leaving a track behind us that looks like a rat’s nest. This place and these people are the foundation for the new places and people that will come next. It was important to stop and see as many of them as we could before pointing the bow toward new waters.

Sundance has a bone in her teeth as we blast out of New England.

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