Tuesday, October 30, 2012

I thought the last motel I wrote about pretty much took the prize, but the adventure continues. The next night, we rolled into a motel in Christiansburg, Virginia, and the sign outside said "Welcome, Hokie Lovers."  Never did figure out what that meant. After supper across the road at a Cracker Barrel restaurant (vegetables so overcooked they just dripped through the fork, gray mashed potatoes, no alcohol), we ran back across the highway and flopped on the nice big bed to watch tv. I thought I'd wash my face, which was when we found out there was no hot water. We ended up packing up and changing rooms.

Next, a full day of Interstate 84, 81 and 77 at 70 miles an hour. I find that wearing. We opted to round out our motel extravaganza at Eulonia, Georgia. Had a lovely chat with Linda at the desk (she raised five babies, her own and her grandkids, and then a looong tale about the youngest and his pregnant girlfriend and the wedding which just wasn't happening). She coughed up a senior's discount (they were desperate - we were the only guests) and sent us down to Room 129, which, it turns out, was not made up. Back to the desk, and on to room 121. 

We thought it was kind of smelly, but left the door open and took chairs outside to enjoy the sunshine. By dark, we were inside and with our eyes stinging and throats closing up, Randy was speculating about sleeping in the car. I found Linda again, and it was back to Room 129. Turns out, the place had been closed up, leaking and marinating for five years, and they'd just opened up 121. The place should just be bulldozed. The interior doors didn't close, and the sheets wouldn't stay on the beds. Soon as we lay down, the bottom sheet popped off the mattress. We were gone at dawn. 

Okay, enough. We are now very comfortably placed in Green Cove Springs Inn. Very clean, very pleasant, and we're figuring out how to feed ourselves without a kitchen. Buying packaged food I would never consider at home, full of chemicals and wrapped and packaged to the nth degree. So much garbage involved. I bought a loaf of multigrain bread that has 62 ingredients listed on the package! WTF?!!

We've visited Nancy Dawson twice, and they're moving her to the work yard this afternoon. No big surprises - lots of dirt, flaking varnish and paint. I was up the mast this morning in the cold wind to disconnect the triatic stay and the wind generator. I'm assuming that's the last time I'm going to be doing that. Masts will come out for repair to the mizzen, and lots of sanding and varnishing to follow. 

I'll post photos when work commences. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

We are On The Road Again. Left Lake Annis on Wednesday, and Randy immediately started arguing with Samantha, our new GPS. Samantha has been really helpful in the last few days, but she has some strange ideas about obscure back roads. 

We managed to get to Digby and celebrate Randy's mum's 89th birthday over a lovely lunch with champagne. Then onto the ferry and dinner in New Brunswick with friends Bill and Janet. Good wine, fabulous roast beef dinner, and lots of talk with people who understand about boats, living on boats, and what selling your boat can do to your brain. It was a most restful and encouraging stop. 

(Samantha the GPS had trouble in New Brunswick too. The highway has been twinned, and moved a bit east. Sam kept suggesting that we MOVE TO THE HIGHLIGHT...MOVE TO THE HIGHLIGHT. As far as she was concerned, we were ploughing through the woods. It's a relationship that is only slowly gaining in trust.) 

Lovely drive through Maine. I could do that for a few weeks. A bit of Perry's Nut House, a bit of yummy shopping in Camden, and then on to NH for stocking up on wine and rum. Five bottles of really nice wine, and a handle jug of Goslings, all for $65 bucks. Very cheering.  

Last night, after another bit of a tussle with Sam, we meandered from NH to Mass and back again before we landed at a Red Roof Inn (cheap!clean!) in Salem. The fellas in the room next door had their bbq set up, and were heating a can of beans and charring some sort of meat next to their truck, which looked like a rolling toolbox/laundry hamper/garbage dump. Through the open door to their room, I had the impression that the floor was awash with dirty white socks. We shared polite greetings, went inside and shut the door, and found we could still hear their belches. That's entertainment! We had a lovely sleep under the blinking green light of the smoke detector, and I couldn't help but think that it signified that the security camera was on, and watching. 

This morning, we happily bypassed Boston to the sounds of the William Tell overture on NPR. Made reference to Bugs Bunny. 

Tonight, we're in Hazleton, Pennsylvania. The saddest Ramada Inn in the universe (cheap! nasty! the room smells like smoke and the cleaning stuff used to get rid of smoke smell! landscaped with dead plants all round!), and a nearby mall that should be called the Double Dismal Discount Dump. But we got a roasted chicken, some bread, and with the lovely wine we got yesterday in NH, made a rather nice picnic while we watched TV. Lots of news about Hurricane Sandy, otherwise, nothing on. Best option? M*A*S*H*. It was ever thus. We'll get south before Sandy comes ashore, and it looks like she's passed Florida without much damage. 

Next update, Florida, and a reunion with Nancy Dawson. 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

We're getting ready to leave for Florida to work on the boat. It's a familiar process involving lots of lists. This time, no bikinis, but lots of tools, paintbrushes, and work clothes going in the car.  Randy's hand is sufficiently recovered, and while we're not looking forward to all the work, we're pretty good at it after all these years, and we are looking forward to seeing the boat looking more like herself. I'll post photos and updates as work progresses.  Looking forward too to showing her to prospective buyers. Time for her to be back in the water.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

This pretty much epitomizes a lot of what's gone on in the last couple of months. Good food with good friends (and family). Here's Randy enjoying a fabulous feed of mussels at a brasserie in Halifax. 

Tara and Stewart visited from the Isle of Wight, and we all visited the  newly-refit Bluenose in Lunenburg. She's awaiting her mast and a few other bits and bobs, but looking wonderful. 

The weather mostly cooperated for their visit and they explored  LA in style.

Walkies in the woods (with Tom! Tom is back from Brazil!)

And he brought back some very snazzy dance moves. Here, Laurie learns Forro.

Cliffs, fields, water.

And wind. Do not go too close to the edge.

Hunting for the falls in Meteghan.

Smugglers Cove. No smugglers.

We hoped that one hunter orange hat would protect us all.

Thanksgiving with family and neighbours and lots and lots of food.

Tara and Stewart try out Nova Scotia pub food and beer.

The weather was warm enough to row and SWIM. 

This is Tara, not me. 

A visit from the vererable and beloved Cadenheads.

Alice and Comer have an exceptional Port Maitland beach experience. Comer ran about ten miles.

But we got the fish and chips.

There were many beautiful morning rows, which I miss. We took the boats out of the water last week after many days of heavy wind. 

Happy visiting doggy. PM beach is a very good reason to have a dog. 

Prepping for one of my last morning rows. Pretty chilly. 

Click to see this bigger - the little black bit to the left of the rock is a big black bear we saw on a hike at the Keji adjunct park on the south shore. 

Photos above are more from Keji park. 

"New" boat gets wet, temporarily before it's trucked around to our driveway. One of Randy's winter projects.

Launch crew

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