Shore Leave

Monday August 20, 2012

After spending basically three full days on the boat (besides the 10 minutes last night to empty our trash) we were finally given shore leave when Matt’s mom & stepdad had driven across the state to bring us a handful of packages that had come after we left and also to be our personal chauffer’s while we ran errands around town. Matt dug into his box of new shackles with the same excitement I dug into the hats and gloves that were brought for us to keep warm on those cold night shifts. And big excitement for both of us, the satellite phone. Imagine a Zack Morris cell phone and that’s the kind of size we were dealing with, but it was still exciting nontheless.

 After looking through our goodies we listed off the stops we needed to make: West Marine for a new flag pole and other boat hardware, Home Depot for the flag plus more hardware, and finally Meijer to fill our fridge back up and some Neosporin to take care of some nasty bilsters I’d received while hiking around Mackinac Island. All three stops were taken care of in less than two hours and then it was time for lunch. Not that we’ve been eating bad on the boat, in fact we’ve been eating remarkably well, but the fast food cravings were setting in and we both wanted something terribly bad for us. Checking on the GPS and finding there was a Five Guys only a few miles away we stopped there and I loaded up my burger with all the free toppings while chugging down the sugary sweetness of a fountain drink. Let’s just say that our own homemade soda making machine we have on board has a few kinks to be worked out and can’t yet compare to the real thing.

With no other stops to make we were brought back to the park that housed our anchorage and said our good-byes for a second time. To Chris’ credit she didn’t cry this time and if I remember right, didn’t even stand at the dock to watch us get out of sight before hopping in the car and cruising away. I may have seen something on Facebook later that day where she mentioned it wasn’t as bad for her now knowing that we had survived a week and were doing well, so I’ll leave it at that. But while I’m on the topic, a HUGE HUGE thanks needs to go out to Chris and Jack. Not only for taking time out of their day to drive 5 hours round trip just to be our taxi drivers for the day and then take us out to lunch (yes, I did see the money you slipped in that envelope, you really didn’t have to) but also for letting us take over their home for 14 months while we scraped and saved to be able to take this trip. Giving us free room and board and the occasional chicken casserole means more than you’ll ever know, thank you so much!

Back on the boat it was still early afternoon but I only had one thing on my mind at that was an internet connection. This was the first time I had a quality connection since our last day at home since the wifi at Mackinac was terribly slow and barely allowed me to do anything. Here I was free to check my Facebook, e-mail, and finally upload photos to the blog. I was in heaven. Taking a little break in the afternoon I made banana bread from scratch with a few over-ripened bananas in our pantry (yes, I know it’s bad luck to have bananas aboard) and it came out so well that I can’t wait to make it again and again. Then back to more internet and a movie. By the end of the day I was exhausted but finally felt like I got a few things accomplished. Good thing because we back on the move tomorrow and navigating rivers doesn’t leave time for much else.

Matt’s mom caught us in a half wave while leaving.

I’m turning into a regular Betty Crocker.

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