Blow the Man Down

  • Come all ye young fellows that follows the sea
    • To me, way hey, blow the man down
  • Now please pay attention and listen to me
    • Give me some time to blow the man down

This is the start of a song that I learned, I guess, in elementary school. Why we would learn a Sea Shanty, I don’t know. It’s possible I learned it somewhere else, but I also remember singing a song about Noah’s Ark at a “choral concert” in elementary school, so I’m thinking that’s where you learn weird songs. It’s not lost on me that I can remember all the words to “Blow the Man Down” but still am unable to determine miles per gallon on a car. Thank goodness, I don’t own one anymore. Sure, it’s embarrassing to admit, but as I often told my students’ parents, everyone has their strengths. Mine is NOT math.

But I digress. This sea shanty has been flowing freely through my head for a few days now, oddly corresponding to our arrival on Jekyll Island, GA. We were to stay for two days because of a pending storm, but had to extend two additional days due to high winds (sustained at 30 mph) and waves (average 3-4 feet). I enjoy the gentle rocking of living on a boat, but it has become an act of survival to get to the bathroom lately. Have you ever attempted to shower in those conditions?

That reminds me, when I was a kid and still took baths, my mom used to wash my hair in the utility sink in our basement. I never thought about it much back then, but really, what was that all about?

But I digress. Nautical Dreamer has two showers. One is small, the other is only useful if you are a body builder with baby feet. The base of the shower is so small you would not be able to turn around and the top is quite wide. It’s so wide, in fact, that you wouldn’t be able to reach the shower head to wash and would need to hold it in your hand the whole time. Forget trying to wash your feet, you can’t bend over. Forget about changing your mind. You’d have to step outside the shower to do that. (I got a million of ‘em, folks.) I tell you this, because although by “normal” standards our master shower is tiny, compared to the other shower, its luxurious. You can bend over and wash between your toes. You can also get your hair washed and shave your legs. There is a nice new shower head that allows for adjusting of the water pressure and our soap dispenser hangs on the wall to allow for more room. Sounds like a five-star hotel, right? I admit that you do have a noise, though. For the water to go down the drain, the drain  pump must be on. It’s quite noisy, but it’s a necessity.

Being that it was difficult to walk on the boat with the wind, waves, and what not, you would think we might skip a day in the shower. Especially since we weren’t sweating or anything. Heck, it was cold enough to have the heat on this morning. The boat’s almost airtight, but this morning when I opened the cabinet where the coffee mugs were, the wind just blew right through. The other cabinets were okay. I don’t know what it is about that coffee mug cabinet. Maybe it’s a poltergeist.

But I digress. I felt the need to shower today because we were heading out for several days of anchoring. As I’ve mentioned before in a previous post (I don’t remember which one and am too lazy to check, so you’ll have to scroll through them if you missed that one), we have had problems with our water tank before. Mostly through our own stupidity, but well, that doesn’t mean it can’t happen again. So, I wanted to shower just in case it was my last for a few days. Also, when in a marina, I tend to take longer showers because I know I have unlimited water, and who wouldn’t like that?

We are on a long dock that is exposed to the wakes of any boat flying by. We aren’t sheltered at all here.

The pier in a quieter time.
The pier in a quieter time.

Add to that the wind pushing us against the dock so forcefully that it deflated one of our fenders

Those fenders are normally 10 inches in diameter.
Those fenders are normally 10 inches in diameter.

and the waves so strong that foam was flying up onto the dock and you can see what a challenge it was going to be just to get in a good shower. The compactness of the shower did come in handy, allowing me to brace one foot on the outside wall and the other at the base of the built-in seat. (Yes! We have a built-in teak seat!) You would think I would use the seat for easy access to shaving my legs. And I did. But did I think to sit down and shave? Why, no. No I didn’t. I put my foot on the seat and proceeded. Luckily, I did not cut myself as the boat, and me and my razor, shifted backward. Most of the time, though, I did alright in there. I did have some trouble with drainage, however. The boat was more apt to lean toward the port side as it slammed into the dock. This meant that the water was not getting to the drain as readily as it should. I didn’t realize it until halfway in. By then water had escaped onto the bath mat outside the shower. Once I realized it, I took to pushing the water toward the drain with my foot while I was soaping, scrubbing, and rinsing. As klutzy as I am, I’m shocked I didn’t lose my balance and flip right out the shower door.  Things turned out okay. I’m clean head to toe and since I showered before Rick did I didn’t have to wring out the bath mat. I’m a lucky gal.

All this leads me to our revised itinerary.

  • Sunday, May 7, 2017: Leave Jekyll Harbor Marina for an anchorage at Tom Creek, GA.
  • Monday, May 8, 2017: Anchor out at Beaufort, SC.
  • Tuesday, May 9, 2017: We will stay at the St. Johns Yacht Harbor in Charleston, SC.
  • Wednesday, May 10, 2017: Anchor at Sugar Mill near Georgetown, SC.
  • Thursday, May 11, 2017: Stay at the Myrtle Beach Yacht Club in Myrtle Beach, SC.
  • Friday, May 12, 2017: Arrive at Port City Marina in Wilmington, NC.
  • Now, come on! Join in!

Come all ye young fellows that follows the sea…no? Oh, alright.


Hanging Out in Jacksonville Another Day

We were supposed to leave today. But here’s the thing. Rick was worried about shoaling through the waterway. We thought we might just suck it up and go offshore, but the waves were predicted to be 5-6 feet. As our friend, Charlie Campbell, always says, “whatever the weather service says, double it.” So that wasn’t happening for us.

Shoaling isn’t necessarily an issue provided you keep an eye out and go slowly. But storms were coming and we were worried we get caught before we reached our first destination. So here we sit. It gave Rick time to research the shoaling. So maybe he will sleep tonight. It gave me time to nurse a sinus headache that won’t go away. I’d like to thank the Wizard of Oz winds we had yesterday for that.

At any rate, here is our itinerary through to Wilmington, NC (subject to change, of course). It will take us longer than originally expected, since we will need to slow it down some.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017: We have a short day. We will anchor in Cumberland Sound, five miles north of Fernandina Beach, FL.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017: Continue on to Jekyll Island, GA. Predicted bad weather will force us to stay for two nights.

Friday, May 5, 2017: We will head to Dolbow Island, GA, where we will anchor.

Saturday, May 6, 2017: Our anchor stop will be Tom Creek, GA.

Sunday, May 7, 2017: Heading to a marina in Savannah, GA for the night.

Monday, May 8, 2017: We are sooo close, anchoring at Beaufort, SC.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017: This will be an overnight marina stop at Charleston, SC.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017: Another anchorage at Sugar Mill, near Georgetown, SC.

Thursday, May 11, 2017: Our final night before our destination for this leg of our trek, we will head into a marina at Myrtle Beach, SC.

Friday, May 12, 2017: Arrive in Wilmington, NC, just in time for some appointments on Monday. We will stay here for a few months, getting more work completed, attending to some doctor appointments, and relaxing.

I’ll update as necessary.