So when your veterinarian from home expresses concern whether everything is OK because he hasn't seen a blog update in awhile, I guess it's time for a new posting! The fact is, we are fine and just have been too busy and having too much fun to find time to blog. I have also been persuaded by more experienced bloggers than I that it is an exercise in frustration to try to blog from an iPad, so I have hauled out my old but still breathing laptop and we'll see if this is easier. If so, you'll probably find me posting more often.
For nearly a week, from May 5-11, we were docked at the Waterside Marina in Norfolk for the Spring Looper Rendezvous, a gathering of about 150 current, past and future Loopers who came together to meet new friends, renew old acquaintances and attend three days of informational sessions covering everything from what to expect at each stage of the Loop, to safety seminars, to everything you ever wanted to know about diesel fuel. This is the third Rendezvous we've attended, although our first as active Loopers, and it is always a lot of fun and very helpful. Also exhausting -- the agenda tends to run from 8:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. We opened our boat for one of the afternoon "Looper Crawls", where attendees are invited to come aboard and view the boats. It's always fun to see the amazing variety of boats, and we know from past experience that it's very helpful for the Looper wannabees who may be shopping for a boat and are eager to get ideas. We were grateful for the many compliments Blue Heron received -- she really is a pretty boat, if we may so humbly say so!
The most valuable part of the Rendezvous was meeting many wonderful active Loopers with whom we hope to connect for parts of our travels. It's so interesting to talk to people from so many different places and backgrounds who all have this incredible adventure in common. There was a Swedish couple who sailed in their sailboat from
On Friday morning we were one of the first boats to leave the marina. We were happy to see so many of our new friends gathered to see us off and to help us with dock lines as we departed. Everyone always says the best part of doing the
We headed for Yorktown, where Craig and I had spent a short visit on our way down to
We have been to
And here's one of the best things we learned at
On Monday, we woke to find we had a brief window of calm weather and decided to move quickly to
For the past two days, we have been docked at the Annapolis City Marina, the same place we stayed with Karen a few weeks ago. We have enjoyed walking the town, sampling the shops and of course, eating more crab. Today we made our second visit to the U.S. Naval Academy and watched the daily noon meal formation, where the entire Brigade of Midshipmen gather in formation before going in for lunch. It’s so impressive to watch these disciplined young people go through their routines. Craig always has flashbacks to his Navy ROTC days when we visit the Academy, but even he never experienced many of the formalities that are a matter of daily life here.
This evening, we enjoyed wine time on the sundeck of our boat watching the weekly Wednesday sailboat races in the harbor. There is a big weekend race here that started this morning, so the activity in the harbor has been even more frenzied than usual. There really is no way to describe or even capture in pictures the nonstop coming and going and spinning on a dime that these sailboats engage in. And we have a front row seat!
Jeanne and Steve are returning to
Here is my closing thought for today. After one month living on board, eating out nearly every day and enjoying “docktails” every night, I have lost 2 lbs! I credit the dogs with that – we are all walking much more than at home. But in any case, I’m inclined to say I should have taken up cruising years ago!