Follow us on the water from land; no Dramamine needed!
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Cape Fear and Southport, NC
We left Beach House Marina in Surf City, NC, early yesterday to catch the 8 a.m. bridge opening. Our lives seem to revolve around bridges these days.
Finally had a fantastic weather day with no need for longjohns! Saw some mighty fine houses and lots of egrets and dolphins on the way to anchor out off Carolina Beach.
I've noticed that the blad cypress and loblolly pines have given way to longleaf pines, and now we're seeing lots of live oaks too. When we start seeing more Spanish moss in them, my blood pressure automatically drops. It's so peaceful.
Also saw a giraffe and a metal mermaid. I can just see the ARB approving these artistic statements in Governor's Land!
I just love individual expression of eclectic folk's tastes.
Today we left our anchorage early to motorsail down the 15 miles or so of the Cape Fear River to the really cute village of Southport. We stayed in a B&B here a few years ago and really loved the town. It's across from Bald Head Island, which we'd like to visit on our way north--whenever that is.
I kept looking for Robert DeNiro or Robert Mitchum to turn up onboard on the Cape Fear. I remember both the '60s and '90s remake as powerful terrifying movies. But the actual river was relatively calm today--but the current swift.
Pete had some nostalgic moments as we passed by Sunny Point Army Military Ocean Terminal, the largest ammunitions port in the world. Lieutenant Pete spent some time there in 1970 putting googads of nerve gas onboard a WWII Liberty Ship to "dispose" of it permanently--by sinking it 150 miles off the NC shore. Then we saw lots of Lientenant Dans on their Bubba Gump shrimp boats too. Are the shrimp here neurologically impaired?
I had lots of time today to walk by the many well maintained homes in Southport from the early 1800s to the early 1900s. It's like a "mini-Charleston" here--complete with horse-drawn carriages. A touch of Willieburg!.
Enjoyed dinner onshore at Mr. P's Bistro. Actually needed reserations, and the place was full.
We just met a couple from Warren, PA, across the dock who are friends of Mai and Paul Ignatius. Small world on the water. There are quite a few of us in this parade down the ICW.
"What bliss to be in the cockpit with the sun and the warm breeze on one's skin, just watching the sea, and the sky, and the sails" -Sir Francis Chichester
"Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the things you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from your safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." -Mark Twain
"He who goes to sea for pleasure would go to Hell for a pastime." -Samuel Johnson
"They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the wonders of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep" -Psalm 107