Thunderbolt GA 07.11.18

It is now five days since we left Montreal and this will be the first report of the new cruise south.

We left Montreal at 06.30 hrs in the Weber’s Windstar and crossed into the USA by the 1000 Islands Bridge. A very picturesque drive with no excitements at all, but time to enjoy the scenery and the colours of Virginia which were in full spate and magnificent. We have done this trip previously taking the road closer to the coast, which entails much more traffic and passing through the outskirts of New York and Baltimore so this time was a treat and far more colourful. Our first night was in Woodstock VA and the second day passed in similar fashion enjoying the scenery. We arrived in Savannah at about 17.30 hrs and enjoyed our first shrimp dinner at Tubby’s a local watering hole where we have eaten three times to date. We stayed at La Quinta hotel for the first three nights since, for the first two the boats were still on the hard and for the third night it was quite cold, but have been living aboard since then.

Thursday 15th we were on board “Solitaire 1” at 07.30 hrs and hard at work preparing her for the launch. The next day was spent polishing the hull and at close to noon the trailer came and we were off to the launching, always a nerve wracking moment. All went very smoothly, the people at this yard are very professional, as they must be, considering the size of the boats around – we, at 40’, are dinghies compared to most of the boats that they handle. For example there is a 135 Perini Navi on the hard being refurbished at present!!

We had remembered all the seacocks and “Solitaire 1” took to the water as to the manner borne – more importantly the engine started with little fuss and so we moved out of the launching area stern first, and onto our berth for the next week or so. “L’Equipe” followed soon after with, again, no excitements.

Since then it has been work, work and more work. We now have the sails bent on and arranged as they should be – we have given the engine and all water intakes etc a good inspection and cleaning, clothes are slowly but surely being put away and the cabin is not looking such a disaster area. Tomorrow the 19th we expect to have our new wind generator installed so that the batteries will be charged by the wind – our new Honda generator will also help with this, so we hope not to have to run the engine as much as we did last cruise when moored in Hopetown for three or four weeks.
Jacqueline fixing up the spreader boots on L'Equipe ...

Both “Solitaire 1” and “L’Equipe” are starting to look as they should, and it will not be long before we are able to cast off and start our new adventure. We look forward to that moment. One thing that we have noticed is the large number of boats passing through on their way south – Canadians, Americans one flying the Dutch flag this afternoon and a couple of French flags have all passed on their way South. It’s time for us !!!

T’is getting late so will close for the moment.