We left the Alligator River marina early on Friday morning and called the bridge for an opening.  It was still pretty windy and very tricky getting out of our slip.  It was much calmer on the other side of the bridge as we made our way down the Alligator river and entered the Alligator/Pungo River Canal.  As we approached the canal, we were warned of a large floating log right at the entrance.  That was the only obstacle in the canal.  It’s much wider and deeper than the Dismal Swamp canal.  We followed the canal in practically a straight line, much like a highway.  It was boring…but I prefer that!  This was our second-longest travel day, almost 44 miles.

We arrived in Belhaven and called the marina.  The owners are very nice.  They came out to the dock and got us securely tied.  The wind was expected to pipe up over night and did it ever!  I remember waking up sometime in the middle of the night to feel the boat bouncing around. 

We took Bailey for a long walk around town to check out the amenities.  After that, a nice warm shower in the best bathrooms since leaving home!  The ladies room is decorated in a beach motif and they had towels (now you know I’m roughing it when I get excited about towels!)  The men’s room had memoribelia from a man who served in WWII, complete with his ‘dear John’ letters.

When the marina owner gave us a run-down on the restaurants, she referred to one place as having a ‘chef’.  That sounded very appealing to us so we went to the Back Bay Cafe–a small place inside of a wine/book shop.  The food was wonderful.  They change their menu each month and this month’s offerings were French.  I had cassoulet and Skip had the filet.  Each were served with recommended French wines.  The best part was dessert – an apple tarte tatin.  The owner/chef explained how she made it and it took 2 days to complete.  Best dessert ever!

While dining, we chatted with a couple sitting at the next table.  They were local and boaters.  They invited us to their house on Saturday night for dinner–they were having some new neighbors over as well as other boating people.

On Saturday morning, the wind was really blowing.  We had our breakfast and spent most of the morning in the gazebo to avoid the rocky boat.  The few boats anchored in the harbor were hobby-horsing so much and I was so grateful to be on dry land. 

We did laundry, read and tried to find a place to get a good wireless connection (apparently, the Verizon man hasn’t been around here much.)


If the weather is nice tomorrow, we’ll continue on our journey south.