Bailey in the cockpit

Bailey liked doing a blog post last time but he thought it took a lot of time that would be better spent sleeping.

What a fun night at the Visitor’s Center!  We gathered on Suzi and Larry’s boat, Kanau along with Tom and Jane from Aurochs.  Larry happened to ask if anyone was musical.  That’s all it took for him and Skip to get out the guitars and entertain us!  After a while, Tom started asking about favorite musicians and we learned that he liked all the same people we did–Subdudes, John Hiatt, Lucinda Williams, Chris Smither and even Xavier Rudd!!

 

Dismal Swamp reflections
Dismal Swamp reflections

We were on the outside of the raft of 3 boats tied to the dock and luckily, no one was anxious to make the early lock opening.  We slept in and left around 10am for the 11am opening of the South Mills lock.  There were 2 large power boats also traveling the Dismal Swamp with us.  They were pretty clueless–conversing on channel 13 (which is a working channel for ship traffic), running their generators all night and generally annoying us.  One of their guests asked me how much power our solar panels generate.  When I responded, he asked if they run our air conditioning.  I replied that we’re cruisers–we don’t have or need air conditioning! 

South Mills lock
South Mills lock

The South Mills lock brought us back down to the level of the Pasquotank river (about 11 feet.)  We motored along the winding river anxiously watching the sky as it turned dark and it started to rain.  We made it to the free docks in Elizabeth City just before the wind gusted and the downpour started.  Elizabeth City is know for their hospitality.  Older gentlemen volunteer to welcome visiting boaters and help them tied up in the free slips.  Being told which lines to toss doesn’t bother me but it sure does rankle some people.  A a guy on small sailboat that arrived after us got into a real spat with the WWII veteran trying to help.  He made it clear he didn’t want any help.  The old guy sat on a bench and watched, providing lots of commentary.  Afterwards, they ‘kissed and made up’.  Later, a power boat came in next to us and that guy didn’t appreciate any help either.  We later learned that he was a retired naval captain.  I guess I can understand where he’s coming from…

After a few nights on the boat, a dinner out was in order.  We joined Larry and Suzi for a meal at Grouper’s restuarant which is right here on the dock.  It was a good meal…especially the mango cheesecake!

After losing 3 straight games of dominoes, I was ready for bed!  I covered the hatches and was hoping to sleep in this morning.  Not so…I was awakened by “Forest Gump” having a lively conversation on the dock.

It’s a cloudy, cool day.  Nice day to hang out and relax since nothing is open here on Sunday’s.  Tomorrow, we leave early to cross the Albemarle Sound into the Alligator River.

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